Spring is around the corner and, just like you do before winter, it's time to take care of housekeeping items to keep up your home and reduce the chances of problems down the road.
Parts of your home can be damaged during winter's harsh weather, particularly if you have endured storms and unusual weather.
Thanks to advances in technology and the Internet, more and more people are running home-based businesses, either full-time or part-time.
What happens if your business suffers property damage or a supply chain disruption and is forced to stop operations either fully or partially? Will your insurance cover the work stoppage or slowdown?
It’s important to understand how your insurance can protect you from the resulting financial loss. In addition to potential recovery for property damage from your property/casualty policy, you may be able to recover lost revenue from your business interruption coverage. If your operations are disrupted - completely or partially - the language of your policy will determine if, and for how long, your insurance company will cover the loss.
Old man winter sure has us in his grip! With record-breaking temperatures and wind chills, many people turn to portable heaters to add some extra warmth. If you are using – or plan to use- a portable heater, be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and never leave it unattended. The extra heat feels nice, but these devices can create an electric shock hazard, burns to users, carbon monoxide poisoning, fires, or possibly even explosions.
As the number of data breaches involving smaller businesses continues to grow, a survey by The Hartford finds 85% of small business owners said a potential breach of their own data was unlikely, and many are not implementing simple security measures to help protect their customer or employee data.
Thinking about using a drone for your business and expect your company's general liability policy to cover any accidents and damage it may cause? Be sure to read the policy.
Most general liability policies contain a broad exclusion that applies to aircraft (as well as autos and watercraft). The exclusion eliminates coverage for any bodily injury or property damage that you (or any other insured) cause while owning, maintaining, or using an aircraft.
The exclusion also applies to aircraft that you rent, borrow, or entrust to someone else. Here is an example of how the exclusion might apply.
While that exclusionary language would seem to not include drones, a recent court decision said it does apply to them. The standard language was written before drones really came on the scene, but the ruling said that drones fall into the catchall term for "aircraft."
Linda is a junior partner in a law firm and drives a car that the firm owns and insures. The firm's auto insurance covers her as a partner and she doesn't own another car, so she sees no need to have her own policy.
Most of the time, this is not a problem. However, spring break comes and she decides takes her kids to an amusement part. She rents a car at the airport and never gives a thought to whether her firm's insurance will cover her if she has an accident with the rental. In this case, a phone conversation with the firm's insurance agent would have been a great idea.
While driving to her hotel one night, Linda rear-ends another car. The damage to the other car is extensive; Linda looks to her firm's auto liability coverage for the cost of repairing it.
The Business Auto Policy covers the person or organization shown in the policy declarations (the information page at the beginning.) In this case, the name shown in the policy Declarations is the name of Linda's firm.
The policy goes on to say that, for liability insurance, the firm is an insured and so is anyone else using, with the firm's permission, a covered auto the firm owns, hires or borrows, with some exceptions.
Coinsurance clauses, commonly found in a builder’s risk completed value policy, involve the policyholder becoming a co-insurer of the risk of loss with the insurer. In other words, certain conditions may result in the insurance company not paying the total amount of loss, thereby leaving the policyholder to bear the remainder. The insured and the insurer jointly assume the risk.
The benefit of buying an insurance policy with such a clause is that the policyholder will usually have relatively low premiums compared to other similar policies that don't contain a coinsurance clause. That said, anyone considering a coinsurance clause should understand what it entails and requires, so they are not taken by surprise with penalties if a loss should occur.
When you have business insurance policies you will often hear the terms “insurance binder” and “certificate of insurance,” but do you know the difference?
A binder is a contract of insurance. It's called a binder because it "binds" your coverage and creates an insurance contract and is used temporarily until the policy is issued.
A certificate of insurance is a form of proof of insurance warranting that you have coverage for a specific period.
Employers have options when it comes to their workers' compensation coverage. Before making a decision, it's important to understand the differences among self-insured, self-insured group, and fully-insured workers’ compensation insurance. Because a self-insured employer assumes the risk of paying the workers' compensation claim costs for its employees, it must have the financial resources to meet this obligation. Further, when considering a self-insured group, employers need to understand how the program works, the financial strength of the group, and how the group is managed.
Learn about these options in our article "Understanding self-insured vs fully-insured workers' compensation coverage," prepared for Iowa Association of Business and Industry.
While every effort has been taken in compiling this information to ensure that its contents are totally accurate, neither the publisher nor the author can accept liability for any inaccuracies or change circumstances of any information herein or for the consequences of any reliance placed upon it. This publication is distributed on the understanding that the publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting, or other professional advice or services. Readers should always seek professional advice before entering into any commitments.
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