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Reply to 3 Questions for the IMO/FMO Gurus Here     
Old 03-18-2017, 05:16 AM   #1
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3 Questions for the IMO/FMO Gurus Here 3 Questions for the IMO/FMO Gurus Here
Good morning everyone. If this is the wrong forum to ask these questions, please help me find where to post. Thank you.

1) I am with an IMO. How would I go about contracting with carriers that are not included (represented) with the IMO? Would it be in my best interest to add to my portfolio of carriers?

2) What kind of health insurance should I look into for my family and I? I've never been a 1099 employee before.

3) What suggestions do you have for filing taxes? Should I stay as a sole proprietor this year, or look into forming an S Corp or LLC?

Thank you all in advance.

Bubba
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Old 03-18-2017, 03:35 PM   #2
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Deadlily on 3 Questions for the IMO/FMO Gurus Here
 
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Originally Posted by Bubbadirect View Post
Good morning everyone. If this is the wrong forum to ask these questions, please help me find where to post. Thank you.

1) I am with an IMO. How would I go about contracting with carriers that are not included (represented) with the IMO? Would it be in my best interest to add to my portfolio of carriers?

...CUT...

Thank you all in advance.

Bubba
I believe the IMO you are contracted with will not approve of you contracting with additional IMOs, so you can add to your portfolio of carriers. N.A.A. type IMOs with lead programs, like Equis, Symmetry, InVida, etc., expect you to contract solely with their carriers through them. They feel the lead program gives them the right to treat you as though you are "captive". And, most would agree that if you are going to take advantage of their exclusive lead program, you should process all business obtained from those leads through that IMO.

N.A.A. type IMOs will also encourage newbies to contract with every carrier they represent. The problem with that for the newbie is that if he/she wants to leave, the IMO won't release and now the agent is free to leave the IMO, but unable to conduct business with those carriers for at least six months.

As a newbie, I would only contract with 3 to 4 carriers at the most. Then if things don't work out with that IMO and I want to remain in the insurance industry, I have only lost access to a few carriers for the next six months.

A word of caution, I know of one carrier, Foresters who will only permit an agent to move his/her contract twice, so I would hesitate from contracting with them until I actually found an IMO I believe I will be with for quite some time.

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“If you want to be a leader who attracts quality people,
the key is to become a person of quality yourself.”

- Jim Rohn

Last edited by Deadlily; 03-18-2017 at 04:25 PM.
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Old 03-19-2017, 05:05 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Deadlily View Post
I believe the IMO you are contracted with will not approve of you contracting with additional IMOs, so you can add to your portfolio of carriers. N.A.A. type IMOs with lead programs, like Equis, Symmetry, InVida, etc., expect you to contract solely with their carriers through them. They feel the lead program gives them the right to treat you as though you are "captive". And, most would agree that if you are going to take advantage of their exclusive lead program, you should process all business obtained from those leads through that IMO.

N.A.A. type IMOs will also encourage newbies to contract with every carrier they represent. The problem with that for the newbie is that if he/she wants to leave, the IMO won't release and now the agent is free to leave the IMO, but unable to conduct business with those carriers for at least six months.

As a newbie, I would only contract with 3 to 4 carriers at the most. Then if things don't work out with that IMO and I want to remain in the insurance industry, I have only lost access to a few carriers for the next six months.

A word of caution, I know of one carrier, Foresters who will only permit an agent to move his/her contract twice, so I would hesitate from contracting with them until I actually found an IMO I believe I will be with for quite some time.
Thank you so much deadlily. So it would do me zero good to try to contract directly with the biggest carriers? Final expense type stuff?

Any suggestions on the tax side, health insurance, incorporating, etc?

Thanks!
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Old 03-19-2017, 06:52 PM   #4
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Deadlily on 3 Questions for the IMO/FMO Gurus Here
 
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Originally Posted by Bubbadirect View Post
Thank you so much deadlily. So it would do me zero good to try to contract directly with the biggest carriers? Final expense type stuff?

Any suggestions on the tax side, health insurance, incorporating, etc?

Thanks!
To my knowledge, carriers do not contract directly with independent agents. I PM'd you some additional info regarding carriers and your IMO. CK your Inbox.

I wouldn't be concerned about incorporating at this point, but once your insurance career takes off, consult with a good business/tax attorney. I think until tax reform is completed, it's impossible to know if a LLC or Corp is a better way to go.

As far as health insurance goes, I'd contact health carriers (or check our carriers online) and look into health coverage for you and your family. The premiums should be deductible, since you are a sole proprietor/independent contractor.

Many feel it's best to open a separate account and transfer funds into it on a weekly basis to cover your taxes. Naturally if you pay quarterly, you will avoid penalties + interest.

loa, there is a lot of great info on the forum. Use the search function and I'm sure you will find some helpful info.

------------------------------------
“If you want to be a leader who attracts quality people,
the key is to become a person of quality yourself.”

- Jim Rohn
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Old 03-19-2017, 11:39 PM   #5
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ExProgrammer on 3 Questions for the IMO/FMO Gurus Here
 
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3 Questions for the IMO/FMO Gurus Here
You can contact directly with some carriers. Some like it that way because they can pay you as much as an IMO and that's their total commission cost. Others might prefer that you go through an IMO because they're not set up to deal with independent agents.

You don't have to have all of your carriers be from one source but like deadlily was saying you'll want to be fair about leads, etc.
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Old 03-20-2017, 07:40 AM   #6
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Deadlily on 3 Questions for the IMO/FMO Gurus Here
 
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Originally Posted by ExProgrammer View Post
You can contact directly with some carriers. Some like it that way because they can pay you as much as an IMO and that's their total commission cost. Others might prefer that you go through an IMO because they're not set up to deal with independent agents.

You don't have to have all of your carriers be from one source but like deadlily was saying you'll want to be fair about leads, etc.
Can you please list the carriers that will contract direct? I am unaware of any and I'm sure this info would help Bubba.

------------------------------------
“If you want to be a leader who attracts quality people,
the key is to become a person of quality yourself.”

- Jim Rohn
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Old 03-20-2017, 08:59 AM   #7
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goillini52 on 3 Questions for the IMO/FMO Gurus Here
 
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Originally Posted by Deadlily View Post
Can you please list the carriers that will contract direct? I am unaware of any and I'm sure this info would help Bubba.

I have a few that I'm direct with that are life, or that also offer life in addition to other products: American National, KSKJ, Settlers Life, Standard Life & Accident and United National Life. I don't have Oxford Life direct, but I've seen others say you can contract direct with them...don't know if that's true.

Hope that helps Bubba. I likes hillbillies...my dad was one.

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Old 03-20-2017, 09:16 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by goillini52 View Post
I have a few that I'm direct with that are life, or that also offer life in addition to other products: American National, KSKJ, Settlers Life, Standard Life & Accident and United National Life. I don't have Oxford Life direct, but I've seen others say you can contract direct with them...don't know if that's true.

Hope that helps Bubba. I likes hillbillies...my dad was one.
Also, Cincinnati Life.
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Old 03-20-2017, 09:18 AM   #9
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Deadlily on 3 Questions for the IMO/FMO Gurus Here
 
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Thanks!! I'm sure Bubba will appreciate the info both of you have shared.

------------------------------------
“If you want to be a leader who attracts quality people,
the key is to become a person of quality yourself.”

- Jim Rohn
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Old 03-21-2017, 04:36 PM   #10
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Holey moley. This forum rocks! Thank you all so much. I guess my final question is this. Has this helped you personally in the field?

Thanks again from Bubba! 😁
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