La. Residents Encouraged to ‘Get Smart’ About Insurance in 2004

January 16, 2004

Every January, Americans make resolutions for the coming year, but most likely “getting smarter about insurance” is not at the top of their lists.

However, when it comes to insurance, knowledge is your best policy. That’s why the Louisiana Department of Insurance and the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) are encouraging consumers to get smart about their coverage during the third annual Get Smart About Insurance Week, Jan. 19-23, 2004.

During this special week, consumers are urged to call the Department of Insurance toll free statewide at 1-800-259-5300 or visit their Web site at to request a free brochure and get information about what they need and should expect from insurance coverage. The Department serves as an unbiased source of information that can help consumers understand the complexities of their insurance coverage.

“The main idea behind Get Smart About Insurance Week is educating consumers, not selling or buying insurance policies,” Commissioner of Insurance Robert Wooley said. “The Department is here to give consumers impartial insurance information in order to help them make sure their families are properly covered.”

The NAIC, with the help of the national research company OCR International, conducted surveys to gauge Americans’ understanding and perceptions of their insurance coverage.

The surveys reportedly show that even though most Americans feel
they have about the right amount of insurance coverage (72 percent), only 33 percent say they understand the details of those policies “very well.”

Compared to last year’s survey, the number of people who think they have the right amount of insurance has increased. However, the number of consumers who say they understand the details of their coverage “very well” has remained about the same.

“This information shows that many Americans may have a false sense of security when it comes to their insurance coverage,” Wooley said. “Although most Americans find peace of mind in having insurance, a better understanding will put them in the driver’s seat.”

The youngest adults (ages 18-24) are reportedly the least likely to understand the details very well (20 percent). Understanding increases with age, as almost half of the participants 65 and older claim they know their insurance details very well (45 percent).

“Young adults are particularly in need of education about the nature of insurance coverage, given their limited life experience and pending
lifestyle changes, as they begin family responsibilities,” Wooley added.

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