Independent agents are, by their very nature, diggers. It is not something they do; for most of them, it is something they are. They are constantly in the game, always prospecting, always selling. As such, planning for their own retirement and the perpetuation of their agencies is not always top-of-mind.

In one of the most comprehensive studies of independent agents in the U.S. ever completed, NU, the National Association of Professional Insurance Agents (PIA) and Flaspöhler, part of NMG Consulting, joined forces to conduct the 2017 Independent Agent Survey — a project whose findings provide revealing insight into the demographics, books of business and industry challenges of independent Property & Casualty insurance agents, as well as their most highly rated carriers.

Today, in this last installment of our findings, our survey respondents told us whether they had a perpetuation plan for their agency — and less than half said they did (see the results below). It's an alarming statistic, considering that the average age of those respondents is between 50 and 59, and 92.2% of them identified themselves as either an agency principal or owner, mostly the latter.

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Shawn Moynihan

Shawn Moynihan is Editor-in-Chief of National Underwriter Property & Casualty. A St. John’s University alum, Moynihan has earned 11 Jesse H. Neal Awards, the Pulitzers of the business press; seven Azbee Awards, from the American Society of Business Press Editors; two Folio Awards; and a SABEW award, from the Society of American Business Editors & Writers. Prior to joining ALM, he served as Managing Editor/Online Editor of journalism institution Editor & Publisher, the trade bible of the newspaper industry. Moynihan also has held editorial positions with AOL, Metro New York, and Newhouse Newspapers. He can be reached at [email protected].