Brokers, agents and representatives
An insurance intermediary can work as part of several categories (general insurance agent, insurance or reinsurance broker, insurance representative, intermediary insurance representative).
Since 30 April 2007, all insurance intermediaries are to be registered, including European intermediaries that are entitled to pursue their activity throughout the country.
The Organisation for the Registration of Insurance Intermediaries (ORIAS) is responsible for this register, that can be viewed online. Browsing through the register enables insured parties to check that the insurance intermediaries called upon are indeed registered.
Insurance or reinsurance broker
This trader (natural or legal person) conducts his business with one or several insurance companies outside any contractual framework. He acts on behalf of his customers and, in the event of misconduct, accepts professionally liability. In order to sell insurance contracts, brokers are required to take out professional indemnity insurance and must show evidence of financial security, provided by a bank or insurance company.
General insurance agent
This natural or legal person is a liberal professional. This category includes those who conduct their business within the framework of an exclusive mandate concluded with one or several insurance companies.
He is entitled to handle certain claims himself, provided they do not exceed a defined threshold.
He represents the insurance company, for which he is liable. In certain cases, the general agent can sell insurance contracts on behalf of other insurance companies, different to the only he represents. This type of business is concluded outside his general agent mandate and under his own responsibility.
He also sells insurance contracts. This category includes all self-employed natural or legal persons other than general insurance agents, mandated by an insurance company either with or without contractual exclusiveness.
Intermediary insurance representative
This natural or legal person is mandated by an insurance or reinsurance broker, a general insurance agent or an insurance representative. The intermediary on behalf of whom he acts is responsible for any misconduct observed during his mandate.
The work conducted by insurance representatives and intermediary insurance representatives is limited to the provision and possibly the cashing of contributions, as well as to the remittance of life insurance funds to the rightful insured party or beneficiary. It excludes the management of insurance contracts and the settlement of claims.