Coverage Types Needed for Different Industries

One company manufactures golf balls. Another builds golf courses the balls are used on. These companies have very different needs. Despite their businesses being intertwined, the businesses’ needs vary greatly.

This is also reflected in what they should look for in insurance coverage, as not every company faces the same risks. For some companies, liability is a priority. For others, workers’ compensation is top of mind. While it’s essential that all companies carry insurance coverage, not every policy is the right fit for every company. Some common policies span industries, but each business’s unique priorities contribute to its insurance needs. Here’s a breakdown of the most common needs by industry:

Home and building services: If you offer home or other building services, it’s important to ensure you have commercial auto, workers’ compensation, property and liability insurance. You should have insurance coverage for tools and equipment.

Office: Companies that rely on offices have to protect their assets, employees and intellectual property. With a focus on Internet-necessary services, these companies place a premium on auto, workers’ compensation, property, liability and cybercrime insurance.

Manufacturing: In manufacturing, worker and consumer safety must be guaranteed; thus, liability is high. There are many moving parts, and they must all have proper insurance coverage. Manufacturers must require auto, product recall, property, workplace injury, workers’ compensation, liability and equipment failure insurance.

Education and nonprofits: Organizations that serve others need insurance. Business owners in this field should focus on workers’ compensation, counseling liability, auto, liability, property, and tuition and fees policies.

Retail stores: Retailers are at high risk when it comes to property, liability, commercial auto, and workers’ compensation claims, and they must secure coverage for these issues. Retail store owners should also secure coverage for income loss and crime in addition to business interruption insurance and protection against theft and fraud.

Religious organizations: For this industry that people rely on for crucial decisions, it’s important to cover any property involved and leadership as well. Religious organizations should obtain solid coverage in pastoral professional liability, business liability, business property and business crime insurance.

Hospitality: Business professionals in this industry have many different needs when it comes to insurance. It’s vital to obtain policies that provide business property insurance, business personal property insurance, workers’ compensation insurance and business liability insurance to properly insure your business and your guests.

Real estate: There are unique risks in the business of selling real estate. Make sure you’re covered by policies for business property insurance, business income insurance, sale and disposal liability insurance and rent guarantee insurance.

Restaurants: Your business model poses risks of employee injury and medical issues as well as fires and other accidents that result in property damage. For proper business coverage, it is recommended you obtain restaurant property insurance, restaurant liability insurance, restaurant crime insurance and workers’ compensation insurance.

As you can see, each business is unique, even within its own industry. Speak with our office today to determine the exact needs for your company and how we can help you.

The Ins and Outs of Certificates of Insurance

Certificates of insurance are often something you see required by contract but not something many people typically talk about. Below, we’ll detail what a certificate of insurance is, why you need one, when to ask for one and what one typically entails.

What is a certificate of insurance?

A certificate of insurance is a document from an insurance company demonstrating that you have a current business insurance policy.

Why do I need to provide a certificate of insurance?

A certificate of insurance shows proof that you have insurance, and some businesses or customers may request to see this proof before they consider working with you. Some may have that as a requirement or condition of doing business with them. Insurance protects your business from risks and can protect your clients and customers, too.

Why should you ask for a certificate of insurance?

Any informed client will ask their contractor or other business they work with for a certificate of insurance to make sure the right insurance with the necessary limits is in place for the work.

What should a typical certificate of insurance include?

A typical certificate of insurance should identify the person who has the policy (the “insured”), the mailing address, type of policy, policy limits, insurance company contact information, and additional insured, if there are any. Double-check the certificate matches the name of the company or person you’re working with, has the correct coverage (which will not expire before the work is completed), lists coverage amounts and is issued by an actual insurance company.

Whenever you need a certificate of insurance, we’re here for you. We can also help you review any certificates you receive and make sure they have what’s needed.

Is It Safe to Sign up for Health Information Portals?

The benefits of a secure online patient portal where you can review your medical records include quicker access to your medical history. Traditionally, a doctor or medical assistant calls you when test results arrive. That can take up to a few weeks, or, in some cases, you don’t hear from your doctors. Because many doctors update your medical chart once they examine you or quickly once your test results arrive, you can view these updates sooner. Portals also eliminate the hassle of back-and-forth calls.

For patients with chronic illnesses, secure messaging can mean more personalized treatment. Portals reduce your time on hold and allow your doctor to focus on your messaged question when he or she is not distracted by other priorities. A recent Kaiser Permanente study found online patient management improved the management of chronic disease by about 10%.

However, there are risks associated with patient portals. As recently as November 2020, The National Law Review cautioned that many healthcare organization’s cybersecurity efforts are “insufficient” against today’s sophisticated cyber hacks. In fact, by the middle of 2019, 25 million patients had had their records breached.

Medical providers encourage their patients to sign into their portals. However, not every patient feels comfortable with this approach, and some may not have computer access. Before you decide, review testimonials from other patients before you commit, or register, try it and decide. If you don’t feel comfortable, you can cancel your account.

Call us to discuss online medical access. We are always here to help.

Part D Medicare – Do I Need This Coverage?

Medicare Part D drug coverage is an important benefit for today’s seniors. Part D helps cover prescription medications your doctor may prescribe. “I’m not on any medications,” you may think, “so why should I buy Part D?” Even if you’re not on a medication today, a flu bug or sudden serious illness may require a prescription drug.

The Medicare website explains there are two ways to obtain Part D coverage. You can add a Medicare drug plan if you have Part A and Part B coverage. Alternatively, Medicare Advantage plans may offer more comprehensive drug coverage in their plans. Always compare the options before choosing.

While doctors often prescribe generics when available, a single prescription can be expensive. Many generic equivalents don’t appear for up to 20 years after the introduction of a new drug. Generics may be inferior in some cases. Some doctors will not prescribe certain generics, finding the original patented drugs more beneficial for their patients.

Even if you currently take no medications, consider this: You’ve been feeling bad and visit your doctor. After a battery of tests, she discovers you have gallstones. Your doctor prescribes a drug that costs $473 per tablet. Multiply $473 by the 90 prescribed tablets per month, and the medication becomes unaffordable for all but the most affluent. With a Part D plan, your coverage would greatly reduce this drug cost and help you better manage your symptoms.

Choosing a Part D plan is an important decision. While many Medicare Advantage plans offer Part D as part of their offerings, “going it alone” online or through a toll-free phone number can leave you with a plan that’s not right for you. Or you may select a plan that excludes the drugs you take.

Don’t make this important choice alone. Our experienced health agents understand the importance of prescription drug coverage. Call us today for more information.

3 Reasons You Need Life Insurance in Retirement

You may think you do not need life insurance after you retire because your children have grown up and moved out and your spouse has enough money from savings and/or Social Security to live on. But thinking that would be a mistake. Life insurance is important at every stage of your life. Here are three reasons you need life insurance in retirement.

Life insurance can help cover final expenses. Funerals can be costly, and you probably do not want your family to bear the cost. A small life insurance policy can cover these final expenses.

Your dependents may need you more than you think. Your spouse may be self-sufficient and your children may have grown up and moved out, but in the future, a dependent could find that he or she does not have enough money to live on after you pass away. This could occur for many reasons.

Your estate taxes may be higher than you think they will be. Most of us are not in a position to worry about significant estate taxes, but if you have a large estate, you may want to consider buying a life insurance policy to pay the estate taxes that will be due. That way, your heirs will not be stuck with the tax bill, which may be hard for them to pay, especially if your assets aren’t liquid.

If you fall into one of these categories, you may want to consider life insurance in retirement. You have a number of options, including permanent and term, which come with different costs and benefits.

But life insurance can be complicated, so it is a good idea to get assistance if you want to review your policies or buy more. I can help, so please call or email me if you have any questions about life insurance in retirement.

11 Common Insurance Industry Terms Explained

Every industry has its own lingo. Do you know the language of insurance? Consumers often see common insurance terms, but many are unsure how to define them or what they mean.

The following are a few of the most common terms and definitions. Becoming familiar with these will help you navigate insurance purchases, questions and claims.

Actual cash value: Coverage equal to the value of your damaged property minus depreciation.

Adjuster: This person determines losses to resolve insurance claims.

Comprehensive coverage: This part of your auto insurance covers damage to your vehicle that is related to damage from events such as vandalism, theft and fire but is unrelated to collision.

Deductible: Your deductible is what you pay out of pocket before your policy begins to cover the rest of the claim. Higher deductibles mean lower premiums.

Depreciation: This is the decrease in value of your property because of wear and tear that usually occurs over time and through regular use.

Exclusion: Damage or acts that won’t be covered under your insurance policy are in the exclusion.

Liability: If you become legally responsible for personal injury or damage to someone else’s property, liability insurance will protect you from bearing the cost.

Premium: Paid annually, semiannually, or monthly, this is the amount you pay for your insurance policy.

Replacement value: Regardless of a damaged item’s depreciated value, this coverage provides the money you need to replace damaged property with a new item.

Rider: This expands or limits the benefits of an insurance policy.

Underwriting: This is the process through which your insurance company reviews your policy application and sets the appropriate premium for coverage.

If you have any questions regarding any insurance or coverage term or issue, call our office today, and we’ll be happy to provide the answers.

Before You Buy Auto Insurance, Ask These 6 Questions

You need coverage for your car. How much coverage do you need, and what kind of insurance should you ask for? You should ask the questions below to help determine the best insurance coverage for you.

When? How many times a week and where do you drive your car? Your policy must be appropriate for the regular use of the vehicle.

What? What kind of vehicle do you drive? The make, year, model and purpose of your car affect the price of insurance. Some types of cars require unique policies, while others may be more suited to safety discounts due to their records or reputations.

Who? Are you the only one driving the car? What about family members? If you share the vehicle with anyone, including family, they’ll need to be on your insurance policy.

Where? Do you park your vehicle at home, on the street or in a garage? Is the weather where you live sunny and calm or rainy and inclement? Think about potential damage and other risks when you choose your policy.

Why? What is your purpose for obtaining coverage? Is it to fulfill legal requirements? Do you have a lease that requires specific coverage? Do you want to keep your car in perfect condition?

How? How can you pay for auto insurance? Think about all the payment options. Consider a higher deductible to bring down your monthly payment.

Contact our office today to review your options and determine the best coverage for you, your financial situation and your vehicle.