Insurance adjusters may be employed directly by insurance companies or they may be self-employed and work for a variety of companies or the public on a case-by-case basis. They may also work on general insurance claims or they can specialize in specific areas of insurance.
In industry parlance, an adjuster who works directly for an insurance company as a salaried employee is known as a “staff adjuster”. They represent only the interests of the insurance company they are employed by and its clients. When recruiting for staff adjuster positions, insurance companies tend to show preference for those who have completed some university or college education, or for those who have worked their way through the ranks of the company and acquired a detailed knowledge along the way.
An independent adjuster is a self-employed contractor who is typically hired by and adjusting firm who is inturn hired by insurance companies to handle claims on a case-by-case basis. Reasons an independent adjuster might be contracted could include that the volume of work is more than can be handled by the staff adjusters, a claim might require specialized knowledge in a specific area, or they might be located in or able to travel to an area where the insurance company has no staff adjusters available. Independent adjusters are also very much in demand in the period following a natural disaster or catastrophe.
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A public adjuster differs from staff adjusters and independent adjusters in that they represent the rights of the policy holder rather than the insurance company and are much less common. Their duties can range from helping policy holders to fully understand the legal wording of their policy documents to negotiating with insurance companies on …