data breach laws

Data Breach Laws: What Are You Liable For?

It’s no secret that a data breach is a big deal. But are you prepared for just how expensive it can be?

In July of 2019, Capital One suffered a breach that affected about over 106 million customers. It’s estimated that this incident cost the company more than $300 million to resolve!

Sure, your business might not be big enough to suffer losses of this magnitude, but it’s still important for you to understand data breach laws. Failure to do so can have catastrophic results for your business.

Recent studies show that a data breach is likely to cost a small business close to $200,000. Even worse, more than half of all small businesses suffered a data breach in the past year!

If these statistics don’t make you nervous, stop and read them again!

While you should be concerned, there's no reason to panic. There are some things you can do to protect yourself and your business.

The first step is to learn about the most important laws regarding your company’s liability following a cybersecurity attack. Start by looking at these five critical facts.

1. There Are Currently No Federal Data Breach Laws

Although there is speculation that it will happen eventually, there are currently no federal laws regulating data breach protocol.

The Data Security and Breach Notification Act was proposed during the Obama administration. While it failed to pass, it's highly likely that similar legislation will come up again.

In the meantime, data breaches are governed by state laws.

2. Every State Has Data Breach Laws

All 50 states and the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands currently have data breach laws on the books. While each state law is slightly different, the basic standards are essentially the same.

Each state requires data owners to report a data breach to the victims and, sometimes, to regulatory agencies. In addition, many states passed enhancements to their laws last year, which went into effect in January of 2020.

3. Data Owners are Legally Responsible for a Breach

A “data breach” occurs when an unauthorized party gains access to a customer’s personally identifying information (PII). This occurs when a person’s name is accessed in addition to one or more of the following:

  • Social Security number
  • Driver’s license or state ID number
  • Debit, credit card, or financial account number with the password, security code, or access code required to access the account

It’s critical for business owners to understand that by law, it’s the “owner” of the data (the business) who is liable for a breach, not the "data holder" (the cloud provider.) This applies to all cases except when the data is covered under HIPAA regulations, which requires even more regulation.

4. Specific Actions Create Liability

Data breach liability laws don’t allow victims carte blanche to file civil lawsuits just because a cyber breach occurred. In general, liability exists if one or more of the following occurred:

  • There was a failure to implement required safeguards or reasonable security measures
  • Once the breach occurred, the entity failed to take measures to mitigate or remedy the damage
  • The affected individuals weren’t notified in a timely manner (per each state’s specific laws)

In most cases, negligence must be proven before liability is assumed. For this reason, having a solid data breach response plan in place is one of the best things a company can do to protect itself.

5. Potential Costs and Liabilities Vary

Depending on the nature of the breach, the costs and liabilities associated with the incident can vary. Some penalties data owners may face include:

  • Individual and class action lawsuits – this may include civil monetary compensation for the victim’s losses, reimbursement for the victim’s out-of-pocket expenses related to recovering from the breach, reimbursement of legal expenses and, in some cases, compensation for emotional distress. Note that these suits can be brought by individuals and shareholders.
  • Government investigations – this may result in the imposition of fines and penalties
  • Additional requirements – this may include audits, mandatory use of third-party response teams, implementation of new or enhanced identity protection policies and procedures and more
  • Increase in liability insurance costs - general liability includes accidents, injuries, property damage and slander.
  • Collateral damage – this may include damage to your business’ reputation, loss of customers and revenue and expenses related to replacement of management.

The nature of the breach can also impact how much liability a company faces. Some of the most important considerations include:

  • Extent of damage – how many people were affected, the type of data that was compromised, the length of time the breach occurred and how much damage the victims suffered.
  • Intention – whether the breach was because of negligence or it was unintentional
  • Mitigation – what the data owner did to mitigate the damage
  • Previous preventative measures – what (if anything) the company did previously to minimize the chances of a breach
  • Past infringements – if there was a pattern of previous negligence, this will negatively impact the company’s assumed liability

Other considerations include how cooperative the company is with authorities following the breach, how quickly victims were notified and whether the company had followed the policies and procedures they had in place.

Protect Your Business from Data Breach Liability

Now that you have a clear understanding of data breach laws, it should be clear that this is a threat you can’t afford to ignore. In addition to having rules, regulations, policies and procedures in place to avoid a potential breach, every business owner also needs a cyber liability insurance policy.

Failing to plan ahead for this potentially catastrophic threat can have serious consequences and could even put your company out of business.  Don’t let this happen to you. Contact us today to discuss your specific needs and request a quote.


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An Overview of Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI)

Discrimination is alive and well in the business world, with 90,558 cases awarding $505 million in damages in 2018 alone.

There is a lesser-known but important insurance policy that protects businesses from facing the brunt of discrimination and retaliation claims. It is known as EPLI insurance, or employment practices liability insurance.

EPLI is a worthwhile additional expense because of the time and money it saves. A business that puts practices in place to cut costs and reduce claims will reap even more benefits.

Read our overview to understand the benefits an EPLI policy can provide, how to run your business in a way that increases these advantages, and where to get this important coverage.

What Is EPLI Insurance?

An employee is within their rights to take legal action if they are discriminated against. The company must bear the burden of any legal fees and pay any damages. The best form of protection against this is an EPLI policy or employment practice liability insurance policy.

EPLI deals with many types of discriminatory treatment. This includes refusing to hire or promote someone due to their race, religion, or other protected factors. The policy protects businesses from any EPLI claims filed by employees, primarily by helping with the resulting legal fees.

Other Types of Business Insurance

EPLI is sometimes confused with other similar types of insurance. While they are all an important asset for protecting businesses, they differ in many ways.

There are other types of insurance policies that protect businesses from facing lawsuits or other repercussions because of employee mistakes. They include D&O, or directors and officers, and E&O, or errors and omissions. They differ from EPLI, however, in what kind of behavior they protect against.

EPLI applies to willfully ignoring rights such as privacy and autonomy. D&O and E&O both protect against claims relating to negligence or misleading information. Both are important for different reasons.

Insurance that covers more than one type of event provides the best value and protection. That is why, while it is helpful on its own, employment practices liability insurance is often purchased as part of a management liability practice policy. This includes other provisions like fiduciary liability insurance and employment liabilities insurance.

Knowing the right policy to buy is an essential part of running an effective business. Check out our blog post for more information on the different kinds of insurance every business owner needs.

What EPLI Insurance Covers (and What It Doesn't)

Employment practices liability insurance does not cover every eventuality. It is important to understand when and how it can be used to determine if it is the right fit for your business.

Employment practices liability insurance primarily deals with unfair treatment and discrimination. The top five charges alleged in EPLI claims are retaliation and discrimination based on race, disability, sex, and age. Going to court over such sensitive issues can be time-consuming and expensive, which is why coverage is necessary.

Any activity that is illegal, occurs during a strike or under contract or involves punitive damages is outside an EPLI's policy's power of protection. If these matters go to court, it is up to the business to cover any costs.

How to Get the Best EPLI Policy

Not all insurance policies are the same. It's important to examine all terms before agreeing to them. There are certain things a business can look for in a potential policy to make sure they get the best possible coverage. There are different types of employment practices liabilities coverage, and choosing the best one depends on the needs of the business.

One important consideration is claims-based vs. occurrence-based. The former only allows employees to file EPLI claims while the policy is in effect, while the latter doesn't take into account when the event is reported.

Another essential component of an EPLI policy is whether it allows for selecting your own defense. A policy that establishes a duty to defend limits the policyholders' choices, but one with a duty to reimburse does not. Choose carefully if being able to choose a defense team is important to your business.

How to Minimize EPLI Claims and Cut Costs

Adding an insurance policy means incurring additional costs. Having insurance does not prevent claims from being filed. Fortunately, there are actions a business can take to address both of these issues.

Minimizing Claims

Having insurance does not eliminate the possibility of employees engaging in or seeking a settlement for discriminatory acts. There are simple policies a business can enact to reduce claims.

Post standards throughout the workplace. Monitor the hiring process to check for discrimination. Educate employees about the company standards on discrimination and fairly discipline anyone who ignores them.

A business owner must ensure that employees know and respect the rules. If they do, they will benefit from a better environment and fewer EPLI claims.

Cutting Costs

EPLI insurance is a worthwhile extra expense for many businesses. Those who work with the public and are at greater risk of facing claims, making it an even more necessary form of protection.

Employment practices liability coverage can save a business an astronomical amount of time and money. EPLI claims typically take 318 days and $160,000 to resolve. Many businesses cannot afford not to protect against such large drains on their time and money.

Employment practices liability coverage can cost anywhere from $800 to $5,000. There are many factors that affect the final price, including the number of employees and previous claims.

Many of the same practices that reduce claims will also help cut costs. The fewer claims lodged against a business, the lower the premiums.

It is also important to monitor other elements to keep costs low. Employee turnover also affects rates, so maintaining staff is important.

Protect Your Business

Understanding EPLI insurance and why your business needs it is only the first step. The next is to find a company to get the best possible policy.

We offer effective EPLI insurance policies for businesses of all shapes and sizes. Contact us for a quote or more information today.


Finger pressing key on computer keyboard

A Data Breach Response Plan for NJ Businesses

A cyberattack can be devastating to your business. More and more businesses and government organizations are attacked every single day. You can no longer assume that since you’re a small business, it won’t happen to you.

These costs of these breaches are becoming astronomical. About 60% of businesses don’t last six months after an attack.

The faster you’re able to respond to a data breach, the more likely it is that you’ll be able to recover from an attack.

Read on to learn about the steps you need to take in a data breach response plan.

Understanding the Types of Attacks

Your first step in responding to a data breach is understanding the types of cyberattacks. Each type of cyberattack will require a different response. These are some of the most common attacks that are plaguing businesses and government organizations.

Phishing

Companies fall victim to phishing attacks every day.

A phishing attack is much more sophisticated than someone asking you to send money to a Nigerian prince.

These are emails that look like legitimate emails from companies and brands that you already know and trust. For example, they can send a mass email to your staff claiming to be from PayPal, asking them to reset their passwords.

What they don’t realize is that it took them to another page asking them to click or download something, which installs malware onto their computers.

The best way to respond to a phishing attack is to isolate the infected machine as soon as possible. That will prevent the malware from spreading through the network.

You then must perform antivirus scans to make sure that the malware is isolated and doesn’t take any sensitive data.

Ransomware

Ransomware is a malicious software that is used to break into your networks. The way a hacker can install the software is through a phishing attack or through a security vulnerability on a computer or server.

A ransomware attack is so severe, it can cause businesses to layoff employees. Local governments in Union County and in Dover have been under attack, too. These attacks cost taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Ransomware is when a hacker infiltrates your networks and holds your computer or your entire network hostage unless you pay them a ransom. The ransom is usually paid in cryptocurrency like Bitcoin.

The key to surviving this type of attack is to have a backup of your systems, preferably off-site. Too many organizations don’t have a backup or the hacker has the backup as well. That leaves people with no choice to pay the ransom.

Assessing the Damage

Once you contain the cyberattack, you need to take the next steps and figure out how bad the attack was.

You want to know how the attack started, whether it was human error or if there was a system vulnerability that was exploited.

You’ll want to assess the data that was breached and how sensitive the data is. You also need to determine if the lost data can be restored or if it’s lost.

Reporting the Cyberattack

If you suffered a data breach, you must report the attack as soon as possible. You should file a call the authorities and file a police report.

You’ll also have to notify your customers and vendors, especially if you suspect that their personal data was compromised. In this email, document what information was compromised, when, and what your customers and vendors can do to safeguard their information to prevent issues like ID theft.

What Insurance Will Cover (And What it Won’t)

You may assume that your business insurance will cover everything you need and you’re protected. That’s not always the case. General liability insurance typically covers property damage and bodily harm.

Cyber liability insurance is a separate policy that you should purchase to protect your business in the event of a data breach.

The amount of coverage that you have will depend on your policy. Some policies will cover credit monitoring for those affected by the breach, business interruption costs, and public relations costs to restore public trust.

Perform a Security Audit

Once the dust has settled, take the steps to ensure that such an attack doesn’t happen again.

A security audit needs to be done to determine the source of the attack, how systems were breached, and what will be done to prevent the next attack

In this step, you’ll want to check your email logs and all of your machines to make sure that they are up to date with the latest security software.

A security audit isn’t something that you only do once. You should do it regularly to ensure that you stay one step ahead of hackers.

Have a Formal Data Breach Response Plan

If you want to help your business survive a cyberattack, you must have a formal response plan. Most IT professionals suggest that your data breach response plan has a three-pronged approach.

The first part is focused on prevention. You’ll want to focus on updating software regularly, training employees, and performing regular security audits.

Detection needs to be another part of your cybersecurity strategy. Some data breaches can go undetected for months, and you want to have a plan in place to analyze your systems to detect any breaches.

The response is the final part of your plan. This outlines the specific steps that will be taken the moment a data breach is detected.

You Can’t Assume a Data Breach Won’t Happen to Your Business

A data breach is no longer a question of if. It’s a matter of when it happens. You need to take the steps to protect your business in the event of an attack.

That starts by having a data breach response plan that focuses on prevention, detection, and having a response plan in place. You can further protect your business by having cyber liability insurance.

Contact us today to find out how we can help protect your business.


White-Business-Man-In-A-Suit

What is Business Auto Insurance and Do I Need it?

Motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of work-related deaths.

You'd never think about not having your personal car insured.

It's the law, after all...

But what about your business vehicle?

You need insurance for it just like you need insurance for your personal vehicle.

But how do you know what you need?

Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about business auto insurance.

What is Business Auto Insurance?

If you own a business where you or employees do any amount of driving, you need business auto insurance.

Commercial, or business, auto insurance, is insurance for a vehicle that you or an employee is driving when conducting business.

If you have an accident while conducting business, commercial auto insurance covers the costs.

This insurance kicks in when you're at fault for the accident.

It will cover the vehicle and medical expenses.

The insurance will cover expenses even in the event of a fatal accident.

Like all insurances, not all business auto insurance policies are the same.

To know what you need, you must compare policies the same way you would compare policies for personal auto insurance.

Do I Need Commercial Auto Insurance?

Just because you own your own business, you do not have to have commercial auto insurance.

However, if you or our employees drive for work, consider it.

If you own, lease, or rent any vehicle such as a car or truck, look into this specialized auto insurance.

Do your employees drive their own vehicles to do business?

Or do your employees operate your vehicles?

Even if you lease or rent a vehicle, consider commercial auto insurance.

Auto accidents happen in the blink of an eye.

Having car insurance for your business protects you from lawsuits and liability should those accidents happen under the umbrella of your business.

What Does Business Auto Insurance Cover?

Business auto insurance will cover anything a regular auto policy would cover.

It kicks in when you're using a vehicle to conduct business.

So if you're just driving to work and back home but do not drive for your actual job, then you do not need commercial auto insurance.

However, if you have a business that requires driving, such as visiting clients or hauling freight, then you need commercial auto insurance.

Protect Your Business and Employees

In the same way, the insurance protects you when you drive, it will protect your business when either you or your employees drive.

If your employees happen to hit a pedestrian when driving a business vehicle, your insurance will cover the pedestrian's medical bills.

If you plow over a residential mailbox after you lose control on an icy road, commercial auto insurance will cover the damage of your vehicle and the cost of replacing the mailbox.

The insurance will cover more than just two-vehicle collisions.

But it does still cover those.

You can purchase auto insurance for any vehicle your company uses.

Car insurance for your business will cover anything from a sedan for business trips to a cargo truck that hauls your freight.

Types of Protection

Your business should already have liability insurance.

General Liability Insurance or Professional Liability Insurance will protect your business from any lawsuit-happy individuals.

Commercial auto insurance offers specific protection in addition to general liability.

It covers four major things.

1. Auto Liability

If your business vehicle causes any property damage or bodily injury, business auto insurance kicks in.

It also pays for accident-related legal expenses.

So if either you or an employee hit a pedestrian, as mentioned above, and the pedestrian attempts to sue your company, the business auto insurance kicks in to cover legal expenses.

2. Medical Payment

If you're on a business trip and have an accident, your business auto insurance covers the cost of your medical bills.

It will also cover the cost of medical bills for anyone else in the car.

Good business auto insurance covers medical bill costs regardless of who is at fault for the accident.

3. Physical Damage and Collision

Commercial auto insurance covers more than just damage because of a collision.

If someone attempts to damage your car, this insurance covers the cost of repairs.

So if you're on a business trip and staying at a hotel, and someone vandalizes your car or damages it, commercial auto insurance will normally pay for those damages.

If you are traveling and end up in the middle of a hailstorm that causes thousands of dollars worth of damage, commercial auto insurance kicks in.

4. Uninsured Motorists

Unfortunately, many people drive without insurance.

A 2017 study conducted by the Insurance Research Council revealed that approximately one in every eight drivers in the United States was driving without insurance.

If individuals cannot afford to pay for car insurance, they cannot afford to pay for your damages.

Your commercial auto insurance policy will cover your damages and medical costs even if they result from a collision with an uninsured motorist.

Big Trucks Require Insurance

If your business does any work that requires larger vehicles, you actually must have commercial auto insurance.

This includes the following vehicles:

  • Box trucks
  • Food trucks
  • Work vans
  • Service utility trucks

Any other truck usually does not just need insurance, but it often requires business auto insurance.

As you explore the world of automobile insurance for your business, you may hear different terms.

Ultimately, the words commercial vehicle, business auto, commercial auto, truck and fleet insurance all refer to the same insurance.

Drive Safe, Drive Insured

Now that you understand all the ins and outs of business auto insurance, you can start looking for the best policy for your company.

For all of your insurance needs, contact us.


while female businesswoman talking on the phone

What Is Commercial Business Insurance? Plus 5 Key Benefits

Take a moment and think about all the hard work you’ve put into your business.

Consider the time it took to start, the energy you've expended and the funds it took not just to start but run successfully.

A lot, right?

By all means, you want to protect your investment, and this is exactly where commercial insurance comes in.

Commercial insurance is among the most important insurance policies you can have for your business.

But what is commercial insurance anyway, and why do you need it?

What is Commercial Insurance?

By definition, commercial insurance is coverage for a business.

It serves as protection against losses through unforeseen problems such as theft, property damage, liability, injured employees, workers' compensation, or any business interruptions that are not planned.

What Does Commercially Insured Mean?

When a business is commercially insured, it means that it’s protected from all the above problems that may happen as long as the coverage is in force.

An insurance policy from a professional insurance company will always cover your business, regardless of the issues you face.

How much coverage you pay for depends on the commercial insurance you have.

Different Types of Commercial Insurance

Many types of commercial insurances can help protect your business from potential lawsuits, lack of compliance and losses.

Let’s look at some of the most popular commercial insurance policies.

Business Owner Policy

The business owner policy (BOP) bundles up several types of business protection into one, and it’s usually very affordable.

However, workers' compensation, auto insurance and liability insurance are not included in the bundle, so consider the characteristics of your business to decide if BOP is the right policy.

Business Property Insurance

Property insurance covers damages to the business properties that include the structure where you conduct your business and inventory, including products, documents, warehouses, machinery and furniture.

General Liability Insurance

Businesses have a lot of liability.

Most businesses need general liability insurance, which covers an array of damages, from injuries to lawsuits and everything in between.

Commercial Auto Insurance

If you have business vehicles, commercial auto insurance will come in handy.

Your premiums will be determined by the type of vehicles you use, and the risks associated with the items you transport in those vehicles.

Workers' Compensation

If you have employees, you undoubtedly need workers' compensation to cover them if they get hurt on the job.

Most states mandate businesses with employees to have this insurance, but even if your state does not, it’s very important.

Other Types of Commercial Insurance

There are many other types of commercial insurance policies, which include:

  • Crime insurance
  • Commercial umbrella insurance
  • Cyber liability insurance
  • Equipment breakdown insurance
  • Business interruption insurance
  • Accounts receivable insurance

5 Top Benefits of Commercial Insurance

Running a business always comes with inherent risks.

Employees could get injured in your business, clients can file lawsuits and natural disasters could happen.

For these and many other reasons, it’s crucial that you get business insurance for your business.

Here are the top five benefits of carrying commercial insurance.

1. Prevents Business Downfall

What would happen in case of a natural disaster?

What if a fire broke out in your business and burns everything, from the building to office property?

How would you carry on with business?

Property insurance will help you start over, and business owner’s insurance will help you cover income loss.

2. Makes the Business Look Credible

Most consumers do their research before conducting business with a company, and one component they check out is whether a business is insured.

Business insurance assured clients that you are a credible business, and it’s safe doing business with you.

Most companies advertise as “licensed, bonded and insured” because it builds trust, and trust is crucial to the success of a business.

3. Protects the Employees

The most valuable asset your business has are the employees, not the products or the properties of your business.

Most business owners think it’s the equipment they take such good care to maintain and the brand they have built for years.

While all these are important, they are not possible without employees.

Protecting your employees is a crucial step that you must take by getting workers’ compensation insurance.

If you could also get disability insurance, then it will be just as beneficial for your business.

Protecting the employees also means protecting the company from liability claims and lawsuits.

Insurance also helps attract and retain qualified employees.

Most job seekers are always on the lookout for benefit packages that include health, life, disability and long-term care insurance.

If you have commercial insurance, your employees are provided protection.

4. There is Always a Possibility of a Lawsuit

We are living in a very litigious world where people get sued left right and center.

One broken contract, one accident, or one disgruntled employee and your business could go down.

Even if you were to win the lawsuit, the cost of legal defense could drag your business down.

You will always worry when something happens, but with liability insurance, you can save yourself the trouble and run your business without worry.

5. Contracts Require Insurance

If you intend to rent your business facility, you’ll need insurance, and if you intend to take business loans, the lenders will need your business insurance.

Some client contracts may also require insurance in case things go wrong, so business insurance is very important.

Commercial Insurance Summary

It’s safe to say that the future is unpredictable, and anything can happen.

It will be beneficial to you and your business if you have commercial insurance to back you up.

So what is commercial insurance?

It’s undoubtedly something you must get for your business.

Do you have more questions about commercial insurance?

Would you like to know more about which types of insurance will best suit your business?

How about you get in touch with us, and we’ll guide you through it.

You may also check out our website for more information about insurance.


white truck fleet

Takin' Care Of Business: Find The Best Business Car Insurance

In the US, the national average car insurance cost is $1,365. Auto insurance is crucial mainly if you use your vehicle for business. Most business cars have to be in several locations in a day.

If you use your vehicle for commercial purposes, consider business insurance because of the high exposure to risks.

Is it time to purchase business car insurance? Let us help you make the right choice.

Keep reading to learn how to find the best business car insurance.

Compare Policies

Compare policies from three credible auto insurance firms before signing any deal. The process allows you to analyze the pros and cons of the insurers.

You will invest your time at this point, but it will save you some money at the end. By analyzing companies, you have the advantage of identifying cheap business car insurance.

You can also work with a firm that has desirable features. Take time to ask all the right questions regarding your vehicle coverage.

Start by listing national and regional auto insurance companies. Get a business car insurance quote from each of the companies and make a comparison to see what works for you.

Don't forget to include the deductibles to get a comprehensive budget.

Minimum Insurance Requirements

You need business insurance in any industry. In the car business, having insurance is non-negotiable.

Different states have their minimum requirements on commercial auto insurance. The coverage is useful in case you get into a collision, vehicle vandalism, or theft.

Apart from Virginia and New Hampshire, you must have a car business policy if you use your truck or van for commercial purposes in the US.

In Virginia and New Hampshire, you need to show that you’re financially capable of paying for damages without insurance. The minimum insurance requirements for a business car are almost similar to personal car insurance.

Yet, your personal car insurance can never be adequate to cover the risks of a commercial vehicle.

Auto Insurance Discounts

Businesses spend billions on commercial vehicle insurance each year. Fortunately, some insurers have an array of discounts and deals that will allow you to save on car insurance.

You can use the rebates to get the best commercial vehicle coverage. If you have a fleet of vans or just a few trucks, the discounts will allow you to save on insurance.

A commercial insurance broker can guide you on reasonable insurance discounts. You don’t have to worry about spending a fortune on business car insurance.

Some insurers will offer you up to a 5% auto insurance discount if you've been in business for over three years.

Your loyalty to a specific auto insurance company will also earn you discounts. Also, you can save up to 15% if you pay your commercial auto insurance in full.

Be Honest

Low rates are enticing. But with commercial auto insurance rising premiums shouldn't prompt you to forge numbers. In the end, you might suffer the consequences when you need compensation.

Some drivers underestimate mileages so they can pay lower premiums.

Leaving drivers off of the policy is another strategy car owners use to save money. While it is tempting to connive your way around, resist.

Your insurer will render your policy inapplicable because the price you’ve been paying doesn’t cover the damages. You’ll lose more than you expected to save.

Besides, your reputation among car insurance companies will be at stake.

Work With Top-Rated Car Insurers

Commercial car insurers have their distinct ways of dealing with payments and claims.

You can work with a small or big company. National insurance is likely to have an enticingly cheap business car insurance quote.

But when addressing your issue, you might have to wait longer because of the large volume of claims.

Conversely, a small insurance company might be slightly more expensive, but the personalized experience you get is worth the money.

Research your desired insurer based on your budget and the experience you expect.

Online reviews can be a great place to start. You can request referrals from experts in the commercial auto insurance industry.

Review Your Coverage

About 29% of traffic deaths involve car occupants.

When a car crashes, the occupants, other road users, and surrounding property are at risk. It is crucial to have comprehensive commercial auto insurance.

So what does business car insurance cover you for?

With this policy, the coverage includes bodily injury, property damage, medical payments, and uninsured motorist coverage. Commercial auto insurance can also include comprehensive and collision coverage.

The bodily injury liability insures the driver of a business car.

The cover pays for any medical expenses, lost income, or funeral expenses. The property damage liability pays for the replacement or repair of vehicles.

Review your insurance to know the extent of coverage.

You can't make claims for a collision compensation if the coverage doesn't extend to such services. Research wide and analyze your policy critically to know how you stand to benefit.

Check Out Crash Repairs

A credible business car insurer should guarantee you high-quality replacement parts.

Some scrupulous companies can contract any manufacturer to maximize on profits. Insist on OEM car parts.

Some repair shops consider cheap car parts that don’t fit well and are prone to rust. These replacements hardly meet the federal safety requirements.

You might end up spending a fortune if you fail to work with credible insurance companies.

Business Car Insurance Is Indispensable

When you are thorough with your due diligence, you will get a great deal for business car insurance.

Compare companies and rates to save on your commercial auto insurance. The coverages are distinct for each firm.

Don’t focus solely on the cost. Car insurance policies have several features that differentiate them from each other.

Read each company’s insurance policy to ensure that you get what the coverage entails.

If you need business car insurance, contact us for a quote.


nurse with an elderly asian woman

What You Need To Know About Long-Term Care Insurance Claims

How many times have you thought about retirement?

Do your plans involve any health care plans?

Are you taking good care of yourself to ensure good health in your golden years?

Even if you do, what if something happens and you need to be taken care of?

You think Medicare has it covered, right?

Well, I hate to burst that bubble but, long-term care is among the things Medicare doesn't cover.

If by any chance you’ll need long-term care services in your old age, you may burn through your retirement savings paying for senior care and start having problems once it runs out.

You may not know this, but nursing homes cost a little over $100,000 annually, a figure that’s projected to rise in the future.

This can prove to be a heavy financial burden, more so in your retirement years when you may no longer be working.

Long-term care insurance claims can help protect you against such expenses.

What Is Long-Term Care Insurance?

Long-term care insurance, shortened to LTI, is a policy that covers expenses associated with chronic health conditions.

Essentially, it is a health insurance cover for something that you are not likely to recover from, such as Alzheimer's.

As a policyholder, you’ll pay premiums regularly until you need to get care.

When the time comes that you need care, the insurance company will offer you funds on a daily or monthly basis depending on the policy.

If you live a long life, at some point, you’ll need some kind of care, whether in your home or in a senior facility.

Unlike healthcare insurance, long-term care claims only pay for eligible personal care.

Eligible care typically includes daily living activities such as bathing, eating, and mobility.

LTC policies are not usually standardized, like regular health insurance claims to you must compare benefits, coverage, and premiums.

Besides that, these premiums rise with age, so be prepared for a price increase in the future.

Once you receive care, however, you’ll no longer have to make payments.

What Do Long-Term Care Insurance Claims Cover?

Different long-term care insurance companies may offer different covers, but there are certain things that are basic. Some of them include:

  • Adult daycare
  • In-home care
  • Nursing home care
  • Community care
  • Skilled nursing care
  • Care by family members

You should inquire with the insurance company because some of them do not pay for family caregivers unless they have the appropriate license. You may have to stay in a state-licensed agency or a care facility for them to pay your claim.

Is Long-Term Care Insurance For Everyone?

Why should you bother yourself with long-term care insurance claims?

What if you don’t need care in the future?

Most people only consider purchasing these premiums when they are closer to retirement age.

However, at that age, premiums are usually more expensive than they would be at a younger age.

Long-term care insurance companies may decline long-term care insurance claims to people already suffering from pre-existing conditions or a history of serious health conditions.

If you are in this position and the company accepts to offer you the policy, you may have to pay more.

Can Long-Term Disability Insurance Cover Your Long-Term Care Needs?

In a nutshell, no. Disability insurance pays benefits based on income.

Once you retire, you may have to depend on savings and social security funds.

The problem with long-term disability claims is that most of them end at age 65.

What’s The Best Time to Buy Long-Term Insurance?

Ideally, you should purchase the premiums in your 50s.

If you wait till you hit 60, it might be hard to find coverage, and it’ll be more expensive.

If you buy before turning 50, you’ll be committed to payments for a longer period of time.

What Will Happen If You Don’t Use The Claims?

Unfortunately, traditional long-term care claims do not offer a way for family members to recoup unused funds.

To get some kind of compensation from it, you may purchase a hybrid cover instead.

This will offer you either long-term care or death benefits depending on what you’ll need.

A hybrid premium is so much more expensive, though.

What Are Long-Term Care Insurance Waiting Periods?

Even if you do not have a pre-existing health condition, an insurance company may subject you to a waiting period before they approve your claim.

This waiting period is also known as the elimination period, and everyone has to satisfy it before they get benefits.

Long-term insurance policies don’t pay for short-term care, so the company imposes an exclusionary period every time you require care.

Some long-term care insurance companies may assume that during this period, your Medicare policy will take care of intermittent needs.

What Are The Long-Term Care Insurance Costs?

The most significant downside to long-term care insurance claims is how expensive it is.

It's cheaper compared to all the benefits you’ll get if the time comes and you need long-term care, but these policies come with hefty premiums.

Consider several factors to determine the costs:

  • Your age when you start paying the premiums. Generally, the better health you are in and the younger you are, the cheaper they are.
  • The maximum benefit the insurance company will pay per day
  • The maximum length of time they will pay for the benefits
  • The waiting period. The longer you take to get approval, the cheaper the premiums get
  • Whether it’s a hybrid policy

Do You Think This Policy Is For You?

Long-term care insurance claims make sense as you’ll be safeguarding against very high potential costs in the future.

If you have to live in a nursing home or an assisted living facility in the future, the burden may be too heavy to bear for you and your family.

Do you have more questions about long-term care insurance claims?

Are you wondering if it’s right for you?

Get in touch with us, and we’ll help you make that decision.


a broker signing a commercial insurance contract

9 Ways Commercial Insurance Brokers Can Help Your Business

If you are trying to run your commercial business properly, it's important that you opt for an insurance policy that will protect you.

Commercial insurance brokers are an essential ally that you'll want to have on your side when trying to build a solid foundation. They will match you up with a commercial insurance plan that will protect your company from its liabilities.

Use the tips in this article when deciding if you need to hire a commercial insurance broker.

1. They Can Expose You to Different Options

Options are your best friend when you're trying to find the best insurance plan. When you talk to brokers, you'll get access to many policy options that will suit your needs.

They have deep relationships with carriers in the insurance business and can help you find deals that aren't advertised. Brokers will also talk to you about the business you run and liabilities you have so they can match you with the ideal coverage for your needs.

It's important to get business liability insurance to protect you from anything that goes wrong while doing business with your customers. The more options you have, the better you can protect your company.

2. They Can Protect Your Office and Other Property

When you need a commercial insurance plan, be sure to look after your office building. Your physical office building is one of your most valuable assets, and you'll need a policy that covers it inside and out.

A quality insurance plan will make sure the building keeps its value, and that you can account for changes in the market.

3. You Can Insure Your Business Cars

If your company makes use of vehicles, commercial brokers will match you up with the best car insurance policy.

They will help you build and protect a fleet, and will ensure that you get repairs to the vehicle when needed. Your broker will also go the extra mile to get you extras like roadside assistance and preventative repairs.

Since car insurance policies vary, a broker can find you the best prices by bundling.

4. Brokers Offer Sound Advice

Above all, commercial insurance brokers see the big picture and can offer you advice as your business grows. When your company expands and changes, so too will your insurance needs.

These brokers can give you advice that can help you with your company's financial future and will make sure you always have the right amount of insurance at an affordable rate.

5. These Professionals Provide Protection Against Cyberthreats

Cybersecurity is a crucial point of interest today, as it has cost businesses trillions of dollars in damages and losses.

When you have access to a broker, they will always make sure you have recourse against cyberthreats. If you have protection from ransomware, malware, information breaches and other matters, it'll be easier for you to stay safe and protect your customers.

Today's business plans account for cyberthreats, so include enough coverage in your plan to account for downtime and data protection.

6. They Will Strengthen Your Company's Human Resources (HR) Department

Your human resources (HR) department administers employee benefits and managing your company's coverages.

When your human resources manager has a broker they can communicate with regularly, they'll always be ahead of the curve in the industry and will be empowered to protect your company. This strengthens your company's foundation as a whole.

7. You'll Get Insurance Issues Handled In a Quicker Timeframe

Since insurance brokers are opening their resources to you, your business can always count on speedier service.

Whether you need to buy a new plan, change your current plan or file a claim, brokers can speed the process along and handle the details with more specificity.

This quick turnaround time makes your business more efficient and lets you always stay covered. Your company's resources will be used more wisely, and you'll be better able to keep your attention on your areas of expertise.

8. They'll Help You Account for Emergencies

Your company can deal with emergencies better when you have access to a dedicated broker.

Whether you're dealing with outages, municipal problems or other issues that you couldn't have accounted for, a broker can speed your claim along enough to address these emergencies. They can help you stop the bleeding and get back to business as usual.

9. Insurance Brokers Can Assist You With Building Repairs

Your workspace needs a facelift now and then if you want to keep high property values and keep the building up to date. If you need any major repairs or renovations, always reach out to a broker first to weigh your options.

They can help you plan with contractors and find the best deals so that your building is fixed in a way that is productive and cost-effective. This comes in handy when you want to handle upgrades that make your building more green friendly.

Hire the Best Commercial Insurance Brokers

When are you looking into a policy, hiring commercial insurance brokers is crucial. These are just a few ways they can help.

If you are trying to shore up your insurance needs, our brokers would be happy to talk to you further.

Take the time to contact us today to see how we can help.


a hacker stealing credit card information

Cyber Liability Insurance Cost: Why It's Worth Your Money

In 2018, the average cost of cyber crime in the United States was $27.37 million.

Unsurprisingly, more businesses across the country have been looking for ways to protect themselves against cyber threats. One such way is by opting for a cyber insurance policy.

But what is cyber liability insurance? Is the cost of cyber liability insurance worth it?

Cyber liability insurance is a kind of insurance that covers your company’s liability in the event of a data breach involving sensitive client information. That information includes account numbers, Social Security numbers, credit card numbers, health records and driver’s licenses.

Cyber insurance is one of the leading types of insurance that every business owner needs. We've compiled several reasons to show you why taking this coverage is worth every penny.

1. Cyber Insurance Helps Offset Expenses of A Data Breach

Cyber liability insurance is often referred to as data breach insurance, as the focus of this policy is to protect your company in case of a data breach.

But what is a data breach?

One definition states that it’s an incident involving illegal or unauthorized access, viewing or retrieval of data by an individual, application, or service. This security breach is aimed explicitly at stealing or publishing data to an illegal or unsecured location.

Every company that handles and saves a customer’s personal data definitively needs cyber liability insurance. Because data breaches are unpredictable, they can be difficult for a business to budget for them. Every data breach differs in scope, size and complexity.

One instance of a data breach can prove costly, given the potential fines from multiple regulatory agencies, among other parties. Cyber insurance can help your business meet all unexpected costs, including data analysis, communication and legal settlements.

2. It Covers the Cost of Business Interruption

How do you deal with a disaster that cripples your computer systems, halting your ability to transmit data? Such an event could cause you or a third party that relies on your services to lose revenue as it affects a business’ day-to-day operations.

How?

Well, the time and resources that you usually spend on your normal business operations now go towards rectifying the problem, which might lead to additional losses. Recently, hackers have increasingly specialized in denial of service attacks, blocking a company's access to specific websites.

Should a sudden interruption occur in your business operations, cyber liability insurance coverage can help you out.

3. You Get Cyber Extortion Defense

Imagine that one day, you try to access vital information from your servers, only to find that it's been held for ransom. How do you deal with the situation?

Unfortunately, these incidents have been on the rise. One of the most prevalent forms of cyber extortion involves the use of ransomware. Ransomware and other malicious software is designed to take and hold your company's data until you pay a fee to the hackers.

One way businesses prepare for cyber extortion is by acquiring cyber liability coverage, so it's easier for them to recapture losses when they become victims of the crime.

4. Cyber Insurance Provides Forensic Support

How do authorities deal with cases of data breaches?

An important step is to investigate the source or cause of the attack. The investigation-related expenses, expert help, and consultation fees can add up to a lot of money. With cyber liability insurance coverage, you can get reimbursed for these expenses.

5. Your Business Gets Legal Support

Following a data breach in your company, you can expect that there’ll be some legal activity. With cybersecurity insurance, you can expect appropriate legal help and advisement.

First, you can expect that there will be privacy lawsuits that claim your business breached the privacy of your clients or staff. It's highly likely that there will be fines from various regulatory bodies. Claims of breach of contract or negligence may also arise.

Most times, companies who've been the victim of a data breach also face media liability claims, including copyright infringement, slander or libel.

6. Cyber Insurance Covers You Where Your General Policy Won't

Now that your business already has general liability insurance, why does it make sense to take cyber liability insurance?

Aa general liability policy specifically excludes any losses that a business incurs because of the internet. Therefore, cyber liability insurance picks up where your general liability insurance coverage leaves off.

To give yourself cyber liability coverage in as many positions as possible, ensure that your policy covers mobile devices and laptops.

How do you go about getting the most seamless coverage you can? The best way is to integrate your cyber liability with employment liability policy and general policy.

7. Cyber Liability Insurance Cost Is More Affordable Than You Think

If you asked many business owners why they didn't have cyber liability insurance, a good percentage would say that it's because they thought it was costly.

Sure, there are policies as high as $30 million. But even businesses that want cyber insurance policies with annual premiums of $2,000 can get them. It all comes down to your specific needs and what you’re prepared to pay.

Compared to most other types of business insurance, cyber liability is a fairly new concept. Therefore, there are many variations among policies and lots of room for you to negotiate.

Pick Your Cyber Liability Insurance Policy Today

As technology becomes indispensable for successful business operations, companies now see the value of a solid cyber liability insurance cover. The risks of modern technology are evident everywhere, and cyber insurance helps address them when other policies simply won't.

As a business owner, you have the freedom to choose what level of coverage you need based on your operations and range of exposure. The one undeniable fact, however, is that cyber liability insurance cost is well worth it.


a female small business owner

7 Types of Insurance Every Business Owner Needs to Prevent Losses

If you own your own business, you're in a select group. Estimates differ, but somewhere between 10-16% of Americans own businesses.

Owning a business can be difficult, and a lot goes into it. Not only do you have to figure out who to hire, how to handle records, and figure out how to keep things afloat, you also need insurance.

What kind of insurance do you need, though? What are the different types of business insurance and why are they important? We'll answer those questions in the paragraphs below.

Watch our video summary below:

1. Business Liability Insurance

Of all the different types of business insurance, one of the most essential is business liability insurance. This basic type of insurance is designed to protect your company should anything happen to a client or other third-party because of your products or policies.

You may wonder why you need this, especially since you don't have any intention of hurting anyone. Sometimes, you don't have to. Incompetence and even product tampering can happen at any level, and will always have consequences.

If you lived through the 1980s, you may remember something known as the Tylenol Poisonings. Back in 1982, somebody could slip poison into various Tylenol capsules after they left the factory, resulting in several deaths.

Nobody ever found out who the perpetrator was, but it left the nation reeling and changed the way we sell various products.

There are also insurance fraudsters to worry about, and the small chance that something harmful slips under your radar and makes it to market.

2. Product Liability Insurance

Much like business liability, product liability insurance protects you in case your product harms someone or damages their property.

It differs from business liability because it's more specific. While business liability can include everything from a faulty product to slipping on a wet floor while walking through the store, product liability is more specific.

Product liability protects the businesses in cases where a product is responsible, or is believed to be responsible, for the incident that occurred.

This case can ruin a small business, even if you aren't found responsible. That's because the legal fees in these cases can mount, and you may have to pay them even if you win.

3. Business Interruption Insurance

Business interruption insurance helps to cover your business from a natural disaster. Natural disasters can wreak havoc on a business, and you may even have to repair or rebuild your store.

When this happens, it will put your business on hold, which eliminates one source of income, perhaps your only one. Business interruption insurance helps to cover some expenses until you can get your business running again.

The bad news is that it doesn't always cover everything, and many businesses go under despite insurance. You can help remedy this by having a disaster plan in place and investing in a building that's better at withstanding extreme weather.

4. Commercial Auto Insurance

If your businesses use any company vehicle, insuring it is an absolute must. Commercial auto insurance protects the company in case of a crash.

Note that this insurance only covers company vehicles. If your business doesn't have a company car or your employees carry out business in their own cars, commercial auto isn't necessary.

It also isn't necessary if you use third-parties to carry out tasks, because commercial auto doesn't cover third-party vehicles.

5. Property Insurance

Property insurance covers various types of damage done to a business, including certain weather events. However, floods, earthquakes, and other natural disasters are generally not included.

Not only does it cover the business itself, but it also covers many forms of property inside the building. For instance, tables and chairs would be covered if a restaurant was damaged.

6. Workers' Compensation

While every business owner wants to keep their employees safe, it isn't always possible. Even the best chefs cut or burn their hands sometimes. People who have climbed up a ladder 99 times can still slip on their 100th. Delivery drivers can still get in accidents even if they're doing everything right.

There's nothing wrong with doing what you can to keep your employees safe and happy. We'd even encourage you to do that, but don't assume that everything is under your control. 

This is where workers' compensation comes in. It provides employees with the money to provide an income for their family while also paying for medical bills incurred because of the injury.

7. Cyber Risk Coverage

It seems like hackers are getting smarter every day, and that's definitely bad news for the business world. If you want to protect your clients' information and even your own, you will need cyber risk coverage.

Cyber risk coverage helps reimburse any money lost through the cyber attack itself, or through repairing it. This is especially good news because a successful cyber attack often costs thousands in cleanup.

Different Types of Business Insurance & Why You Need Them

There are many different types of business insurance out there. We've covered many of the important policies in the paragraphs above, but there are plenty more out there. We encourage you to do more research on your own if you're interested.