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Documentation needed from new subscriber / E&O insurance – SARPG / CS Webinar Schedule

June 27 2020
Advanced notice:
Central Station* 2020 webinar series starts July 13, 2020.  K&K will be hosting webinars by central stations, one at a time, who will address "why you should be using our central station".  Each webinar will be approximately 20 minutes and then Q&A opportunity.  See what your central station has to offer or what others offer, enabling you to choose the right central station for you.  
You should be using a central station listed on The Alarm Exchange to be assured of quality and more importantly, accountability
  *  only central stations on The Alarm Exchange will be invited to participate
Register Now for the CS webinar series: 
AvantGuard Monitoring Centers - July 13, 2020
UCC – United Central Control - July 14, 2020
Rapid Response - July 15, 2020
Dispatch Center - July 16, 2020
Statewide Central Station - July 17, 2020 
Documentation needed from new subscriber
            Should an alarm company secure documentation of ownership of a property, which is involved in a real estate sale prior to transferring a monitoring account into new owner’s name?
            Is there any liability for fire or burglary, if we transfer an account we are monitoring without proof that person calling us is in fact the legal owner?
    Please advise.
Thank you,
            Two issues come to mind:  you should know who your subscriber is; it’s full legal name, or in the case of a natural person, the subscriber’s name.  Therefore, if dealing with an entity, it should end with Inc or LLC or something other than Joe’s Pizza Place.  If your subscriber is a natural person the contract shouldn’t read Mrs Jones.  
            But knowing who your subscriber is doesn’t mean you need to do a title search before installing a system, even a fire alarm.  Occupants often have the authority to install alarm systems.  The Standard Form Agreement contains a representation that the subscriber has such authority.  
            If you have an existing account you shouldn’t transfer it unless the existing subscriber provides the request and authorization.  You will also need the agreement of the transferee – the new subscriber.  A new subscriber can either assume the existing agreement or sign a new agreement.
            It’s not a bad idea to get a copy of a natural person’s ID, a driver’s license for instance and a copy of a lease or deed to property,  Of course these documents may not be available and you won’t want to hold up making a deal waiting for them.  
E&O insurance - SARPG
            My Insurance agent is working with SARPG getting a quote to replace our Hartford policy and I think I already know what your answer is to this but I thought your official response would put my agent at ease. Please read his message to me:
“As a heads up, Hartford has taken a very large increase on their renewal pricing.  With a potential change in carriers, we suggest you send the attached policy form specimens from Lloyds of London and the Hartford renewal policies to your attorney who specializes in your industry.  While Rhett at US Risk tells me their product is “comparable” to Hartford, I am always wary of products that have this substantial of a price difference.  He tells me Hartford has been departing the alarm/security world and is likely the reason they have priced [your] renewal so high.  It would be money well spent to confirm the Lloyds of London risk retention group program via US Risk is comparable or better to what you have now with Hartford prior to making the switch should you want to.”
   Thank You
Name withheld
            I have no information that Hartford is leaving the alarm arena, though I can’t say I would be surprised.  If they haven’t changed the way they handle claims they should stop insuring alarm companies.  The difference between alarm insurance E&O and other insurance policies use to be that the carriers did not expect to pay damages in their alarm insurance program.  Once they insisted on using “house counsel” and treating alarm defense cases like slip and fall or car accident cases, the loss runs have to go up.  That ends up with higher premiums until the carrier prices itself out of the market.
            We don’t have this problem with SARPG [and, BTW, I have no confirmation what Hartford situation is].  SARPG is alarm industry owned.  It’s a risk purchasing group owned by its policy holders and covers itself with excess coverage through Lloyds of London.  More importantly, it covers itself with its Claims Administrator, Bart Didden, who is in the alarm business [he owns USA Central Station] and knows the alarm business and particularly how to handle claims against alarm companies.  
            There are very specific precautions alarm companies and their insurance carriers can take to reduce their exposure to liability and damages.  SARPG takes these measures, to varying degree, and is therefore able to better defend claims with better results.  These better results ultimately translate into lower premiums.
            Insurance brokers are more comfortable recommending “admitted” carriers, and I wouldn’t be comfortable recommending a fly by night company either.  A risk retention group out of Texas did go under in the 1980s, though I don’t think any alarm company was left holding the bag.  SARPG is not in that category because it’s industry owned and more importantly, industry supported.  SARPG is a good choice if your coverage is within 5 million.  If you need more coverage you will have to find an excess carrier on top of SARPG

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Ken Kirschenbaum,Esq
Kirschenbaum & Kirschenbaum PC
Attorneys at Law
200 Garden City Plaza
Garden City, NY 11530
516 747 6700 x 301