What is now L&A Mutual Insurance Company began in the pioneering years after Confederation when a group of farmers met in in 1876 in Newburgh to create a co-operative insurance company to help protect them from the losses that occur to property and livestock due to fire.
The Lennox & Addington Mutual Fire Insurance Company brand lasted from 1885 to 2003, when it took its current name. But the overriding philosophy of being owned by its policy holders and offering personalized service to the local region has continued through the ensuing decades. And it’s a philosophy that has obviously worked well, as the company has continued to thrive.
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L&A Mutual is run by a board of directors, elected from among the policy holders. They oversee a staff of more than two dozen, who report to president Michael Salmon. Some outside independent agents also sell L&A Mutual products.
Broad range of products and services
Showing remarkable versatility, the company has broadened its products and services to include most forms of insurance as they continue to respond to the ever-changing needs of their policy holders.
“We now offer home insurance, tenant packages, condo packages. We have people moving into the area part time and need seasonal packages. We do automotive insurance and coverage for small business. And we keep up to date with all the current trends. We take pride in always continuing our education. We attend seminars and reach out to all the other mutual insurance companies in Ontario to learn their best practices. We make sure to stay in tune and up to date with everything that is happening in the industry. We can do anything the big stock insurance companies can do – but we just do it with that little bit of flair that comes with a personal touch,” said Kristy Smith, one of L&A Mutual’s underwriters, speaking on behalf of the company, who added the company is also very much involved in community causes and special events.
A “hyper-local” company
“We use people who have strong roots in the community to sell our product. All the decision makers in the company are policy holders, who act on behalf of the other policy holders. So it’s not outside people in big office towers making decisions for the people in this area. Everything about us is local and personal: you can come into the office at any time to talk to us. Our claims are all handled in-house and locally, you can come in and pay your bill, meet your agent at any time. We really do pride ourselves on being hyper-local.”
Although the company is based in L&A County, there is a second branch office, which opened in 2015, in Harrowsmith, and Smith said their overall territory has grown outside of the county boundary to include Lindsay, Bancroft, Perth, Brockville and Prince Edward County.
For more information, visit www.l-amutual.com.