All posts by JAMA Insurance

Key Insurance Coverage Areas for Commercial Shopping Centers

Compared to other commercial real estate businesses, shopping centers face unique areas of risk. Unfortunately, many New Jersey shopping centers are only covered by standard commercial real estate policies, which can leave them significantly exposed. Shopping center owners who are reviewing their policies for real estate insurance in New Jersey should strongly consider adding the following two types of coverage if they are not already in place.


Crime Insurance


Although thieves can target virtually any business, commercial retailers are especially vulnerable. Crime insurance can mitigate this risk by providing reimbursement for stolen merchandise. When choosing a policy, shopping center owners should carefully review its specific provisions. In addition to simple cases of theft, crime insurance may cover employee theft, forgeries, and fraud, but these are not necessarily standard areas of coverage on every policy.


Alcohol or Food Borne Liability


If a shopping center includes restaurants, bars, or liquor stores, owners should consider taking out one or both of these policies. Alcohol liability policies protect against liability for accidents caused by alcohol served or sold on the property. Food borne liability policies protect against claims brought by people who suffer from food borne illnesses. These claims present a real risk even to businesses that strive to be careful and legally compliant.


Other Areas to Consider


Shopping centers owners buying real estate insurance in New Jersey may also want to look into cyber liability, pollution liability, and other coverage areas that are becoming increasingly necessary. An insurance agent can help a shopping center owner understand these various policy options and decide which ones to choose to ensure optimal coverage.


Three Basic Types of Commercial Laundry Insurance

The commercial laundry industry has unique and specialized risks that require customized insurance plans in order to provide adequate coverage. From dry cleaners insurance to uniform rental insurance, there are a few different types of policies that benefit the different branches of the industry. Finding the right one for your business requires you to understand each type and what they cover.


Uniform Rental Insurance


Small businesses that specialize in the rental of uniforms need this coverage in order to protect against the loss and damage that can occur due to the day-to-day use of their assets. These companies are in the business of lending out different clothing items to other companies for their employees to use. Without specialized coverage, each and every damaged piece of clothing can create a big cost.


Dry Cleaners Insurance


A dry cleaning facility has many specialized machines and employees who are at a higher risk for injury. Insurance specifically for dry cleaners provides protection for the unique needs of these businesses.


Linen Supply Companies Insurance


Most linen supply companies take in soiled linens for laundering and supply their clients with cleaned and pressed items. Coverage for these businesses’ delivery trucks is necessary to protect against the risk that comes with driving commercial vehicles.


Whether you need coverage for your dry cleaning business or uniform rental insurance, you should invest in the right policy for your company’s needs.


Insurance Blogging and Content Marketing

Content marketing is one of the most important tools for insurance companies trying to sell their products. It helps to differentiate your company from the others, it tells your story and gets customers’ attention, it attracts search engines and boosts your rankings, and it helps to increase leads. One of the best ways to do this is through keeping a blog—insurance blogging is a great way to build your company.


Corporate Blogs


Blogs are becoming more and more popular for businesses, since they provide content that people enjoy reading and helps elevate a brand. The offer a number of informative posts to interest customers, as well as providing the company an outlet for corporate news. They are a very popular form of content marketing.


Blog-Writing Services


It can be a hassle for an insurance company to write a blog, but services exist that can produce a blog for them. When done by a quality company, this will often consist of interviewing the insurance business to understand the company culture, products, and services. This helps to bring a unique voice to the blog. Then they use talented writers to create fresh and engaging content.


Any good SEO (search engine optimization) strategy requires content marketing, and one of the best content vehicles is a blog. Insurance blogging is a great way to increase links to your site, generate buzz, and help your company grow.


What Types of Businesses Benefit From Directors Corporate Liability?

When you deal with clients in the corporate world, they may have very different needs than some of your other clients. Fortunately, there are insurance wholesalers who can help you design an insurance package that will be specifically made for each client you are dealing with. Directors corporate liability can be tailor-made so that your clients have protection for their specific needs. The following are a few of the corporations that can benefit from this type of insurance through a wholesaler:


  • Credit Unions
  • Initial Public Offerings (IPOs)
  • Non-profits
  • Privately held companies
  • Publicly traded corporations


Within each of those businesses, there are various coverage types, with each one aimed at specific needs of each corporation. One aspect typically insures the directors themselves, in addition to the officers and personal assets. Another aspect typically insures the company when officers and directors are indemnified in a claim. A final aspect insures the company when it becomes a defendant.


As an insurance agent, your clients who are directors of corporations look to you to provide them with the protection they need for various, specific aspects of business. Whether your clients run non-profits, privately held companies, or if you have clients from a variety of corporations, let a wholesaler put together a directors corporate liability package that will benefit their company the very most. Contact an insurance wholesaler today for more information.


The Fundamentals of Workers Comp Insurance

If you have employees, then you need to make sure that you also have PA workers comp insurance. It doesn’t matter how many or how few employees you have, you never know how much a single workplace accident can cause you, and you probably hope that you never have to find out how much. Protect yourself and your employees with the right coverage.

What’s Provided?

Specific and comprehensive benefits are provided with workers comp, including lost wages, medical expenses, death benefits and vocational rehabilitation. Now that you see examples of what’s covered by workers comp, you have a better understanding of just how much you stand to lose without coverage. Something else to think about with PA workers comp insurance is that by not having it you leave yourself open to having to pay state penalties.

Changing States

If you plan on moving your business to another state, make sure that you familiarize yourself with your new state’s laws regarding workers comp before you relocate. The reason for this is that there are some states that require employers to get insurance through state-operated funds, which is the only way to make sure that employees are legally covered.

If you are the sole proprietor of a business or in a partnership, you more than likely won’t be required to have workers comp insurance, but it can be a good idea to get some type of professional insurance for your protection as well as for the protection of anyone you work with in the future.


Specialized Canine Coverage Protects Against Excessive Liability Costs

Every year nearly 4.5 million individuals are bitten by dogs, with an average claim cost of around $24,840. According to the CDC about 1 in 5 dog bites will require medical attention, making it crucial that pet owners ensure that their companions are fully covered in event of an unexpected injury-related incident. Homeowner’s insurance and renters’ coverage plans often provide only limited liability coverage, and frequently deny coverage based on breed. However, the Federation of Insured Dog Owners in Florida (F.I.D.O.) can help concerned owners to gain access to comprehensive coverage regardless of pet breed.


A Different Way to Asses Risk


While many insurance providers will refuse coverage based on breed alone, F.I.D.O. members have unique access to plans with a nuanced approach that better serves pet owners. Members can get an easy self-rating quote based on a combination of breed, weight, and size considerations as well as important factors such as responsible, ongoing veterinary care, well-fenced enclosures and yards, and cohabitation with children.


Conscientious Coverage


In addition to improved coverage options, members of the Federation of Insured Dog Owners in Florida will appreciate the fact that annual membership fees are used to fund a variety of support rescue groups and educational pet programs. If you are concerned that your current renter’s or homeowner’s insurance plan does not provide sufficient coverage, or breed restrictions make such coverage difficult to find, you may want to consider looking into this innovative insurance offering.


Recent Changes to California Workers Compensation Insurance

Recent Changes to California Workers Compensation Insurance


California workers compensation insurance

California workers compensation insurance

Just last year, (S.B.) 863, new legislation intended to address steadily increasing workers’ compensation (WC) costs in the state took effect. It was met with approval by a coalition of California businesses and workers’ groups who routinely supported the new law. The hope was that the new law would aid companies that annually reiterated that their cost for workers compensation insurance was detrimental to their operations and could potentially put many small companies out of business.


Labor and management agreed that in order for permanent disability benefits to be increased, costs would have to be decreased where possible (they had declined by 26 percent under the state’s 2004 workers’ comp reforms). They also agreed that where possible, the workers’ compensation process should be made more efficient. One of the benefits is that it would provide solid savings for employers, which saw the costs of WC insurance creep upward from $14.8 billion to $19 billion over the past 2 years.

To counteract another of the problems that arose out of the 2004 reforms S.B. 863 minimizes delays in medical treatment and also improves access to quality care, most of its provisions having taken effect January 1, 2013.


Reforms under the new law

The increase in permanent disability benefits for employees is balanced by significant changes in the benefit delivery system that are intended to eliminate costly waste, inefficiencies, and loopholes. The law increases permanent disability (PD) benefits by 30 percent, or approximately $740 million per year. The increase, which will be phased in over a 2-year period, adjusts the formula for calculating the benefit amount in order for the compensation amounts to more accurately reflect any loss of future earnings.


The law also excludes, with some limitations, the ability to obtain increases in permanent disability ratings for sleep dysfunction, sexual dysfunction, and psychiatric disorders. It does, however, provide medical treatment for such conditions if they are a compensable consequence of an industrial injury.


Changes to supplemental job displacement vouchers


As a result of SB 863, the voucher amount (which was on a sliding scale ranging from $4,000 to $10,000) is now fixed at $6,000 for all qualifying injured workers, and it is to be offered when the injured worker reaches permanent and stationary status and their treating physician reports on the individual’s work abilities and limitations resulting from their injury.


In addition, the bill has created a Return-to-Work Fund that establishes payments from the fund to be made available to injured workers whose permanent disability ratings are disproportionately low in comparison to their wage loss. These are just a few of the exciting changes that took place in California workers compensation insurance.


Association Captives Can Offset the Costs of Insurance

Association Captives Can Offset the Costs of Insurance


Association captives

Association captives

Captive insurance companies can be set up in different ways including one that owned by an association, its members or both. It is called a “captive” because only a limited amount of entities is eligible to participate in the program. Association captives were meant to be a solution to the rising costs of insurance, which resulted in the banding together of companies to insure as one entity. Each captive insurance company selects a domicile, a state or offshore country that has enacted captive insurance laws and regulations giving that domicile primary regulatory jurisdiction over them.


Captives have gone through a swing in popularity


Association captive insurance companies have existed since the 60’s, and provide property and liability coverages to association members. However, market conditions discouraged the formation of new associations in recent years, with some existing programs disbanding due to a lack of demand for these types of services. The insurance market has subsequently changed more recently and associations are experiencing a renewed interest in the forming of captive insurance groups.


There are various benefits to an association and its membership in forming a captive insurance company. Those benefits include the following:


  • Meeting member needs for affordable insurance coverage


  • Availability of coverages not provided by the commercial insurance market


  • A source of revenue for the association, and


  • Opportunities to increase association membership


The first of these benefits is vital, as the rise in insurance costs can be a major burden on many business institutions. By meeting member needs, captives prove to be a valuable way of doing business, and are therefore imperative to a successful program. The other benefits, availability of certain coverages, a source of revenue, and increased association membership alone will not sustain a successful captive insurance program.


The 90’s were a period where captives did not perform well


During the 1990’s the commercial property and casualty insurance market was characterized by intense competition for businesses, mostly among the commercial insurance carriers. This was actually good for those in the market for certain insurance products, and it resulted in the availability of affordable insurance coverage and fairly broad coverage for the first time in a while. During this decade the insurance industry experienced what is referred to as a “soft” market. Thus, most associations captives were not in demand during that period simply because insurance was not an issue for most of those doing business.


Captives make a comeback


The formation of captives is on the rise with more states passing legislation to allow captives to be formed. In addition, emerging trends such as cyber risks and increased healthcare costs has seen increasingly more companies turning to captives, including midsize companies. 


Websites Insurance Customers Want to See

Websites Insurance Customers Want to See
insurance websites

insurance websites

insurance websites

Every business has to provide their customers quality web-based information in order to meaningfully connect with them. This is especially true of insurance websites. Customers need to see at a glance the most important information and feel confident that it comes from a trustworthy, authoritative source. Providing clients and prospective clients with the online resources they want is simple though there are a few key points to keep in mind.


Focus on the Essentials


Customers visiting insurance websites are generally looking for three things:


  • Information about policies offered
  • Explanations of currently-held forms of coverage
  • Contact information for their agent or a 24-hour response line


These three elements should be given priority on insurance websites.


Inviting Further Contact


An insurance agency should be easy to contact; many agencies are served by 24 hour contact services that help customers handle claims at any time of day or night. Some websites include live chat boxes to help customers access necessary services. Basic contact information should also be included; make sure that customers can easily locate the general phone number of the agency as well as the mailing or street address where physical letters can be sent. The email address and phone number of each agent should also be included.


Creating insurance websites that are informative and user friendly requires insight and expertise. Experienced marketing agencies can create a website with detailed information that is easy to understand and relevant to the concerns of your customers.


The Importance of Nursing Home Worker’s Compensation

The Importance of Nursing Home Worker’s Compensation
 nursing home worker’s compensation

nursing home worker’s compensation

Aging is an inevitable part of human life. As the human body progresses through life, the need for quality health care increases alongside the demand for safe communities and residencies. Nursing homes are no longer a place for senior citizens to simply eat and sleep. They are now lively homes filled with health care, weekly events, and opportunities to build relationships throughout the local community. However, these beneficial systems cause an increase in the number of staff who need to be protected through nursing home worker’s compensation.


Essential Elements of Worker’s Comp


Providing nursing home staff members with worker’s compensation is beneficial to the managers, employees, and residents. The programs create safe and supportive environments in which staff can provide the best in care for each resident. When looking for nursing home worker’s compensation programs, directors or managers should look for the following inclusions and coverages:


  • On site and web based training for staff
  • Protection for nursing home and commercial sites
  • Protection of company automobiles
  • Employee liability programs
  • Risk management training for directors
  • Customer support and service both online and over the telephone


These components are important to keep in mind when searching for nursing home worker’s compensation programs. As society members continue to live longer lives, their needs for socialization and events outside of the care facilities will increase. So will their need for privacy in eating, bathing, and sleeping, as their healthier bodies will not require as much dependent care. Nursing homes still play a critical role in senior care, and keeping employees safe and satisfied is the first step in providing supportive and healthy environments for the residents.