INSURANCE IN THE NETHERLANDS
In The Netherlands we can roughly distinguish between two different kinds of insurance providers: those who only conduct business with consumers through an intermediary, and those who are directly in touch with consumers, the so-called direct writers.
Intermediaries can be found in various forms; most usually they will be either:
- The ‘true’ intermediary
- The broker
- The authorised agent
The intermediary places insurance policies with insurance companies with which a cooperation agreement exists.
A broker will of course also be looking after the interests of his (our emphasis) clients. Brokers will not accept any kind of interference from another party; they guard their relationships very carefully. As such, brokers tend to have a slightly different approach than intermediaries.
It is also possible to buy and place insurance cover on the insurance exchange. This is where insurance policies are written that under normal circumstances would be too large for one insurance carrier to underwrite, whether because of the risk profile or because of the size of the risk to be insured.
The authorised agent will normally also fulfil the same type of role as an intermediary; but we think it’s important to understand that one or more insurance carriers have expressed their full confidence in such agent. This is demonstrated by:
Being authorised to arrange and close insurance policies for the account of the insurance carrier. Effectively this means that, within certain limits, these agents are permitted to do the same job as the insurance carriers can do themselves. This includes writing and administering policies, and of course also handling claims for damages or other events.
It is customary for a consumer to enter into an insurance arrangement with a carrier, and to use intermediary services in the process. In order to remove any appearance of partiality or favouritism, there do exist intermediaries who are not affiliated in any way with any insurance carrier, or financial institution. These intermediaries are at liberty to place the insurance policies they arrange wherever they think best.
All of this will of course guarantee you 100% independent advisory services, after all: it should not be the insurance carriers or financial institutions who call the shots, but You who is running the show. After all, they’re your own interests which must be served!
It is necessary to have a licence in order to work as an intermediary in the Netherlands. This licence is issued by the Financial Markets Authority and must cover every market segment in which the intermediary is active.
Where does EvR fit into this?
EvR was started in the early 30s to be an insurance brokerage firm. It has been, and continues to be, its primary focus. It is what we do best.
We act both as Advisors and as Insurance Intermediaries.
Of course we are in possession of all the necessary licences and qualifications, issued by the Financial Markets Authority (AFM). Our Licence number is: 12005222. We are also registered with the Registry of Insurance Intermediaries (RMiA).
No insurance company has any kind of ownership stake in our company. We are not ‘producing’ numbers for any large shareholder; we don’t favour any one over another. So, we can proudly say that we are independent, 100%.
Most of our business is in non-life insurance. That is where our expertise is greatest and where we believe we can be of the greatest service to you. Nevertheless, in the Netherlands nowadays it has become customary for insurance intermediaries to also offer advice on life insurance plans, pension savings plans and mortgages. Looking around at what we are seeing, we would much rather not join the ranks of those intermediaries who let you think that they have in-depth knowledge of all markets — we think that’s impossible today, anyway — we would rather make sure our clients can get the higher quality they are used to from us. No, we don’t leave our customers out in the cold, because we have had for some time a great cooperation with another company that strictly specializes in these areas. You would not be the first satisfied client who has been helped in this manner.
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