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The #1 Factor Affecting Workers Compensation Outcomes

Posted by David Ross on Sat, Sep 16, 2017

Reduce Workers Compensation Insurance Fraud by Building Trust. Serving Philadelphia, Lancaster, Reading, Allentown, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, Erie, PA and beyond.Trust… What is trust? Merriam Webster defines it as “one in which confidence is placed” or “assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something.”

But what does trust have to do with workers’ compensation claims? EVERYTHING!

Studies have found that the biggest single factor that determines the success or failure of a workers’ compensation insurance claim is trust between the injured employee and his or her employer. And that trust (or lack of trust) begins as soon as the claim is reported (often before).

Workers Compensation Insurance Fraud is Rare. Surprised? 

Now, you may be thinking that there are so many cases of Workers Compensation Insurance fraud that you can’t trust anyone. We have an interesting statistic for you: studies show that only 1 to 2 percent of all workers' compensation claims are fraudulent. That means 98 to 99 percent are legitimate. So, yes there should be a thorough investigation of every claim, but you should also give your employees the benefit of the doubt. After all, trust is a two-way street.

How to Build Trust

Here are two areas that employers should focus on when trying to develop trust, plus one magic question that can help lead to a mutually successful claim.

#1. Work on The Employee / Supervisor Relationship

Research has shown that a supervisor’s response to an injured worker at the moment the claim is reported is key to building trust, and once trust is lost, it’s very difficult (if not impossible) to get it back.

If the supervisor responds with blame or anger by saying something like “What did you do to cause the injury?” there will be an immediate lack of trust. Perhaps even worse is expressing apathy with something like “You’re not hurt; get back to work.” Both of these show a lack of trust in the employee and puts them immediately on the defense.

If the supervisor responds positively by taking every workers’ compensation claim seriously and by showing genuine concern for the employee’s well-being, trust is built. And with trust you will have a significantly better claim outcome.

Supervisors should continue to leverage that trust by following up with a call or a visit to the hospital the day of the injury to let the injured employee know how sorry they are that he or she got hurt and how eager they are for the employee to return to work. Follow this up with a get well card signed by the supervisor and the injured employee’s co-workers. Again, say something like, “We’re so sorry that you got hurt. We look forward to seeing you back at work.”

The supervisor should continue to solidify that trusting relationship over time with weekly conversations reaffirming that they care about the employee’s well-being. These discussions also allow the supervisor to assess the attitude of the injured employee, how their medical treatment is going, and how their transitional duty job (if there is one) is going.

#2. Work On The Employee / Insurance Adjuster Relationship

First impressions are crucial. If you present a positive reaction to an injured employee during the first interaction, it’s much easier to build that trust. The adjuster should avoid using insurance jargon, such as “adjudication” and avoid calling the injured worker the “claimant."

And remember that this is probably the employee’s first workers comp insurance claim, so they probably don’t understand the process, what is going to happen, or what they need to do. It’s up to the adjuster to guide them through the process as a trusted advisor. If the injured employee believes their rights are not being protected, they will call an attorney, which often makes a claim even more complicated and more costly.

#3. Ask The “Magic” Question

One of the most powerful questions you can ask an injured employee is, “Do you think you will be back to work within four weeks without any restrictions?” If they say no, ask them why and offer additional resources and support. If they answer yes, they’ve set the expectation in their mind, which will drive them back to work more quickly. This question helps builds trust and should be asked with every Workers’ Compensation claim.

This may sound like a lot of work, but if you want to resolve workers’ compensation claims quickly and minimize your workers’ compensation insurance claims costs, these are necessary actions.

Contact Us To Learn More About Workers Comp Insurance 

A Trusted Choice Independent PA Workers Comp Insurance AgencyTo learn more about saving on workers compensation insurance, contact American Insuring Group online or call at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848.

Our independent insurance agents are motivated to help you save on the best workers comp plans from reliable insurers.Best of all, as independents we are free to shop among lots of competing insurance providers, so you can be confident of getting a great price on the right coverage!

For helpful tips and plenty of insightful blog posts on the topic, visit our Workers Compensation Insurance page.

Tags: Workers Compensation Insurance, workers comp costs

Workers Comp Insurance Fraud? Try This

Posted by David Ross on Sun, Sep 03, 2017

Tips for Investigating PA Workers Compensation Insurance FraudThe majority of workers’ compensation insurance claims are legitimate, and if an employee is injured on the job, they are entitled to the medical care and indemnity benefits stated in the workers’ compensation statutes. Unfortunately, there are also a number of fraudulent workers’ compensation claims every year.

Workers Compensation Insurance Fraud Statistics

The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) estimates that workers’ compensation insurance fraud costs the insurance industry $7.5 billion every year, which in turn drives up the cost of workers’ compensation premiums. This doesn’t even take into account the cost of replacing the “injured” employee, training a new employee, overtime, and even a decrease in employee morale and productivity.

“Workers’ comp fraud is a large crime in America today,” according to the Coalition Against Fraud Insurance. “Scams are forcing premiums higher — draining business profits and costing honest workers their pay and jobs.”

Tips for Investigating Workers Comp Insurance Claims

Yet, many employers don’t investigate workers’ compensation claims properly. There is one simple thing every employer can and should do immediately following an accident or injury: collect written incident reports from the injured employee and any witnesses.

The injured employee should provide a written description of the incident including details of the accident, what caused the injury, the nature and scope of the injury, and what the employee thinks could be done to prevent the accident from happening again because.

Here’s why:

  1. Immediately following an incident, the employee should be able to recall the accident or injury more accurately than they could months or years later.

  2. Having the details of the accident in writing will discourage the employee from embellishing the details later, and having documentation of exactly which body parts were injured, limits the employee’s ability to add additional body parts to the claim at a later time. Tales do tend to grow taller on down the line.

  3. Often, if a claim is questionable, the adjuster will take a recorded statement from the employee. A written report allows them to compare the two reports to look for deviations. In this interview, the adjuster may also ask if the employee has any prior claims, accidents, and any prior injuries to the same body part.

Keeping the WC Claims Process Honest

The bottom line is that knowing that an employer has the details of the incident written in the employees’ own words goes a long way to help keep an injured employee honest.

Obtaining a written report from every witness immediately following the incident will help provide additional information about the accident and the extent of the injuries. Employers should be cautious of any accidents that have no witnesses or that the only witnesses are friends of the injured employee.

The employee’s supervisor or someone familiar with the work process should review the reports to confirm the accuracy of the information, and those reports should be given to the workers’ compensation adjuster. The employer should also provide information to the adjuster about any previous workers’ compensation claims, any other accidents or injuries the employee has incurred in the past, and any strenuous activities, sports, or hobbies the employee participates in.  

Create a Standard Protocol for Investigating Workers Comp Accidents

Having an established protocol for investigating accidents can help ensure that the proper steps are taken each time. It’s important that you react quickly to an accident or injury, capture the details quickly, and take the right actions to investigate the claim. Doing this will help limit the ability of dishonest employees to exploit legitimate workers’ compensation claims and help you keep workers’ compensation costs down.

How to Get the Best PA Workers Comp Insurance Coverage

Contact us for tips in preventing WC insurance fraud and for the best WC insurance protection in PA.To learn more about protecting your company against WC insurance fraud or your workers compensation insurance coverage options, you can reach us via our Contact Page or call American Insuring Group at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848.

Our independent agents are ready to help you get affordable insurance protection. We'll drive down your cost by comparing prices and coverages among lots of competing WC insurance carriers. Don't delay - contact us today and start saving!

Tags: Workers Compensation Insurance, workers comp, workers comp insurance, PA Workers Compensation Insurance, workers comp costs, WC Insurance

Contractual Risk Transfer vs. Contractor Insurance

Posted by David Ross on Sun, Aug 27, 2017

Contractor Insurance Vs.Contractual Risk Transfer. Contact us for advice and for quality PA Contractor Insurance.If you own a construction company, the chances are good that you subcontract some or all of the work to another party. You can (and should) do your due diligence to ensure that any subcontractor you hire has a reputation for doing a good job safely. However, it’s impossible to foresee all of the potential financial and operational risks that may arise with a project, particularly with a third-party. 

General Contractors Held Liable

There is always the possibility of an injury, property damage, a delay, or a construction defect as a direct result of a third-party’s services or products. Normally, it’s the general contractor who is held liable for the actions of the parties that they subcontract.

Shifting Risk Through CRT - Contractual Risk Transfer

Since you can’t stand over, watch, and control every action your subcontractor makes, it’s important to protect your business from liability issues that may be caused by these subcontractors. Contractual risk transfer (CRT) can help mitigate some liability risks as it shifts some or all of the responsibility for claims, losses, and damages to another party.

CRT is not contractor insurance. Instead, it is a non-insurance contract that identifies critical exposures and clearly states the roles, responsibilities, and requirements (including insurance) of everyone involved in a construction project before the project begins. It is designed to place all or part of the financial risk on the party that is closest and most able to control the activity that may cause an injury, damage, delay or defect, and it indemnifies and holds certain parties harmless for specific actions, inactions, injuries, or damages.

Typical components of a CRT include the following:

  1. A written contract
  2. An indemnification or hold harmless clause
  3. Insurance specifications
  4. A certificate of insurance
  5. An additional insured endorsement
  6. Record retention guidelines

Contractual Risk Transfer Best Practices

Here are five best practices the insurance industry website PropertyCasualty360.com offers to build a more effective contractual risk transfer program:

  1. Create standard contractual risk terms that are regularly reviewed and updated as needed.
  2. Train procurement professionals, so they understand standardized terms and why they’re important to risk management.
  3. Require authorization to bend the terms of the contract because occasionally changes may be needed.
  4. Establish guidelines for when to involve risk management. For example, when a contract exceeds a certain dollar amount or falls outside the scope of your normal activities.
  5. Enforce collection and review of certificates of insurance.

 

Contractual Risk Pitfalls

Here are three common CTR pitfalls from Construction Executive that you should watch out for:

  1. Accepting Certificates of Insurance (COI) at face value. Dishonest contractors have been known to provide fraudulent COIs, cancel the policy after presenting the COI, or purchase highly restrictive policies.
  2. An additional insured endorsement will provide you with a written notification if a policy is cancelled; however, the pitfalls associated with an additional insured endorsement include a) if you don’t have a written contract to go along with it, it may not be enforceable, b) if the underlying policy doesn’t cover a claim because of an exclusion, the endorsement is worthless, and c) even with an additional insured endorsement, the subcontractor’s limits may not be adequate to cover the full cost of a loss.
  3. A written contract may not be enforced in a court of law especially if there is no COI with an additional insured endorsement.

In Summary 

CRT programs can be quite complicated, but since they help limit your liability, protect your assets and your bottom line, and control your insurance costs, they are well worth the effort. It’s always a good idea to use an attorney and insurance advisor when drafting a contract, and whenever you enter into a new contract, you should review it carefully and make sure you understand the risk that you are accepting.

Contact Our Experts To Protect Your Business

Our independent insurance agents will save you money on contractor insurance in Philadelphia, Harrisburg, Reading, Allentown, Lehigh Valley, Pittsburgh, Erie, PA and beyond.To learn more about protecting your business, contact American Insuring Group online or call us at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848. Our independent insurance experts will inform you of the risks you may be exposed to, and how to protect yourself with the proper contractor insurance coverage.

Unlike our "single brand" competitors, our independent agents are free to shop and compare rates and coverages among many competing insurance carriers to ensure you get the best price on quality insurance protection. Contact us today!

Tags: Contractor Insurance, Business Insurance, Contractual Risk Transfer

Commercial Insurance and Faulty Workmanship

Posted by David Ross on Sun, Aug 13, 2017

You need the right Commercial General LIability Insurance to protect you against lawsuits. This applies to Contractors Insurance and other types of business in Pennsylvania and beyond.We live in a litigious society, and no matter how careful you are or how small your business is, you may find yourself at the wrong end of a lawsuit. Every year more than 100 million lawsuits are filed in the U.S. every year, according to Rocket Lawyer.

Thirteen percent of small business owners have faced a lawsuit, according to Hiscox. And according to courtstatistics.org, the median cost for a business lawsuit starts at $54,000. “Nearly half of these cases resulted in negative consequences, including financial impact, loss of customers or damaged reputations,” according to Thrive.

Commercial General Liability Insurance

Commercial General Liability Insurance (CGL) is essential if you want to protect your business from lawsuits. CGL covers your business in the event of a liability claim for bodily injury and property damage and from advertising and personal injury liability caused by your services, business operations or employees. It usually covers the cost of your legal defense and any damages if you are found liable (up to your policies limits).

The Insurance Information Institute offers these examples of circumstances that are generally covered by a CGL policy:

  • A customer visiting your business trips on a loose floor tile and is injured.
  • An employee forgets to turn off the water and causes significant damage to a customer’s property.
  • Someone files a class action lawsuit against your business, alleging advertisements constituted misleading information. 

Faulty Workmanship and CGL

We are all human. Sometimes things go wrong: an improper installation or a defective product. What if you install a water heater incorrectly, which causes an explosion with significant damage to your customer’s property, and they sue you for the damages? Will your CGL policy cover you?

Generally, the answer is yes. The CGL policy is designed to pay for property damage to a customer's property, even if the contractor installed it improperly.  It is not designed to pay the contractor to rip it out and replace it in the proper way.  That would be the Workmanship exclusion, but damage from a water heater explosion would typically be covered.

Every policy is unique, but here are two common exclusions in CGL policies that may result in a claim being denied:

  • “Your Work” Exclusion – This exclusion is meant to prevent someone from using a CGL policy as a guarantee of their work. It usually excludes coverage on property damage that is caused by faulty or defective workmanship
  • “Your Product” Exclusion – This exclusion prevents coverage for damage to an insured’s product in the event of a defect in that product.

These are just two of the exclusions that may be included in your CGL policy. There are many other exclusions that can result in your claim being denied. Understanding these exclusions and knowing your options will help you protect your business. For example, there is optional insurance that can be purchased that may cover you in the event of faulty workmanship - Contractors Faulty Workmanship Coverage or an Errors and Omissions Insurance Policy.

 

Get Help - Contact the Commercial Insurance Experts!

CGL policies can be complex, so it’s always a good idea to speak with an experienced and knowledgeable independent insurance agent. At American Insuring Group, we pride ourselves on answering questions you may not have thought to ask and making sure you have the right insurance for your business, all at a great price.

Call American Insuring Group at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848 or contact us online to learn about Commercial General Liability Insurance of all kinds, including Contractos Faulty Workmanship Coverage and Errors and Ommissions Insurance.

Tags: Contractor Insurance, Commercial Liability Insurance, Commercial Insurance, Business Insurance, Commercial General Liability Insurance, CGL, Errors and Omissions Insurance

Truck Drivers, Texting and Trucking Insurance

Posted by David Ross on Sun, Aug 06, 2017

Truck driver texting guidelines and impact on trucking insurance rates in PennsylvaniaIf you’re a CMV (Commercial Motor Vehicle) driver, you’ve probably heard of a little federal agency called the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).

As part of the U.S. Department of Transportation, FMCSA regulates the trucking industry throughout the United States. Its primary mission is to reduce CMV crashes, injuries, and fatalities, all of which are great for keeping your truck insurance costs under control. 

While there are still many states that have not banned texting while driving or even addressed distracted driving in general, any driver engaged in interstate commerce is subject to FMCSA laws regardless of what state they’re starting from or driving into.

What Truckers Cannot Do Under FMCSA

The FMCSA has made their stance very clear: “No Call, No Text, No Ticket!” That means…

  • No Reaching
  • No Holding
  • No Dialing
  • No Texting
  • No Reading 

Penalties

  • Drivers can be fined up to $2,750.
  • The driver’s employer can be fined up to $11,000 if they knowingly allow or require drivers to use hand-held devices while driving.
  • Repeat offenses will result in a driver being put out-of-service for up to 120 days (60 days for two serious traffic violations in three years/120 days for three violations in three years).
  • Violations will negatively affect the employer’s Safety Measurement System ratings.
  • Drivers can be subject to severe civil fines.
  • The driver’s employer may also impose penalties, which often includes termination.

Harsh or Smart? 23 x More Likely to ...

Research commissioned by the FMCSA shows that CMV drivers who text while driving have a 23.2 times greater chance of “being involved in a safety-critical event (e.g., crash, near-crash, unintentional lane deviation).” The research shows that drivers who are texting take their eyes off the road for an average of 4.6 seconds. To put that into perspective: someone driving 55 mph will travel 371 feet (approximately the length of a football field) without looking at the road.

Distracted Driving Death Toll

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that distracted driving took the lives of 3,477 people in 2015 alone. The CDC has reported that every day, approximately nine people are killed and more than 1,000 injured in crashes in the U.S. due to a distracted driver. The CDC defines distracted driving as “driving while doing another activity that takes your attention away from driving” including texting and cell phone use. 

What every CMV driver needs to know about FMCSA’s rules regarding distracted driving

  • Texting and hand-held mobile phone use while operating a CMV is prohibited.
  • According to FMCSA, texting means “manually entering alphanumeric text into, or reading text from, an electronic device."
  • These rules do not apply to devices used as part of the company’s fleet management system for dispatching (except if they’re used for texting).
  • The use of hands-free options to make phone calls are usually acceptable.
  • Technically, even texting or using a hand-held device to make a call while stopped at a traffic light or traffic delay is prohibited. You should safely pull over to the side of the road
  • Any hands-free device (earpiece-speaker phone, hands-free dialing, or hands-free mode) needs to be located close to the driver. Hands-free means being able to safely activate a mobile device by touching a single button, while safely and properly seated and restrained.

Today, many trucking companies are using hands-free dispatching devices. Some of these devices only show a short message or simply beep until the driver stops and parks.

The FMCSA has made it quite clear: “No Calls, No Texting, No Tickets.” So, unless you want to face penalties, possible loss of your job, or even worse – death or injury to someone, do not text or use a hand-held mobile device while driving.

How to Save on Trucking Insurance

Contact us for trucking insurance in Philadelphia, Reading, Lancaster, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, Allentown, Lehigh Valley, Erie and beyond.Give American Insuring Group a call at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848 or contact our trucking insurance specialists online to get the right trucking insurance at a great price.

We'll analyze your risks and then shop among many competing insurers to find the policy that's right for you. Our independence leads to your savings. Contact us today!

 

For additional information on FMCSA rules and guidelines: 

https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/sites/fmcsa.dot.gov/files/docs/Mobile_Phone_Rule_Fact_Sheet.pdf

https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/sites/fmcsa.dot.gov/files/docs/No_Texting_Rule_Fact_Sheet.pdf

Tags: truck insurance, Trucking Insurance, Texting

Life Insurance for the Young and Single

Posted by David Ross on Sun, Jul 30, 2017

Young people need life insurance too! Buy it while rates are low. Contact us for life insurance in Philadelphia, Reading, Lancaster, Allentown, Pittsburgh, Erie, PA and beyond.You’re young and single. You have the world at your feet as you begin your adult life. You’re probably thinking about college or your first job or your first apartment. You’re certainly not thinking about the end of your life! And you don’t have a spouse or children depending on you financially, so why should you think about life insurance?

While it’s true that not everyone needs life insurance, there are three reasons why life insurance may be a smart financial move for you:

  1. It's more affordable when you start young – Life insurance tends to be very affordable when you’re young and healthy, and purchasing it now allows you to protect your insurability if/when you need it in the future, like when you have children or a spouse depending on you financially.

    And you can always add more insurance as you need it. Don’t wait until a health issue or age restricts you from purchasing affordable (or possibly any) life insurance.

  2. You have student loans or other debt – You may assume that when you die your debt dies with you. That applies to loans taken out through the federal government. Those loans are discharged or forgiven in the event of your death.

    However, personal loans with a cosigner are not usually discharged upon your death, which means that if your parents (or anyone else) co-signs a loan through a bank for you, they will be responsible for repaying the loan if you’re unable to. Sometimes the bank will even require the loan to be paid in full upon your death. Do you want to leave your parents dealing with both grief and your loan payments?

  3. Access to money – Permanent Insurance provides lifelong protection; it stays in effect as long as you continue to pay your premiums and provides a death benefit to your beneficiaries. Permanent Insurance can also accumulate a cash value (Aka cash-surrender value) that you can borrow on a tax-deferred basis. This can come in handy when you need money for emergencies or opportunities that come your way.

    You can borrow money from your policy, and use the policy’s cash value as collateral. The interest rates are usually quite low, and the loan isn’t dependent on credit checks or other restrictions that may prevent you from getting a loan from a bank. It’s important to note that it does take a little bit of time for your policy to accumulate a cash value.

 

Contact Us For Help in Selecting Your Life Insurance Policy 

Contact us to buy life insurance - we'll help you get the best price.Purchasing a life insurance policy while you’re young is a great way to start on the road to financial responsibility and security now and well into the future.

Not sure what kind of life insurance – if any – is right for you? Contact American Insuring Group online or give us a call at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848. We'll help you get a great price on a quality life insurance policy.

Contact us today!

 

Tags: Life Insurance Berks Pa, Life Insurance Philadelphia Pa, Life Insurance Reading PA, Life Insurance Allentown Pa, Life Insurance

INFOGRAPHIC: Opioid Epidemic & Workers Comp Insurance

Posted by David Ross on Sun, Jul 23, 2017

You’ve probably heard that the United States is in the middle of an opioid overdose epidemic. Opioids - a class of drugs that include both heroin and prescription pain relievers such as oxycodone, codeine, and fentanyl - are being prescribed at an alarming rate and too often those prescriptions are leading to opioid addiction and even death. Workers compensation insurance costs are, of course, impacted by the epidemic.

INFOGRAPHIC:
The Opioid Overdose Epidemic And Workers Compensation Insurance

INFOGRAPHIC- The Opioid Overdose Epidemic And Workers Compensation Insurance. Contact American Insuring Group, Ltd for all your Workers' Compensation Insurance needs.

 

259 Million Opiod Prescriptions in the US?

The American Society of Addiction Medicine reported that in 2012, 259 million prescriptions were written for opioids, which is more than enough to give every American adult their own bottle of pills!

Opioid abuse impacts workers compensation insurance costs. Contact us for affordable PA workers compensation insurance.The Center for Disease Control (CDC) reported that every day, over 1,000 people are treated in emergency departments for misusing prescription opioids, and in 2014, almost 2 million Americans abused or were dependent on prescription opioids.

“Opioids were involved in the overdose deaths of more than 33,000 Americans in 2015, nearly quadruple the number from the year 2000 and more than any year on record,” according to the CDC.

The Impact on Your Workers Compensation Insurance

There is no denying that the human costs of this epidemic are tragic, but have you ever considered what this epidemic is costing your business? The CDC reports that the side effects of opioids – drowsiness, mental confusion, depression, nausea, etc. - can increase the risk of workplace incidents, errors and injury. In 2013, the estimated lost productivity for people in the United States with opioid use disorder totaled $20.4 billion and a cost of $29 billion in increased health care and substance abuse treatment.

60% of Injured Workers May be Addicted to Opiods

According to the International Risk Management Institute, Inc. (IRMI), 5,000 employees a week are injured and disabled for at least a week and pain management is often part of their treatment. The CDC reported that in 2011 approximately 25 percent of workers compensation prescription drug claim costs were for opioids. IRMI says, “While reliable data showing the proportion of injured workers that may be addicted to opioids is hard to find, it is estimated around 60 percent of all those prescribed.“

Reducing the Human and Financial Impact of Opiod Abuse

At the 2017 Workers Compensation Research Institute Conference earlier this year, experts provided two recommendations to reduce the human and financial impact of this epidemic.

  1. Mandate for Physicians to check Prescription Drug Monitoring Data

Kentucky, which was has been at the epicenter of the opioid drug problem and opioid overdose deaths, became the first state (2012) to require physicians to search patients’ prescription drug histories on an electronic database - Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) - before prescribing opioid painkillers, sedatives or other potentially harmful and addictive drugs. According to a former employee at the Kentucky Department of Workers Compensation Claims, this one step had the biggest impact. Since then, fifteen more states – including Pennsylvania – have instituted the same mandate.

  1. Alternative Pain Treatment

The current medical model for the treatment of pain isn’t working because it doesn’t consider the biopsychosocial factors of pain management. This includes “biological factors (genetic, biochemical, etc.), psychological factors (mood, personality, behavior, etc.), and social factors (cultural, familial, socioeconomic, medical, etc.),” according to John W. Santrock, Ph.D. Some popular options for pain management include mindfulness and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT).

When it comes to Workers’ Compensation claims taking a collaborative approach that includes a variety of experts, different pain management approaches, and the injured worker has shown to be more effective in reducing medical costs and in getting employees back to work more quickly.

 

Don't Overpay for Worker's Compensation Insurance - Contact Us

To learn how we can help you save on workers compensation insurance, contact American Insuring Group online or call at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848. Our independent insurance agents will check for the best rates among many competing insurance carriers. You'll get a quality policy at a geat rate.

Contact us today to start saving!

Tags: Workers Compensation Insurance, workers comp, workers comp insurance, PA Workers Compensation Insurance, workers comp costs, Insurance Infographics, Workers Compensation Insurance Infographics

Physical Damage Truck Insurance - Do You Have Enough?

Posted by David Ross on Sun, Jul 16, 2017

As we’re sure you’re aware, buying or leasing a truck is a huge investment. Many truckers, use most or all of their savings to purchase their vehicle.

Tips on Physical Damage Truck Insurance in PennsylvaniaNow, what would happen if your truck was damaged, stolen, or totaled in an accident? Would you have enough money to cover the repairs or replace the truck? What would it mean to your livelihood?

Are you certain your truck insurance is adequate to keep you financially secure if the worst were to happen? 

These are all scary questions, but they’re also real possibilities.

Getting Proper Insurance for Your Truck

The good news is that you can protect yourself from most damages your truck may incur with physical damage truck insurance. If you have a loan on your truck or you lease your truck, physical damage insurance is probably required. But even if you own your truck outright, you’ll want to consider physical damage insurance to protect your investment (and your livelihood).

2 Types of Physical Damage Truck Insurance

There are two different parts to physical damage truck insurance: collision insurance and comprehensive insurance. Collision Insurance pays for damages incurred if your truck collides with another vehicle or object. In the event of a collision, collision insurance will pay to repair or replace your truck. Comprehension Insurance pays for other types of damage your truck may incur, such as vandalism, theft, collision with an animal, glass breaking, fire, and more.

Physical Damage Insurance Considerations

Here are some important things to consider when shopping for physical damage truck insurance:

  1. Stated Amount - You will need to provide the stated amount – your best estimate of the value of your truck – if you are adding comprehensive insurance. The stated amount should be based on the make and model of your truck, mileage, upgrades, and comparable sales data. The stated amount will have a big impact on how much you pay in premiums, so it’s a good idea to work with a good insurance agent to determine the proper value.

  2. Actual Cash Value - The amount you will receive on a physical damage truck insurance claim is based on the Actual Cash Value (ACV) of your truck, which means the market value of your truck. Unlike personal lines of insurance, replacement values are not available for commercial policies.

  3. Deductibles - One way to reduce your premiums is to increase your deductible. You should determine a dollar amount that you would be comfortable paying in the event of a claim.

  4. Endorsements – There are certain things that a basic trucking physical damage policy may not cover, that an endorsement will. Endorsements you may want to consider are a single deductible for your truck and trailer, personal belongings coverage, electronic equipment coverage and a rental truck while your vehicle is getting repaired or replaced.

 

Let's Talk About Your Truck Insurance

Contact us about Physical Damage Truck Insurance protection in PennsylvaniaProtect your truck and your livelihood with physical damage insurance by giving American Insuring Group a call at (800) 947-1270 or (610)775-3848 or contact us online to learn more about both collision and comprehensive insurance for your truck.

We specialize in PA Truck Insurance, so whether you are in Philadelphia, Reading, Allentown, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, Erie or elsewhere, we'll find you the best deal on insurance. That's because our independent insurance agents are free to shop and compare lots of competing insurance quotes, so you can count on getting great coverage at a great price.  

Contact us today!

Tags: truck insurance, Trucking Insurance, Physical Damage Truck Insurance

Your Restaurant Needs Employment Practices Liability Insurance

Posted by David Ross on Sun, Jul 09, 2017

The EOC looks at nearly 90,000 Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI) claims every year, and the average cost of each case is $450,000.

Restaurant owners should consider Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI) for restaurants in Philadelphia, Reading, Lancaster, Allentown, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, Erie, York, PA and beyond.If you own a restaurant, you’ve probably worked hard to build strong relationships with your staff and create an environment conducive to teamwork. If you’re lucky, you’ve found the magical formula that balances friendliness with professionalism, and you’re proudly watching as your well-oiled team creates and delivers delicious food to your customers. You and your staff may even feel like a big happy family.

But even happy families disagree and face irreconcilable differences. It happens all the time. Sometimes they can work through it, and sometimes they can’t. The same is true for employees.

Employment Issues Are 30% of Civil Litigations

The Equal Opportunity Commission (EOC) reports that employment issues make up 30% of all civil litigations in the U.S., which makes the likelihood of an employment claim against an employer higher than a property or general liability claim. And employment practices liability risks can begin the moment you interview someone.

Employment litigation claims can have a severe financial impact on a restaurant, even forcing them out of business if they do not have adequate insurance.  According to the Society for Human Resource Management, 67% of all employment cases that go to litigation result in a judgment for the plaintiff.

Larger companies tend to protect themselves against employment claims with employee policies and procedures and EPLI, but many small restaurant owners do not, and 41% of all EPLI claims are made against employers with only 15 to 100 employees.

Common EPLI Issues For Restaurants

Common issues for which a good EPLI policy can help protect your restaurant include:

  • Sexual harassment
  • Discrimination in hiring practices
  • Wrongful termination
  • Defamation of character
  • Emotional distress
  • Invasion of privacy
  • Failure to promote

How to Protect Your Restaurant From Employment Practices Liability Risk

  • Research employment laws that apply to your business.
  • Create an employee handbook with detailed policies and procedures that guide you through hiring, disciplining, and terminating employees. Include policies and procedures regarding attendance, discipline, and complaints; an employment-at-will statement and an equal employment opportunity statement.
  • Create job descriptions for each position that clearly defines the skills and performance expected from someone hired for that position.
  • Include an equal employment opportunity statement and an employee-at-will statement on your job
  • Conduct background checks on candidates.
  • Conduct and document periodic performance reviews of all employees.
  • Create a zero-tolerance policy regarding discrimination, substance abuse, and harassment.
  • Conduct an insurance review with your insurance agent to ensure that you have adequate EPLI

What You Should Know About Employment Practices Liability Insurance

The cost of EPLI coverage is determined by factors such as the number of employees you have, the percentage of employee turnover, and if you have established practices and procedures in place. EPLI may be offered as an endorsement to your Business Owner’s Policy, General Liability Policy, or as a stand-alone policy. It usually covers the cost of defending your restaurant against the charges and any damages you are ordered to pay.

Contact Us for a Free Insurance Review

Contact us for a free EPLI reviewDon't take chances with your restaurant business - you've worked too hard to get to where you are today. Be sure you are properly covered for every liability.

For a FREE REVIEW of your liability insurance, contact American Insuring Group online or call us (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848.

Tags: Restaurant Insurance, Commercial Liability Insurance, Restaurant Insurance Pittsburgh PA, EPLI, Employment Practices Liability Insurance

Trucking Insurance and the Sanitary Food Transport Act

Posted by David Ross on Wed, Jun 28, 2017

The U.S. has one of the safest food supplies in the world, but foodborne illness still sickens 76 million people, causes 325,000 hospitalizations, and results in 5,000 deaths in the U.S. each year, according to the CDC.

Trucking insurance tips for food transporters in Philadelphia, Reading, Allentown, Lancaster, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, PA and beyond.If you own a food transporatation business, then you need to understand government regulations that can affect your trucking insurance needs and that you acquire proper truck insurance to cover your unique needs.

In 2011, the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), the most far-reaching reform of our food safety laws in seventy years, was signed into law. The goal of FSMA is to prevent contamination – as opposed to responding to contamination - and it gives the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) new authority to regulate the way food is grown, harvested, processed, and transported.

If you are a food transportation company with revenues over $500,000, the most important thing you need to understand about FSMA is the Sanitary Food Transport Act (SFTA), which took effect on March 31, 2017.

New Requirements for Trucking Company Vehicles

SFTA established requirements for trucking company vehicles, equipment, operations, records and training for shippers, loaders, motor and rail carriers, and receivers involved in transporting human and animal food. The focus is on the use of sanitary and temperature control practices.

 

SFTA defines requirements around the following:

  • Vehicles and Transportation Equipment – The vehicles used to transport food must be designed and maintained to ensure that they don’t cause the food to become contaminated. For example, vehicles must be kept in a sanitary condition, and handwashing facilities must be available at loading/unloading stations.

  • Transportation Operations – Every measure must be taken to ensure that food is not contaminated in transit. For example, storage compartments must be pre-cooled and have a temperature monitoring device when transporting refrigerated items and measures need to be made to ensure that ready-to-eat food doesn’t touch raw food and that non-food items (in the current or a previous load) don’t contaminate food.

  • Training – Carrier personnel need to be trained in sanitary transportation practices, and that training needs to be documented.

  • Records – A log of temperature conditions throughout the transportation must be kept for at least 12 months.

Liability Questions for Trucking Firms

FSMA and SFTA have raised many liability questions. For example, what happens if a receiver rejects all or part of a motor carrier’s food shipment because of an FSMA violation even if the product did not sustain damage? Who is responsible for the disposal of the shipment? Who is responsible for a mechanical breakdown that results in an FSMA violation?

 

Protect Your Trucking Business With The Right Insurance - Call Today 

Contact us for all your trucking insurance needs.FSMA is just one government-imposed regulation that can affect your business, so it’s important that you have the right type of trucking insurance to cover your unique needs.

For a review of your insurance policy and to get the best price on quality trucking insurance for your business, contact American Insuring Group online or call us at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848.

Tags: truck insurance, Trucking Insurance, Food Transportation Insurance