General Insurance Agents – Ontario

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I want to become a general insurance agent. What are the qualifications and how do I apply?

In order to obtain a license as a general insurance agent, an applicant must:
1. Have their sponsoring company initiate the online General Insurance Agent application accessible through Licensing Link and pay the required fee;
2. Be familiar with the laws of Ontario relating to the licensing of general insurance agents.
3. Be sponsored by a licensed insurer.
4. Hold himself/herself out publicly and carry on business in good faith as a general insurance agent only in the name in which the agent is licensed.
5. Not be engaged in any other business or occupation that would jeopardize the person’s integrity, independence or competence.
6. Be of good character and reputation.
7. Be a suitable person and meet all the licensing requirements.
8. Possess the appropriate educational background.
9. Provide FSCO with an Ontario mailing address that is suitable to permit service by registered mail.

What is the difference between a General Insurance Agent and a General Insurance Broker in Ontario?

Education

What are the educational requirements to become a general insurance agent?

To become licensed as a general insurance agent, the applicant must successfully pass the qualifying examination for general insurance. Examination results are valid for one year and must be forwarded to Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO) when applying. FSCO does not conduct the examinations. General agents are exempt if they have a Chartered Insurance Professional (CIP) designation or successfully passed the equivalent RIBO exam.

Exam Preparation Course

I am a new agent, how do I apply for a general insurance agent license?

New agents should contact their sponsoring company to initiate an online application on their behalf. New agents are unable to submit an application without a sponsor.

Renewal

How do I renew my General insurance agent license?

Insurance agents’ licenses are renewed every two years. Agents must renew their license within 60 days prior to the expiry date on their existing license.
Applicants who have been unlicensed for two or more years will have to re-qualify as a new agent, including redoing the General Insurance examination.

All renewal applications are submitted online via Licensing Link and are initiated by the sponsoring insurer.

Payment/Fees

How much is the fee to obtain/renew my general insurance agent license?

The fee for an insurance agent license and/or to renew an insurance agent license is $150. This fee covers a two-year license period.

Sponsorship

General insurance agents require sponsorship at all times to maintain their license.

Transfer of Sponsorship

I no longer wish to remain with my sponsor. Can I move to another sponsoring company?

Sponsored agents can transfer out of their sponsorship and move to another sponsor.
The current sponsor should terminate the license online so the new sponsoring company can pick up the license and transfer to their company.
Please contact your current and new sponsor for information as the transfer application is created by the sponsor on behalf of the agent.

How much is the fee to transfer my license to a different sponsoring company?

The fee is $50 to transfer your license from one sponsoring company to another. The fee is paid online through Licensing Link. The application is created by the sponsoring company. Please contact your sponsor on how to submit an application.

Terminations

I am a sponsored general insurance agent and wish to terminate/surrender my license. How do I notify FSCO of this?

Sponsored agents shall have their sponsoring company submit an online termination on their behalf. Please contact your sponsoring company to terminate your license.

I want to terminate/surrender my license, but I do not want to lose the qualifications in case I decide to come back into the industry. Are there any provisions, time frames in which I can reinstate my license without taking the qualifying exam again?

Agents have the option of terminating their license and may have their license within two years of the date of termination/expiry (whichever comes first) without having to re-qualify.
Applicants who have been unlicensed for two or more years will have to re-qualify as a new agent, including re-writing the qualifying exam. Please contact your sponsor to terminate your license.

This information is provided for guidance only. The above information was originally provided on the FSCO website.

About FSCO.

FSCO was established under the Financial Services Commission of Ontario Act, 1997 (FSCO Act) with a legislative mandate set out in the FSCO Act.  FSCO’s legislative mandate is to provide regulatory services that protect the public interest and enhance public confidence in the sectors it regulates. FSCO regulates the insurance sector; pension plans; loan and trust companies; credit unions and caisses populaires; the mortgage brokering sector; co-operative corporations in Ontario; and service providers who invoice auto insurers for statutory accident benefits claims. FSCO is accountable to the Minister of Finance. In order to support FSCO’s legislative mandate, the FSCO Act sets out a three-part structure for FSCO, which includes the Commission; the Superintendent of Financial Services and Staff; and the Financial Services Tribunal (Tribunal).

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