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An underwriter is a professional who impartially reviews a client’s eligibility for services. This person reviews the application of a potential client for services such as insurance coverage and loans to determine whether services should be granted. The two main types of underwriter jobs are those with insurance companies and those with financial institutions.
Regardless of industry, an underwriter is charged with the task of thoroughly reviewing an applicant’s information and determining his or her potential risks as a client. This evaluation must be completely unbiased, even though an underwriter is employed by the company and not by the individual. Based on the information gathered and the factors under consideration, an underwriter then approves or denies a potential client and outlines the terms of service.
Insurance underwriters can work in any of several subcategories, including life, health, property and casualty insurance. In life and health insurance, the underwriter reviews medical history, actuarial studies and health factors in the interest of determining the risk an individual poses. If the risk is too great, an underwriter denies coverage. If risk is minimal, he or she determines the premium that a client pays and the scope of coverage that the client receives.
The other types of insurance underwriter jobs deal with property and casualty insurance. These policies include homeowners insurance and auto insurance. The underwriter assesses the condition of a commercial or residential property or automobile and offers package coverage. It is important for underwriters in this line of work to be familiar with each specific coverage option and how each one is most effectively packaged.
Underwriting jobs in the financial industry typically involve loans, such as mortgages. Unlike insurance underwriters, credit history consideration is the most important concern for an underwriter working for a creditor. Reviewing an applicant’s payment history concerning his or her other debts and examining the applicant's credit score is the best way to determine eligibility.
A loan underwriter verifies a borrower’s ability and willingness to repay a loan, as well as his or her assets and collateral. Together, these elements are indicators of the risk posed to a creditor by offering a line of credit to the borrower. Underwriter jobs are vital to the financial industry because they allow large institutions to review thousands of applications on an individual basis and avoid investing in unreliable clients.
Underwriter jobs typically do not require a degree or particular course of education. Most insurance and financial companies do prefer a bachelor’s degree in finance or business administration. Underwriters can work for a wide range of businesses: insurance companies, credit unions, banks and mortgage lenders. On average, underwriters earn between $50,000 US Dollars and $60,000 USD annually.