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6 Common Workers' Comp Insurance Myths

Posted by David Ross on Sat, Dec 03, 2022

Learn the Facts About Workers Compensation Insurance in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Erie, Lancaster, Allentown, Reading, Harrisburg and throughout PAThere are many myths or misconceptions about Pennsylvania Workers' Compensation Insurance that can end up costing business owners time and money. So let's set the record straight on these myths once and for all. 

What is Pennsylvania Workers' Compensation (WC) Insurance?

Most states, including PA, require employers to carry WC for their employees. The PA Department of Labor & Industry states, "If you employ workers in Pennsylvania, you must have workers' compensation insurance -- it's the law." This includes both full and part-time employees, even if they are family members. There are very few exceptions. 

If a worker is injured in the workplace or becomes ill because of their work environment, Workers' Compensation (WC) helps cover medical costs and lost wages if the employee cannot work. In Pennsylvania, it doesn't matter who or what caused the injury. If the injury or illness occurred during the course of their employment with you, WC would pay those expenses. 

WC also limits an injured employee's right to sue an employer directly for damages that injury or illness causes. 

Most Common Workers' Compensation Myths

MYTH 1: You don't need WC coverage for your business.

FACT: In Pennsylvania, if you employ even one person, even if that person happens to be your brother-in-law, you probably need to carry WC coverage for that employee. The only exceptions are If ALL employees fall into one or more of the following categories:

  • Federal workers
  • Longshoremen
  • Railroad workers
  • Casual workers
  • Persons working out of their own homes or other premises not under the control of management
  • Agricultural laborers making less than $1200 per calendar year
  • Domestic workers who have not elected to come under the provisions of the Workers' Compensation Act
  • Sole proprietors or general partners
  • Those who have been given an exemption by the Department of Labor and Industry due to religious beliefs
  • Executive officers who have been granted exclusion by the Department of Labor and Industry
  • Licensed real estate salespersons or associate real estate brokers affiliated with a licensed real estate broker or a licensed insurance agent affiliated with a licensed insurance agency, under a written agreement, remunerated on a commission-only basis and qualifying as independent contractors for State tax purposes or Federal tax purposes under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986. 

If a business does not qualify for one of these exceptions, it must carry Workers' Compensation Insurance for its employees. Failure to do so can result in the employer being required to pay back any costs paid by the Uninsured Employers Guaranty Fund or a work-related injury or illness, including interest, penalties, and fees. An uninsured employer may also face civil and criminal risks that can result in fines and imprisonment. 

MYTH 2: Your company must be at fault for Workers' Comp to pay.

FACT: As mentioned above, Pennsylvania WC is a no-fault system. Regardless of the cause of the injury - a faulty machine, a mistake made by an employee, etc., if the injury occurred in the course of their employment, WC will pay. 

MYTH 3: An injury must happen on-site to file a WC claim.

FACT: If an employee is injured while driving to a meeting, at a work conference, etc., while conducting business for you, you can (and should) file a WC claim. 

MYTH 4: All work-related injuries are covered by Workers' Comp.

FACT: In Pennsylvania, Workers' Compensation claims can be denied to employees whose injuries are caused by the use of illegal drugs or alcohol intoxication. 

MYTH 5: Your role ends once the WC claim is made.

FACT: When an injury occurs, you are responsible for submitting the claim form and supporting documentation promptly; however, your responsibilities don't end there. 

You also need to manage the WC claim, continue cooperating with your insurance carrier, help ensure the claim is resolved quickly, keep in touch with the injured employee, and consider return-to-work options when appropriate. 

MYTH 6: A minor injury is not worth reporting

FACT: Injuries that initially seem minor may become more severe and require additional medical treatment. Not reporting work-related injuries can keep your employees from receiving proper care and put your WC policy at risk. 

Reduce Your Workers' Compensation Insurance Cost

Understanding these common myths and working with one of the experienced independent insurance agents at American Insuring Group can help ensure you get the best coverage at the lowest cost. Our independent agents shop the market to help you save on the proper insurance protection for your business.

Contact us today at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848, or connect with us online.

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

7 Policy Review Tips to Help You Save on Contractors' Insurance

Posted by David Ross on Sat, Nov 26, 2022

We'll help you review your contractor insurance policy in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Erie, Harrisburg, Lancaster, Allentown, Reading, York and anywhere in Pennsylvania

As a busy contractor, it may be tempting to simply renew your Contractors' Insurance without reviewing it first. However, failure to review your insurance can result in paying more than you have to or being underinsured. Taking a few minutes to review your current policy, evaluate your current needs, and discuss it with a trusted insurance agent can make all the difference. 

While every business faces certain risks – employee injuries, property damage, etc., it could be argued that contractors face many challenges unique to the industry. For example, the construction industry is currently facing rising material costs, supply chain issues, a shortage of skilled laborers, increased risk of cybersecurity exposures, and more. 

Furthermore, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 4,764 U.S. workers suffered fatal work injuries in 2020. The private construction industry accounted for 21.2% of those deaths. The construction industry fared better in non-fatal injuries but still experienced 174,000 injuries out of 2.7 million total non-fatal workplace injuries reported by the private sector. 

The right insurance will help protect you financially from those risks, but to ensure you have the right insurance for your business, you need to take the time to review your policies before renewing them. 

The best time to start the renewal process is three to four months before your current policy's expiration date. This gives you time to review your policy, gather information, determine if there are any changes in your insurance needs, and compare the cost of your coverage. 

7 Insurance Review Tips:

  • Identify any changes to your business, such as…
    • Did you increase or decrease the number of employees?
    • Have you added, replaced, or sold any vehicles or equipment?
    • Did you add or change your location?
    • Has your business structure altered in any way?
    • Has your payroll changed?
    • Has the classification code for any of your employees changed?

  • Review your current policy. Is all the information correct – payroll, classification codes, experience modifier, etc.?

  • Run a loss run report. Loss Run Reports list the date of each loss and claim, a brief description of each claim, the amount paid to the insured, and whether or not the claim is closed. This information is used to determine how risky a business is to insure, which can affect the premium you pay or even if an insurance company will issue or renew a policy for your business. In addition, you can use the information to lower your insurance costs and even improve other areas of your business.

  • Research industry trends. Factors such as litigation, a recession, or the availability of materials can affect your risks and coverages. Knowing what challenges you may face can help ensure you have the right insurance coverage.

  • Work with an insurance agent who specializes in Contractors' Insurance. American Insuring Group specializes in insurance for small to medium-sized construction companies. We start by taking a close look at your business and then recommend the proper types of coverage to protect you, your business, your employees, and your assets.

  • Ask about discounts and how you can lower your premiums. Some insurance carriers offer a discount for the following:
    • Combining policies
    • Paying your premium upfront (rather than monthly payments)
    • Paying by electronic funds transfer
    • Allowing them to access your driving data via an electronic logging device (ELD)
    • Installing certain safety features (burglar alarms, sprinklers, etc.)

  • Compare the cost of your coverage with several insurance companies. The good news is that, unlike many agencies that sell only one insurance brand, American Insuring Group is a Trusted Choice independent insurance agency. That means we are free to offer not just one but more than 25 competing brands of insurance to ensure you pay the lowest rate for your insurance coverage.

 Who to Call for the Best Rate on Contractors' Insurance

Whether it's general contracting insurance, construction insurance, contractor workers comp, carpentry, HVAC, handyman, or any other type of insurance, American Insuring Group has you covered!

Contact us today at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848, or connect with us online and start saving on Contractors' Insurance costs today!

Tags: Construction Insurance, Construction Risk Insurance, Contractor Insurance, Construction Equipment Insurance

How Can Your Restaurant or Bar Lower Liquor Liability?

Posted by David Ross on Sat, Nov 19, 2022

Buy Liquor Liability and Restaurant Insurance in Philadelphia, Lancaster, Erie, Allentown, Reading, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh and throughout Pennsylvania

It’s that time of year – Christmas parties, New Year’s Eve, the Super Bowl, followed quickly by St. Patrick’s Day. It’s a busy time for restaurants, and it’s also a time when Restaurant Insurance is more crucial than ever! And if you serve alcohol, Liquor Liability Insurance should be part of your insurance portfolio, especially if your business operates in one of the thirty-five states with dram shop liability statutes – such as Pennsylvania, New York, and New Jersey. 

What is the Dram Shop Liability Statue?

“Every day, 29 people in the United States die in motor vehicle crashes that involve an alcohol-impaired driver,” according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). “This is one death every 50 minutes. The annual cost of alcohol-related crashes totals more than $44 billion.” 

In an attempt to prevent drunk drivers from hitting the roads, many states have increased DUI penalties, raised sales taxes on beer and liquor, and/or tried lowering the legal drinking age. Thirty-five states and the District of Columbia have also instituted dram shop liability laws that allow individuals who are hurt by drunk drivers to sue the bar or restaurant that served the alcohol to the drunk driver. 

Justice Guardians describe Pennsylvania’s dram shop liquor liability as follows: “Under the state’s Liquor Code, any licensed establishment that sells alcohol to a visibly intoxicated patron can be held liable for injuries caused by that patron after they leave the premises.” Those injuries can be caused by fights, falls, car accidents, etc. Justice Guardian also states, “Courts in the state [PA] have almost unanimously considered this liability to be ‘negligence per se.’ That means victims probably won’t have to prove the vendor was negligent in any way other than serving alcohol to a visibly-intoxicated patron.” 

How Can You Lower Liquor Liability?

Prepare for larger crowds

If you expect larger than normal crowds – like on Superbowl Sunday – have extra servers and bartenders working to help track alcohol consumption and consider hiring security to control unruly or intoxicated customers.

Establish a Policy Regarding Liquor Service

Have a written policy that clearly states you have zero tolerance for serving minors and directions on how and when to refuse service. You should also have an incident reporting system in place.

Be Prepared to Refuse Service

Your servers have the right to refuse alcohol to anyone who appears intoxicated. And yes, we realize that the more drinks you sell, the more you make, but is it worth the hassle of a lawsuit or a hit to your restaurant or bar’s reputation?

Card Everyone

If caught serving alcohol to minors, you will lose your liquor license, so ensure that your servers card everyone.

Train Your Staff

Staff should know and understand your liquor service policy, know how to measure alcohol correctly, so they don’t over-serve a customer, and be able to identify the signs of intoxication.

Provide Water

Medical News Today states, “When a person hydrates by drinking plenty of water, it can give their liver time to metabolize the alcohol in their body, as well as spacing out the alcoholic drinks they consume.” Therefore, providing water, even if they don’t ask, can help minimize the risk of intoxication.

Serve Food

Medical News Today also states that eating before drinking can slow the processing of alcohol, and eating while drinking may help customers drink slower. You may consider keeping pretzels or chips out for customers to snack on or offering discounted food specials.

Provide Alternative Transportation

You never want to let an intoxicated person behind the wheel of a car. At the very least, you can display the phone numbers of transportation services available or try to partner with Lyft or Uber to offer discount rides. You may even want to call a taxi for an intoxicated customer. It’s a small price to pay for the safety of your customers and the public (not to mention the cost of a lawsuit).

Purchase Liquor Liability Insurance

Suppose, despite all of your best efforts, you get sued for serving alcohol to someone who has caused damage or injury. In that case, Liquor Liability Insurance is your safety net (and may be required by your state or financial institution if you serve alcohol). Liquor Liability Insurance typically covers legal costs, settlements or judgments, repair costs, and medical bills. 

How to Save on Liquor Liability Insurance

The agents at American Insuring Group specialize in Restaurant Insurance, so they understand your unique challenges and can help protect your business with the right insurance coverage. As independent agents, we compare rates among multiple insurance carriers to ensure you pay the lowest premium for Liquor Liability Insurance and all your commercial insurance needs.

Contact us today at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848, or connect with us online.

Tags: Restaurant Insurance, Liquor Liability Insurance, Restaurant Liability Insurance

What Every Employer Should Know About Indemnity Benefits

Posted by David Ross on Sat, Nov 12, 2022

We Sell Indemnity Insurance and Workers Comp insurance in Philadelphia, Lancaster, Pittsburgh, Erie, Allentown, Reading, Lebanon, and throughout Pennsylvania

If you’ve ever worked with Workers’ Compensation Insurance, you’ve probably come across the term “indemnity.” So let’s take a look at both Workers’ Comp Insurance and indemnity entail. 

What is Workers’ Compensation Insurance?

In Pennsylvania, Workers’ Compensation (WC) Insurance is “mandatory, employer-financed, no-fault insurance which ensures that employees disabled due to a work-related injury or disease will be compensated for lost wages and provides necessary medical treatment to return them to the workforce.” 

If an employer fails to carry WC and an employee suffers a work-related injury, they will be required to reimburse the PA Department of Labor & Industry for money paid by the Uninsured Employers Guaranty Fund concerning the claim, plus interest, penalties, and fees. In addition, an uninsured employer may face civil and criminal risks. 

A misdemeanor conviction could result in a $2,500 fine and up to one year of imprisonment for each day the employer is in violation. Felony convictions could result in a $15,000 fine and up to seven years in prison for each day the employer is in violation. 

What Are Indemnity Benefits?

An indemnity benefit is the money an injured employee receives for lost wages while they are unable to work due to a work-related injury or illness. There are basically four different types of indemnity benefits. 

  1. Temporary Total Disability (TTD) benefits are paid when an injured employee is temporarily unable to return to any job with the same employer – neither the work they performed before the injury nor any other position with that employer. This is the most common type of indemnity benefit. Typically, with a TTD benefit, injured employees are paid two-thirds of their pre-injury average weekly rate. 
  1. Temporary Partial Disability (TPD) benefits are paid when an injured employee can return to work (as determined by the treating physician) for a limited time. For example, if an injured employee was working an eight-hour day before their injury, but following the injury, their physician stipulates that they can only work four hours per day, they would receive TPD benefits. The amount of the payments is typically the difference between the injured employee’s average weekly wage (AWW) and the amount they are able to currently earn, multiplied by two-thirds. TPD = (AWW – current wage) x 2/3. 
  1. Permanent Partial Disability (PPD) is defined by the International Risk Management Institute (IRMI) as “a workers compensation disability level in which the injured employee is still able to work but not with the skill and efficiency demonstrated prior to the injury. As a result, the earning capability of the worker is affected.” These payments are typically based on the percentage of the disability. 
  1. Permanent Total Disability (PTD) benefits are paid when the physician determines that the employee will never be able to return to work. The IRMI states, “Under most statutes, the employee will receive weekly wages for life.”

 NOTE: When discussing indemnity, you may also hear the term “maximum medical improvement” or MMI. MMI is “a legal concept where no further significant recovery from or lasting improvement to a personal injury can be reasonably anticipated, regardless of subjective complaints from the employee. In essence, additional medical care and treatment may still be required to keep the employee in a stable condition, but no noticeable improvement will take place in that medical care.” 

How to Lower Workers’ Compensation Insurance Costs?

Workers’ Compensation Insurance can be complicated, but the more you understand it, the more likely you can lower your WC costs.

The agents at American Insuring Group specialize in Workers’ Compensation Insurance and would be happy to work with you to explain the ins and outs of this – and all your commercial insurance needs – and help ensure that you have the right coverage at the lowest cost.

Contact us today at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848, or connect with us online.

Tags: Workers Compensation Insurance, workers comp costs

10 Tips to Lower Fleet Insurance Costs

Posted by David Ross on Sat, Nov 05, 2022

Contact us to save on Truck Fleet insurance in Philadelphia, Erie, Pittsburgh, Allentown, Reading, Lancaster, Harrisburg and throughout PA

Commercial Truck Insurance is crucial to protect your business, employees, and fleet. Here’s why. In 2020, 4,998 large trucks and buses were involved in fatal crashes, 108,000 large trucks or buses were involved in injury crashes, and 160,000 people were injured in large truck and bus crashes, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). 

Experts report, “The average cost of a commercial truck accident that includes an injured person is $148,279. If a fatality occurs, the cost can shoot up to over $7 million.” So one significant accident could put you out of business without the proper insurance. 

Ensuring that you have adequate insurance at the lowest cost is a balancing act that an experienced insurance agent can help you achieve. 

10 Tips to Lower Fleet Insurance Costs:

    Understand Fleet Insurance

It’s essential to understand what fleet insurance does and does not cover and what affects the cost of your premiums. Fleet insurance is available to businesses with two or more business vehicles, which can include trucks, cars, and most motorized equipment. Fleet insurance covers you against bodily injury and property damage when operating a company vehicle. It saves time and money as it eliminates the need to purchase a policy for each vehicle in your fleet.

Hire Good Drivers

Drivers can be your greatest asset or your greatest liability. Hire only drivers with clean driving records – no accidents, moving violations, or license points. Cleaner driving records mean lower insurance premiums. Plus, a driver with a clean driving record is less likely to be involved in an accident, which could further increase insurance premiums. Also, some insurance companies may charge more for younger drivers.

Purchase Vehicles Strategically

When you need to expand or decrease your fleet, consider the cost of repairs if the vehicle is in an accident and how each vehicle could affect your insurance premiums.

Combine Policies

Combining multiple commercial insurance policies with one insurance company could lower insurance premiums.

Ask About Discounts

Bundling policies, installing certain safety features, paying in advance, and other discounts can help lower your insurance premiums.

Consider Increasing Deductibles

The Insurance Information Institute defines a deductible as “the amount of money that you are responsible for paying toward an insured loss. When a disaster strikes your home, or you have a car accident, the deductible is subtracted, or ‘deducted,” from what your insurance pays toward a claim.” Typically, the higher your deductible, the lower your premiums. But before increasing your deductible, remember that you will need to have the amount of the deductible available when you make a claim.

Utilize Technology

There is a great deal of technology available today, such as GPS tracking, dash cams, or fleet telematics systems (FTS), that may lower your insurance premiums and improve overall safety.

Maintain High Safety Standards

Create a culture of safety in your organization that clearly communicates a priority on safety. Do this by following a zero-tolerance policy for impaired driving, encouraging regular breaks to reduce driver fatigue, requiring pre- and post-trip truck inspections, providing regular driver safety training, and instituting incentive programs to reward safe drivers.

Maintain Vehicles

Regular maintenance of your vehicles – oil changes, inspections, tire rotations, etc. – helps minimize the risk of mechanical failures and accidents, which will help lower insurance premiums.

Compare Costs

The cost of premiums can vary from one insurance brand to another – even for similar coverage. So it’s important to work with an independent agent who can compare the cost of your coverage with several insurance carriers.

 Start Saving on Fleet Insurance Today

The independent agents at American Insuring Group work with not just one but more than 25 competing brands of insurance to ensure you pay the lowest rate for your insurance coverage.

Contact us at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848, or connect with us online and start saving on Fleet Insurance costs today!

Tags: Commercial Vehicle Insurance, truck insurance, Trucking Insurance, commercial vehicles

Contractual Risk Transfer for Contractors

Posted by David Ross on Sat, Oct 29, 2022

Transfer Risk via Contractor Insurance in Philadelphia, Lancaster, York, Reading, Erie, Pittsburgh, Harrisburg, and all throughout PA.One of the best ways to lower your Contractors Insurance costs is with a risk management plan..

The first two steps in a risk management plan are 1) identify risks and 2) prioritize risks.

The third step is to determine response strategies, which include avoidance, transference, mitigation, and acceptance. Today we'll delve into transference.

Transference is the act of transferring risk to a third party. The most obvious way to transfer risk is with a comprehensive Contractors Insurance policy, which transfers many risks to your insurance company.

Here are three examples of how to transfer risk to your insurance company:

  • Injuries - If an employee is injured on the job, Workers' Compensation – which is required by law in PA and most states – provides wage-loss and medical benefits. If a visitor to the worksite is injured, General Liability Insurance will help cover medical expenses and legal costs if a lawsuit is filed against your business.

  • Physical Damage - If your tools are stolen, a piece of equipment is damaged, or someone vandalizes your office, there are insurances – such as Commercial Property Insurance and Builders Risk Insurance - that help pay the cost to repair or replace those items.

  • Faulty Work - If a client sues you for design errors or omissions, Professional Liability Insurance helps cover your legal costs.

It is also possible to transfer risk to yet another third party, such as a supplier or subcontractor, with contractual risk transfer. "When astutely negotiated, a construction contract can become a valuable risk management tool," the International Risk Management Institute (IRMI) states. "Liabilities can be equitably distributed among the contracting parties—general contractor, subcontractors, suppliers, architects, and the owner."

What is Contractual Risk Transfer?

"Contractual risk transfer is the ability to move a risk/loss from one party to another through the language written in a contract," according to Business Credentialing Services. "Contractual risk transfer is when the language in a non-insurance agreement excuses one party from financial or legal responsibility associated with specified actions, inactions, injuries, or damages. In contractual risk transfer, one party agrees to indemnify and hold another party harmless in a contract."

It's important to note that the Indemnitor – the entity that holds another party harmless if injury or damage occurs - is backed by their insurance policy.

Effective Contractual Risk Transfer

"Unfortunately, many construction contracts are drafted (or standard versions modified) by professionals with little knowledge of insurance coverage," IRMI states. "As a result, it is not unusual for contracts to shift liabilities to the contractor that are extremely difficult or costly to insure, or even uninsurable." Therefore, it is best to leave contract writing to the experts – a qualified attorney and one of the insurance agents at American Insuring Group who specialize in Contractors Insurance can help.

However, it's always good to understand the basics when discussing contracts and insurance with these experts. Here are five tips:

  1. Often a contract will require a certificate of insurance; therefore, keeping those certificates well-organized helps save time and frustration.

  2. Make sure whoever drafts your contract is aware of current insurance requirements and doesn't just copy from an existing contract.

  3. Ensure that appropriate endorsements are attached to your contract.

  4. Most states limit the risk that can be transferred.

  5. Four endorsements crucial to the contractual risk transfer process include Additional Insured Endorsement, Primary & Non-Contributory Endorsement, Waiver of Subrogation Endorsement, and Alternate Employer Endorsement.

Work With the Right Insurance Agent and Save

The agents at American Insuring Group specialize in Contractors Insurance and can help execute your risk management plan. As independent agents, we check with multiple insurance companies to ensure you pay the lowest price for your insurance coverage.

Call us at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848, or connect with us online and start managing your risk today!

Tags: Construction Insurance, Construction Risk Insurance, Contractor Insurance, Contractual Risk Transfer

9 Tips to Reduce Slip and Fall Injuries in Restaurants

Posted by David Ross on Sat, Oct 22, 2022

Keep Restaurant Insurance Affordable by Avoiding Slip and Fall Accidents in Philadelphia, Harrisburg, Allentown, Pittsburgh, Erie, Lancaster, Reading and throughout PAInjuries within your restaurant can significantly increase the cost of Restaurant Insurance and other costs, damage your restaurant’s reputation, lower productivity, and more. Therefore, understanding and minimizing the risk of injuries is crucial to business success. One of the most significant risks restaurants encounter is falls. 

According to ISSA, “More than 3 million food service employees and over 1 million guests are injured annually as a result of restaurant slips and falls.” They also report that “slips and falls are the greatest source of general liability insurance claims within the restaurant industry.” 

You may not be able to avoid all slips and falls in your restaurant, but there are steps you can take to minimize the risk. 

  1. Install high-traction, slip-resistant flooring. You can confirm slip resistance with a coefficient of friction (COF) audit.
  2. Immediately clean up spills, pick items off the floor, and keep walkways clear of clutter.
  3. Use maintenance and floor cleaning products with slip-resistant characteristics compatible with your flooring surfaces. Check out the National Floor Safety Institute (NFSI).
  4. Pay special attention to permanently installed features, such as carpets and mats. They need to be properly maintained and cleaned to avoid trip hazards. NFSI-certified mats are an excellent investment.
  5. Conduct and document regular hazard inspections. Regularly walk around your restaurant looking for hazards, such as wet floors, uneven surfaces, and blocked or dimly lit areas. Document the hazard, when it appeared, and what you did to eliminate it. Documenting this information helps provide proof that you are serious about maintaining your property and keeping it safe for employees and customers.
  6. If you discover a hazard that can’t be fixed immediately, alert employees and visitors to the danger with warning signs.
  7. Install a surveillance system to monitor for situations that may pose a risk. Cameras can also record accidents to help expedite the resolution of any claims and minimize the risk of false claims.
  8. Train employees on established safety procedures, cleaning operations, and inspection procedures. Train workers to apply floor cleaning and maintenance products following the manufacturer’s recommendations. Keep records of all employee training, including individuals trained, subject matter covered, training materials, and the date of the training.
  9. Require slip-resistant shoes. A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention(CDC) study concluded, “The findings from this study provide evidence of the effectiveness of slip-resistant footwear and may assist employers, managers, and workers in their decision on whether to invest time and resources in a slip-resistant footwear program.” 

IIf – despite all your best efforts – an injury does occur, immediately ensure that the injured person receives appropriate medical attention, complete an incident report, and notify your insurance company as soon as possible. 

Lower Your Restaurant Insurance Costs!

The American Insuring Group is committed to providing information about Restaurant Insurance and tips to improve safety with our weekly blog. From protecting your restaurant from cyber threats to minimizing the risk of an allergic reaction in your restaurant and from protecting your restaurant against lawsuits to creating a safe outdoor dining space your customers will love (and everything in between), we’re here to help your restaurant succeed! 

In addition, when you work with one of our Restaurant Insurance specialists, we help ensure you have the right coverage for your needs. And as independent agents, we check with multiple insurance companies to ensure you pay the lowest price for that coverage.

✔︎ So call us at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848, or connect with us online to discover how we can help lower your Restaurant Insurance costs.

Tags: Restaurant Insurance, Safety Programs, Restaurant Safety

3 Steps to Renew Workers’ Compensation Insurance

Posted by David Ross on Sat, Oct 15, 2022

Renew Your Workers Compensation Insurance the Right Way and Save in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Lancaster, Harrisburg, Erie, York, Lebanon, Allentown and all throughout PAIn most states, including Pennsylvania, Workers’ Compensation Insurance (WC) is required by law. But, truthfully, even if the insurance isn’t required in your state, WC is an excellent investment as it helps protect your employees and your business.

We’re sure you have a lot on your plate as a business owner or manager, and conducting an annual review of your insurance policies – including WC – may not be high on your to-do list. It’s so much easier to renew the policies you currently have. However, an annual review helps ensure you are not underinsured or overpaying for your coverage.

Here are three steps to make the annual review process as painless as possible.

Step 1: Review Your Business

Look at how your business may have changed since you purchased your existing WC policy. Ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Did your business needs change? For example, did you switch from an independent contractor to an LLC?
  2. Did you hire new employees or let old employees go?
  3. Has the classification code for any of your existing employees changed?
  4. Has your payroll changed?

Step 2: Look at Your Current Policy

The next step is to take a look at your current WC policy, keeping in mind how your WC premium is calculated:

WC Premium = Classification Code Rate X Experience Modifier X payroll/$100

Look at the declaration page to see how your workers are classified and the estimated payroll for each, and determine if this information is still accurate.

Classification Codes - A classification code is a 3-digit number assigned to every type of job. It is based on the likelihood of that employee being injured on the job and helps determine your WC premium. Typically, the more risk of injury, the higher your WC costs. Therefore, assigning the wrong classification code can lead to overpayment, insufficient coverage, or even WC fraud.

Payroll - “Initially, the payroll used to calculate your premium is an estimate. Once your actual payroll has been determined, adjustments may have to be made, and you could be audited and billed accordingly,” Pennsylvania Insurance Department reports.” Any changes to your business within the policy term that affect the rate of your policy can lead to an audit and possible billing.”

Experience Modifier - Finally, review your loss run report, which shows your company’s claim activity for the policy period. Loss Run Reports list the date of each loss and claim, a brief description of each claim, the amount paid to the insured, and whether or not the claim is closed. You can think of it like a credit report or report card for insurance companies.

This information is used to determine how risky a business is to insure, which can affect the premium you pay for insurance or even if an insurance company will issue a policy or renew a policy for your business. You can use the information to lower your insurance costs and even improve other areas of your business.

Step 3: Renew Your WC Insurance (Contact us for great rates!)

Armed with this information, you are ready to renew your WC coverage and ensure that you have the right coverage at the best price.

American Insuring Group agents have years of experience with Workers’ Compensation and other commercial insurance policies to ensure that you get the right coverage for your business needs. As independent agents, we check with multiple insurance companies to ensure you pay the lowest premium for that coverage.

✅ So give us a call today at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848, or connect with us online.

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

7 Types of Insurance Coverage for Truck Owner-Operators

Posted by David Ross on Mon, Oct 10, 2022

Trucking Insurance for Truck Driver Owner Operators in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Harrisburg, Allentown, Reading, Lancaster, Erie, and throughout Pennsylvania.Many drivers become owner-operators, so they can be their own boss and set their own hours, but being an owner-operator also comes with certain responsibilities, such as obtaining a USDOT number and purchasing the right Truck Insurance.

As an owner-operator, you are a self-employed truck driver with your own commercial trucking rig. You are a business owner who needs to protect your business with the right insurance. Whether you are an owner-operator under a permanent lease or an owner-operator with your own authority, there are both required and recommended types of insurance coverage you should have.

For example, interstate and intrastate carriers are required to file proof of insurance with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), including commercial auto liability insurance from $750,000 to $5 million (depending on what type of cargo you are transporting). Some states and contracts will also require additional types of insurance.

Beyond these requirements, what (and how much) insurance you should have to protect your business can vary. Here are seven insurance coverages owner-operators should consider:

Collision Insurance 

Collision Insurance insures against damages to your truck and other vehicles in a collision-type accident.

Comprehensive Insurance

Comprehensive Insurance covers damages or losses that are not the result of a collision—vandalism, theft, fire, etc.

Commercial Liability Insurance

Commercial Liability Insurance protects you against loss from legal liability resulting from bodily injury or property damage to another party.

Cargo insurance 

Cargo insurance protects against loss from legal liability for damage to goods or merchandise in your care and custody while in transit. It also provides coverage for things like debris removal and refrigeration breakdown

Non-trucking coverage 

Non-trucking coverage is for those things that are not directly related to the trucking operation. For example, this coverage would include an occupational accident for the truckers and insurance for trucks that drive without cargo (i.e., the cargo has been delivered, and the truck is coming back empty).

Trailer Interchange Insurance

Trailer Interchange Insurance is available under the trucker's or the motor carrier policy form that covers the insured's legal liability for damage to the trailers of others. Coverage is also available, by endorsement, under the business auto policy (BAP). Under a trailer interchange +agreement, the motor carrier in possession of the trailer is responsible for any damage to the trailer, even if the trailer is not attached to the tractor.

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorists Coverage

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorists Coverage helps pay for damage to your trick if someone hits you and does not have liability coverage.

In 2020, according to the National Safety Council (NSC), 4,842 large trucks were involved in fatal crashes, and 107,000 large trucks were involved in crashes resulting in injury. Without the right insurance, one significant accident can quickly put you out of business; therefore, it's crucial that you protect yourself, your business, and those around you with the right insurance coverage.

How to Get the Right Insurance Coverage at the Lowest Cost

At American Insuring Group, we go beyond providing you with affordable truck insurance. First, we carefully analyze the needs and risks associated with your business. Then, we match you up with the best trucking insurance policy based on a careful analysis of many competing insurance companies.

The result? You'll get the high-quality commercial insurance coverage you need at a very affordable price. Therefore, if you want the right insurance coverage at the lowest cost, call us at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848, or connect with us online.

Tags: truck insurance, commercial vehicle insuarance, Trucking Insurance, commercial vehicles

7 Tips to Get the Most Out of Your Contractors Insurance

Posted by David Ross on Sat, Sep 24, 2022

Follow these tips to save on Contractors Insurance in Philadelphia, Lancaster, Reading, Erie, Pittsburgh, Allentown and all throughout PA Have you ever thought about why you purchased Contractors Insurance? It may have been to protect your business, equipment, employees, and more. It may have been required – by law, a customer, etc. Whatever the reason, everyone wants to get the most they can out of their insurance.

Check out these 7 tips to discover how to get the most out of your insurance coverage.

Identify Risks and Determine Response Strategies

First, you need to identify your risks, determine which could have the most significant impact on your business, and decide on your response strategies, which may include one or more of the following:

  • Avoidance – If you determine that a project is too risky or your business is not equipped to handle the risk, you may decide to decline the project or change the scope of the work.
  • Transference – Sometimes, you can transfer the risk to a supplier, subcontractor, or insurance carrier.
  • Mitigation – Mitigation is the act of reducing the severity, seriousness, or painfulness of something. For example, providing a safer worksite will help mitigate safety risks.
  • Acceptance – Sometimes, you may be willing to accept a potential risk and develop a contingency plan as a workaround. 

Mitigate Risk

Mitigating risk – and thereby reducing the number of claims – is one of the best ways to lower insurance (and other) costs. American Insuring Group offers many blogs to help, such as 10 Hand and Power Tool Safety Tips, How to Minimize and Protect Your Construction Company from 3 Top Risks, and Choosing Appropriate PPE for Construction Workers. 

And the good news is that mitigating risk also leads to more productive employees, happier customers, a better business reputation, and a healthier bottom line. 

Understand Your Insurance Policy

We realize that most people do not find reading their insurance policy a fun activity, but it's a must if you want to get the most out of your coverage. You need to understand what your policy does and does not (exclusions) cover so that you can compare any gaps with your response strategies and available cash flow. You may need to purchase an additional policy, add an endorsement to extend your coverage, or consider an umbrella policy to increase your current policies' limits. 

You should also understand your deductibles and ensure that you have enough available cash flow to cover those deductibles if you make a claim. 

Combine Policies

It is tempting to shop around and find the lowest premium on each of your policies, but you will often find more savings by combining your policies with one company. The independent agents at American Insuring Group will compare the cost of your policies with multiple insurance companies to ensure you pay the lowest premiums. 

Review Your Policies Regularly

You know the old quote, "There is nothing permanent except change," and this is certainly true in business. You may buy or sell a piece of equipment. You may increase or decrease the number of employees. All of these changes can affect your insurance coverage and premiums; therefore, regularly reviewing your policies is the only way to ensure that you have the right coverage at the lowest cost. 

Advertise Your Insurance Coverage

Advertising your insurance coverage – on your website, social media profiles, truck advertising, etc. – shows that you are a professional and can help get more customers. You should be happy to provide your customers with a certificate of insurance as proof that you have insurance coverage that will pay for any injuries, damage, etc. 

Work With an Experienced Insurance Agent and Save!

The independent agents at American Insuring Group specialize in Contractors Insurance and can ensure that you have the right coverage for your needs. Plus, as independent agents, we check with multiple insurance companies to ensure you pay the lowest price for that coverage!

So give us a call today at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848, or connect with us online.

Tags: Commercial Vehicle Insurance, Construction Insurance, Contractor Insurance, Commercial Liability Insurance, Contractor Safety Management