What Kind Of Insurance Adjuster Will You Be?
There are four main types of insurance adjusters: staff adjuster, independent adjuster, catastrophe adjuster, and public adjuster.
Each of these positions accomplishes essentially the same task: assess the damage to property brought about by some event and make an evaluation of what monetary value the insurance claim should carry.
The big difference between these different types of adjusters is who pays them, and in the case of the public adjuster, who they are advocating for. Staff, independent, and catastrophe adjusters all require the same type of license, while a public adjuster license is a little different in its specifications.
- Staff Adjuster – Works directly for an insurance company
- Independent Adjuster – Works for a third-party company who performs insurance adjuster work and is contracted by an insurance company
- Catastrophe (CAT) Adjuster – An independent adjuster who travels to an area that has been largely affected by an event (usually severe weather) and performs claims adjuster services en masse
- Public Adjuster – Is an advocate for the insurance customer, not the insurance company (requires a different type of license)
This article will cover a standard insurance claims adjuster license (sometimes known as an independent adjuster license), not a public adjuster license.
How To Get Your Insurance Adjuster License In New Mexico
Step 1. Adjuster Pre-Exam Education
Preparation for this exam is not something to take lightly, as the average pass rate of insurance exams nationwide is around 55% for first-time test-takers, and even less for any following attempts. We want you to pass your test the first time you take it.
Studying for this exam can take many different forms. The most common way to get prepared is to take an online study course. These courses are generally comprised of video and text with short knowledge quizzes to make sure you have a comprehensive understanding.
A slightly more minimal approach would be to purchase a state-specific study guide. These guides give you all of the facts that you need to pass the exam and maybe a bit less expensive than a course. They are, however, quite long and densely packed books, so be sure you are ready to tackle this task.
You should choose the method that fits best for you. Some people learn best out of a book, while others take in information better through video and short text. Remember, the goal is to pass your exam on the first attempt, so pick your best path forward and study hard.
Step 2. New Mexico Insurance Adjuster License Exam
The next step after completing all your coursework is to take and pass the New Mexico Insurance Adjuster License exam.
This is a proctored test, which means that you will be in a controlled environment with a person watching over you. For people who haven’t tested in a situation like this should be aware of this fact, and work on taming their nerves prior to sitting for the exam. When you arrive at the exam location you must have a photo ID any other documents that the testing facility has asked you to bring.
New Mexico offers one line of authority for an adjuster: Independent/Staff Adjuster. This exam consists of fifty (50) questions and you will be given one hour (1:00) to complete it.
An outline of included subjects for the exam can be found here: Prometric New Mexico Examination for Independent/ Staff Adjuster Series 18-40.
Each attempt of the exam costs $75 and will be paid when you make your reservation.
A total score of 70% or more is required to pass this test. To further explain the scoring of the exam, we will quote the Prometric New Mexico Department of Insurance Licensing Information Handbook
“Your Exam Results
At the end of the exam, you will see a completion notice on the screen. A copy of your score report will be emailed to the email address you provided at the time of scheduling. The report indicates the overall score and grade, including the numerical percentage of questions answered correctly and whether you passed or failed. To achieve a passing score on the examination, you must receive a 70% or higher on the examination.
The report also displays the correct percentage in each major section of the exam, as defined by the exam content outline. These section scores are shown to guide you, or your employer and/or trainer, about areas requiring additional preparation for retesting if you do not pass the exam. Even after you pass, you may want to focus on these areas as you begin to provide insurance products and services to the public”.
Insurance license tests are intentionally difficult, but not impossible by any means. You should study to the point of comfortability with the information before you attempt the test. Failing the exam isn’t the end of the world, but keep in mind that you will need to pay the fee each time you attempt the test.
You may register to take your exams and find more information on the Prometric New Mexico Insurance page or by calling Prometric at (800) 853-5448.
Step 3. Fingerprinting and Background Check
The State of New Mexico requires that all insurance license applications provide fingerprints prior to licensing. Giving your fingerprints will initiate a background check. If you have any prior misdemeanors or felonies, this may affect the outcome of your licensing efforts. If you have specific questions regarding things that may come up on your background check you may call the State of New Mexico Office of Superintendent of Insurance at (505) 827-4349 or send them an email.
You will process your fingerprints through Gemalto Cogent. Appointments can be made on their website or by phone at (877) 996-6277.
The fee for fingerprinting services is $44.
Step 4. Execution of New Mexico Surety Bond
You must obtain and submit a bond in the penal sum of $10,000 executed by a New Mexico admitted surety and signed by the principal and by the Attorney-in-Fact.
Once you have the bond in place, submit it to the State of New Mexico Office of Superintendent of Insurance. The state must receive this document within ten (10) days from the date of your application. Use the mailing address in the Contact Information section below.
Step 5. New Mexico Insurance Adjuster License Application
Once you have completed your exams and fingerprinting, you are now ready to apply for your license.
The fee for an online application is $30.
Apply online with the New Mexico Insurance Adjuster License Application.
Note: If you are affiliated with an adjusting firm, you must complete the State of New Mexico Independent Adjuster Affiliation Form and mail the form together with the affiliation fee check for $20. Use the mailing address in the Contact Information section below.
Step 6. Application Review
Once you have submitted your application and have completed all the other requirements, your license application will be reviewed by the state. This process generally takes about ten (10) business days. Depending on the results of your background check, the Department of Insurance may request more information or documentation.
After the review is complete, you will receive an email from NIPR regarding the status of your license.
You’ve done the work, put in the time and effort, and now hold the key to your own success! We’re proud of you. Take five (5) minutes and celebrate.
New Mexico Department Of Insurance Contact Information
Office of Superintendent of Insurance
P.O. Box 1689
Santa Fe, New Mexico 87504
Overnight Delivery Address:
Producer Licensing Bureau
1120 Paseo de Peralta, RM 331, Santa Fe, New Mexico 87501
Phone: (505) 827-4349
Information on this page has been gathered by a multitude of sources and was most recently updated in February 2021.
Any Information on this site is not guaranteed or warranted to be correct, accurate, or up to date. StateRequirement and its members and affiliates are not responsible for any losses, monetary or otherwise. StateRequirement is not affiliated with any state, government, or licensing body. For more information, please contact your state's authority on insurance.
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