Is Your Business Fully Covered?

If you own or operate a business, commercial insurance needs to be part of your business plan.  If not properly insured, your business most likely will not withstand the effects of a common loss.  Business insurance, or commercial insurance, is designed to protect your business from accidents and loss.

Your business can be shut down for a number of reasons including; fire, cyber breach, water damage, customer litigation and more.

Key Business Coverage for Your Business Needs

Business Interruption Insurance covers the loss of income that a business suffers after a covered loss (fire, windstorm, etc.), while its facility is shut down or in the process of being rebuilt.

Directors and Officers Insurance is needed even if you are a privately held business. Directors and officers liability Insurance protects your business, owners, executives, and managers if individuals, competitors, third parties, or government regulators make claim for damages.

Cyber Liability is a risk that every business has. According to the Insurance Information Institute, businesses have a greater chance of having a cyber breach than they do of having a fire. Most businesses should consider cyber liability insurance, which is designed to cover the costs of investigations, notification, and credit monitoring for affected individuals, regulatory compliance, defending lawsuits, and payment of any resulting judgments or settlements.

We are committed to providing clients with the highest quality insurance plans available combined with some of the lowest possible rates. Whether you are shopping for auto insurance, home insurance, life or business insurance, we can help you obtain the best coverage available with the lowest rate possible.

Our agency truly values the long term relationships with our clients, and are proud to give families, individuals and businesses the personal attention required when it matters most. When claims arise, we realize that it can be very stressful and will do everything possible to assure timely and complete recovery.

RV Insurance 101

You probably bought your motor home or travel trailer because it offers the best of both worlds: the ability to explore the world we live in and the convenience of your home each night when you pull over. Motor homes and travel trailers offer a freedom and joy that’s unique regardless of the size of coach or fifth wheel you explore with.

But with this dual benefit also come some increased risks. As a vehicle, your motor home needs some auto-type insurance to protect you from crashes, medical costs and the like while you’re driving on the road. But comprehensive rv insurance needs to also protect you when you have stopped and camped. That means you need insurance closer to what you find in a homeowner’s policy that includes features such as:

Personal liability:

Protection in case someone is injured in or around your RV

Personal property:

Enhanced property insurance that will protect the contents of your RV in case of theft or damage.

Additional living expenses:

Protection that helps pay for your cost of living if you are displaced from your motor home.

Attached accessories:

Another layer of protection that covers your awning, tv antennas or other accessories that might be damaged.

Getting the right recreational vehicle insurance doesn’t have to be expensive or difficult with an insurance expert on your side.

Consider Vacation Liability coverage for when you stop driving and start using your recreational vehicle as a temporary residence. Some policies can include additional coverage for physical damage in Mexico.

Some policies include Roadside Assistance, which has you covered 24/7 in the event of a breakdown or accident. Some will even allow you to upgrade the coverage to include lodging, transportation, and meal coverage if needed.

Our claims service is available 24/7. In the event you have a loss, the insurance companies we work with have skilled claims teams who will work with you to get your RV repaired and back on the road.

Fire Up the Grill

A Personal Insurance and Safety Update

There are many good reasons to have homeowner’s or renter’s insurance, and here are a few more.

In 2019, 18,500 people went to emergency rooms because of barbeque related accidents.  Sixteen percent of home structure fires involving a grill were caused during ignition because something flammable was too close to the grill.  Twenty percent of all reported grill fires were a result of leaks or breaks.  Gas grills account for more home fires overall than do charcoal grills.  Emergency rooms see the use of gasoline on a charcoal grill as the most common error associated with burn cases.

You might think you know all you need to know about barbeque safety and grilling, but here are some reminders.  We want your grilling experience to be fun and safe for the entire family.

General Grilling Safety

Never barbeque inside, in a garage, on the roof, or on a second story deck.

Never leave your grill unattended.

If you are using a charcoal grill, let the lighter fluid soak into the coals a few minutes before lighting them so that any vapors have time to evaporate.  When you do light the coals, stand back.

Do not use lighter fluid on hot coals.

Open the grill lid before you light it

Do not wear loose fitting clothing.

Keep an extinguisher outside or close by.

Make sure you use the grill 10 feet away from your house.

Use the grill close to a water source.

Do not let raw meat sit out too long without being chilled or cooked.

Always wash your hands before and after handling food.

Do not over-indulge in alcohol while barbecuing.

We are committed to providing clients with the highest quality insurance plans available combined with some of the lowest possible rates. Whether you are shopping for auto insurance, home insurance, life or business insurance, we can help you obtain the best coverage available with the lowest rate possible.

Artisan Contractor Insurance

The category of artisan contractors, also known as casual contractors, includes many occupations that involve skilled work with tools at the customer’s premises. Carpenters, plumbers, electricians, roofers and tree surgeons are some of them. Also included are diverse other skilled service providers, such as interior decorators, piano tuners and exterminators.

Special insurance needs of this group include coverage for equipment and tools that are often moved around and for the value of work done for a customer until it is finished.

For many artisan contractors, the most cost effective and efficient way to obtain property and liability coverage is with a Business Owners Policy (BOP) especially tailored to their needs. Although marketed under a variety of names, these policies will typically have provisions similar to the BOP’s.

Property Insurance

The BOP covers real estate and other property that your business owns that is located at the described business premises. If your business rents or leases its premises, the BOP provides coverage for tenants’ improvements and betterments. These are fixtures, alterations, installations or additions that you have put into the space that cannot legally be removed from the landlord’s premises.

Your biggest personal property loss exposures, however, may involve valuable machinery and equipment that moves around from job to job and is not covered by the standard property insurance. Such movable property is insured by contracts that insurers call “floaters.”

An installer’s floater covers all kinds of machinery and equipment during transit, installation and testing at a customer’s premises. Even building materials may be covered, but the more usual coverage is for equipment or machinery that only contractors install, such as heating or air conditioning. The policy can be written to cover a single job or on a reporting form, meaning that you provide the insurer with information about each new contract you undertake.

A tools and equipment floater covers the insured property wherever it is used and may include such items as hand tools, power drills, hoisting machines and power pumps.

Liability Insurance

Given the possibility of a lawsuit should someone claim to have been harmed by your work, you will almost certainly need liability insurance.

If working as a subcontractor, your customer may require you to have Owners and Contractors Protective Liability (OCP) coverage. This protects either a property/business owner or a general contractor from possible liability arising from the negligent acts of an independent contractor or subcontractor hired to perform work on behalf of the insured. The actual purchaser of the policy is the independent contractor or subcontractor, but the protection is for the benefit of the property/business owner or general contractor for whom the work is being done.

Business Vehicle Insurance

Your personal auto policy probably provides coverage for some business use of your truck, van or other vehicle. A personal auto policy is unlikely to provide coverage, however, if the vehicle in question is used primarily in business. It will not provide coverage for any vehicle owned by a business. For those vehicles you must have a business auto policy.

If you’re driving a truck you own personally for a business purpose and get into an accident for which you are liable, an injured person could sue you personally. Will your personal auto policy have enough coverage to pay all the damages? If not, a lawsuit may be filed against your business. If you use personal vehicles for business, you want to be sure you have high enough limits to protect your business. You should discuss this with your insurance agent.

Workers’ Compensation Insurance

States have varying rules about when an employer must provide workers compensation insurance. If you have three or more employees, you should check with your state department of workers’ compensation to see if you are required to provide workers comp insurance.

Enjoy The 4th Of July And Be Safe

We are approaching our nation’s birthday, July 4th, and we hope everyone has a great day of celebration with friends and family. In 2019 over 7,800 people went to the emergency room as a result of fireworks-related injuries. There were an estimated 15,770 reported fires started by fireworks. These fires resulted in an estimated eight reported deaths, and $38 million in direct property damage. This is why it is a good idea to have a free home insurance review and quote, call us today!

Homeowner’s Insurance

If you over-celebrate and do have a loss or damage, please call our office. It is very likely that the claim would be covered under your homeowner’s insurance policy.

General 4th of July safety

Be a safe swimmer. Water sports and fireworks are two of the biggest pastimes for the Fourth of July celebrations, and these are both linked to numerous deaths and injuries each year. Never swim alone, and make sure that kids’ water play is adequately supervised at all times.

Be a safe boater. Never consume alcohol while driving a boat. Set water safety rules for your family and passengers.

Use alcohol responsibly. Alcohol and fireworks can be a hazardous and dangerous combination.

Use sunscreen. At the start of summer, skin is especially tender, so use a high SPF.

Keep alert for local weather conditions. Check to see if any warning signs or flags are posted.

Remember your pet. They are not used to all the fireworks, so keep them inside.

Grill safely. Before you use your grill, make sure all hoses are secure and leak-free. Never grill inside. Keep grill away for al structures.

Fireworks Safety

Never try to make your own fireworks.

Light fireworks on a smooth, flat surface away from the house, dry leaves, and flammable materials.

Only use legal store-bought fireworks.

Don’t point sparklers or fireworks at yourself or others.

Make sure spectators are out of range before lighting fireworks.

Always keep matches and lighter fluid far away from fireworks.

Read labels and carefully follow directions.

Only light fireworks on the ground and in areas that are dry and fire-resistant.

Don’t attempt to light multiple devices at the same time.

Never allow young children to handle fireworks or sparklers.

Teach children to “stop, drop, and roll” if their clothes catch fire.

Always keep a portable fire extinguisher close by. Also, keep a water hose or buckets of water nearby to put out fires.

Thanks to our sources

http://www.medicinenet.com

http://www.redcross.org/

http://www.protection1.com/

Make Your Workplace Safe After COVID-19

As many people are getting back to work, many employers wonder how they can have their employees return safely. Employers are confronted with the complexities of returning employees to work in a manner that is safe and ensures operational continuity.

Now is the time administrators should be building policies and procedures so that when employees and the public return, you will have a plan in place.

Conduct a Hazard Assessment for new protocols/equipment put in place consistent with OSHA rules.

As with all policies and procedures, employers should ensure that any return-to-work protocols are implemented in a fair and non-discriminatory manner.

Develop communication systems for returning workers, ensuring that they are aware of the safety measures in place and how to comply with them.

Make sure that proper personal protective equipment (PPE) and general cleaning materials such as soap and hand sanitizer are available.

OSHA recommends providing tissues, no-touch trash cans, hand soap, alcohol-based hand sanitizers, disinfectants, and disposable towels for workers to clean their work surfaces.

Consider appointing a chief COVID officer responsible for ensuring that all public safety and health guidelines are implemented and that employees follow them.

Intensify cleaning, disinfection, and ventilation.

Stager breaks and recreation times.

Close off common spaces where employees or others are likely to congregate.

Consider what screening procedures are needed for visitors to the school.

OSHA requires employers to provide employees with a safe place to work. Employers may be responsible for workplace safety violations related to the coronavirus outbreak under OSHA’s “general duty” clause, which requires that each employer furnish to each of its employees a workplace that is free from recognized hazards that are causing or likely to cause death or serious physical harm.

 

Business Insurance

We Help You Understand the Risk vs. Reward

We understand that your business is unique.  You serve people first, and foremost.  Just because you are a small business does not mean you are exempt from litigation.  Commercial Liability Insurance from Jewell Insurance offers protection to your businesses.  It covers claims from property damage and/or bodily injury to a third party caused by your business operations, or from your premises.  This general liability coverage may also provide for the legal defense of the insured.

General Liability Insurance should be the foundation of your insurance program.  General Liability Insurance provides the following coverage:

Bodily Injury – Bodily Injury to a third party.

Property Damage – Damage to a third party’s property (equipment building etc.).

Personal Injury – Injury to the mind or emotions, as opposed to an injury to property.

Advertising Liability – Damages arising out of advertising, libel, slander, or invasion of privacy.

Products and Completed Operations – Liability arising out of products or business operations and services conducted, excluding professional services.

Premises – Covers liability arising out of injury to third parties while on your premises.

Medical Payments – A general liability coverage that reimburses others, without regard to the insured’s liability, for bodily injury while on your premises.

General Liability Insurance is designed to cover defense costs as well as judgments.  It is an important part of your recommended insurance program.

 

Reduce Your Texas Auto Insurance Premiums

Auto Insurance

When it comes to purchasing auto insurance, having options can be a very important way to save money. Putting money back in your pocket is one of our primary goals.  We know and understand the auto insurance market.  This allows us to provide you with the best possible combination of pricing, coverage and service.

Auto insurance rates differ from company to company, so it really pays to have us shop your insurance. Some markets offer better rates for trucks, RV and campers, while others can offer better rates for motorcycles.

How to reduce your auto premium

There are many things you can do to keep your auto rates at the lowest level possible.

Review your deductibles. According to the Insurance Information Institute, raising your deductible from $200 to $500 could reduce your Collision and Comprehensive costs by 15 to 20 percent.

Encourage your student driver to get the best grades possible. Most major insurance companies offer a discount for students in good academic standing.

Select a safe car. Check out which cars are popular with thieves and avoid them. Also, the more expensive the car, the higher the premiums.

Be a safe driver. The more accidents and tickets you have, the higher the premiums will be.

Purchase a car with an alarm or LoJack. LoJack® Stolen Vehicle Recovery System provides car owners with peace of mind knowing that if their vehicle is stolen, they have the best chance of getting it back.

Be loyal. Many auto insurance companies offer loyalty discounts if you stay with them over time.

Check for other auto insurance discounts. These might include taking safe driver courses, senior discounts and more.

You might be able to pay less for your car insurance premium and not even know it. So it pays to connect with us to review your insurance needs.

COVID-19 and the New Cyber Challenges

The CIOVID-19 pandemic has affected the way we do business in a very significant way.  Many businesses are requiring people to work remotely.  Employers are finding that having employees work remotely may be the new normal.

COVID-19 has forced us to become more dependent on the internet, as desperate measures, like social distancing, disrupt economic activity and everyday life.

This new way of doing business could mean that employees are collecting client information from home or other places that may not have the same cyber security as an office network.  In some instances, employees who are working remotely are forced to use their home computers because they do not have a company laptop.

Top Work-from-Home Cyber Concerns

Unsecured video conferencing

Using unsecured networks

Spam and phishing campaigns exploiting the COVID-19 pandemic

Maintaining security-critical operations, such as patch management

Supporting employees to ensure they have what they need to work from home without sacrificing security

Theft of client information from lap tops

Changes to regular security-critical processes

Using social media platforms from unsecured networks

What Can Employers Do to Reduce the Threat?

Do not open email from people you do not know.

Do not reveal personal or financial information in emails, and do not respond to email solicitations for this information.

Do not provide personal information to unknown websites or uninvestigated third-party messengers.

Do not share the virtual meeting URL’s on social media or other public channels.

Avoid clicking on links in unsolicited emails, and be wary of email attachments.

Lock your screen if you work in a shared space.

Provide corporate computers/devices to staff while teleworking, where possible.

Use secure, password-protected emails when sending documents.

Ensure that adequate information technology resources are in place to support staff.

Provide secure video conferencing for corporate clients (both audio/video capabilities).

How Best To Insure Your Home

Many people look to save a few dollars on their home insurance premium by insuring their home for less than its replacement value. While this may save a few dollars now, it will cost you thousands later. Your homeowner’s insurance policy, if it is written correctly, can repair and or replace your current home with “new” like kind and quality materials. Amy Bach, executive director of the consumer advocacy group United Policyholders, says one 2019 study found that two-thirds of U.S. homes are underinsured. Why? For one thing, many homeowners buy only enough insurance to cover the amount of their mortgage. But the mortgage may be, at most, 80 or 90 percent of the value of the house, depending on the original down payment (less, if the home has appreciated in value).

Key Terms

Market Value is the amount you might sell your home for based on real-estate conditions in your area.

Appraised Value is the term that describes what the local government uses to determine your property taxes.

Replacement Value is the amount it would cost to rebuild your home with like kind and quality. The replacement cost, however, is based on the total cost of labor, activities, and materials to put the structure back to the way it was before the damage. This would include costs related to clearing and cleaning up the damage debris -activities that precede the actual build-out of the home.

Replacement Cost Considerations

There are a number of factors that go into determining your home’s replacement value, including:

Type of construction quality

Materials used in the construction

Size of your home

Location

Your lot configuration, (hillside or flat)

Are there any unique materials, like imported stone, marble, etc.?

The overall quality of construction—is your home average construction or high-end?

The average cost per square foot for new construction in your area.

We always recommend you insure your home to the full replacement values and have an inflation cost factor added annually.