Is the Assigned Risk making a comeback?

Having been working in insurance for over 30 years, I can recall the days of using carbon paper and typewriters.  Back when I started, rating auto policies was done manually, with limited rating factors.  Nowadays, rates are done through the computer using algorithms and it’s almost impossible to determine one’s rate.  Rates are driven in a large part by credit, prior coverage history together with tickets, accidents and other claims going back as far as 5 years. Some companies even charge more for claims involving personal injury regardless of whose fault the accident was.

Interestingly, over all those years, the Assigned Risk really hasn’t changed it’s rating structure. The Assigned Risk is a state’s auto program that is designed to write people that have trouble getting insurance. Although I haven’t used the AR for years,  I am beginning to now find that the AR or NYAIP can be a good fit in certain circumstances. This is because the  AR does not base a rate on one’s credit or on having prior coverage.  Furthermore, only tickets and at fault accidents, going back just 39 months, are rated. Not at fault accidents, hit and run accidents and no seat belt tickets are not rated.  The AR also does not begin charging for a ticket or an accident until it is at least 3 months old.

Knowing the ins and outs of the Assigned Risk aka the New York Auto Insurance Plan has come in very useful.
Posted in Blog

Happy First Day of Spring!


From all of us at Curran Cooney Penny Insurance Agency, we would like to wish all of our clients a lovely first day of spring. Cheers to warmer, longer days and more time spent outside!

Posted in Blog, News

Traveling? Maybe Not ..

Cancel for Any Reason coverage will soon be available in New York State. If you are considering traveling and would like to have this coverage, it will be available once the carriers have updated their filings and policy forms. Please see attached article link from one of our new sources as well as a link to the Travel Insurance Website that we recommend. They are so friendly, knowledgeable and provide excellent guidance. I use them myself for all my travels. -Mike Wittkowski


Travel Policies Offered in New York as Coronavirus Spreads

The travel insurance I use:

Posted in News

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Posted in News

AETNA International Business

We are proud to be able to now offer the AETNA International Medical Insurance suite of products to all eligible clients.  With over 37.9 million client members worldwide covering businesses and diplomats through their Consulates, Missions and Embassies, the AETNA’s program is one of the best options for medical, dental and vision insurance for any business or government entity that has an international exposure.  AETNA is focused on providing great services to their clients as well as assisting them in whatever way possible when overseas or local.  AETNA will provide excellent benefits and can create a tailored plan to suit your needs. With 4 international hubs across the world, employees in 16 countries, 1.2 million medical providers in the US alone, AETNA is able to assist customers 24/7 anywhere. Call us today if you would like to learn more about how Aetna and our agency can help your organization.


(Also see the PowerPoint in this link for more information – AETNA International business) 

Posted in Blog

Do you have a will?

Did you know that if you die without a will,  the state’s statutory laws will apply and all your assets will be divided amongst your family members without any say from you?  In addition, guardians will be appointed for your dependents and they probably will not be the same that you would have chosen.  There could be many additional costs in terms of legal fees and, if you had even a modest estate, most likely higher taxes.   The state will not make any attempt to limit your exposure to taxes and will not make charitable contributions on your behalf.

By making and properly executing a will, you get to appoint your own executor,  name the guardians for your dependents, make specific bequests and charitable contributions and be as creative as you would like.  Since this could be the last interaction with others where it affects your loved ones, why not have your will properly represent your thoughts, wishes and values?

Another great estate planning tool is the use of a Trust.  Whether it be a Family or a Life Insurance or Charitable Trust, a trust can allow you to ensure the financial well-being of your family by removing assets from an estate which helps to reduce probate expenses and possible estate taxes.  A trust can potentially provide an income to you and/or your designated survivor(s) for life (or a set number of years).  Lastly, a trust can enable assets to move swiftly, smoothly, and confidently into the hands of the desired recipient(s) because the assets escape probate. A trust is a very efficient estate planning tool in so many ways.

Feel free to call our agency for advice and direction on any and all estate planning questions.  We believe in the importance of estate planning and would love to share our knowledge with you.

Posted in News

Summer Vacation Tips

Vacation season is upon us! Imagine taking the kids to Disney World and returning home to a flooded basement, or even worst a break in. Here at Curran Cooney Penny we don’t want this to happen to you! We have complied a list of tips for you to consider before leaving home for your next vacation.

  • Have a trusted friend or family member stop by daily to pick up any mail, and water your plants
  • Stop your mail. USPS can stop your mail for up to 30 days
  • Lock everything. Before you leave for paradise walk through your home and lock any possible entry point to you home. Ensure that ALL windows, even on the second floor, are locked and that all doors are locked with the deadbolt when applicable
  • Test and check that your smoke and carbon monoxide detector are working
  • Remove all spare keys hidden on the premises and store them away
  • Lock the garage door manually and disconnect the remote
  • If you leave your car in the airport parking lot or in a public parking area, change your home location in your GPS to a nearby restaurant in case your car gets broken into or stolen
  • Stash all your valuables in your safe
  • Keep valuables too large to fit in your safe (i.e. laptops) out of sight
  • Shut off your water main
  • Unplug all non-essential appliances (i.e. coffee maker, TV, computers, lamps, etc.)
  • Install an outdoor sensor light
  • Place security system stickers near your front and back door
  • Simulate human presence with lights on a timer
  • Ask a neighbor to put out your garbage cans and return them, even if they must put a bag of their trash inside the can
  • If you have a lawn maintenance company, don’t cancel your scheduled appointment. If you do not have one, hire someone to keep the lawn maintained in your absence
  • Keep a low profile on social media. Save all your vacation photos for Throwback Thursday when you return home

While you are enjoying your summer adventures, keep in mind that the staff at Curran Cooney and Penny are here to assist you with all your home coverage needs.


Posted in Blog