Universal North America Celebrates 10 Years, Focuses on Emergency Response in Documentary

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After law enforcement and emergency medical services personnel, insurance claims professionals often find themselves on the front line of a disaster, particularly when it is weather-related. Putting customers first, they help people re-group, rebuild and even deliver food when there is no electricity.

Ten years ago, Universal North America launched operations in Sarasota, Fla., not deterred by the state’s history of hurricanes or the stiff business competition. That year, the state was slammed with a record spate of hurricanes, the “Big 4 of ‘04” including Charley, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne. Universal North America paid out $100 million in claims their first year.

Now celebrating its 10th anniversary, Universal North America has not only weathered multiple storms, but grown from a mono-line domestic carrier comprised of eight employees in a single office to a super-regional carrier with approximately 200 team members spanning 17 states. The company operates in five time zones, insures more than 280,000 policyholders and writes Homeowners, Flood and Commercial coverage.

In celebration of their 10-year anniversary, Universal North America is participating in “Making it Right,” a new web series that honors claims professionals who have gone the extra mile in helping policyholders to restore their lives. “Making it Right,” sponsored by software company Enservio®, features Universal North America claims professionals who make it their priority to consistently serve customers, many of whom are often facing dire circumstances due to an overwhelming catastrophe.

“Customer service is the heart of our business,” says Miguel Barrales, president of Universal North America. “We know that keeping the promises we make to our policyholders is the principal reason we are here, and our team delivers on our promise daily.”

Sharing real stories from dedicated claims professionals – and hearing words of gratitude from the people they’ve helped – is the purpose of the “Making it Right” series, which has the potential to change the way the public views the insurance industry as a whole.

Claims Manager Otto Kieslich of Universal North America, featured in the first episode, says, “We cannot control bad things happening to good people. But we can control how insurance companies treat those people.” He tells the story of a particularly devastating Christmas claim in his story, which can be seen at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iLRFv0xkRYc.

Also featured in the series is Universal North America Senior Outside Property Claims Representative Roger Yonce, who helped policyholder Bobby Simpson and his family when a tree fell on their Florida home.

“My family was at the house when the tree hit,” said Simpson. “I never imagined the magnitude of the damage that I was going to see when I got to my house. I never imagined it was going to be that bad. It was devastating.”

Simpson explains about Yonce, his claims adjuster, “He literally said, ‘Let me take your fears and worries, and let me have them. I’m gonna handle this. You just go take care of your family.’ And that’s what happened, from beginning to end.” More of the Simpsons’ story can be seen in at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dEISbJKwbCY.

After emergency personnel, claims professionals are often among the first respondents to a disaster scene and go to great lengths to reach affected customers. In one case, an adjuster literally hiked miles after devastating tornadoes hit Texas in May 2013.

Universal North America policyholder Tina Pollock of Cleburne, Texas gained firsthand experience that a caring claims professional can make all the difference. After the high-powered tornado winds hit her neighborhood, Pollock filed her first-ever homeowner’s insurance claim. Unable to reach the area by car because of police roadblocks, Universal North America Adjuster Chad Evans walked two miles to visit Pollock and other affected customers nearby.

Barrales says that every strategic decision the company makes is to ensure the fiscal strength and stability required to deliver that level of customer service. “Our financial health is the reason we can make these promises to our customers. It’s the reason our policyholders can trust they can count on us when they need us most,” he says. “We stay true to our core values, and that’s the reason we’re here to celebrate our 10th anniversary.”

To view the trailer for “Making it Right,” please visit http://www.enservio.com/makingitright.

About Universal North America
Universal North America is a subsidiary of Universal Group, Inc., Puerto Rico's leading supplier of property/casualty, auto and life insurance, policy financing and investment products.

With the solid backing of its parent company, Universal North America began operations in Florida and followed a deliberate pattern of growth, subsequently expanding into Texas, South Carolina, North Carolina, Arizona and Nevada. Today, Universal North America has operations across the country in 17 states. For more information, visit http://www.MyUniversal.com.

About Enservio, Inc.
Enservio® software and services help you solve one of the biggest issues in property insurance - knowing what's inside an insured's home or business. This visibility helps you right-price your policies upfront, settle claims quickly and accurately, manage replacements to keep customers happy, as well as run your business more efficiently. Founded in 2004, we are headquartered in Needham, MA, with offices and professional staff across the U.S. Enservio is a strategic partner of the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) in their continued fight against insurance fraud. For additional information, please visit the company's web site http://www.enservio.com or call 888.567.7557. Connect with Enservio via LinkedIn (http://us.linkedin.com/company/enservio), Twitter (https://twitter.com/enservio), and Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/enservio).

Enservio is a registered trademark of Enservio, Inc. All other trademarks referenced are the property of their respective holders.

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