Archive for the ‘Claims’ Category

A bit about Statutory Limits – State minimum insurance limit requirements

State minimum insurance requirements are minimal. Most states demand less than $100,000 for bodily injuries and $50,000 for property damage. Some states require only $10,000 for property damage coverage.

How many cars valued at greater than $10,000 travel the highways? How many trucks carrying cargo are worth more than $10,000? $50,000? $100,000?

According to the 2010 census, the median family net worth exceeded $200,000. That amount includes houses, cars, savings, retirement funds, cash in the bank, college savings, and furniture and personal effects. Half the families are worth more, half have assets less than $200,000; all of it is hard earned.

If the family is underinsured for liability, their net worth is vulnerable to be seized in a lawsuit based on injuries or property damage caused by any family member driving a vehicle. The car owner and the car driver become parties to the suit.

Bodily injuries sustained in car wrecks devastate lives. People unable to work, the high cost of medical treatment, rehabilitation expenses, and the pain and suffering can only be compensated with money. The money comes from the insurance company or the liable party’s personal wealth.

Not convinced you need higher limits? Not all liabilities are released in bankruptcy. Many states have specific legislation disallowing debt reduction for certain accidents, most notably driving while intoxicated. Wage plans reduce take home pay by as much as 33%. Many employers do not tolerate either bankruptcy or wage garnishments.

Still not convinced? How about a selfish motivation?

Other drivers are either uninsured or underinsured. Most insurance companies will not provide uninsured motorist coverage in limits greater than the liability limits of the policy. Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage from your policy pays on behalf of the driver who hits you if they are poorly insured. In a classic exercise of the golden rule, insurance companies only sell limits commensurate with the protection you offer others.

Proper limits of liability allow you to protect yourself from the improper coverage other people maintain.

So how much coverage is enough? What are reasonable limits of liability?

Ask our insurance professionals. And consider this:

Your assets are your excess insurance coverage. This means that when the limits of your policy are reached, your assets are at risk. Excess insurance Umbrella policies, for example is available in $1 million layers over your Automobile and Homeowners liability limits if those limits qualify are high enough. Protect yourself against underinsured drivers by increasing your uninsured motorist coverage.

www.FittsInsurance.com

888.697.6542

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

Insurance considerations for a student away at school

Student moving into dormThere’s no denying it. Labor Day is coming soon which means that you might have children who will be heading off, or back, to college soon. Together with the many lifestyle changes that they (and you) will be making in this time of transition, remember that it’s also important to give your insurance a tuneup.

A recent industry report recommends considering these items when Johnny or Sally leaves the nest: More

Do you know your Risk Definitions?

If you want to manage risk within your firm, you need to familiarize yourself with riskmanagement language. Here are some basic definitions, provided by the National Alliance for Insurance Education & Research, which you can use to build your knowledge base:

  • Exposure: A situation, practice or condition that might lead to a loss; an activity
    or resource (assets, people).
  • Peril: A “cause” of loss; an event that might cause a loss.
  • Hazard: A condition within an exposure that might lead to an incident; “a peril
    about to happen.”
  • Incident: An event that disrupts normal activities and might become a loss or
    claim; “a near miss.” Lifecycle of an incident: Preincident,incident, immediate
    postincident,post incident, rehabilitation (repair, recovery).
  • Accident: An incident resulting in injury or damage to person or property which has, or will become, a loss or
    claim; “an unplanned event definite as to time and place that causes bodily injury or property damage.”
  • Occurrence: An accident with the limitation of time removed.
  • Loss: A reduction in value.
  • Claim: A demand or obligation for payment as a result of a loss.
  • Frequency: The number of times an incident occurs.
  • Severity: The monetary impact of a loss.
  • Expected losses: Loss projections (“loss pics”) based on probability distributions and statistics; frequently
    developed using actuarial techniques.

For a complimentary review of the risks your business faces, please feel free to contact us at any time.

888.697.6542

www.FittsInsurance.com

Cover Yourself with and Umbrella

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In today’s “litigation culture,” with million dollar legal settlements all too common, anyone including you and your family could easily face ruin from a lawsuit, whether serious or frivolous. Even if you won, you’d be out thousands of dollars in defense costs.
A Personal Liability Umbrella can help ensure financial peace of mind by providing coverage up to an amount you’ve selected over and above the Liability limits under your Auto or Homeowners policy. Insurance companies often set minimum limits for Umbrella coverage. If you’re sued, the bulk of the settlement will come from your Homeowners or Auto policy, with the Umbrella picking up the rest. Bear in mind that many insurers will only offer this coverage if they write both your Home and Auto insurance. More