About // Insurance Carriers // FAQs // Blog // Contact // (800) 525-3817

Personal Insurance

We’ve got all the kinds of coverage you need, from car and home to motorcycle and boat insurance. Give us a call today or request a quote to find out how affordable insurance coverage can be.

 
Commercial Insurance

You’ve worked hard to build your business. Don’t let all that be for nothing by leaving yourself, your employees, and your future unprotected. We can help you find complete coverage at an affordable price.

Current Clients

Request Service
for Your Policy

Contact Us
This form does not yet contain any fields.
    Thursday
    Sep202018

    Employer Liability for Employee Cell Phone Use on the Rise

    Employers are facing increasing liability as a direct result from their employees’ cell phone use. So why is this the next legal frontier? The number of lawsuits involving employer liability for traffic accidents caused by employee cell phone usage is steadily growing, as well as lawsuits based on health problems associated with cell phone use.

    The principal of vicarious liability states that an employer is responsible for the harm caused by its employees if the employees are acting within the scope of their employment at the time an accident happened. In this situation, a company can be held accountable by a third party for auto accidents caused by an employee’s cell phone use if the company provided the phone or if the cell phone is an integral part of the employee’s job. The company can even be held liable for incidents resulting from personal calls made by employees on company-issued cell phones, or phones inside company cars.

    There is also an emerging trend establishing that an employer can be found directly negligent if it allowed employees to use cell phones for business without proper training or in spite of safety issues, and an accident results.

    Another exposure resulting from employee cell phone use is the rise in the number of claims brought by employees for health problems associated with their cell phones. Employees who consistently use cell phones as part of their job are filing workers’ compensation claims and lawsuits alleging that radio frequency radiation from cell phones causes brain cancer.

    The scientific evidence concerning whether or not cell phone use increases the risk of cancer is inconclusive. There are two studies that are most frequently quoted, and their results are contradictory. A study conducted at the Danish Institute of Cancer Epidemiology, whose results were released in December 2006, followed the health of over 420,000 cell phone users over the course of 21 years to determine if cell phone use causes cancer. The researchers concluded that the radio frequency energy produced by cell phones did not increase the risk of contracting brain cancer. However, a April 2006 study conducted by the Swedish National Institute for Working Life, examined the cell phone usage of 905 adults who developed malignant brain tumors. They found that people with more than 2,000 hours of total talk time had 3.7 times the risk of developing brain cancer as compared with non-users. The study also found an increase for tumors specifically on the side of the head where the cell phone was used.

    While there is no way to alleviate all potential liability arising from cell phones in the workplace, companies can offer employees training on the safety issues and possible health risks associated with using cell phones. Promoting a safe workplace is a simple way to reduce the number of accidents and health risks associated with cell phones.

    Tuesday
    Sep182018

    When You Shop for a New Car, Consider Safety Ratings

    Most people know that the federal government enforces certain safety standards for new cars. However, these are only the minimum standards a car manufacturer must satisfy in order to have its vehicles considered safe. Many automakers offer safety features beyond the required federal minimums. When shopping for a new car, you should look for a vehicle that offers the maximum safety features in your price range.

    The following list of safety features should be considered when you are shopping:

    ·   Crashworthiness - This rating indicates the level of risk of death or serious injury if a crash occurs. Log on to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's web site at www.iihs.org/searchresults.aspx?q=crashworthiness for more information about the various models.

    ·   Structural design - Look for a structural design that has a strong occupant compartment. The vehicle should have front and rear ends that buckle and bend in a crash to absorb the force of the crash. This keeps the occupant compartment from collapsing. If the occupant compartment collapses, the likelihood of injury increases significantly.

    ·   Size and weight - Larger and heavier cars are safer than lighter and smaller models. In crashes where smaller and larger vehicles collide, the larger vehicles drive the smaller ones backwards, which increases the forces in the smaller vehicles.

    ·   Restraint systems - Shoulder belts, airbags and head restraints are designed to work together with a vehicle's structure to protect people in crashes. Shoulder belts keep you in place, reducing the possibility of your body slamming into something hard or being ejected from the vehicle. Airbags reduce the risk of the head and upper body hitting some part of the vehicle's interior. They also distribute crash forces more evenly across your body. Head restraints keep your head from being violently snapped, which would injure your neck in a rear-end crash.

    ·   Anti-lock brakes - Conventional brakes may cause wheels to lock if you brake too hard. This can result in skidding and possible loss of control of the car. Anti-lock brakes pump brakes automatically many times a second to prevent locking and keep you in control. While anti-lock brakes help you maintain steering control, they don't necessarily help you stop more quickly.

    ·   Daytime running lights - These are usually high-beam headlights at reduced intensity or low-beam lights at full or reduced power. These lights prevent daytime accidents because they increase the contrast between the vehicle and its background, which makes the car more visible to oncoming drivers.

    ·   Miscellaneous factors - Other design characteristics can influence injury risk. The structure of some small utility vehicles and pickups make them more likely to roll over during a crash. High performance cars tend to have higher-than-average death rates because drivers, especially young ones, speed when they are behind the wheel. You should examine the design features of any new car you are considering to be sure that they are appropriate for everyone who will be driving the car. 

    Thursday
    Sep132018

    Key Considerations When Obtaining Builders' Risk Insurance

    Savvy contractors understand the key points of workers’ compensation, especially on controlling losses and managing the premiums. They are also likely familiar with commercial auto and general liability insurance, as construction contract issues tend to center around these coverages. But builders’ risk insurance is often a little more daunting for contractors because it’s not top of mind.

    Builders’ risk policies cover property during the course of construction and may cover materials in transit to the job site and in temporary storage awaiting installation. When considering the purchase of a builders’ risk policy, a contractor should weigh several factors, including contract requirements, the property and locations in question, the parties who need coverage, and loss exposures that are time-sensitive.

    The construction contract should contain the insurance requirements for the project. For example, it may specify that the builders’ risk policy cover certain causes of loss, such as earthquake and flood damage, that the insurer’s standard policy will not cover without modification. It may also require that coverage be on a replacement cost basis and that the insurer must waive subrogation rights against the project owner. The contractor should carefully review the contract and discuss the coverage requirements with his insurance agent.

    The contractor must also determine what property he needs to cover. If he is building a new building, he will need insurance on the building materials, foundation, temporary walls and their supports, scaffolding, and other equipment. If the project involves rehabilitation or renovation of an existing building, such as the conversion of an old office building to condominiums, he will need coverage for the old structure as well as the improvements. How the insurance company will determine the existing structure's value is an important question - some companies may subtract depreciation from the building's replacement cost which could leave the contractor with a large uninsured exposure. As such, he should negotiate for replacement cost coverage whenever possible.

    The construction contract will usually require the policy to cover the project owner, general contractor and even some or all of the subcontractors. The contractor should determine whether the policy covers material suppliers. If not, he should consider additional insurance to cover loss of income in case one of the suppliers shuts down temporarily due to property damage. He should also determine how the policy will respond if faulty work by a subcontractor causes damage to other parts of the building. Not all policies will pay if a sprinkler subcontractor installs a pipe fitting improperly and an entire floor gets flooded.

    The last two major considerations are the locations to be covered and coverage for extra costs resulting from a construction delay, which was caused by a covered peril. In addition to the project site, the contractor should inquire about coverage for property in transit to the site and property stored off-site. Building materials could be damaged if a supplier's location is damaged by fire or if the train carrying them derails. Extra costs resulting from a delay, known as "soft costs," can be a significant exposure. For example, leases may need to be renegotiated or replaced, construction loans may have to be extended, or additional equipment may have to be rented. If the contract makes the contractor responsible for these costs, this coverage can be critical.

    Because builders’ risk insurance has so many unique considerations, contractors should address them before starting work on the project. These policies will differ from one insurer to another, so careful review is essential. Attention to details before work begins will reduce the chances of uninsured losses and contractual disputes.

    Thursday
    Sep132018

    Key Considerations When Obtaining Builders' Risk Insurance

    Savvy contractors understand the key points of workers’ compensation, especially on controlling losses and managing the premiums. They are also likely familiar with commercial auto and general liability insurance, as construction contract issues tend to center around these coverages. But builders’ risk insurance is often a little more daunting for contractors because it’s not top of mind.

    Builders’ risk policies cover property during the course of construction and may cover materials in transit to the job site and in temporary storage awaiting installation. When considering the purchase of a builders’ risk policy, a contractor should weigh several factors, including contract requirements, the property and locations in question, the parties who need coverage, and loss exposures that are time-sensitive.

    The construction contract should contain the insurance requirements for the project. For example, it may specify that the builders’ risk policy cover certain causes of loss, such as earthquake and flood damage, that the insurer’s standard policy will not cover without modification. It may also require that coverage be on a replacement cost basis and that the insurer must waive subrogation rights against the project owner. The contractor should carefully review the contract and discuss the coverage requirements with his insurance agent.

    The contractor must also determine what property he needs to cover. If he is building a new building, he will need insurance on the building materials, foundation, temporary walls and their supports, scaffolding, and other equipment. If the project involves rehabilitation or renovation of an existing building, such as the conversion of an old office building to condominiums, he will need coverage for the old structure as well as the improvements. How the insurance company will determine the existing structure's value is an important question - some companies may subtract depreciation from the building's replacement cost which could leave the contractor with a large uninsured exposure. As such, he should negotiate for replacement cost coverage whenever possible.

    The construction contract will usually require the policy to cover the project owner, general contractor and even some or all of the subcontractors. The contractor should determine whether the policy covers material suppliers. If not, he should consider additional insurance to cover loss of income in case one of the suppliers shuts down temporarily due to property damage. He should also determine how the policy will respond if faulty work by a subcontractor causes damage to other parts of the building. Not all policies will pay if a sprinkler subcontractor installs a pipe fitting improperly and an entire floor gets flooded.

    The last two major considerations are the locations to be covered and coverage for extra costs resulting from a construction delay, which was caused by a covered peril. In addition to the project site, the contractor should inquire about coverage for property in transit to the site and property stored off-site. Building materials could be damaged if a supplier's location is damaged by fire or if the train carrying them derails. Extra costs resulting from a delay, known as "soft costs," can be a significant exposure. For example, leases may need to be renegotiated or replaced, construction loans may have to be extended, or additional equipment may have to be rented. If the contract makes the contractor responsible for these costs, this coverage can be critical.

    Because builders’ risk insurance has so many unique considerations, contractors should address them before starting work on the project. These policies will differ from one insurer to another, so careful review is essential. Attention to details before work begins will reduce the chances of uninsured losses and contractual disputes.

    Tuesday
    Sep112018

    Three Questions to Determine Whether Your Home Is Properly Insured

    Homeowners are always being advised to update their property insurance annually because any home alteration or lifestyle change, such as marriage or divorce, can affect the amount of coverage needed. While it is important to complete that yearly review, it is equally important to know what questions you should ask your agent to ensure you have the right coverage for your circumstances.

    According to the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.), there are three key questions you should always ask:

    1.   Do I have enough insurance to rebuild my home? - Buying just enough insurance to meet your mortgage lender's requirements could mean that you are inadequately covered should you need to rebuild your home at current prices. To have real protection, you need to consider the following types of coverage:

    §      Replacement Cost Policy - A replacement cost policy pays for the repair or replacement of damaged property with materials of similar kind and quality.

    §      Extended Replacement Cost Policy - This extends your coverage another 20 percent or more above your stated policy limits. This additional insurance can be extremely important if your home is one of many damaged in a disaster, because a widespread disaster can result in increased costs for building materials and labor.

    §      Inflation Guard - This coverage automatically adjusts the policy limits for rebuilding costs as construction costs rise.

    §      Ordinance or Law coverage - If your home is badly damaged and requires rebuilding under new building codes, ordinance or law coverage will pay a specific amount toward any additional costs involved in meeting the new code requirements.

    §      Water Backup - This coverage insures your property for damage from sewer or drain backup. 

    §      Flood Insurance - Standard home insurance policies do not include coverage for flooding. Flood insurance is available through the federal government's National Flood Insurance Program (http://www.floodsmart.gov), but can be purchased from the same agent who provides your homeowner's insurance. Make sure to purchase flood insurance for the structure of your house, as well as for the contents.

    2.   Do I have enough insurance to replace my possessions? - Most insurers provide coverage for personal possessions equal to 50 percent to 70 percent of the amount of insurance on the dwelling. The best way to determine if this is enough coverage is to conduct a home inventory. A home inventory is a list of everything you own and the estimated cost to replace these items if they were stolen or destroyed.

    You can insure your possessions in one of two ways:

    a.            Cash Value Policy - This coverage pays the cost to replace your belongings minus depreciation.

    b.            Replacement Cost Policy - This coverage pays the full cost of replacing your belongings at current prices.

    3.   Do I have enough insurance to protect my assets? - Homeowner's insurance provides you with basic liability coverage. This protects you against lawsuits for bodily injury or property damage that you, your family, or your pets may cause to other people. Liability insurance pays for the cost of your legal defense and for any damages a court rules you must pay, up to the stated limits of your policy. Most homeowner's insurance policies provide a minimum of $100,000 worth of liability insurance. If the standard liability coverage isn't sufficient, you may need an excess liability policy, which provides additional coverage over and above what is covered by your homeowner's insurance policy.


    Give Us a Shot
     
    Follow Us
         
       
     
    Contact Info
     
     
    Legal Stuff

    California license #0D60878
    Arizona license #151474
    Georgia license #175676
    Idaho license #464725
    Kansas license #753057454-000
    Oregon license #100156593
    Nevada license #18577
    New Mexico license #100009065
    Texas license #1991219
    Washington license #224471

    Copyright © 2013, Stanley M. Davis Insurance. All rights reserved.

    This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

    Powered by Awesurance

    Admin | Forms