Re certification for an insurance license in order to keep the license current requires 24 hours of continuing education courses every two years. Some courses are specific, but others are standard. For an example, a specific, minimum three-hour course in ethics must be completed.
Online insurance continuing education must address ethics or suitability of a product while acting with the highest professional standard. An agent should only recommend or sell a policy to a client that is suitable to the purchasers needs. It must be an ethical choice for the purchaser.
Ethical consideration is especially crucial in the senior market. A three-hour course in ethics is required to reinforce the license holders fundamental knowledge of ethical behavior.
The remaining 21 required hours can be standard courses in life, health, and annuities. An excellent CE course provider should have a full range of courses to choose from. Many outstanding companies provide continuing education courses in an on-line format including statece.com.
A key element though is that all of the 24-hour courses must be completely new courses–none can be a repeat of a course previously taken by an agent within the prior 36 months.
The agent is responsible for checking with the state to be certain that no course title is being repeated. However, many online providers of CE courses, as a courtesy service, will check the agents state record to ensure that the agent is not repeating a course. The agent seeking recertification should ask the CE provider if they provide that service.
Continuing education courses fulfill several functions:
1. They provide information on changes or updates in the insurance profession. 2. They refresh the agent’s current knowledge and experience.
3. They reinforce fundamentals of health insurance.
4. They cover the elements of life insurance.
5. They update changes in annuities and ethics in annuity sales.
Continuing education courses are offered in several formats. Classroom study and testing is available. In addition, mail order courses which include textbooks and practice tests offer a second choice. Testing for mail-order courses can be done at a testing center or online.
A third choice, which is becoming the preferred choice for many needing continuing education, is completely online. The online format includes testing. Tests results are reported immediately to the state insurance department. Test results and a copy of a completion certificate goes by email to the agent for easy printing.