North Bay Brokers Can Help Employers Manage Workers’ Compensation Costs

risk-1945683_640A Workers’ Compensation Update

There are over 4.1 million workplace injuries in the Unites States each year, according to OSHA.  Employers spend about $155 billion on work related injuries each year.  There is no doubt workers’ compensation is a big expense for employers.

The good news is there are many actions an insurance agent can do to help employers reduce workers’ compensation costs.

  1. Search the market for options and program designs that fit the individual needs of each employer.
  2. Help build a bridge between the insurer and business.
  3. Educate employers about how workers’ compensation works.
  4. Work with employers in the development of a safety program.
  5. Analyze all classifications to make sure they are correct.
  6. Help the company prepare for the workers’ compensation premium audit.
  7. Provide the framework for an early return to work program.
  8. Help the company review accidents and claims to determine trends and then create safety solutions.
  9. Facilitate a claims review with the insurer to make sure all claims are being processed correctly.
  10. Be a resource to the business by bringing in other service providers to solve problems; i.e., attorneys, safety professionals, and third party claims consultants.

Workers’ compensation is an important part of your business insurance program. It is required by state law that your business has workers’ compensation insurance.

As a business owner, you go to great lengths to provide a safe working environment for your employees. Workers’ compensation continues to be a significant cost driver for most employers, and understanding all the factors that can drive your workers’ compensation cost can often be complex and time consuming.

At North Bay Insurance Brokers, we understand that mistakes happen. That’s why we’re committed to helping you create a Professional Liability policy that keeps your day-to-day operations protected should your business be held legally liable

 

 

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No Animal House For Your College Students

bigstock-Student-with-skateboard-and-ba-15704690A Personal Insurance Update

By now, your college-aged kids are in school doing who knows what.  Sending a child to college requires making many decisions, but one decision you do not want to put off is reviewing your personal insurance.  The reason is that with a child in college your risk has changed and you may need to adjust your personal insurance program.

Is Your Child Renting a Home or Apartment?

If your child is renting a home or apartment with others, you may want to consider a renter’s policy.  The concern is that roommates can create liability for you if their actions cause a loss.  We usually recommend a separate renters policy to keep the liability separate.

Other Personal Insurance Issues

  • If a student is attending school 100 miles or more away from home and is not taking a vehicle, you may be able to list the student as an “occasional driver” with the insurance company and save money.
  • Many homeowners’ policies will cover a child’s personal belongings while at college if they are damaged by fire, water, or other perils named in the policy, subject to limitations. Call our office for more information.
  • Identity theft is big problem on many college campuses. We can add coverage to your homeowner’s policy.
  • Health insurance – Children can remain on your health policy until the age of 26. Many colleges will offer student health insurance at a very reasonable cost.

We are always searching for ways to help our clients save money on their auto insurance. Saving money on car insurance is a relatively quick way to lower the cost of operating your car, and can be accomplished with a quick phone call to our office.

North Bay Insurance Brokers, Inc. is your trusted solution for homeowners insurance. We offer coverage options that are both flexible and affordable, and will work with you on an individual basis to find a policy that best suits your needs. Our team is dedicated to providing the assurance that your family and your possessions are secure.

 

Mom, Dad, I just Got Into An Accident

HgkyHmioEsXDTN7aWhat Not To Do After An Accident

Auto accidents are no fun.  They cause injury, damage, and a lot of stress.  However, the good news is that if you bought insurance from our agency you have the best possible combination of coverage, price, and service.  You buy auto insurance to protect yourself in the event you are in an accident, and we are here to help you through the claims process.

Over the years, we have seen just about every kind of accident and response. We thought it might be beneficial to talk about what not to do after an accident.

  • Do not get upset or angry. Stay calm and make sure everyone is unhurt.
  • Try not to move the vehicle unless damage is minor and you can exchange information parked on the side of the road.
  • Never accept money from the liable party, rather than filing a claim.
  • Do not leave the scene. Stay on the scene until the matter is settled. In some areas, you may be required to call the police, even for minor incidents. Other times you may just need to file a report later.
  • Never admit an accident was your fault, even if you think it was. An apology can be construed as an admission of fault. Let the authorities determine who was responsible. Auto accidents can be disorienting even if you are not physically injured. You may not be aware of all factors leading up to the crash.
  • Don’t forget to document everything. Take photos and get contact information from all parties involved, including any witnesses.

We are here to help you with your California auto insurance needs. We have access to many insurance products and can provide you with competitive premiums. We offer auto liability, auto collision and auto comprehensive coverage.

At North Bay Insurance Brokers, Inc., we combine premium auto Insurance with personalized service to give you the best coverage possible. Our insurance specialists will work with you one-on-one to find a policy that keeps you and your drivers protected at all costs – for peace-of-mind driving assurance.

 

Don’t Let Your Home Remodel Project Turn Into An Episode Of Tool Time

building-1080593_640

A North Bay Insurance Update

A home remodeling project can create an exciting new and improved home and even increase your home’s value. However, the process can be daunting and frustrating as your home can be the center of a “war zone” during the process. While you focus on color and design issues, do not forget to consider these items.

Homeowner’s Insurance

If you are increasing the value of your home, you will need to make adjustments in your homeowner’s insurance limits. Typically, your homeowner’s insurance will not cover the contractor or his work. If the contractor causes damage to another part of your home, you will want their insurance to provide restoration.

Review Your Contract or Agreement

Before you hire a contractor make sure you consider the following:

  1. Check references
  2. Go to Yelp or Angies List to check reviews
  3. Ask the contractor to provide you with a certificate of insurance
  4. Address how change orders will work
  5. Be specific with regard to brands and products you desire
  6. Never provide 100% payment upfront
  7. All contractors who work on your home should have the following minimum insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation to state minimum or statutory
  • Commercial General Liability $1,000,000 Combined Single Limit
  • Auto Liability $1,000,000 Limit
  • Builders Risk which covers the value of the new work
  1. Some changes or remodeling projects can actually help reduce your homeowner’s insurance; for example, upgrading electrical or plumbing. Replacing an older roof can also help your insurance costs.

North Bay Insurance Brokers is your trusted solution for homeowner’s insurance. We offer coverage options that are both flexible and affordable, and will work with you on an individual basis to find a policy that best suits your needs. Our team is dedicated to providing the assurance that your family and your possessions are secure.

Don’t Wait For A Flood To Prepare For A Flood

White house in water, flood

White house in water, flood

North Bay Home Insurance and Personal Safety Update

There are many events that can create devastation to homes and families. These events can include winds, floods, fire, and more.  Your homeowner’s insurance may not automatically cover wind or flood damage, especially if you live in a high-risk area.  Homeowner’s insurance coverage can be adjusted or separate flood and wind coverage can be purchased.

Now is the time to prepare

  • Review your insurance to make sure you have adequate coverage and limits.
  • Hold an annual family meeting to discuss issues and plans.
  • Notify neighbors and family members of your plan.
  • Plan for any special medical needs.

Your Emergency Kit Should include

  • Three-day supply of food and water
  • Medications
  • Sanitation and personal hygiene items
  • Flashlight
  • Whistle
  • Cash
  • Photocopies of identification and credit cards
  • Batteries
  • Basic tools
  • Solar power source for smart phone
  • Dust masks for every family member
  • Items for infants such as formula, diapers, bottles, and pacifiers
  • First aid kit

At North Bay Insurance Brokers Insurance Agency, we know you’ve invested a lot of time and money in your personal property and keepsakes. A flood insurance policy will cover the cost of replacing your valuables from any flood-related damage.

Flood insurance is available through the federal government’s National Flood Insurance Program, however, it’s a better bet to purchase a flood insurance policy from the same agent or company who provides you with your home insurance. Here’s why: your agent or current insurance company can provide much higher limits of coverage than the NFIP, especially if your loss proves to be catastrophic. There is usually a 30-day waiting period before this type of insurance becomes valid.

Your Holiday Insurance Shopping List

christmas-2597789_640North Bay Homeowner’s Insurance

You buy home insurance to protect your most important asset.  There are many items to consider and we can help you through the process of finding the right coverage for you and your family. Remember not all homeowner’s insurance policies are considered equal.

There are many factors that go into determining your homeowner’s insurance premiums.  We thought it might be fun to address our “top ten list” of things every homeowner should know before purchasing insurance.  As your agent we can help you identify the best possible combination of coverage, price and service.

  1. You are a statistic. To an insurer, you are a set of risks. An insurer bases its premium (or its decision to insure you at all) on your “risk factors” including your occupation, who you are, what you own, and where you live. To us, you are a person and we value our relationship with you.
  2. Know your home’s value. Before you buy a policy, it is important to know your home’s replacement cost.
  3. Insurers differ. As with anything else you buy, what seems to be the same product can be priced differently by different companies. You can save money by comparison shopping, we can do that for you.
  4. Don’t just look at price. A low price is no bargain if you don’t have the right coverage.
  5. Go beyond the basics. A basic homeowner’s policy may not promise to entirely replace your home.
  6. Look for discounts. Insurers provide discounts to reward behavior that reduces risk.
  7. Be sure that you have the proper documentation if you have a claim. Your idea of fair compensation may not match that of your insurer. Your insurer’s job is to restore you financially. Your job is to prove your losses so you get what you need.
  8. Know your policy. Keep your policy updated, and reread it before you file a claim so there are no surprises.
  9. Check you deductibles. It may benefit you to increase your deductible, especially if you have a good claims experience.
  10. Your policy excludes Quake and Flood. Check with us and we will provide you with a quote.

North Bay Insurance Brokers, Inc. is your trusted solution for homeowners insurance. We offer coverage options that are both flexible and affordable, and will work with you on an individual basis to find a policy that best suits your needs. Our team is dedicated to providing the assurance that your family and your possessions are secure.

 

Is Your Office Holiday Party Like An Episode Of the “Office”

Group of friends cheering with glasses of champagneCompany Holiday Parties Increase Risks

Your company Holiday party was going great, and everyone was having a wonderful time.  Except one of the female employees said that a manager touched her and made un-wanted advances.  Now she is filing an employment liability claim.  This is a scenario that no one wants to happen.

Your business insurance many not cover this lawsuit unless you have employment practices liability insurance.  Call our office for a review of your commercial insurance today.

Office Holiday Party Safety

  1. Limit use of alcohol; offer two drink tickets per person.
  2. Make sure you have food at your party.
  3. During the party, monitor alcohol consumption. Quickly try to diffuse any situations or displays of inappropriate behavior.
  4. Consider having the party at a restaurant. This is a good way to transfer liability.
  5. Make the party optional.
  6. Arrange for cab rides or transportation home for guests who may need it.
  7. Prior to the party, review harassment policies with all employees as a reminder of proper behavior.
  8. Encourager managers to set a good example.
  9. Consider inviting spouses, which is a good way to reduce romantic hook-ups.
  10. Know your state laws.
  11. If you have employees bring food, be sure the food is labeled by type. Some people may have food allergies.

As long as you don’t charge for drinks, your business insurance may provide coverage (Always check with our office as each policy is different). North Bay Insurance Brokers provides insurance to businesses in Sonoma, Napa, Marin, Santa Rosa, Petaluma, American Canyon, and surrounding areas.

No matter what business you’re in, each workday is dedicated to doing your job well and providing your customers with the best service possible. North Bay Insurance Brokers would like to return the favor by giving you the coverage you need to ensure the security of your business.

At North Bay Insurance Brokers, we’re committed to keeping your business protected – so you can focus on your day-to-day operations. And with the right insurance plan, your business will be covered from top to bottom.