Archive for the ‘Business’ Category

What can we do about the texting & driving epidemic?

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Stop it!

Unless you’ve had your head in the sand over the past 4 or 5 years, you’re probably tired of hearing how dangerous texting and driving is. We’re all well aware that it has quickly become a leading cause of car accidents and auto-related fatalities. So? Smoking is a leading cause of lung cancer, we’ve known that for 30 years, yet people are still smoking. Sure you say you’re all about safe driving and you claim that you don’t text and drive, but how truthful are you being to yourself? You’re still glancing at your phone now and then when you hear that little notification tone. Maybe you didn’t respond, but you still looked away from the road. Do you text with kids in the car? Let’s not even go there.

Rather than just provide another reminder of the dangers of texting and driving, this article will serve as a notice of what’s happening and what you can do to help the war on texting and driving. More

PROTECTING YOUR BUSINESS: THE CGL SOLUTION

In today’s “litigation society,” you face lawsuits that could cripple your bottom line or even put you out of business based on anything from a fire on your premises to an allegation of libel by a competitor.gavel

Commercial General Liability (CGL) insurance provides financial protection against damage or injury caused by something that your business did, or perhaps didn’t do.

Your CGL policy covers a variety of exposures:

  • Premises and Operations Legal Liability pays for injuries or property damage on your premises, as well as those that occur outside your place of business.
  • Products and Completed Operations Legal Liability covers injury or property damage resulting from someone using your products, or real or alleged faults as a result of work your business has completed. More

DAMAGE TO YOUR COMPANY’S REPUTATION?

Identifying and preventing the incidences that might harm your firm’s reputation can be a challenge at best. The explosive expansion of web-based communications and social media has aggravated the risks of reputational damage, while dramatically reducing response time to counter these threats.

According to Reputation Review 2012, a report from Oxford Metrica sponsored by Aon P.L.C., a public company runs an 80% chance of suffering a reputational risk that can cost at least 20% of its equity value in any month over a five year period. Privately held companies face similar risks. More

Insurance Might Not Cover Faulty Work

When accidents happen on construction sites, the result usually involves property damage. Faulty wires cause fires, which burn the walls. Collisions often put dents in expensive equipment, and paint can be inadvertently sprayed onto nearby cars. If such incidents occur, the contractor must look to their General Liability policy to compensate for damages. Although the CGL policy covers several types of incidents, not every situation is covered.

In order for a situation to be covered, three requirements must be met. First, there must be a legal obligation for the contractor to pay the damages. The contractor’s tort liability is covered by insurance, so most negligent acts are covered. However, if the contractor fails to complete the work he or she agrees to, there is no coverage.

The second requirement is that the damage must happen out of an occurrence, which the policy defines. In a CGL policy, an occurrence is an accident that More

CYBER LIABILITY INSURANCE: A smart investment that can save your business

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On April 20, 2011, someone hacked the Sony Playstation Network. They found an opening in the online video gaming network’s password-reset system and penetrated the security protecting its customer database. Days later, the company admitted that the hackers had obtained personal information on 70 million or more subscribers. The hackers got names, physical and e-mail addresses, birth-dates, and other identifying information, and it’s possible that they got credit card numbers. Sony took the network offline to reinforce it, but within days of it coming back online, hackers broke in again.

Playstation Network is a high-profile target with tens of millions of subscribers, making it attractive to criminals. However, even small businesses that do business over the Internet are vulnerable to the same kinds of intrusions. The federal Internet Crime Complaint Center referred more than 146,000 complaints to local, state and federal law enforcement agencies in 2009, 22 percent more than the year before. One out of every three of those complaints was for identity theft, credit card fraud and computer fraud. The Ponemon Institute has reported that the average data breach costs businesses $7.2 million.

What could happen to a business’s data? More

Take steps to limit your liability for summer employees

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, 2.3 million workers between the ages of 16 and 24 years of age are hired for

Beware of the risks associated with seasonal help

Beware of the risks associated with seasonal help

summer employment. On average, one of these summer employees will be injured on the job every five seconds. Most of these work related injuries are both needless and costly to the employer. The three main causes for the majority of these injuries are due to inexperience, lack of training and inadequate supervision. There are a number of proactive steps that employers can take to limit their exposure and reduce their liability.

Steps to Take Beforehand. Business owners would be wise to develop safe working practices for summer help.  Here are some simple but practical steps you can employ to reduce your costs from job related injuries this summer:

  • Ask yourself what hazards the summer worker will be exposed to, including any pertinent risks outside the immediate working area.
  • Consider carefully the personnel who are to be involved in the training process and ensure they are well versed in the training procedures.
  • Always try to assign an experienced worker as a supervisor and ensure they keep a watchful eye on the summer worker over the first several days.
  • Make sure that any equipment to be used is examined and operational beforehand. Ensure that all legally required equipment safety guards are in place.

Take the Time to Give an Adequate Safety Orientation. Even More

Understand the fine points of Waivers of Subrogation

Suppose you’re an air conditioning contractor and while installing a system for a new industrial building, there is an accident. Another contractor’s employee on the job site suffers injuries when your scaffolding collapses and falls on top of him. The injured worker sues the AC contractor and the project owner. The project’s contract included a requirement that the contractor assume the owner’s liability for any accidents arising out of the contractor’s work. Consequently, the contractor’s General Liability insurance company pays the injured worker for both the contractor and owner’s shares of the damages. The insurance company, however, has determined that the owner was 20% responsible for the accident. It files a claim with the owner demanding some of its money back.

The insurance company’s action is entirely legal. Many project owners and general contractors, wanting to avoid this situation, insist that their subcontractors agree to a waiver of subrogation. More

Why D&O coverage is vital for small and medium sized firms

Directors & Officers Liability coverage is important for all medium and small firms. This form of coverage protects personal assets of directors and officers during a lawsuit stemming from mismanagement. When they’re charged with mismanaging the company, directors and officers who don’t have this type of insurance face the risk of significant losses. Directors and officers liability affords them the protection they need, and money for their legal expenses is also provided. If the company they work for must be brought into the lawsuit, this coverage may also be extended to include the company itself. There are many other beneficial provisions these policies offer.

Directors and Officers Make Mistakes. Nobody is perfect, so it’s important to be prepared for directors and officers to make mistakes. Although most mistakes that require this coverage are the result of negligence, it’s important to remember that anyone is capable of making such mistakes. Although training directors and officers to make responsible and ethical choices is necessary, don’t pay so much for training that there isn’t enough money for liability coverage. It’s better to create a healthy balance by preparing representatives and obtaining coverage to protect them. More

The Importance of Employment Practices Liability Insurance

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Since Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 passed, the issue of employees’ rights continues to be controversial.

Understanding How Fast Lawsuit Risks Are Increasing. As more laws are enacted for workplaces, employers face a higher risk of lawsuits. The likelihood of discrimination lawsuits is especially high. In order to minimize this risk, employers need to create a workplace that offers workers equal rights, opportunities, job access, working conditions, job security and opportunities for advancement. They must also strive to create a workplace that is in compliance with federal employment guidelines for mature and disabled workers. During the period between 1992 and 2004, the number of individual discrimination charges jumped from 72,302 to 79,432 annually. These figures, which were collected by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, include all types of discrimination filings. More