The Western Alliance is proud to announce CPIA designation courses will be available via webinar format beginning in January 2024 at  


Check our calendar of events for course informatioin.  

Registrations will be open soon!

CPIA - Certified Professional Insurance Agent

Empowering Insurance Professionals into the Future

The CPIA designation is first-of-its-kind, hands-on, how-to training. To earn the CPIA designation candidates are required to participate in a series of three, one-day seminars THE BEST PART IS NO EXAMS!
Completion is due three years from the first course.

These seminars are designed to enhance the ability of producers, sales support staff, and company personnel to efficiently create and distribute effective insurance programs. Participants leave with ideas that will produce sales results immediately.

While not a requirement, it is recommended that courses are taken in order.E&O Discounts apply for Utica National Policy Holders.

Each of the 3 courses are approved for 7 CE in
AZ | CA | ID | MT | NM | NV | OR | WA

Course Modules

Position for Success

Implement for Success

Sustain Success

During this workshop, participants focus on internal and external factors affecting
the creation of effective business development goals.

Factors discussed include:

current state of the insurance                 marketplace

competitive pressures

insurance carrier underwriting criteria

consumer expectations.

During this workshop, participants learn:

specific tools for analyzing consumer needs

how to utilize risk identification techniques to gather pertinent prospect

skills necessary to assimilate information gathered into customized coverage recommendations

how to prepare a complete submission

tips for preparing and presenting a comprehensive insurance proposal

This workshop focuses on fulfilling the implied promises contained in the insuring agreement.

Participants will:

review methods of providing evidence of insurance coverage

discuss policies and procedures for controlling errors and omissions including policy review and delivery, endorsements, claims-processing, and handling of client complaints

learn how to calculate the lifetime value of a client and techniques for generating referrals.

CPIA Update Requirement

The Certified Professional Insurance Agent designation stands for professionalism, commitment to professional training and results, and technical knowledge. To maintain the right
to use the CPIA designation, designees must complete an update on an annual basis * or maintain a Ruby, Sapphire or Diamond level membership with the CPIA Program.

* CPIA 1, CPIA 2, CPIA 3, Special Topics:

An Agent’s Guide to Understanding and Mitigating Cyber Exposures

Disaster and Continuity Planning for Business and Families

An E&O Loss Control Program for Agencies

For the last couple of weeks, Weekly Industry News has focused on State Farm, Allstate and AIG leaving California’s homeowners market. Lots of reasons but mainly an inability to afford to cover homes in the wildfire prone state and an insurance commissioner who refuses to allow the insurers to raise their rates to cover the cost of insuring homes in those areas.

Late last week, Anthony Verreos of Verreos Insurance in Brisbane, California sent Weekly Industry News some comments on what’s going on in the Golden State. His comments were interesting.

Here are a couple of questions from the editor of Weekly Industry News for regular readers, and for those selling homeowners policies in the 9 Western Alliance states. What do you think about insurers leaving the homeowners markets in California and about Oregon Mutual leaving the same market in Oregon?

Do you think this is a trend and something that is going to spread to other states?

Below are Verreos’ comments on insurance, the dangerous dog insurance issues in Arizona and more. He makes some interesting observations.

Hi PIAW Editor:

On the Homeowner market — I’m not sure if it was in your last weekly letter that I saw comments from CA DOI Commissioner Ricardo Lara. He actually said something halfway friendly about insurers, and noted the department is doing all it can to help resolve the crisis. 

Naturally, he didn’t have much good to say about the industry in general, about agents brokers roles in particular (in 53 years I’ve never heard any of that), and while he took credit for stopping cancellations for a year due to wildfires, he didn’t take any credit for creating this crisis by failing to work with insurers since he took office, and constantly fighting rate increases.

You reference to other states and their emergency state created insurers should be a new topic all of its own, because my impression is that they are not all the same models. 

I think the CA Fair Plan associationI is set up essentially as a quasi governmental non profit, with the provision that any insurer who sells fire insurance in CA automatically is subscribed to a fractional ownership of total CFP losses for the year. 

Therefore, as the CFP sales and losses grow, those losses are going to be billed to State Farm and others who sold the most fire insurance that year. The benefit to the insurers is that instead of owning 100% of a total wildfire loss on policies they write directly, for CFP losses they will only have to pay @ 18% to 23% or whatever their market share is.

The other side is they get no premiums to offset those losses. The taxpayer is not involved. That may be far different in other states.

The dog Liability issue is poorly explained by insurers in general. Every year there are one or more trade press articles published with the same type of snarling or vicious dog pictured next to a headline stating how many millions more insurers paid out this year than last year. The deception involved is what gives the industry its bad reputation with consumers and consumer advocates.

1. How many dog bites are reported nationally?

  • They tell us the insured claims, not the total reported bites.
  • They do this with catastrophe losses too. 
  • X billions estimated total losses and only 10-20-50% insured?

2. How many biting dogs were insured of the total bites?

  • Wouldn’t that be good to know?

3. What’s the breakdown of severity and mean settlement cost total?

  • Averages are not valuable information.

4. What percentage of bites are considered minor cuts/punctures, major/deeper/multiples, and worst cases/deaths?

  • And what cost ranges to insurers are typically associated with each of these groups of claims?

 5. What is the basis in rate making to assign a premium charge to each policy to cover potential dog bite claims?

  • It may vary substantially.
  • What percentage of policyholder even own a dog, 2 dogs or more?
  • It seems to me that every policyholder pays for these dog bite losses, and has no idea how much of their annual premium goes to cover these losses. 

6. Insurers can seem stupid at times, but generally, they know exactly what they are doing, so when we look at the rates they charge for liability which is a catch all basket of potential loss causes for bodily injuries and property damages, the only thing that is clear, is the premium being charged are maybe 10% or less of the total policy premium is, in many cases, far lower than that. 

This tells anyone paying attention that Liability claims are not a problem, and that portion of a policy may be very profitable to insurers, If this is not correct, then why not raise those rates? 

7. The article on the new AZ dog bite laws caught me eye, but I didn’t follow the link to see what’s behind it. The article I could read, was a typical government action banning discrimination which is all the more crazy in a business that is all about discriminating between different levels of risk on a fair and legal basis. When government takes away that ability, insurers normally react by taking away their products!