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

To Insure or Self-Insure, that is the question?

As an insurance professional for over 30 years, I have had countless conversations with clients.  When it comes to insurance,  you are either covered or not.  You either decide to secure insurance or not.  An insurance policy is a contract between you and the insurance company.  Insurance companies want to include terms that benefit them and you need to make sure that the terms benefit you.  At the time of a loss,  the terms and conditions of your coverage will dictate how the claim is settled and what the outcome will be.


With this in mind, every individual and business’s needs are different.  Each one of us is different and our needs differ in so many ways.  Therefore, one should consider insurance that is customized to best suit his or her individual lifestyles.  In my opinion, what is most important to insure are those things that you cannot afford to replace and losses that would have a devastating effect on your family.  If you can replace something without it affecting you or causing you any type of anxiety,  that you can self-insure.  Here in the Berkshires, having the proper insurance on your home or property and everything in it makes great sense.  Having the proper liability insurance when you have grown up toys, a business or building is critical.  Umbrella coverage can provide an extra layer on top of everything else.  Insuring for physical damage on your older vehicles,  ATV or snowmobile, might not be as critical, depending upon the values of those items.  Knowing and having great medical insurance is also key and having the proper life and disability insurance to protect yourself and your family’s financial future is also very important.


When speaking to clients, I try to put things into perspective in such a way that they can relate to it.  Like the Berkshires,  I love my profession and how I help clients better understand coverages.  If you have an insurance challenge, an insurance professional can perhaps help you.  There is never a problem until the problem occurs.  My suggestion is to be prepared for anything as best as possible and insurance can play a huge role, if properly obtained.  You should choose your insurance professional like you choose any other professional.  Take the time and you will be rewarded with knowledge and the ability to make great decisions.  To insure or self-insure, that is the question?

-As seen in the April 2019 issue of the Otis Gazette, Massachusetts

Posted in News

Celebrating UPC’s 20th Anniversary in Florida!

We had the exciting opportunity to visit Florida this past weekend and celebrate UPC’s 20 Year Anniversary with them. We are grateful to be working with such a good company and look forward to work more with UPC in the future!

Posted in News

Being an independent agency means we offer a choice of companies and products. Let us help you today.

Posted in News

Insurance for Jewelry: What You Should Know

Over the years, you may have accumulated some jewelry – from an engagement ring, expensive necklace to a finely crafted watch. You may also be looking into purchasing some new items of value. Either way, it’s a good idea to schedule these items on your Homeowners policy or to buy a separate jewelry policy to protect them. To learn more about the questions you should be asking regarding jewelry insurance, here is a some valuable information from one of our carriers, Safeco:

You can also look on our Facebook Page at some posts we shared from Travelers, another carrier that provides jewlery insurance.

Lastly, if you have any questions regarding your current coverage and seeing about adding jewelry, feel free to call, text, or email us!

Posted in Blog