History of Valentine’s Day

How did St. Valentine become associated with love and romance? Get the full story behind the holiday.
Did you know

PIA of Tennessee is the exclusive sponsor of the Certified Professional Insurance Agent (CPIA) professional designation program in Tennessee.

Invest in your future and demonstrate your commitment to professionalism in insurance sales and marketing. This first-of-its kind, hands-on training will help empower you to efficiently create and distribute an effective insurance program .
Learn more @ http://piatn.com/cpia/

Why CPIA -In Their Own Words!

“The CPIA classes that I attended taught me a lot on how to better communicate with our prospects/insureds. We all sometimes forget how important that first impression can be. It can mean the difference between you getting/losing the prospect/insured. The classes also taught me that I need to be more pro-active in growing our agency’s book of business, and CPIA teaches you the tools you need in order to do that. I was really impressed with the courses, and I feel like a much better Account Manager since I have completed them. I hope that the knowledge I took away from my CPIA classes will be an asset to our agency.”

Gracie Nicholson, CPIA Account Manager, Swallows Insurance Agency

“I feel the CPIA program offers a solid educational value for its members that will open their eyes to other ways of bringing value to their clients, win new business and reduce the risk for an E&O claim. The instructors brought great knowledge to the subjects they taught.”

Ryan McKinney, CPIA, CWCC Managing Partner, John M Green Insurance, Inc

PIA and AVYST are excited to announce that PIA members’ free trial of AVYST’s eForms Wizard has been extended to March 31, 2019.

This PIA member benefit is an innovative software solution that enables insurance agents and producers to efficiently interview clients and prospects on-site with or without access to the internet. Using the eForms Wizard, agents can input data once and share it across multiple forms without the need to rekey all of the data into their management system. Coming in January is the services first release of carrier and agency specific forms, so be sure to watch for the new update.

Not only does eForms Wizard streamline the entire submission process, it also improves the customer experience, as prospects and clients are receiving their quotes faster and with fewer interactions with their agents. Carrie Mahoney of Mark Anthony Associates recently told PIA:

“AVYST’s eForms Wizard has been a great time saving product to bring potential new customers to market with up to date applications and ACORD forms. I don’t need to enter all the information into my agency management system to get the quote going and with the information automatically passed from form to form, it saves tons of precious time. If the customer moves from prospect to insured, I just print the signed application forms into the PDF format and attach it to the customer file. I highly recommend this product!”
PIA Market Access offers more than just market access. If you are an agent and you already have your own carrier appointments, you can join the PIA Market Access "Best of Both Worlds" Program. The Best of Both Worlds Program enables agents who are seeking a c/l and p/l comparative rater to use the platform while utilizing their existing carrier contracts and augmenting additional market access with InsureZone contracts within the platform.
PIA Market Access, available at www.PIAMarketAccess.com , is a wholesale market access program that will help PIA members access over 50 nationwide and specialty personal and commercial lines markets from a number of admitted "A" or better-rated companies. For a current list of carriers available in each state, please refer to the Carrier page at www.PIAMarketAccess.com .
PIA Market Access is made possible through a partnership between PIA and InsureZone, Inc., based in Fort Worth, Texas. PIA has negotiated an exclusive low monthly rate for the use of InsureZone technology and market access. Agents who join the PIA Market Access Program will receive two months free.
Agents can expect to see competitive commission rates. Agents using their own contracts will receive 100 percent of the commission on those sales.
PIA Market Access is available to PIA members in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Carrier availability varies by state.
PIA Market Access is a PIA member-only program.

Learn more about PIA Market Access: www.PIAMarketAccess.com
Events & Info
Upcoming PIA National webinars:

DocIT for Agents Webinar — February 14 at 2 PM ET
Hartford Flood Webinar - February 22 at 2 PM ET
Floodbroker.com Webinar – March 13 at 2 PM ET 
2019 Convention
Why should you attend?

This is a historical moment that is unequaled in the insurance industry!

Be part of the 2019 convention where you will be joined by your fellow agents who have built agencies and have realized true success.

  1. Learn from some of the most successful agency owners in the industry how to build your agency stronger, larger, and faster.
  2. Build relationships with fellow agents from all around Tennessee.
  3. Learn how to enrich your clients experience.
  4. Learn tactical strategies that you can implement in your agency right now.
  5. Learn how to keep your retention level up.
  6. Be inspired and learn strategies to implement to make 2020 the most successful year yet.
  7. Be inspired by spending time with industry leading companies.
  8. Get some down time in an amazing location, where you can focus on making your agency a better agency for both yourself, your team and your clients.

Learn more: www.PIATNconvention.com
2nd Annual Herbert Montgomery Golf Tournament will benefit
"A Soldiers Child Foundation"

Please take time to watch the video below to get more information about this charity and the wonderful inspiring work they do.

Can't wait to see you on the golf course!
2018 Convention Recap
Legislative Updates
STAY CONNECTED: PIA Federal Legislative Summit  

The five-week partial government shutdown cost the U.S. economy about $3 billion in forgone economic activity that won’t be recovered, the Congressional Budget Office said in a new report Monday. The agency projected that an overall $11 billion in losses due to the shutdown over President Donald Trump’s border wall will be offset by a projected $8 billion boost for the GDP through the remainder of the year.

The impact on the insurance industry is still being assessed . Various industry leaders and stakeholders were gathered in New York days before the shutdown ended at the annual Property/Casualty Insurance Joint Industry Forum held by the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.). One thing participants noticed was who wasn’t there.
For example, FEMA Deputy Administrator Dan Kaniewski had been invited to speak at the event, but he wasn’t able to attend due to the shutdown. “It’s a shame that we can’t have guests like that because of this type of activity, which we all know is more political than anything else,” Sean Kevelighan III president and CEO, said.

Roy Wright, president and CEO of the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety , was the former chief executive of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). “I’ve got to tell you, as someone who’s worked in that space and led as the chief executive national flood at FEMA, so much about these kinds of things just really gets at a visceral level.”

“Those are folks, some of them are furloughed, but many of them actually are at work, and they’re working without a paycheck. That affects real families, and it just pains you to see how that plays,” Wright said. “At the end of the day, there are real services that are provided to Americans, and there’s a set of professionals that have been brought in, that are part of our insurance industry.”
PIA: Threat to State Regulation Is Alive and Well

PIA believes it remains necessary to stay vigilant against measures that would expand the role of the federal government into insurance regulation. 

Some may have thought that Republican control of Congress and the White House would lessen the risk of federal insurance regulation. In truth, even with GOP majorities in both chambers, and with a Republican in the White House, the 115 th  Congress took steps that threatened the successful state insurance regulatory system.

“The lesson that should be learned from this experience is that, regardless of which party controls Congress, it is always necessary to stay vigilant to defeat measures that would expand the role of the federal government in the regulation of insurance,” wrote PIA National’s vice president of government relations Jon Gentile in  an article for the  National Underwriter .

“PIA will continue to stand up against either party, on any issue, that seeks to erode the successful system of state insurance regulation to the disadvantage of independent insurance agents and consumers,” Gentile said.

PIA National's government relations team recently launched the PIA Advocacy Blog, your one-stop shop for timely updates on what's happening on Capitol Hill and on state and federal regulatory issues. Follow the blog by visiting www.PIAAdvocacy.com .  

Here are some of the recent posts on PIA Advocacy :

In a major win for PIA National and small-business insurance agencies across the country, final regulations were issued on Friday, January 18, by the U.S. Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) saying that, for the most part, insurance agents are permitted to take the 20 percent pass-through deduction provided by the tax law passed at the end of 2017. [ READ MORE ]

Each year, PIA agents from around the country come to Washington, D.C. to attend PIA National's annual congressional fly-in known as the Federal Legislative Summit, or FLS. The FLS is your opportunity to represent the independent agent profession on issues that impact your business. [ READ MORE

In The News

The French data protection watchdog CNIL has fined Google a record €50 million for failing to provide users with transparent and understandable information on its data use policies. For the first time, the company was fined using new terms laid out in the pan-European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The maximum fine for large companies under the new law is 4 percent of annual turnover, meaning the potential maximum fine for Google was almost €4 billion.
The fine was levied, CNIL said, because Google made it too difficult for users to find essential information, "such as the data-processing purposes, the data storage periods or the categories of personal data used for the ads personalization", by splitting them across multiple documents, help pages and settings screens. That lack of clarity meant that users were effectively unable to exercise their right to opt out of data-processing for personalization of ads.
Advertise or Write in the Next Newsletter
If you are interested in advertising your business or writing an article in our newsletter, please contact:
Tina Nickell @ 615-823-5079 or tnickell@piatn.com
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