Coverage Concerns for PEOs

Professional employer organizations (PEOs) often employ thousands of people to contract out to different companies that need to address a particular set of services. They’re able to infuse a large number of employees to help owners lower the cost of health insurance and the unemployment taxes they have to pay. PEOs provide these services for a fee that is commonly based on a percentage of the company’s gross payroll.

Professional employer organizations can bring a lot of value to a company through increased payroll accuracy and lowered health and legal costs as well as in other areas that are quite significant, like lowered absenteeism and increased employee morale. By taking on these duties they also inherit the risks and exposures inherent in these types of responsibilities. Your clients that enlist these services will benefit from having peo insurance to address anything from employment practice liabilities (EPL), to errors and omissions (E&O) that may occur during the dispensing of their services.

Responsibility and liability issues

Then there is the question of who is the employer of record for the employees? Is it the client company, the PEO (or leasing firm), or both? Often there is co-employer liability, meaning the client company may still have liability even if its workers are considered employees of the PEO, so addressing the EPL coverage for the client company is extremely important. Many EPL policies include language to cover “leased employees” on the client company policy.

PEO and staffing firm policies should include full prior acts coverage, but it’s imperative to carefully review how liability from prior acts has been handled for employees before they became the responsibility of the PEO. For example, you may encounter prior acts coverage on one specific page of the policy, but it may only provide for acts of those employees while under the control of the PEO.

You must also consider how prior and former employees are handled, as well as their prior acts, and how your policy responds. Moving employees to a PEO/staffing firm may not cover prior acts and related exposures for client company employees that retired, quit or were terminated prior to the use of the PEO. Former employees may not be covered under the PEO/staffing policy, so dropping the client company policy often leaves a gap.

These are conditions and situations that should be carefully evaluated to ensure that your client’s peo insurance will provide them with coverage for any conditions that may arise.

The Basics of ERP Coverage

Errors, omissions, negligence and other forms of malpractice can occur in your business. When they do, you need a solid insurance policy that protects you from having to pay legal fees and any subsequent settlement out of pocket. Most E&O and malpractice policies only last for a year, though, and they don’t cover issues that arise outside the policy terms. That is why you need extended reporting period coverage, or tail coverage. What is tail coverage? It is a provision that extends the ability to report on an issue that occurred during the policy term.

Any claims that are made against services your company provided between your E&O policy’s retroactive date and expiration date can be covered under the tail coverage. This add-on allows you to extend your reporting period for a certain amount of time, whether it’s three years or up to ten. It is particularly useful if you are selling your company, retiring or just restructuring your insurance package. While it does not cover services that you provide outside of the associated policy’s time frame, it gives you more than the policy’s one year of protection. When you add an ERP provision to your policy, you can ease some of the concern about possible lawsuits clients might bring against your company.

What is tail coverage? It’s peace of mind.

Food Contamination Issues in Hospitality Industry

Operating in the hospitality industry has its share of risks and exposures and perhaps none greater than food contamination. It’s bad business to become involved in recalls of food that may be contaminated, as it can be quite expensive to implement the requirements necessary to remedy the situation. This certainly points out the necessity for coverage for food spoilage from NorthStar Insurance Services for such expenses when such a situation arises.

Food borne illness claims are among the most detrimental financial risks facing this industry and news reports about major recalls often creates concerns and can seriously damage the reputation of companies involved. Once a contamination event has been reported, all companies in the food supply chain, from farm to market, may find themselves implicated as a possible source of the contamination. This means coming under the scrutiny of plaintiffs’ lawyers until the source of the contamination is recognized.

Only insurance can provide the needed protection

Insurance often works as a critical risk management tool, one that many companies in the hospitality industry should employ to protect against the risk of food contamination claims. However, the rise in lawsuits involving disputes over tainted food products demonstrates that owners and executives operating at food and meat supply companies should also do more to properly inspect, and protect themselves against these types of concerns.

This can certainly be accomplished by purchasing commercial general liability (CGL) and commercial property insurance policies, along with a rider that addresses food contamination, and by negotiating coverage enhancements to fill any potential gaps in your coverage.

Realize that the manner in which a claim is characterized when submitted to your insurer can often determine the difference between a covered and an uncovered claim. It’s also extremely important to understand that coverage determinations are fact specific and driven by policy language.

Therefore, as a policyholder, you should be aware of contamination and recall liabilities and should work closely with your broker providing you with NorthStar Insurance Services, along with other experienced coverage counsel to maximize your food contamination coverage in the event of a product recall that results in a loss.

Warehousing Standards and Understanding Policy Provisions

While having normal business liability insurance coverage is critical, as a reputable warehouse operator you should also be sure to carry warehouse legal liability insurance in Orlando, Florida. Legal liability coverage for warehouse man is a unique type of policy that responds whenever a warehouse operator’s failure to exercise reasonable care in the handling and storage of a customer’s goods results in loss of, or damage to, those goods.

If, for whatever reason, you’re found negligent in the care of a customer’s goods then your insurance carrier makes payment directly to the customer for the loss they’ve incurred. This is the main reason why customers do not wish to be named as an additional insured under the warehouse operator’s warehouse legal liability policy.

Certain exclusions exist within the policy

It is important to note that just about every warehouse legal liability policy excludes liability for loss or damage in instances where the warehouse operator has, of his own accord, agreed to take on a higher degree of risk and responsibility for the care of a customer’s goods beyond what is legally required.

This exclusion is necessary since warehouse legal liability policies are underwritten by insurance carriers on the basis of insuring those risks associated with a warehouse operator’s negligence. If a warehouse operator has agreed to assume greater liability for a customer’s goods, then the risks become much more extensive, far beyond what the insurance carrier may have taken into account when setting a premium for the policy.

When a significant loss or damage to the customer’s goods does occur and is directly attributable to the warehouse operator’s failure to take reasonable care of the customer’s goods, both the warehouse operator and the customer are relying on the warehouse operator’s liability policy to respond to the claim.

It would be considered an unfortunate circumstance if a warehousing service agreement were to contain a provision requiring the warehouse operator to assume liability for a customer’s goods beyond the standard of “reasonable care”. In this instance, such a provision is likely to void the warehouse operator’s warehouse legal liability insurance in Orlando, Florida, thus putting both parties in an unfavorable position regarding reimbursement or restitution.

 

Types of Liability Coverage for Your Real Estate Firm

If you work in the real estate industry, you understand the pressures you face to meet clients’ demands and to help them achieve their goals. Unfortunately, real estate has a high exposure to lawsuits and other legal matters. To protect your business, you need to seek professional liability insurance program for real estate firms.

Discrimination Allegations

Real estate professionals must exercise extreme caution when turning down clients’ requests and applications. If a client can’t get into the home he or she wants, that person could claim you discriminated against him or her and that was the reason for the missed opportunity. You can select a package to guard against loss from these allegations.

Environmental Hazards

If you sell a home with environmental issues to someone, you could face severe consequences. Even if you’re not at fault, you could be left in financial ruin. Professional liability insurance program for real estate firms have packages to compensate you for these legal expenses and defense.

Privacy Breach

In your work, you have access to clients’ sensitive personal information. Make sure you get coverage to protect against allegations that you’ve used this information against your clients for your own gain.

Choose liability coverage for your firm today. The right plans can save you significant amounts of money and keep your business moving forward even in the face of legal challenges.

Facebook Continues to Aid Agent Marketing Strategies

When devising a marketing plan nowadays you must factor in social media as a way to increase awareness of your brand and build an audience. Facebook, whose audience has skewed much older the past few years, is a great place for an insurance page. Agencies are faced with a unique challenge when it comes to Social Media for Insurance because there is a lot of competition. The idea is to simply find useful and unique ways to garner attention and make your products and services appealing to those with coverage needs.

One important aspect of your plan should be to develop a local brand identity. Once you establish this, you can continue by demonstrating positive customer experiences. You can post video testimonials of people expressing how happy they were to find your agency and the benefits they’ve received from this relationship.

Remember, social media is a valuable tool for getting the word out about many of the new services and plans, while posting information about available discounts and using the opportunity to make a name for yourself as a local expert in the community, someone that can be trusted.

Developing a social media strategy

It’s important to understand your place in the social media landscape and you’re free to determine which channels are right for your firm. You have to set reasonable expectations when implementing social media, but the more active you are, generally the better the response. Other platforms like Instagram, Snapchat, and Vine may or may not be a good fit for the audience you wish to engage. Focusing on more traditional platforms like Facebook and Twitter you’re likely to engage users that are more apt to show an interest in these services and products.

Write and post articles related to coverages you offer, but additionally write about other subjects, not necessarily about insurance, yet angled to that specific core audience. Social media enables two-way communication so be ready to answer general questions about policies, as this will help to present you in an even more endearing light. It’s important to respond to customers as promptly as possible. When you make a point to do so, customers will see that you’re committed to providing quality customer service.

Social Media for Insurance can be a major part of your marketing strategy and by using the tools correctly an agent can help establish themselves as a friendly voice ready to help.
 

Insurance Required for Temp Employees

The use of temporary staff can be a great resource for companies of all types and sizes as a way to fill voids in the everyday workforce. Due to the nature of the business, staffing insurance is purchased as a way of protecting the staffing agency in the event the employee becomes injured on the job, or is responsible for some type of loss as a result of a mistake or error made.

Most companies upon determining that a temporary employee is needed will seek out a staffing agency based on which entity is able to deliver the best candidates. However, any business relationship with a staffing company should be carefully reviewed given that clients of temporary employees are placed in a co-employment relationship with the agency of their choosing.

Concerns the should be addressed

There are certain risk management issues that are inherent in staffing, such as whether the chosen recruiter is representing the best agency for your personnel needs, and is the agency’s workers’ compensation plan and staffing insurance adequate in the event of an accident or injury. Furthermore, does the agency have adequate new hire materials to protect the organization and what are the agency’s qualifications regarding human resource education and training?

There are many considerations involved in evaluating the agency assigned with this task. A staffing firm should be in charge of maintaining all employment-related records and also provide a handbook and any essential training to its employees regarding key labor and employment issues.

Temporary employees may be exposed to sensitive and confidential material while on assignment. A confidentiality agreement allows the agency to address the importance and seriousness of maintaining confidential information and can assist with risk management requirements of clients, such as liability and malpractice insurance coverage criteria.

In addition, state and federal employment laws require employers to have a policy that addresses harassment issues. Laws are also in place requiring employers to have a formal safety policy known as an Illness and Injury Prevention Program. New hires should be given a complete written program that addresses safety and accident reporting procedures.

In the event of a claim, an arbitration agreement can help to manage the cost of any litigation procedures. Finally, a client benefit waiver acknowledges that a temp employee is employed by the staffing service for benefit plan purposes and that the employee is eligible only for such benefits as the staffing service may offer to its employees.

Finding the Right Insurance Coverage for Attorneys

When it comes to finding the right attorney professional liability insurance for your firm, it is a good idea to know some basics about your risks and your options. This can help you find the right agency to work with to design the coverage you need.

Your Risks

The risks you face for liability include errors and omissions cases. These are usually civil court cases focusing on possible negligence in the advice given to your clients. The more clients you handle, the higher your risks are likely to be. The same goes for the number of attorneys in your firm. An insurance agency can sit down with you to go over your risks and ways to minimize them.

Your Options

Your options for insurance coverage will start with the companies in your area which offer professional liability for the size of law firm you have. You can then narrow down your options to the ones with the best reputations, plans and rates to find the right fit.

Attorney professional liability insurance can be found through a few companies designed to cover errors and omissions damages. To find the right coverage, you will first want to determine your risks and your options. Some providers will help you go over these things to build the best package for your firm.

Electricians Coverage to Mitigate Liability Exposures

Any business that provides electrical service installations needs to protect the company from litigation or any other concerns in addition to protecting the people it employs. As an electrician, there are certain risks and exposures to consider, and as a business owner, you have equipment that may be at risk of theft, plus you may have issues regarding the work once completed. Speak to a New Mexico Insurance agency to get electrician’s insurance that will protect you against many of these types of liability concerns.

Working in a safe environment

Working with electricity is dangerous business. The shock from a burst of electricity can cause severe damage to a person, and at times, may even result in death. The most important thing to remember is that the safety of your customers and employees should always come first. Inspect any work done and be absolutely certain that no health risks exist before signing off on any job performed.

Not only is there the threat of potential electrical shocks, but deep cuts and scrapes, falls from heights, and perhaps plenty of worse dangers can exist while working around power lines. There’s plenty you can and need to do to protect yourself and your workers. Whenever you have other electricians or assistants doing work for you, make sure they are well trained and follow all safety instructions.

In the event that a client does accuse you (or one of your employees) of doing faulty work, having electrician’s coverage from a New Mexico Insurance agent can help protect you from being personally held liable. You may even fall victim to a false accusation, causing you financial and reputational damaged, and these situations do occur. This is why you always need to have the right coverage for any exposures you may face.

Even when you complete a job to satisfaction, there’s always the possibility that the work performed on electrical equipment could later result in some type of damage to a home or even an individual. With the potential for a fire or some other electrical problem occurring due to work you’ve done, don’t risk facing a costly lawsuit, only to find out that you’re under-insured or don’t have the correct coverage in place. Speak to an agent in New Mexico and get the right protection now.

 

Cyber Crime and Insurance to Aid Victimized Businesses

In the world of cyber crime, “botnets”, essentially networks of private computers infected with malicious software and controlled as a group without the owners’ knowledge, are becoming increasingly big business. This demonstrates yet another vulnerability that exists where hackers are able to infiltrate businesses and wreak havoc.

These types of invasions have proven to be quite costly, causing financial and reputational damage often resulting in companies being unable to operate until the matter is resolved. A security breach could easily result in a client’s data being stolen and used in a damaging fashion leading to third-party liability claims. Carmel cyber risk insurance addresses many of these concerns and is vital to reparation and cyber security efforts.

Companies often seek professional help

A data breach may result in your company needing to hire a forensic IT investigator trained in just determining how the hack occurred. There are many other additional costs related to cyber crimes, such as notifying customers whose information has been compromised. An event of this nature may result in business-interruption losses, which are not likely to be covered under any standard policy.

Cyber coverage is no longer considered an undeserved market, and companies large and small are securing coverage as the inherent risks associated with cyber crimes have become more and more evident. Educating business owners about liability issues can only help to serve the marketplace and create better understanding about what these exposures are and how to better protect against them.

Types of coverages available

There are several types of coverage most firms consider purchasing, including litigation and regulatory for covering the costs associated with civil lawsuits, judgments, settlements or penalties resulting from a cyber event, regulatory response, notification costs, crisis management, credit monitoring, media liability, and privacy liability. Your coverage choices can be determined by the types of exposures you may face in your line of work.

No business is safe from privacy breaches and cyber attacks, and hackers have only grown more sophisticated over time. The demand for Carmel cyber risk insurance has grown as a result of the many breaches reported in the news and on the web, and recent studies have found that 31 percent of companies have by now purchased some type of cyber policy.

All these carriers now offer coverage for both first-party and third-party losses, so speak to an agent about your concerns and get the protection you deserve.