Volunteering your work and time is a noble pursuit. Helping others with no gain to yourself is a great thing and can be extremely rewarding. However, it is important to consider the risk that can come along with volunteer work. Volunteers are often exposed to the same risks that typical businesses are exposed to, despite not being employees in the usual sense. This makes it vital for you to have volunteer insurance.
What Is Volunteer Insurance?
Volunteer insurance is exactly what it sounds like. It’s a type of insurance coverage that is designed to protect volunteer workers from the financial risks they may encounter while doing volunteer work.
Why Do You Need Volunteer Insurance?
To put it simply, if you have a claim made against you, you could face significant financial damages. Volunteer work related claims can be just as damaging as claims made against for-profit businesses and can often cost thousands of dollars in court fees, settlements, and judgments.
What Does Volunteer Insurance Protect You From?
Volunteer insurance can offer you protection from a variety of claims that are commonly made against volunteer workers. Some examples of claims are:
- Bodily injury
- Property damage
- Breach of fiduciary duty
Volunteer work comes with a certain amount of risk. Volunteer insurance can make all the difference in terms of your financial security.
Filing a flood insurance claim is something no one wants to do, but it is unfortunately not uncommon, particularly as seasonal weather patterns continue to shift and regions unaccustomed to flooding increasingly see high amounts of water. Carrying flood insurance will ensure that if faced with severe flooding — and consequent water damage to your property or personal effects — you will be financially and mentally prepared to deal with damages.
Filing an Insurance Claim
If there is a possibility of filing a flood insurance claim, it is helpful to understand some general aspects involved in the process:
- Immediately after a flood, evaluate damage (before cleaning or repairing anything), and work to determine the value of damaged or destroyed items; you’ll ultimately want to document all damage with photos
- Speak with your insurer about a claim, determining where your coverage limit is and whether it will cover the extent of damage
- Submit all claims within 60 days of a flood
While you never want to be the one filing a flood insurance claim, there is always a chance it will happen. Ensuring you’re well-covered — including, if needed, carrying excess flood insurance — will allow for peace of mind in the interim and financial security in the event that significant damages do occur.
Financial organizations employ underwriters who assess and evaluate the risks involved in representing another party before accepting those risks. Mortgage companies, banks and insurance agencies rely on underwriters to make sound decisions before they offer loans and issue insurance policies. The fee for this assessment usually takes the form of interest payments or premiums.
Underwriters in the Insurance Business
Insurance underwriters evaluate the risks before insuring a business, home or automobile so that the risks don’t outweigh the potential benefits for the organization. They consider certain criteria to make sure the contract will be profitable for the insurance agency. For example, if a person has been in numerous accidents, they may be denied car insurance or may pay a higher premium than a person who has a clean driving record.
Banks and other financial institutions employ underwriters to evaluate the applicant’s financial history before approving a mortgage or other loan. Financial records and credit ratings are reviewed to ensure the party will be able to pay back the loan on time.
The underwriter wants the loan to be safe for all involved. In some instances, underwriting software is utilized to give a more accurate picture of the risks.
Underwriters play a critical role in the financial process of issuing loans and insurance policies.
Homeowners’ associations are tasked with seeing to the needs and best interests of the communities they serve. From community upkeep to ensuring that neighborhood best practices are adhered to, these homeowners’ associations or HOAs carry a great responsibility and are exposed to various operational risks and potential liabilities. Two types of insurance, E&O and D&O can help cover an HOA’s exposures to claims and liabilities, but it’s important to understand these policy types and what they specifically address.
Comparing E&O and D&O Coverages
E&O stands for errors and omissions and is also known as professional liability insurance. This coverage protects the insured from claims due to errors, omissions, and other negative outcomes as a result of their actions. Such a policy covers any actions for anyone affiliated with an HOA, including employees. D&O stands for directors and officers liability. This coverage specifically protects the directors, officers, and other senior positions in the HOA. This policy would protect individual members of an HOA from claims.
Protecting my Community Association
According to providers of homeowners’ or community association directors and officers insurance, it may be beneficial to have both. E&O and D&O protections cover the individuals as well as the entire board and employees, where applicable. As you explore the needs of your community association, considering talking to an insurer about creating a comprehensive plan.
Ridesharing has provided many people the opportunity to earn extra income transporting others from here to there. Driving for companies such as Uber or Lyft and other delivery services comes with rewards as well as risks. Presumably, rideshare drivers experience more wear and tear on their vehicles, and the increased time on the road increases the risk of collisions and accidents. Auto insurance policies often don’t include coverage for livery which includes ridesharing and delivery services. Are you covered in the event of an accident or other loss?
Understanding TNC Protection
Transportation Network Companies or TNC insurance helps cover the gaps in insurance protection. Even though ridesharing companies offer additional coverage, you may be unprotected if something happens while you’re waiting for a pickup request. A TNC or rideshare insurance provides these coverages whether on or off the job:
- Bodily injury
- Property damage
- Medical bill payment
- Uninsured/underinsured motorist
- Comprehensive and collision
Covering your rideshare auto with TNC protection helps to ensure that an uncovered claim doesn’t threaten your business.
Protecting Your Business
Leaving your car in the hands of a typical auto policy or rideshare protection can cost you serious money. Not only do you have the costs associated with repair or replacement, but there’s also lost money from not having a car to fulfill trip requests. Don’t delay. Get a TNC policy to protect your rideshare business today.
Whether a business’s primary activity is transportation or it’s just one facet of its operations, staying safe on the road has to be a key priority. Here are some of the most important things that businesses can do to ensure that their employees are as safe as possible.
Emphasis on the importance of safety in transportation needs to start in hiring. It is advisable to conduct driving history record checks on any employees who will be driving as part of their regular job duties.
Experienced drivers can benefit from additional training. Defensive driving, handling inclement conditions, and avoiding distracted driving are all essential training safety topics.
Keeping vehicles in good condition may help to prevent accidents. Businesses need comprehensive maintenance plans in place for each vehicle that it has on the road.
Businesses whose vehicles have secondary functions such as waste collection trucks or fuel delivery systems need to ensure that equipment is well maintained. Any type of malfunction could create issues while a vehicle is stationary or in motion.
Good policies equip businesses to promote safety while also mitigating exposure to liability and loss. Ultimately, businesses that are engaged in any type of transportation need to be proactive about avoiding accidents while also being prepared to handle the unexpected.
There are plenty of problems that can come along with running a specialty business. Not only can it be more challenging to deal with traditional business tasks like marketing and organic growth, you also must consider the unique circumstances of your industry in order to find appropriate insurance coverage. If you run a staffing firm, for example, you might find yourself confused about whether or not your temp workers can be covered via traditional means. Unfortunately, business owners must typically take extra steps when they employ workers of this designation.
What Are Temp Workers?
The idea of the temp worker is nothing new. Official temporary employee classification pretty much applies to any individuals who are not employed in a full-time capacity by an organization and are only required to commit to the job until the end of a contract or project. With a temp agency, this is a vast majority of the employees. Since traditional workers’ compensation plans and other insurance options will not apply to such workers, you need to find specialized policies that reflect your actual needs. Areas to consider include:
- Theft or damage caused by subcontractors
- Harassment claims against a client
- E&O coverage for documentation
Getting More From Your Insurance
The more you understand about your industry’s risks, the easier it will be to find insurance that meets your needs. Review your options to find a plan that helps your staffing agency stay safe no matter what issues may arise.
For people who distribute propane, specialty insurance is the best way to go. Here are some facts about propane dealer insurance that can help you decide if this is the policy that you need.
Who Is Covered
This policy is primarily designed for companies that distribute propane to homes, farms, and other establishments. It is also used by a lot of wholesale distributors of propane. Aside from these standard types, you may also be eligible for this coverage if you sell HVAC systems, appliances, bulk oil, gasoline, and other types of fuel.
What Is Covered
Using a specialized type of insurance is great because it offers you a one-stop coverage plan. You can choose what to include in your policy, with options including general liability, property insurance, excess coverage, commercial auto, workers’ compensation, and more.
Ways To Reduce Risk
If you’re looking to lower the cost of this insurance, you can take steps to reduce your risk. This includes background checking your employees, using driver-assisted technology, purchasing cybersecurity technology, properly training your employees, and maintaining your equipment.
If you are a propane distributor or a similar fuel, you should look into this type of policy. It can serve as a one-stop coverage plan and give you additional benefits that reduce your company’s risk.
If you run a business, it is important that you understand workers’ compensation insurance. Workers’ compensation is a vital part of any business insurance plan and can protect you from major financial loss. Below are the answers to a few commonly asked questions about workers’ comp.
What Is Workers’ Compensation?
Workers’ compensation is a type of insurance coverage that protects businesses and employees from financial loss in situations where a worker is hurt while working or gets sick from a job-related cause. It helps employees by covering the costs of their work-related injuries and it helps employers by protecting them from uncovered workers’ compensation claims.
What Is Covered By Workers’ Compensation?
Workers’ compensation covers a variety of things related to on-the-job injuries and illnesses. It can cover things like medical expenses, lost wages, and even funeral expenses if the worst-case scenario occurs and an employee dies on the job.
What Is Not Covered By Workers’ Compensation?
Some situations that occur on the job are not covered by workers’ compensation. Some of these are:
- Injuries due to a fight that the employee started
- Injuries due to intoxication in the workplace
- Self-inflicted injuries
- Emotional injuries that are not due to physical workplace trauma
Work-related injuries can potentially be costly for both employers and employees. Workers’ compensation can make a huge difference.
In cities with ongoing infrastructure projects, car damage due to road construction sometimes becomes so commonplace that it creates negative public sentiment toward construction companies and their crews. However, contractors can minimize collisions by taking the following two steps toward prioritizing safety.
The U.S. government publishes a number of documents about safety on a road construction site. Some to add to your reading list include the following:
- S. Department of Transportation’s “Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices”
- National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health’s “Workplace Safety & Health Topics: Highway Work Zone Safety”
- S. Department of Health and Human Services’ “Building Safer Highway Work Zones: Measures to Prevent Worker Injuries From Vehicles and Equipment”
Inspect Cones and Signs
A large percentage of construction site accidents occur when motorists strike cones and signs that construction workers have placed to reroute traffic into safer lanes. Workers should inspect these items before placing them, to ensure they are not defective and that they are in optimal locations.
A road construction site is inherently dangerous because it interrupts the normal flow of traffic. However, companies can minimize risks to drivers with a modicum of foresight. Following the above suggestions will help keep accidents to a minimum so that road improvements can continue unimpeded.