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Insurance Types

  Insurance (some also applies to business)

   To obtain information on any of insurance types, please click from the list below.   An application can be completed and submitted on line.  An insurance broker and/or agent will contact you within 24 hours.  Thank you.  

Travel and Student Insurance – US abroad – International in the US.
Foreign Student Insurance in US -
International Medical Insurance - International Visitor in US Insurance - US Students Insurance Traveling in Other Countries - Organized Groups Travel Insurance Worldwide - Employee Travel Insurance (3 to 100 employees). Other Travel Insurance.

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Insurance Brokerage Services                                 

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Car Insurance – Personal Auto Policy (PAP)

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Health Insurance

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Vision & Dental

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Group Health Insurance

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Individual Health Insurance

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Homeowners, Apartment Building, 2 to 4 units Insurance

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Long Term Care Insurance

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Life Insurance

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Permanent Life Insurance               

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Term Life Insurance

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Disability Insurance

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Other Insurance / Dental Plans  

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Umbrella Insurance                       

 

Business Insurance     

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Business Owners Package policy  

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Liability Insurance

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Business Property Insurance

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Business Interruption Insurance    

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Key Man Insurance

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Directors and Officers

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Errors and Omissions

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Fidelity, Surety & Crime

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Business Automobile Insurance:

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Home Office Insurance (See Part of Homeowners, Apartment Building, 2 to 4 units Insurance )

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Professional Liability

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Inland Marine

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Sexual Harassment

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Workers Compensation (application 1)      

 

Insurance Brokerage Services

An insurance broker has the ability to obtain for his or her clients, quotes from various insurance companies.   The insurance companies appoint a broker to sell their insurance policies and register the appointment with the state’s insurance commissioner.  On the other hand, the “captive insurance agent” contracts with only one insurance company and sells only their products.  The insurance agent cannot contractually sell other insurance companies’ products.  The only exception is that the agent may sell other insurance products in the event the contracted insurance company does not sell a certain policy sought  by he agent’s client.  In this case the agent needs to offer the contracted insurance company the right of first refusal before selling other companies’ policies.   We are insurance brokers and we provide our clients policies from reputable companies at competitive prices.  We typically obtain no less than three quotes from different insurance companies and present these quotes to our clients.  An agent can only offer one quote from the contracted insurance company, thereby not providing their clients with competitive quotes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Car Insurance – Personal Auto Policy (PAP)

An insurance policy that covers incidents involving your car.  The most common coverages are basic liability coverage that pays other people's expenses for accidents caused by drivers covered under your policy; and collision and comprehensive coverage which covers the cost of repairing or replacing your car after an accident, cost of replacing or repairing your car if it is stolen or damaged by fire, vandalism, hail, or another cause other than collision.

Under California Law the minimum amount of financial responsibility required is:

 

$15,000 for bodily injury to one person

$30,000 for bodily injury to all persons

$5,000 for property damage

 

Vehicles not customarily covered by the PAP include:

Vehicles rented to others

Vehicles used to carry passengers for a fee

Motorcycles and other vehicles with fewer that four wheels

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Health Insurance

Find the best health insurance for yourself, your family or your small business. View standard plans, HMOs, PPOs and short term plans.  You can choose from low to high deductibles.   We also offer catastrophic high deductible as well as hospital only coverage.  An insurance policy that will pay specifies sums for medical expenses or treatments. Health policies can offer many options and vary in their approaches to coverage.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Group Health Insurance

A medical insurance plan by which employees and their dependents or other homogeneous group, are insured under a single policy, issued to their employer or group with individual certificates given to each insured individual or family unit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Individual Health Insurance

For those individuals not covered by employer’s health insurance, there is an individual or family policy available

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Homeowners Insurance

Protect your most valuable assets — get home, condo or renter's insurance quotes. Homeowners insurance is designed to pay for damages to your home and its contents.   Homeowners insurance is a package policy consisting of different types of coverage for the house, its contents, additional living expenses, personal liability claims against the policyholder and other members of the household, and medical payments to others. Insurance policies are also available for Condos and Town homes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Renters Insurance

No matter where you live, renters insurance is economical and worthwhile: for as little as $10 a month, you can protect your belongings.  Insurance rates vary depending on the amount of coverage and additional features. Some things to consider before signing your check:

Before buying renters insurance:

Take an inventory of your belongings. Videotaping works well to jog your memory if items are lost. When taping, read off brand names, and serial and model  numbers. Also, use a ruler to determine size.

 

Document approximate costs and purchase dates of household goods. This will give you an idea of how much coverage you need and assist you with filing a claim if disaster strikes. When figuring how much coverage you need, many companies offer a “contents evaluation guide” to assist you.  Keep a copy of inventory in a safe place away from your home.

There may be discounts for security systems, smoke detectors or deadbolt locks. 

Some items, like wedding rings and art, may need separate coverage.

You may choose replacement versus cash value coverage.  Cash value covers only the value of the item — taking depreciation into account — at the time it’s lost.  Although they cost more, replacement value policies reimburse the cost to buy the item new.

 

 

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Long Term Care Insurance

Long Term Care Insurance protects you, as well as your loved ones in the advent that extended care is needed during your life.  The chance of requiring long-term care services is roughly 50 times the chance of sustaining a major loss from an automobile accident.

 

Americans are becoming more sophisticated about long-term care insurance. As the knowledge of this financial product has broadened, the insurance carriers have designed additional options and riders for the more savvy customers. These additional options include accelerated pay riders, indemnity payments, enhanced daily benefit maximums, waiver of home health care elimination periods, multiple inflation protection choices, enhanced survivorship benefits, greater elimination period choices and expanded home health care benefits. Unfortunately, despite an overall knowledge of long-term care, too many Americans remain reticent to make decisions on whether they will purchase a policy. Far too often, people remark that their uncertainty is based on a perception that they "may" never use the benefits. This perception, while true in many cases, is completely irresponsible when evaluating one's financial planning.

 

As Americans continue to live longer and longer, long-term care insurance will become even more critical than it is today. Despite the fact that many Americans still believe that they will never require long-term care services, the statistics show otherwise. Today, the chance of requiring long-term care services is roughly 50 times the chance of sustaining a major loss from an automobile accident. Most consumers would never dream of driving an automobile without owning automobile insurance, but yet they have not planned accordingly for the time when they will require long-term care services. According to the Society of Actuaries, for every 1,000 people, nearly 600 will require some form of long-term care (LTC). Many people are relying on a flawed belief that Medicare or Medicaid will provide the care at the time of need, thereby eliminating the need for private LTC insurance. This misconception is extremely naive and quite dangerous when considering the numbers of people who truly believe that LTC insurance is a luxury. Actually, Medicare only covers six percent of long-term care costs nationally, and Medicaid provides benefits only to those people who have depleted enough assets to qualify for the aid, as reported in The Western Journal of Medicine, January 1994. This gross miscalculation will only worsen in the future, as Medicare becomes more exclusive to medical-related services, with lesser coverage for custodial care. As more facilities sell a larger percentage of their space to private-pay patients, these facilities will terminate existing relationships with federal and state programs. Ultimately, this will leave Medicaid patients with fewer options than they have today. In fact, the last nine months have already brought about significant restrictions for Medicaid eligibility in many states.

 

Additionally, more consumers are becoming more adamant about receiving assisted living and home-based care, which is evidenced by the fact that, for every person living in a nursing home, there are four others receiving care in the home, according to a 1998 report, "Group Long Term Care ?  Flexibility, Innovation, Experience." Unfortunately, neither Medicare nor Medicaid pay for any assisted living facility and home-based health care. Perhaps more importantly, is the fact that the federal government has made it clear that long-term care is not the responsibility of the government, so private insurance will be the only definitive assurance that benefits will be available in the future. These people, who are waiting on the "sidelines" for the government to step-in and provide coverage, will be left with few options. As the baby boomer generation will soon be retiring, the passive planning in this country is paving the way for a crisis of nightmarish proportions.

 

The statistics from the May 2003 Roper Study are even more alarming. According to the report, approximately 75 percent of those surveyed were families currently aware of the major long-term care options in the marketplace. Of those who were surveyed, 71 percent believed that is was very important to have some type of private or government coverage for LTC services, but only 17 percent stated that they currently have LTC insurance to cover these costs. Despite what the remaining 54 percent may believe, most of them will not be eligible for Medicaid, and few will have the assets to fully pay for these necessary services. Astonishingly, nearly 67 percent of those surveyed stated that choosing the long-term care facility for themselves or someone close to them was very important. Under Medicaid, only the government decides where the patient will receive care. Even more shocking was the fact that 46 percent of those who currently have health insurance believed that their health insurance would cover most of the costs associated with long-term care. Finally, 30 percent of the respondents were unaware that Medicaid was provided only to applicants who had depleted nearly all of their financial resources.

 

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Life Insurance

Life insurance is designed to provide funds to a survivor, family or business in the event of a death. It is used to help replace income, pay off mortgages, debts or estate taxes, provide cash to buy out a partnership or acquire stock owned by the deceased.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Whole Life Insurance

A life insurance policy (also known as straight life, ordinary life and traditional permanent insurance) which has guaranteed premiums and guaranteed death benefits payable to a beneficiary at the time of the death of the insured, and a minimum interest rate which will be credited to the funds accumulated in the policy. One type of whole life insurance is variable life insurance, in which the death benefit and cash value benefits vary in relation to the value of the investments underlying the policy. Another type of whole life insurance is universal life insurance, which allows the policy owner to vary the amount and timing of premium payments and the death benefit. Standard life insurance is for those who fulfill the physical, occupational, and other requirements on which most of the company’s policies are issued. Someone whose requirements are more favorable may be eligible for a "Preferred Risk." When the applicant's characteristics are less favorable, they may be characterized as "Rated" or refused coverage altogether.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Term Life Insurance

Life insurance issued for a stated temporary period of time. These policies provide benefits in the event of death, but they generate no cash value. If you have a limited amount to spend, and only need insurance for a finite period of time, you may be able to get more coverage by buying term insurance than by buying cash value insurance. Standard life insurance is for those who fulfill the physical, occupational, and other requirements on which most of the company’s policies are issued. Someone whose requirements are more favorable may be eligible for a "Preferred Risk."   When the applicant's characteristics are less favorable, they may be characterized as "Rated" or refused coverage altogether.

Mortgage Life Insurance (click for Application)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Disability Insurance

Disability Insurance provides a preset income to an insured person who is unable to work due to injury or illness income payments to an insured wage earner when income is interrupted or terminated because of illness, sickness, or accident.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Burial Insurance

Burial insurance is insurance whose terms specifically provide that the proceeds can be used only to pay the burial expenses of the insured.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Long Term Care Insurance (LTC)

Long-term Care Insurance pays for nursing home, home health or adult day care when people need help with "activities of daily living," such as bathing, dressing and walking, or have a "cognitive impairment" such as Alzheimer's disease. Medicare and Medicare supplement insurance policies generally don't pay for such services. A Long Term Care (ltc) policies pay a specific dollar amount for each day you spend in a nursing facility or for each home health or home care visit. Some of these policies pay the daily benefit amount regardless of the charges, others will pay covered charges, or a percentage of covered charges up to the daily benefit amount. Long Term Care insurance should definitely be considered, since at age 65, about 33% of men and 52% of women will spend some time in a nursing home.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Other Insurance / Dental Plans

Motorcycle, ATV, Boat, Watercraft, RV, Flood, Mortgage Protection, Smokers & Tobacco Users, Fixed Annuities, Travel, Renters Insurance, Dental Plans and more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Umbrella Insurance

Any number of occurrences could wipe out your primary liability limits and leave your assets vulnerable. You work too hard to let that happen! Protect yourself with Umbrella coverage.

Umbrella liability insurance provides excess liability coverage over several of the insured's primary liability policies. Most umbrella policies provide coverage that is broader than the insured's primary policies.  An excess liability policy may be what is called a following form policy, which means it is subject to the same terms as the underlying policies; it may be a self-contained policy, which means it is subject to it's own terms only; or it may be a combination of these two types of excess policies.

Umbrella policies have three functions: (1) To provide additional limits above the "each occurrence" limit of the insured's primary policies; (2) To take the place of primary insurance when primary aggregate limits are reduced or exhausted; and (3) To provide broader coverage for some claims that would not be covered by the insured's primary insurance policies, which would be subject to the policy retention.

Most umbrella liability policies contain one comprehensive insuring agreement. The agreement usually states it will pay the ultimate net loss, which is the total amount in excess of the primary limit for which the insured becomes legally obligated to pay for the damages of bodily injury, property damage, personal injury and advertising injury.

 

 

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Limits of insurance

All umbrella liability policies contain an each occurrence limit of insurance. Some umbrella liability policies may have a separate limit that applies to all personal and advertising injury for one person or for the organization. Also, some policies are written with aggregate limits for only one type of loss. Other policies may have one or more aggregates for all losses. Umbrella policies can be written with several different variations of the aggregate limits. There are no standard umbrella policies.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Pay on behalf

This is the insuring agreement used in some umbrella policies. The agreement promises to make direct payment on behalf of the insured for those sums of money the insured becomes legally obligated to pay because of liability imposed upon the insured by law, or assumed under contract.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Indemnity

This is the insuring agreement clause found in most umbrella policies as opposed to the pay on behalf agreement. When the indemnity insurance clause is used, the insurer will indemnify or reimburse the insured for those sums of money the insured becomes obligated to pay by reason of liability imposed upon the insured by law, or assumed under contract.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Self Insured Retention

The self-insured retention is the amount of the loss an insured must pay before the umbrella policy would be required to respond. The self-insured retention would only apply when a loss is excluded from coverage under the primary policy, but not excluded under the umbrella policy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Required Underlying Limits

Required underlying limits are a requirement of the Insurer. It requires the Insured to have certain types of coverage, minimum limits and carriers that meet a specific Best rating.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Business Insurance

Business insurance protects the contents of your business against fire, theft and other losses. It is prudent for any business to purchase a number of basic types of insurance. Some types of coverage are required by law, other simply make good business sense.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Business Owners Package policy

This is referred to as BOP for short, is a combination of liability and property insurance. It is designed to save the small to medium-sized business owner money when compared to buying policies separately. A BOP ordinarily provides building and contents coverage, business income and extra expense coverage and can provide crime, boiler and machinery, inland marine and liability coverages.

As a general underwriting guideline, BOP insurance is for small businesses and annual company revenues must be under $1 million. Actual guidelines will vary from carrier to carrier.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Liability Insurance

Businesses may incur various forms of liability in conducting their normal activities. One of the most common types is product liability, which may be incurred when a customer suffers harm from using the business product. Liability insurance also provides protection in case someone gets hurt using your services or falls down the stairs. There are many other types of liability, which are frequently related to specific industries.

Comprehensive general liability coverage insures a business also against accidents and injury that might happen on its premises.  It will protect you from payments for bodily injury or property damage to a third party, for medical expenses accruing to the underlying incident, for the cost of defending lawsuits including investigations and settlements, and for any bonds or judgments required during an appeal procedure.

No matter how diligently you remove all possible hazards from your business, you could be sued successfully for accidents resulting from simply the carelessness of a customer. General liability insurance is your last line of defense against devastating claims for things over which you may have little or no control.   Liability law is constantly changing.  An analysis of your liability insurance needs by a competent professional is vital in determining an adequate and appropriate level of protection for your business.

 

How much liability coverage do you need? Generally, experts say, $2 million to $3 million of liability insurance should be plenty. The good news is that liability insurance isn’t priced on a dollar-for-dollar basis, so twice the coverage shouldn't be twice the price.   The price you pay for coverage depends on the size of your business (measured either by square footage or by payroll) and the specific risks involved.

Limitations will be akin to those on your personal auto policy; for example $100,000 per person and $300,000 per accident.

Exclusions

One item of note with general liability insurance is that it tends to have a lot of exclusions. Be sure to make sure you understand exactly what your policy does and doesn't cover.   You may want to purchase additional liability policies to cover specific concerns.  For example, many consultants purchase errors and omissions liability which protects them in case they are sued for damages resulting from a mistake in their work.

Companies with a board of directors may also want to consider directors and officers liability (D&O). This type of insurance protects top executives against personal financial responsibility due to actions taken by the company.

 

 

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Business Property Insurance

There are many different types of property insurance and levels of coverage available. It is important to determine the property you need to insure for the continuation of your business and the level of insurance you need to replace or rebuild. You must also understand the terms of the insurance, including any limitations or waivers of coverage.   Property Insurance is not just insurance for physical property like a building, it protects your business against physical damage and loss of assets. Assets, broadly defined, include the area in which your business operates and the property housed there. Good examples of property within a building are desks, chairs and merchandise. In the case of catastrophes like fire, explosion, theft, or vandalism, property insurance helps cover your costs — whether it's to repair damaged property or replace what you've lost. It is important to review your property insurance every year because the value of your property can change from year to year.

 

Commercial property owners, both those operating a business on their property and those leasing property to another entity, may purchase policies that protect the building and associated structures. A property owner’s policy will not protect tenants from loss. Business owners who lease their property may buy policies that protect the building’s contents, such as machinery, furniture and stored or displayed merchandise.

 

The Independent Insurance Agents of America offers a coverage checklist for commercial property insurance that's useful even if your business doesn't own all of these types of property.   Use this checklist to aid you in making a complete inventory of all your business property.

Buildings and other structures, leased or owned

Furniture, equipment, and supplies

Leased equipment

Inventory

Money and securities

Records of accounts receivable

Improvements and betterments you made to the premises

Machinery

Boilers

 Data processing equipment and media, including computers

Valuable papers, books, and documents

Mobile property, such as automobiles, trucks, and construction equipment

Satellite dishes

Signs, fences, and other outdoor property not attached to a building

Intangible property (goodwill, trademarks, etc.)

 

 

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Business Interruption Insurance

While property insurance may pay enough to replace damaged or destroyed equipment or buildings, how will you pay costs such as taxes, utilities and other continuing expenses during the period between when the damage occurs and when the property is replaced? Business Interruption (or "business income") insurance can provide sufficient funds to pay your fixed expenses during a period of time when your business is not operational.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Key Man Insurance

If you (and/or any other individual) are so critical to the operation of your business that it cannot continue in the event of your illness or death, you should consider "key man" insurance. This type of policy is frequently required by banks or government loan programs. It also can be used to provide continuity in operations during a period of ownership transition caused by the death or incapacitation of an owner or other "key" employee.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Directors and Officers

Under some circumstances, officers and directors of a corporation may become personally liable for their actions on behalf of the company. This type of policy covers this liability.   Directors and Officers Liability Insurance provides financial protection for the directors and officers of your company in the event they are sued in conjunction with the performance of their duties as they relate to the company. Think of Directors and Officers Insurance as a management Errors and Omissions policy.

Directors & Officers Liability Insurance can usually include Employment Practices Liability and sometimes Fiduciary Liability. The former involves harassment and discrimination suits, and is where the majority of your exposure will be.

Directors and Officers Insurance is often confused with Errors & Omissions Liability. The two are not synonymous; Errors & Omissions is concerned with performance failures and negligence with respect to your products and services, not the performance and duties of management. Generally it is a good idea to carry both Directors and Officers Liability Insurance and Errors and Omissions Liability Insurance.

When do I need Directors & Officers Insurance?

You need Directors and Officers Liability insurance when you assemble a board of directors. They will frequently make the requirement.

Investors, especially Venture Capitalists, will also usually require that you show evidence of Directors & Officers Liability insurance as part of the conditions of funding your company.

Why do I need Directors and Officers Liability Insurance?

First, you need Directors & Officers Insurance because claims from stockholders, employees, and clients will be made against the company, AND against the directors of the company. Since a director can be held personally responsible for acts of the company, most directors and officers will demand to be protected rather than put their personal assets at stake.

Secondly, you need Directors and Officers Insurance because: Investors and members of your board of directors will not be willing to risk their personal assets to serve as a corporate director or officer, no matter how heartfelt their belief in your company.

Lastly, employment practices suits constitute the single largest area of claim activity under D&O policies. Over 50% of D&O claims are employment practices related.

 

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Errors and Omissions

While not referred to as “malpractice” insurance, much like a legal or medical malpractice liability policy, Errors and Omissions (“E & O”) insurance covers businesses for errors and omissions committed in the course of providing advice, expertise, or other services to their customers. Such a policy can be purchased for a wide range of businesses and can cover a wide range of activities, from an insurance agent who purchases a policy to protect him in the event he makes an error in securing insurance for a customer to a computer consultant who purchases a policy to cover her in the event she provides incorrect advice to a customer regarding a computer network.

Many businessmen assume that they are insured for their misdeeds by the Comprehensive General Liability (“CGL”) policies that cover their businesses – their assumption is incorrect.  Most CGL policies do not cover claims related to professional services that a business provides; indeed, CGL policies almost always expressly exclude coverage for claims related to the rendering of such services. E & O policies pick up where CGL policies leave off – while most CGL policies explicitly exclude liability for “professional services” from their scope of coverage, most E & O policies are defined to cover only errors and omissions committed during the provision of professional  services.”

Because E & O policies generally pick up where the CGL policies leave off, much of the case law interpreting the coverage for E & O policies stems from disputes regarding the scope of coverage of CGL policies and the meaning of the “professional services” exclusion in the those policies.

Like most other professional malpractice policies, E & O policies are generally “claims made” policies. Coverage is determined by reference to the policy in effect when the claim is first made, rather than when the alleged wrongful act occurred. Common exclusions in E & O policies, regardless of the type of business insured, include those for claims related to acts occurring prior to the effective date of the policy of which the insured was already aware; claims for bodily injury or death; claims arising out of an assault and battery; claims between insureds; claims for wrongful employment-related practices; and claims for willfully dishonest, fraudulent, malicious or criminal acts.

In addition to these common exclusions, most policies also have exclusions that

are specific to the business activity being covered. For example, an E & O policy issued to an insurance broker might contain an exclusion for claims related to the collection of premiums; an E & O policy issued to a securities broker-dealer might exclude claims against or fines or penalties levied against by a state or federal regulatory agency; and an E& O policy issued to a car dealership might exclude claims alleging a violation of the Federal Odometer Statute.

 

 

 

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Fidelity, Surety & Crime

Surety-Bonds: Most commonly referred to as Bonds, Bid Bonds and Performance Bonds. A bond covers the fulfillment of an obligation. The obligations can range from performance of a contract to following laws related to an operating license. Other obligations include paying taxes or lease fees, supplying goods, paying a court judgment, or performing duties as a public official, etc.

Fidelity-Crime: If there is a crime against your business a Fidelity-Crime policy protects you. Commercial crime insurance protects businesses from the loss of money, securities or inventory resulting from risks such as theft, embezzlement, forgery or alteration of checks, robbery, counterfeit currency and documents, disappearance and destruction of money, securities and documents, employee dishonesty, safe burglary, computer fraud, wire transfer, audit and investigation expense. Reduce your risk from crime and obtain Fidelity-Crime coverage.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Business Automobile Insurance:

It is obvious that a vehicle owned by your business should be insured for both liability and replacement purposes. What is less obvious is that you may need special insurance (called "non-owned automobile coverage") if you use your personal vehicle on company business. This policy covers the business' liability for any damage which may result for such usage.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Home Office Insurance:

If you are establishing an office in your home, it is a good idea to contact your homeowners' insurance company to update your policy to include coverage for office equipment. This coverage is not automatically included in a standard homeowner's policy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Professional Liability

Professional liability insurance protects against claims arising from your acts, errors or omissions in rendering services of a professional nature. Businesses involved in everything from advertising to engineering need to consider this coverage seriously. It is common for customers to require Professional Liability coverage from their providers of services such as those provided by lawyers, architects, accountants before contracting for their professional services.   Medical Professional Liability is referred to as malpractice insurance

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Inland Marine

Inland Marine is the oddball of insurance policies, it does cover goods in transport, but it also includes diamonds and information technology equipment. If you are having difficulty identifying the proper type of coverage for something you wish to insure there is a good possibility it will fall under Inland Marine coverage.

These policies cover property while in transit or in the custody of bailees, “floating” property, dealer stock, property sold on deferred-payment basis, instrumentalities of transportation and communication, and electronic data processing equipment. Some of the major categories of Inland Marine insurance are, builder’s risk, contractor’s equipment floaters, installation floaters, dealer’s policies, electronic data processing equipment, bailee coverage, property in transit and instrumentalities of transportation or communication.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Sexual Harassment

As more lawsuits are filed, corporate American has sent sexual harassment insurance sales catapulting

An estimated 60 percent of companies have been the target of at least one employment-related lawsuit in the past five years and more businesses are turning to a relatively new form of insurance designed to protect them against workplace liability.

Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI) was developed in the 1980's to protect employers who find themselves the target of work-related lawsuits, including harassment, wrongful termination and discrimination.

According to the Western Insurance Information Service, between 1992-1996 the number of civil rights cases filed in federal court more than doubled from 10,771 to 23,152. In 1995 the medium compensatory award nationally for a wrongful termination case was $219,000. In California, the average was only slightly lower at $210, 700 in 1996.   EPLI covers defense costs, judgments and settlements for the corporate entity, employees, former employees as well as directors and officers. Depending on the type of business, coverage is provided up to a limit of $50 million.

Deductibles range from $10,000 to $25,000. On the average, companies are spending $100,000 annually for EPLI coverage. Workers' compensation, bodily injury and property damage are not covered by EPLI.

Insurance coverage for each of these wrongful actions has also transformed from nonexistent to many companies now providing some special type of coverage. The standard liability insurance policy that most businesses purchase specifically excludes claims arising out of "employment practices." The North Carolina Court of Appeals in Russ v. Great American Insurance Co., very recently ruled that an employer held liable for sexual harassment of his employees could not recover from his general liability insurer, because the acts were intentional efforts to harm the harassed employees and thus not covered as "accidents" under the general liability policy. Coverage under standard business liability policies was barred, even though the employer testified that he did not intend to injure the employees by the wrongful sexual conduct.

In order to obtain coverage for this type of conduct, business owners must find a company willing to accept some, if not all, of the financial risk associated with wrongful termination, discrimination, and/or sexual harassment. Increased premium costs for these type policies will range from $500 for a small employer (three to six employees) to several thousand dollars for larger employees. Is the higher cost worth the coverage? Look at the following court awards, remembering that this does not include the legal costs to defend a law suit:

*A jury awarded $2.7 million to a woman forced out of her job because company officials wanted someone "younger and cuter."

*A cancer patient received $220,000 in back pay from the employer who had wrongfully discharged him.

More and more businesses are seeing the need to purchase this special insurance coverage -- even those companies that have all the correct policies and procedures in place to avoid sexual harassment or discrimination.

 

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Workers Compensation 

Workers compensation insurance covers the cost of medical care and rehabilitation for workers injured on the job. It also compensates them for lost wages and provides death benefits for their dependents if they are killed in work-related accidents, including terrorist attacks.

Workers compensation systems vary from state to state. State statutes and court decisions control many aspects, including the handling of claims, the evaluation of impairment and settlement of disputes, the amount of benefits injured workers receive and the strategies used to control costs.

Workers compensation costs are one of the many factors that influence businesses to expand or relocate in a state, generating jobs. When premiums rise sharply, legislators often call for reforms. The last round of widespread reform legislation started in the late 1980s. In general, the reforms enabled employers and insurers to better control medical care costs through coordination and oversight of the treatment plan and return-to-work process and to improve workplace safety. Some states are now approaching a crisis once again as new problems arise.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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RECENT DEVELOPMENTS

State Activities

California: Workers compensation costs are still dropping as a result of reforms in 2003 and 2004. The state Workers Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau recommended a 16.4 percent drop in workers compensation “pure premium” rates starting in July 2006, bringing the cumulative reduction to 55.1 percent since July 2003. In September it recommended a further decrease of 6.3 percent to take effect in January 2007. Pure premium is the cost of coverage without any additional charges for such things as overhead expenses and taxes and without a margin for profit. A report on insurance industry profitability from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners shows that 2004 was the first year in a decade that average returns for workers compensation insurers doing business in California did not lag behind those in other states. The ten-year return on policyholder surplus, or capital, for California workers compensation insurers was 0.5 percent, compared with 7.9 percent nationwide.

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has vetoed SB 815, a bill that would have raised permanent partial disability benefits. In explaining his veto, the governor said that the proposed changes were not based on a comprehensive analysis and that he was awaiting the results of an 18-month study by the insurance department on the adequacy of current benefits and on the process through which medical care is provided. Critics say the reforms have gone too far and some injured workers are being denied proper treatment. Among other things, labor attorneys are seeking to roll back provisions that require the adoption of a more objective system for assessing the degree to which injured workers are permanently disabled. Determinations of physical impairment must now be based on the American Medical Association guidelines, a publication used in may other states as well, to help ensure evaluations are fair and consistent.

 

 

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