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Comments On Monitoring Certificates / See Webinar Schedule Below - Register Today - February 11, 2017


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COMMENTS ON MONITORING CERTIFICATES FROM FEBRUARY 3, 2017 ARTICLE
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Ken
    I am not an attorney but agree that too much was said about the alarm design in the Monitoring Certificate offered.  Why not just give them a code?
    I feel like that letter sets the customer up for failure if they did sustain a loss because it says that the system does not offer "complete protection".
    Most insurance companies base their discount on a security system on only a few terms.  They like to see that there is a local alarm (siren) and off premises reporting (Monitoring) and may offer additional discount if there is fire protection.  Some companies have us sign their affidavit which contains these terms.
Thanks for your newsletter.
Ron B
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Ken:
     I read your February 3rd, 2017 newsletter and must say that I’m extremely disappointed in your response to “more on monitoring certificates-sample letter offered.” Instead of advising your readers to provide a “simple letter” or a “fancy certificate,” how about encouraging the industry to educate the insurance industry that the “Certificate” they are getting isn’t worth the paper it’s written on.
                The only true “Certificate” in the alarm business is one provided by a Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory (NRTL) such as UL, FM or ETL.  In order to become a UL Listed “local” or installation company (there are other categories as well), there is a fee from UL to inspect the systems that have been installed to verify that the systems installed comply with the appropriate national standard.  When people purchase stock in a Company they usually look at the Company’s financial statements which are audited by an independent accounting firm in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. UL/FM/ETL are NRTLs that audit alarm companies operations and attest to the ability of a company to provide systems and/or service in accordance with the national standard, much like accounting firms do for financial statements. While there is an expense involved to be “Listed,” a true “Certificate” from a NRTL—not a from a printer connected to a Mac --can be issued so that the insurance industry has verification that can be relied on. Not sure if the DIY companies provide a certificate along with their products but how can that be justified to an insurance underwriter. What oversight is there?
                I’ve read time and time again how “professional” the industry thinks it is. How about finally promoting Codes and Standards Complying systems as the norm, not the exception (this applies to residential systems too). How’s the “fancy certificate” going to hold up on a claim or in court? I’m assuming that your “Certificate” to practice law is fancy but did not come from a printer connected to a Mac. J
    There is no question that RMR is key and getting contracts to secure the revenue and protect the alarm company is critical. However the industry needs to level the playing field for systems and services rendered and providing codes and standards complying systems would
raise the quality of service provided, 
reduce false alarms, 
increase RMR by having regularly scheduled inspection/maintenance required (you bring your car in for service), and 4) the insurance industry would get a real “certificate” (which could even be fancy) that can be relied upon.
Richard Kleinman, President
AFA Protective Systems, Inc.
Syosset, NY
www.afap.com
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Response
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    Promoting professionalism in the alarm industry is a laudable goal that few could argue with.  AFA is one of the largest alarm companies focused on commercial fire and therefore quite accustom to dealing with codes, insurance company issues, licensing and other issues affecting alarm, particularly fire alarm, companies.  But not all alarm companies do commercial fire and not all alarm companies are prepared to or interested in fighting with subscriber insurance companies.
    The "Certificates" that we discussed were for the run of the mill residential subscriber looking for a discount on their home owners insurance.  That certificate doesn't require UL, ETL, NFPA or any other certification.  The carrier just wants confirmation that there is an alarm system, with or without central station monitoring, and that it includes or doesn't include intrusion, fire, water flow or water detection or some other alert component that is important to that subscriber and the carrier.  The certificate is nothing more than confirmation of services.  Keep it simple.  The carrier can always ask for more information.  You should only hope it wants UL or NFPA or some other criteria so you can upgrade the DIY system or other $399 system that was installed and being monitored for $19.00.
    Those of you out there looking for a brawl with the insurance industry should contact Richard directly.  I strongly endorse him as your fervent leader in that battle.
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                                WEBINARS:  Sign up for any or all of the webinars that interest you.

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FREE Webinar Series "All You Need To Know About" alarm industry issues. 
Register for one or all.  Each presentation scheduled for half hour to hour.  Not recorded.

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Title: All You Need To Know About Automatic Renewal Provisions in Alarm Contracts
When: February 15, 2017 at noon EST
Where: Your computer for power point, live video and call in on computer or phone
What will be covered: The why, where and how of automatic renewal provisions in alarm contracts
Who should attend: Alarm company owners, general managers, sales managers, sales staff
Presented by: Ken Kirschenbaum, Esq.
Register here:    https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/3498770624606417921
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Title: All You Need To Know About Video Surveillance
When: February 16, 2017 at noon EST
Where: Your computer for power point, live video and call in on computer or phone
What will be covered: Discuss latest in video surveillance equipment and services
Who should attend: Alarm company owners, general managers, sales managers, video technicians
Presented by: Ari Erenthal, training manager for IPVM, the leading resource for independent news, reviews, and testing of cameras, VMS, NVRs, and more. (862) 414-3078 ari@ipvideomarket.info
Register here:  https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/6264618512556065793
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Title: All You Need To Know About Selecting the Right Broker to Sell Your Alarm Business
When: February 23, 2017 noon EST
Where: Your computer for power point, live video and call in on computer or phone
What will be covered: General discussion about finding the right broker to represent you on the sale of your alarm business
Who should attend: Alarm company owners
Presented by: Ron Davis and Steve Rubin from Davis Mergers and Acquisitions Group, the Graybeards rdavis@graybeardsus.com srubin@graybeardsus.com
Register here:   https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/8548769256865453057
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Title: All You Need To Know About modern nationwide central station operations and how to select the best central station for your needs
When: February 24, 2017 noon EST
Where: Your computer for power point, live video and call in on computer or phone
What will be covered: General discussion about what you should expect from your modern nationwide central station and how to select the best central station for your needs
Who should attend: Alarm company owners, general managers, sales managers, sales staff
Presented by: Morgan Hertel from Rapid Response MHertel@rrms.com
Register here:   https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/507826318172222465
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Title: All You Need To Know About Fire Alarm Systems and Taking Over Fire Alarm Systems
When: March 1, 2017 noon EST
Where: Your computer for power point, live video and call in on computer or phone
What will be covered: General discussion about issues to consider when installing, servicing or inspecting fire alarm and when taking over an existing system
Who should attend: Alarm company owners, general managers, sales managers, technician managers
Presented by: Jeff Zwirn JeffZwirn@alarmexpert.com
Register here:   https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4756737271107996417
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Title: All You Need To Know About Standard Fire Protection All in One Agreement Covering Installation, Inspection, Service of Sprinkler System, Portable Extinguishers, Kitchen Hood, Smoke Detectors, Fire Pump
When: March 2, 2017 noon EST
Where: Your computer for power point, live video and call in on computer or phone
What will be covered: General discussion about the Standard Fire Protection All in One provisions including scope of work, liability limitations, insurance issues, indemnity issues, how to handle subscribers who won't sign or want you to sign their agreement. 
Who should attend: Alarm company owners, general managers, sales managers, sales staff
Presented by: Ken Kirschenbaum, Esq.
Register here:   https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/658147149875346945
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Title: All You Need To Know About Alarm Licensing and Contracts for DIY 
When: March 9, 2017 noon EST
Where: Your computer for power point, live video and call in on computer or phone
What will be covered: General discussion about licensing in the alarm industry for DYI. Different types of licenses, where you need them and how you get them. How and when to use License Holders or Qualifiers for your business and how to become a license holder for a company. Risks involved in not being licensed. Contract you will need for nationwide DIY monitoring agreements.
Who should attend: Alarm company owners, general managers, compliance managers and license holders.
Presented by: Ken Kirschenbaum, Esq.
Register here:   https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/2585168820901654273
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