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  • Parker Esworthy

MGA Ep. 2 "Building You Up" w/ Morgan Tunks

Join Commercial Lines Underwriter, Morgan Tunks, and Kansas Marketing Representative, Parker Esworthy, as they discuss contractors, wind-hail buydown, and builder's risk.

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Transcript for Ep. 2 with Morgan Tunks

Parker: My name is Parker Esworthy. I'm the marketing representative for Chris Leef General Agency in the Kansas office, and this is Making Great Amazing. I'm joined today by our senior commercial lines underwriter, Morgan Tunks to assess some current trends in the industry. How are you doing today, Morgan?

Morgan: I'm doing well. How are you doing, Parker?

Parker: I'm doing great. I'm rocking my pink cowboy hat as we lost our sales competition with our marketing director, Kevin Conway. So can you tell us a little bit more about yourself?

Morgan: Sure. I've been at Chris Leef for over 10 years and I've been a commercial lines underwriter here for almost four years now. Um, I grew up in the Kansas City area, but recently moved to Joplin Missouri to be closer to my family. And I've been in Joplin for just over a year now, and it's been a really great fit for me and my family and I've also had the pleasure of connecting with some local agencies around here.

Parker: Well, that's awesome. Well, as you know, I'm new to the insurance industry. So what kind of current trends are you seeing out?

Morgan: Well, we're seeing more and more carriers move to a 2% minimum wind, hail deductible or even higher in some states, um, even in the standard market. So we've been able to alleviate some of the insured's responsibility of that deductible by offering wind, hail, deductible, buy down insurance, um, and as always we see quite a variety of contractors.

Parker: Okay, awesome. I think we'll start with the contractors. So obviously you're seeing a lot of contractors. What type of contractors are you usually seeing out?

Morgan: Um, we've been seeing a fair share of tree trimmers and lawn care professionals, um, some roofing companies, general contractors, plumbing and electrical contractors, and I've been seeing more and more welding and fabrication as well.

Parker: Wow. Sounds like you can handle quite the appetite when it comes to contractors. So I hear a lot of agents talking about pollution liability. Can you tell us a little bit more about.

Morgan: Sure. We've been seeing, uh, many contractors lately that are being required to carry CPL coverage or contractors' pollution liability. Um, and that coverage protects the insured against bodily injury, property damage or pollution cleanup costs that result from pollution conditions, um, that arise from the insured's operations and most contractors assume that their GL policy covers them for any third party injury or property damage claims. Um, but most GL policies typically contain a pollution exclusion, which excludes bodily injury or property damage arising from the release of a pollutant.

So pollutant is defined as an irritant. Or contaminant, whether in solid liquid or gaseous form, including when they can be regarded as an irritant or contaminant, smoke, vapors, soot, fumes, acids, alkalis chemicals and waste. So that can include paint or welding fumes, mold, asbestos, bacteria, or many other common things that a contractor can encounter in their daily line of work.

In addition to the contractor's pollution liability, most of our pollution carriers can also offer site pollution liability, which provides coverage for bodily injury or property damage claims resulting from pollution conditions that occur from a designated location or site. So this coverage would be beneficial for a recycling center, auto repair shop, or any other business dealing with fuel or other potential land pollutants.

And we can also offer storage tank liability insurance for gas stations, convenient stores or other businesses with underground or above ground fuel tanks. And, um, this coverage would protect the insured from pollution conditions emanating from a scheduled fuel storage tank if the contents of that tank were to leak and cause harm to a third party, whether that be bodily injury or property damage.

Parker: Sounds like an important coverage with a lot going into that. Now you have me curious about our wind hail deductions. What is a wind, hail buy down and how does it protect the insured?

Morgan: The intent of our wind hail, deductible buy down program is to reduce the insured's out-of-pocket cost. In the event of a wind hail claim, um, we can reduce the insured's wind hail deductible from a percentage amount to a lower percentage, a percentage to a flat dollar, or a flat dollar to a lower flat dollar amount.

Our policy responds, uh, when the insured's primary carrier responds to a wind hail related claim and the insured can choose retention options as low as 5,000. So we can write these for apartment buildings, we can write them for, we've seen some municipalities. Uh, we can do builders risk.

Parker: Interesting. Looks like the wind hail coverage really covers a broad spectrum there. So I know you mentioned builder's risk there. What is a builder's risk coverage?

Morgan: So builders risk, um, can be ground up course of construction for a brand new building or a vacant building that is undergoing renovation. Um, we can consider GL and property coverage for either scenario.

Our policy would contemplate the construction operations being performed at a scheduled premises and can include minor non-structural renovations or major remodeling projects such as any building additions. Um, our policies can provide coverage for the existing structure as well as the building materials and the supplies that are left at the job.

Parker: Awesome job shedding some light on builders risk. Our wind hail deduction, and contractors today sounds like some extremely valuable coverages. Well, thanks again Morgan for taking the time to speak with me today. I'm sure the applications are piling up, so I'll let you get back to it. Thanks everyone for tuning in, and we'll see you every other Wednesday. May the commission be high in the hard times, pass you by, see you in a couple of weeks.

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