When You Need a Sample COI, Think ACORD

March 1, 2021

A certificate of insurance (COI) establishes that an insured party has active coverage. This evidence lowers an employer’s risk when they hire contractors or vendors. If a third party hired by a company is not insured, then the company can be held liable in the event the third party injures themselves or those around them. Businesses should find it essential that third parties be sufficiently covered.

The people responsible for their company’s COIs should understand what the most common forms are used for and what kind of information they should contain. COIs are among the most important documents in the business world today. Not knowing the details that determine their authenticity can delay employment and increase liability risks.

A blank certificate of liability insurance template can be beneficial for training and actual use. You can find them online and most, if not all, are free. However, quality can come at a price. Anyone can upload a certificate of liability insurance PDF of debatable quality just like anyone can download them for dubious reasons. For this reason, when you need a sample COI, you should think ACORD.

Here’s a Certificate of Insurance Sample

Anyone can find a certificate of insurance sample online. If you perform a search for a certificate of liability insurance form, you will have millions of results to choose from. You can easily download and print the sample COI you need in a matter of moments.

How can you be sure you’ve picked the right form from the most reputable source? Your agent or broker should be completing the Certificate of Insurance, to prove the COI is valid and accurate. 

How to Find an Example COI Online

An ACORD certificate of insurance sample is probably the best form to have on hand for training and for reference.

ACORD, the Association for Cooperative Operations Research and Development, is a non-profit organization that issues and keeps standardized insurance forms. Their documents are used by companies across the United States because they observe industry guidelines.

An ACORD certificate of insurance sample downloaded from their website can be used by insurance agents to represent insurance coverage for their clients. There are numerous other forms like the ACORD 23 (Vehicle or Equipment Certificate of Insurance) and the ACORD 27 (Evidence of Property Insurance) so while these forms share similar purposes, each type has a particular set of nuances. All ACORD forms are not the same.

You can search the ACORD website for the forms that are relevant to your situation and download them just as you would free ones randomly found throughout the Internet.

How Do You Know If the Example You Found Online is a Good One?

A tell-tale sign that the example you found online is a good one is if it contains the information it should. A blank form should have spaces for details that are relevant for that type of form. A completed sample should have all applicable data included. For instance, a sample certificate of insurance with additional insured should have space for additional insured information.

An ACORD 25 form, the standard general liability insurance certificate, is a good example to look at since it is one of the most widely used. A sample ACORD 25 should contain the:

  • insured’s name.
  • name of the insurance company.
  • policy number.
  • insurance company’s National Association of Insurance Commissioner number.
  • type of insurance protection.
  • effective date.
  • limits of protection.

Fake ACORD 25 forms might exclude any of these items. Some certificates can appear valid under scrutiny. It’s necessary to double-check all certificates of insurance, blank and otherwise, for legitimacy.

Sample ACORD COIs and Fraud

Anyone can access a certificate of insurance online and download one. In honest hands, they can be powerful tools.

A blank certificate of insurance sample PDF can also be used to commit fraud. Some people might fill in a blank certificate of liability insurance form if they don’t own ample coverage. Insurance agents and brokers are usually the only people who should fill out COIs.

As such, you can validate a COI by:

  • calling the insurance company listed on the form to verify the certificate’s credibility.
  • checking for missing and contradictory information like signatures and endorsements.
  • contacting your insurance agent to verify the company exists.
  • looking for the name of the insurance company on the top right of the certificate.

Using an ACORD form as a template can give you a better idea of what to expect when handling COIs. Their standard use across the country is due to their accuracy.

A certificate of liability insurance form example can help people learn as well as try to fool their employers. Being aware of what constitutes a genuine COI can decrease fraud and liability risk. A sample COI obtained from ACORD can make a difference between sustaining and ruining a company’s reputation and financial status.

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