The BCS health insurance certificate (COI) is a document that serves as the official form of employment insurance. It is the current formality of a health insurance policy that contains valuable information and details and allows them to insure themselves against third party risks.
Simply put, a certificate of insurance (COI) indicates what an auto ID card means for business insurance. It is proof of insurance for your business.
When you buy a car insurance policy, you also get a supplementary document – the insurance card. You keep it in your vehicle to present it as proof of insurance in case of an accident or traffic stop. Likewise, when you buy a general liability policy, you should also obtain an insurance certificate that you can use to prove your business’s insured status when entering into new contracts.
Just as an insurance card is a tiny, compact version of an otherwise long contract, an insurance certificate contains the most relevant details of your general liability policy in a standard, one-page form. The most commonly used type of COI is the ACORD 25 form.
It is important to note that the insurance card itself is not a policy; instead, the document’s sole purpose is convenience. The same goes for an insurance certificate for business. A COI aims to facilitate access to the most important information on your policy, including the coverage of your policy, the carrier, the policy’s validity and expiration dates, and policy limits.
Who Needs a Business Insurance Certificate?
If you are a business owner, you must have an insurance certificate. Damn it’s that easy.
Insurance certificates are essential documents in any industry that uses contract workers. Whether you’re working in the construction, hospitality, logistics or healthcare industry, once contracts are signed and work begins, good insurance is all you need to protect a business from third party liability.
Things get more complex as more entities enter the picture. As a project owner, you are not only in charge of your business’s insurance policy, you are also vulnerable to the details of each of your vendors’ policies, and every worker comes with their own risk of personal injury or property damage. . More vendors mean more liability, and insurance certificates help protect against third-party risks.
Ok, Collected COIs. What will happen now?
To reduce your risk, you must have processes in place for collecting and verifying your vendors’ COIs.
Here are a few things you’ll want to consider during your COI monitoring and assessments:
- Is the document real? COIs can be easily changed . To verify the authenticity of a COI, contact the issuing insurance agent.
- Do policy boundaries provide sufficient protection for the project at hand?
- Are the effective and expiration dates consistent with the expected duration of the insured’s participation in the project?
Important Tip: Beware of sellers who undercut their competitors’ prices, as this is often an indication that a business is underinsured.
Large projects such as hotel construction often involve hundreds of workers and thus hundreds of COIs. Collecting and tracking all of these properly can quickly turn into a big time sucking. If you are outsourcing a fair amount of workforce, your best defense against costly insurance certificate custody is to entrust your document management to a COI tracing service provider, such as Business Credentialing Services (BCS).
How BCS Makes COI
COI monitoring is Business Credentialing Services’ primary service offering. With the help of our proprietary software, the BCS Application, we will authorize you to collect and review COIs or our team will have done it on your behalf. The self-service solution equips you with our time-saving platform, while the full-service option also enables expert analysts to work with insurance agents and vendors to correct the insurance discrepancies we inevitably encounter.
With our full service solution, the sausage is made as follows:
- First, a trained team of compliance analysts facilitates the collection and storage of insurance documents.
- The documents are then reviewed. Depending on your unique needs, we may limit our review to COIs or expand it to include endorsements and policy pages.
- During the review process, we will identify insurance deficiencies and plan remedial changes.
- We then correspond with vendors and intermediaries to ensure that optimal fit is re-established, depending on the contract, while relationships are still intact.
- Maintaining insurance compliance is an ongoing task, so even after all necessary adjustments have been made, BCS will continue to protect you from liability by monitoring expiration dates until you are no longer vulnerable to risk transfer.