Glass Network Closes Doors
The Minnesota Glass Network, which was originally co-founded by
the Minnesota Glass Association (MGA) and the Minnesota Independent
Insurance Agents (MIIA), has closed, according to Mike Schmaltz,
executive director of the MGA.
"It has ceased processing claims and we are wrapping up on work
processed prior to close," Schmaltz says.
The network officially closed its doors in September 2008.
"Insurance agent referrals did not reach the levels needed to justify
continued participation by member glass shops," Schmaltz says. "This
was aggravated by slow and short payment of claims by insurers and
their third-party administrators. The network was operating profitably
until the end, but we were unable to deliver the benefits needed
by member shops. A trend of declining claims reached a point where
we knew we would begin to lose money; we had worked diligently on
root issues and did not see a way to reverse the trend so we had
Shops on the network were notified when the decision was made to
close, Schmaltz says.
"[Member shops] were disappointed because they were excited about
the possibility of developing additional new business and wished
to avoid the frustration associated with third-party administrators,"
Schmaltz adds that though MGA has no plans to begin another network,
he is sad to see this one close.
"It is very sad to see this development, the MGA, member shops
and the MIIA put a lot of time and money into the development of
the program," he says. "We processed over 18,000 claims and had
only two consumer complaints. Members are all AGRSS registered and
the level of service was unsurpassed. The number of jobs we got
simply because others didn't show when promised never ceased to
surprise us. I continue to be very proud of the shops that made
up the network."
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