We have brought together the best insurance guides and information from the Washington State Insurance Commissioner, The Life and Health Insurance Foundation for Education, and The National Association of Insurance Commissioners. Below you will find links and summaries to help you make the best decisions regarding your insurance. As always, feel free to contact us with any further questions.

You can visit their websites directly at the following links:

National Association of Insurance Commissioners: http://www.naic.org/

The Life and Health Insurance Foundation for Education: http://lifehappens.org/

The Washington State Insurance Commissioner: http://www.insurance.wa.gov

The basics of life insurance
If someone will suffer financially when you die, chances are you need life insurance. Life insurance provides cash to your family after your death. This cash (known as the death benefit) replaces your income and can help your family meet many important financial needs like funeral costs, daily living expenses and college funding. What's more, there is no federal income tax on life insurance benefits.
You can learn more by visiting:
http://www.lifehappens.org/

Factors of auto insurance rates
Insurance companies calculate auto insurance rates by starting with a dollar amount (base rate). Your base rate is adjusted according to certain factors such as your age, sex, marital status, driving pattern, claims history, geographical area, credit history and the make, model and year of your vehicle.
You find out how your auto insurance rates are determined by visiting:
http://www.insurance.wa.gov/publications/auto/determiningAutoRates.pdf

Foreign travel and health insurance
When you travel outside your health insurer’s regular provider network, your insurer may not pay your medical bills, except for emergency care. Before you travel abroad, check with your health insurer to make sure you understand the rules in your policy. In some cases, especially if you plan to travel for an extended period to study or work, you may want to buy additional coverage.
You can learn more by visiting:
http://www.insurance.wa.gov/publications/other_types/foreign_travel_ins.pdf

How annuities work
There are three different kinds of annuities: fixed, variable, and indexed. You can buy any of these products by paying one single premium or by making flexible premium payments over a longer period of time. The payouts from most annuities start 10 to 15 years after the purchase. If you pay a single premium upfront, you may have the option to receive income payments within a year.
You can learn more by visiting:
http://www.insurance.wa.gov/publications/tips/Annuities.pdf

Guide to homeowner's insurance
A homeowner policy is a protection package that provides coverage for your property, medical payments for others, and protection against claims someone else makes against you. This type of policy is available for primary residence homes occupied by the owners. There are a wide variety of homeowner policies available, so be sure to consult with us to find out what coverage your insurance company provides.
You can learn more by visiting:
http://www.insurance.wa.gov/publications/home/homeowners_guide.pdf

Disaster preparedness
Knowing what to do before and after a disaster can help keep you and your family, and your property safe. An insurance plan also can help make the recovery process a little easier. If you suffer a loss following a major disaster, you may feel overwhelmed and confused about how to file your claim. To lessen your anxiety and to ensure you’re paid appropriately, it’s important to plan ahead. Here are some tips to help you prepare and protect your property from disaster:
http://www.insurance.wa.gov/publications/home/Disaster_prep.pdf

How credit scores affect insurance
Insurance companies have used credit information for the last several years to determine your level of risk before selling or renewing your auto, home, or renter policies. They use your credit history, along with other factors to develop an insurance score. Your score may impact your rate or whether a company will even offer you coverage.
You can learn exactly more about credit scores and how they affect your insurance options by visiting:
http://www.insurance.wa.gov/publications/credit/credit_scoring.pdf