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Home-Based Business Insurance Needs

Posted by David Ross on Thu, May 21, 2015

Home business insurance tips. Serving home-based businesses with insurance for over 25 years. We offer commercial business insurance in Philadelphia, Lancaster, York, Lebanon, Harrisburg, Reading, Allentown, Lehigh Valley, Pittsburgh, Erie, PA and beyond.Every home-based business should be protected by commercial insurance. But the growth of the internet and other technological advancements –such as social collaboration tools and communication apps -  have changed the way many of us do business today and significantly influenced the number of small businesses  nationwide.  In addition, the low start-up costs; the reduction in the cost of commuting, meals, and other expenses; the flexibility; and the savings realized from not maintaining a “storefront” are creating more home-based businesses. Sometimes home-based business owners forget that their homeowner's policy is unlikely to cover them for liabilities that can occur in their business.

In 2014, there were 28 million small businesses in operation.  Approximately half of the small businesses today are home-based businesses.   The SBA reports that most of these home-based businesses are operating as sole proprietorships; others are s-corporations and partnerships, and the majority of them are service oriented.

But a home-based business is still a business.  Owners need to understand the financial risks and responsibilities associated with this type of business, including how to protect that enterprise with the right business insurance for businesses run out of the home.  It’s important to understand the differences between personal and commercial insurance liabilities and not assume that your personal insurance policies will always cover your home-based business insurance needs. 

Here are five things every home-based business owner needs to consider protecting with the right business insurance.

  1. Home and Property Insurance – Most home owners’ or renters’ insurance policies only cover up to $2,500 for business property losses or damages.  They also tend to exclude business-related liability claims and provide no provisions for any downtime associated with a property loss.  Therefore, if you run your business from home, you may want to consider a business owner’s insurance policy, general liability insurance, business property insurance, and business interruption/continuation insurance.  You may qualify for a homeowners' policy endorsement that modifies your standard policy.
  2. Auto Insurance – If you own or lease a vehicle almost exclusively used for business – whether it’s a small 10-year-old sedan or a large customized van complete with everything needed to groom a giant Greyhound - make sure your business name is listed as the principal insured. If your business involves transporting people, you should consider commercial vehicle insurance for the higher liability limits and special provisions that are available.
  3. Life Insurance – If your home-based business is a partnership, you may want to consider Key Person life insurance to ensure the organization’s future.  If one partner dies the other partner (s) can use the life insurance payout to buy out the partner’s heirs, pay off outstanding loans, and continue operations. When considering key person life insurance, be sure to think about staff beyond the business owner. This type of coverage typically focuses on any person without whom the business would cease to exist.
  4. Health Insurance – Without health insurance, one extended stay in the hospital could mean the end of your business.  Today, it’s much easier for small businesses to acquire health insurance – HMOs, PPOs, EPOs and other group plans.  With the new Affordable Care Act, you may even qualify for a tax credit or subsidy if you purchase coverage through the new healthcare marketplace and failure to purchase health insurance could result in a tax penalty. 
  5. Income InsuranceWorker’s Compensation insurance and disability insurance isn’t reserved for large companies.  If you have just one employee, many states require that you purchase workers’ compensation insurance to protect your business from claims relating to work-related injuries and to protect the employee’s income.  If your family relies on your income to survive, you should also consider Workers’ Compensation and/or disability for yourself, to ensure that you continue to see an income even if you are injured or become ill and can’t work. 


Getting the Right Business Insurance for Your Home Business

There are also insurance “packages” available -known as Business Owners Policies (BOP) - that usually include property, business interruption, and liability insurance. 

Contact us to learn more about business insurance for home businesses.The agents at American Insuring Group can help you determine the best commercial insurance for your home business. Contact us or give us a call at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848. As independent insurance agents, we're free to shop among many competing insurance companies, so we can find you the best deal on quality business insurance protection. Call or email today to learn more!

Tags: Business Insurance Reading PA, Business Insurance Berks, Business Insurance Philadelphia Pa, Business Insurance Lancaster Pa, Business Insurance Harrisburg Pa, Business Insurance York Pa, Small Business Insurance, Home Business Insurance, Commercial Insurance, Business Insurance Allentown PA, Business Insurance

I Don’t Need Commercial Vehicle Insurance. Or Do I?

Posted by David Ross on Wed, Mar 04, 2015

Who needs commercial vehicle insurance?

Tips for determining if you need commercial vehicle insuranceIf you own a fleet of vehicles that are used exclusively for your business or you own a freight truck or delivery truck, you probably understand that you need commercial vehicle insurance on those vehicles.  But what if you have one vehicle that you use to deliver pizzas?  What if you use your personal vehicle to drive to job sites or to meetings?

Any vehicle being used for business or commercial purposes is technically a commercial vehicle, which means it needs to be insured by a commercial vehicle insurance policy.  This includes any vehicle used for the pickup or delivery of goods and any vehicle used to transport people for business.

You may also need commercial vehicle insurance if your vehicle is…

  • Registered or titled to a:
    • Business
    • Corporation
    • Partnership
    • Rented or leased by others
    • Equipped with:
      • Snowplowing equipment
      • Cooking or catering equipment
      • Bathrooms
      • Altered suspensions
      • Hydraulic lifts
      • Racing equipment

Bottom line: If you own or use any type of vehicle for business purposes, you need a good commercial auto insurance policy to protect yourself, your employees, and your business!

Commercial vs. Personal Car Insurance

It is true that the premiums for commercial vehicle insurance are generally higher than premiums for personal vehicle insurance, but there’s a very good reason for that - the risk of covering any vehicle used for business purposes is higher than the risk of covering cars used for personal purposes. This is the main reason car insurance policies for commercial purposes differ from personal policies.

Types of commercial auto insurance include:

  • Business auto insurance
  • Truck insurance
  • Cargo insurance
  • Pickup truck insurance
  • Tow truck insurance
  • Van insurance
  • Dump truck insurance
  • Non-owned/hired liability insurance

Many of the common types of personal car insurance coverage also apply to commercial auto insurance, such as:

  • Bodily injury liability
  • Property damage
  • Comprehensive
  • Collision
  • Medical payments
  • Personal injury protection (PIP)
  • Uninsured/underinsured motorist

 But, commercial car insurance policies are better suited to cover:

  • Your business and its assets
  • Your employees or other drivers you hire to drive your company cars
  • The higher risk of operating certain commercial vehicles



If you carry a personal car insurance policy, and you file a claim for an incident that occurred while driving for business purposes, you may find that your car insurance company will not pay on that claim. A good commercial auto insurance plan can save you from a financial disaster, regardless of whether you're an independent contractor or the CEO of a multi-million dollar company.

How is my commercial vehicle insurance rate determined?

Your commercial auto insurance rate depends on several factors. These factors include, but are not limited to:

  • Age and personal driving record of all drivers (driving history is one of the biggest factors in determining your rate)
  • License type of all drivers
  • Vehicle make and model including its safety rating, age, and history
  • Type of cargo the vehicle carries
  • Number of passengers the vehicle transports
  • Annual mileage

The nature of your business and how your vehicles are used will also affect your rate.  As with personal vehicle insurance, the lower your risk, the higher your savings will be. Other factors include:

  • The limits of your coverage
  • Any optional coverage you purchased
  • Your deductible
  • Your credit history

Contact us for help in obtaining the right commercial vehicle insurance protection. We serve Philadelphia, Lancaster, Reading, Harrisburg, York, Allentown, the LeHigh Valley, Pittsburgh, Erie, State College, Pennsylvania and beyond.The best way to determine if you need commercial vehicle insurance and what type of coverage is best for your business is to speak with an experienced independent insurance agent.  Call American Insuring Group at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848 or email us to learn more about commercial vehicle insurance.

Tags: Commercial Vehicle Insurance, Business Insurance Reading PA, Business Insurance Berks, Business Insurance Philadelphia Pa, Business Insurance Lancaster Pa, Business Insurance Harrisburg Pa, Business Insurance York Pa, Commercial Insurance, Business Insurance Allentown PA, Business Insurance

10 Safety Tips to Reduce Injuries & Workers Comp Insurance Costs

Posted by David Ross on Sat, Jan 17, 2015

10 Safety Tips to Reduce Workers Comp Insurance CostsOn average, thirteen Americans are killed on the job every single day of the year and nearly 4 million workers are seriously injured on the job each year.  Under the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act, employers are responsible for providing a safe working environment.  Furthermore, employers “MUST provide their workers with a workplace that doesn’t have serious hazards and must follow all OSHA safety and health standards.”  

Good for Employees and Good for Workers Compensation Insurance Rates

Obviously, this is the right thing to do, but the fact is that providing a safe work environment also helps the employer by providing more healthy, happy, and prosperous employees; lower absenteeism; and lower workers’ compensation costs. 

Safety Training Applies to Every Job

Safety is probably top of mind in industries such as construction where more than 20% of the fatalities in 2013 occurred.  But working in an office also comes with its share of hazards, such as slipping and falling, misusing equipment, stacking and lifting, and poor lighting.  Whether your employees sit behind a desk inputing data all day or climb 100 foot poles to work on electrical wires, all employees should receive workplace safety training appropriate to the type of job they perform. 

Here are 10 Training Guidelines for Safer Employees and Lower WC Costs:

  1. Educate new employees about company safety and health policies and emergency procedures.
  2. All employees should be trained on the specific hazards of their jobs.
  3. Retrain employees when equipment or processes change and when employees change jobs or return from a long absence.
  4. Adapt training to your audience.  Different people learn in different ways, so use a variety of teaching methods, such as hands-on, lecture, discussion, videos, etc.
  5. Consider reaching out to local organizations, such as fire departments or medical facilities to help you with training.
  6. Educate management about key workers’ compensation concepts and how workers’ compensation expenses impact the business.   
  7. Arrange small-group employee training events to allow for discussions.
  8. Include information about who a worker should contact in the event of a work-related injury and what their responsibilities are if they see an injury occur.
  9. Ensure that workers sign off on an in-service acknowledgement showing they have received training.
  10. Check out OSHA’s website - - for training courses, educational programs and training materials.  OSHA offers a wide selection of training courses and educational programs to help broaden worker and employer knowledge on the recognition, avoidance, and prevention of safety and health hazards in the workplace.

Lower your workers comp insurance costs with better safety training and the right insurance. Serving Philadelphia, Reading, Lancaster, Allentown, Lehigh Valley, Pittsburgh, Erie, State College, PA and beyond.Get the Right Workers Compensation Insurance Protection

To further protect your company and your employees, contact Amerian Insuring Group at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848 to learn more about business insurance options, including worker's compensation insurance and more.


Tags: Workers Compensation Insurance, Business Insurance Reading PA, Business Insurance Berks, Business Insurance Philadelphia Pa, Business Insurance Lancaster Pa, Business Insurance Harrisburg Pa, Business Insurance York Pa, Commercial Insurance, Business Insurance Allentown PA, Business Insurance

Pet-Friendly Workplaces: Benefits, Risks, and Business Insurance

Posted by David Ross on Mon, Dec 01, 2014

Is a Pet-Friendly Workplace Right for Your Business? Understand the Benefits, Risks, and Business Insurance Needs.

Know the benefits, risks, and business insurance protection needed for a successful pet-friendly workplace. Offering quality business insurance for over 25 years to Philadelphia, Reading, Lancaster, York, Lebanon, Harrisburg, Allentown, the Lehigh Valley, Erie, Pittsburgh, PA and beyond.Thirty-nine percent of households have dogs, so it’s no surprise that more companies – including Google, Etsy, and Build-A-Bear Workshop – are allowing employees to bring their dogs to work.  After all, Congress has been dog friendly since the 19th century.  And, according to a survey conducted by the American Pet Products Manufacturers, 17 percent of Americans work at pet-friendly companies. What are the benefits? What are the risks? Does your business insurance adequately cover the risks? You should know the answers to these questions before implementing a pet-friently workplace policy.

Pet-Friendly Workplace Benefits

Offering a “bring your pet to work” policy can definitely have its advantages.  It has been shown to lower employees’ stress levels and absenteeism; boost morale and create a more positive work environment; improve job satisfaction, which improves retention; encourage people to work longer hours; attract new employees by standing out among the competition; and offer opportunities for exercise and non-work-related interaction among employees. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention cites dozens of animal experts who report that pets can decrease blood pressure and cholesterol levels as well as increase opportunities for exercise and socialization.

Pet-Friendly Workplace Risks

If you’re considering opening the doggie door on your business, there are a few things you should consider.

  • If you lease your workspace, make sure the landlord allows pets.
  • If any part of your business involves the handling of food or beverages or offering personal care services, such as day care or elder care, check licensing bureau regulations.
  • An animal allergy may be considered a disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990. If you ignore or don’t make reasonable accommodations for an employee who is allergic to animals, you could open your business to potential ADA liability.
  • People who are afraid or uncomfortable around pets can also create possible ADA liability. A former mail room clerk from Foodarama Supermarkets in New Jersey brought an ADA claim in which she alleged that her former supervisor occasionally brought his house cats to the office, despite the fact that the employee had previously informed him of her condition as an ailurophobe (a person who is afraid cats).  Although courts are reluctant to find liability under strict liability statutes or under ADA accommodation laws, an employer could still face the expense of defending such a suit if they allow pets in the office.
  • A pet can bite another employee, customer, or delivery person.

  • A pet can damage or destroy property, such as carpets, computers, and other office equipment and furniture, or even “eat your presentation."

Business Insurance and Other Ways to Keep Your Business Out of the Doghouse

  • Have open discussions with your employees about concerns, such as allergies, accidents, etc., and how you will accommodate them.

  • Create and enforce a comprehensive written pet policy.
  • Require that employees prove that their pets will respond to basic commands, such as “sit” and “stay.”
  • Limit the number of pets allowed in the workplace at one time.
  • Enforce a zero tolerance for aggressive pets that growl, bark, chase, or bite.
  • Establish pet-free zones.
  • Require that pet owners show that vaccinations are up to date and that pets are licensed and free of parasites and insects.
  • Require proof, in writing, that pet owners have sufficient home owners’ or renters’ insurance to cover damage caused by their pet and carefully check exclusions.  Some policies have a business-pursuit policy exception and some exclude certain breeds, such as Pit Bulls and Rottweilers. 
  • Consider indemnification in case your business gets sued.
  • Ensure that your business insurance will cover any liability associated with pets in the office. 

Contact us for the right business insurance to support your pet-friendly policy.Contact Us for the Right Business Insurance Protection to Support a Pet-Friendly Workplace

A pet-friendly workplace isn’t right for every business, but if you decide that it could be a good fit for your company, your first step should be contacting the independent insurance agents at American Insuring Group at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848. We offer business insurance protection from competing insurance providers. We'll help you find the right policy at the right price. Contact us today.

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Substance Abuse and Workers Compensation Insurance

Posted by David Ross on Wed, Sep 10, 2014

The Cost of Substance Abuse in the Workplace

The cost of substance abuse in the workplace is staggering. Consider the impace on workers compensation insurance costs.The National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD) estimates that drug abuse in the workplace costs business owners $81 billion annually.  

Studies show that substance abusers miss work more often, use more sick leave, and arrive late more frequently than their coworkers.  Substance abusers are more likely to injure themselves or others and file more workers compensation insurance claims. 


Double the Worker's Compensation Insurance Cost

It’s estimated that substance abusers cost employers twice as much in medical and workers compensation claims as their drug-free counterparts.  And finally, substance abusers are considerably less productive than their drug-free co-workers. 

Although Pennsylvania does not have a state law that regulates, requires, or prohibits drug testing or any drug-free workplace programs, companies that implement a drug-free workplace initiative can improve their bottom line, increase productivity, and develop healthier employees.  A program may include supervisor training, employee education, drug testing, and/or an Employee Assistance Program (EAP). 

The Cost of a Drug-Free Workplace Initiative

The cost of a drug-free workplace will vary depending on the size of your initiative, your response level, and available community, state, and federal resources.   Costs may include policy development, employee education, management training, employee assistance, and drug testing. 

However, a study of the economic impact of a drug-free workplace initiative in Ohio found significant improvements in job-related performance:

  • A 91 percent decrease in absenteeism
  • An 88 percent decrease in problems with supervisors
  • A 93 percent decrease in mistakes in work
  • A 97 percent decrease in on-the-job injuries

Risks of NOT Implementing a Drug-Free Workplace Initiative

The cost of implementing a drug-free workplace program should be weighed against the cost of not implementing a program.  For many small businesses, one serious accident or one troubled employee can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars and jeopardize the future of that company. 

How to Create a Drug-Free Workplace Initiative

  • Drug-free workplace policy - Establish written policies and procedures that prohibit the abuse of alcohol or illegal use of drugs. Ensure that all employees and potential applicants read and understand the policy and that compliance with the policy is a condition of employment.  The US Department of Labor has a “Drug-Free Workplace Policy Builder” at

  • Supervisor Training – Supervisors closest to the workforce should be trained on your drug free workplace initiative and their role in its implementation.   They should also be taught the signs, symptoms, behavior changes, and performance problems associated with drug or alcohol abuse and what to do when they see those signs.

  • Employee Education - An employee education session should describe the impact that alcohol abuse and drug use has on the workplace, provide information about addiction and the major drugs of abuse, and include your company’s drug and alcohol policies.

  • EAP – An Employee Assistance Program is a worksite-focused program designed to identify and resolve productivity problems associated with personal problems, such as alcohol and/or drug abuse, which often includes counseling and referral programs.

  • Drug Testing – A drug and/or alcohol testing program may detect or deter drug and/or alcohol use or abuse.  Drug testing works best when used in conjunction with the other initiatives listed above.

Additional Resources:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-

National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism -

National Institute on Drug Abuse –

Contact Us to Improve Your Bottom Line

Contact us to lower your workers compensation insurance costs. We serve Philadelphia, Reading, Lancaster, York, Harrisburg, Allentown, Pittsburgh, Erie, PA and beyond.A drug-free workplace initiative can create a healthier workforce and improve your company’s bottom line, including lowering your workers compensation insurance claims and costs. 

For more information about controlling your workers’ compensation insurance costs, contact us at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848.

Tags: Workers Compensation Insurance, Business Insurance Reading PA, Business Insurance Berks, Business Insurance Philadelphia Pa, Business Insurance Lancaster Pa, Business Insurance Harrisburg Pa, Business Insurance York Pa, Commercial Insurance, Business Insurance Allentown PA, Business Insurance

Workers Comp Insurance & Job Classifications - Avoid Costly Mistakes

Posted by David Ross on Wed, Jul 09, 2014

ob classifications and how they affect workers comp insurance premiums. Contact us to avoid costly mistakes. We offer workers comp insurance protection for businesses in Reading, PA, Philadelphia, Lancaster, York, Harrisburg, Adams County, Lehigh Valley, Erie, Pittsburgh, PA and beyond.Worker's compensation insurance, job classifications, job risks and insurance premiums are all related. Job classifications, which are based on specific ratings and descriptions for all types of jobs, are determined by the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI), the insurance industry’s ratings bureau.  There are more than 600 different job classifications, and more are being added all the time, so it isn’t surprising that 30-35 percent of businesses have classification errors. But have you considered the potential impact on your business insurance costs that an erroneous job classification can bring?

Workers' Compensation Insurance and Risk-Based Job Classifications

Why should you care?  These ratings, based on an estimated level of risk, help determine how much Workers’ Compensation premiums you will pay for each job classification.  The following misclassifications are examples of mistakes that can significantly increase your Workers’ Compensation premiums:

  • An administrative assistant who sits at her desk all day is classified at the same job risk level as a tree trimmer who spends most of her day swinging through the trees.
  • A dispatcher who spends most of his time on the phone is classified at the same job risk level as a driver who spends most of his time behind the wheel of a tractor trailer full of flammable materials. 

How can you avoid misclassifications?

  • Review your NCCI Classifications
  • Don’t use the same classification for everyone in your company.  Classify each worker individually.
  • Ask your insurance agent how jobs are being classified.
  • Read your policy.
  • Don’t let the insurance agent copy from an old policy from year to year. Things change; your business changes. 

Contact us for help with proper job classifications for workers compensation insurance in Philadelphia, Reading, Lancaster, York, Harrisburg, Allentown, Pittsburgh, Erie, PA and beyond.Don’t wait for your workman's compensation insurance premiums to skyrocket to discover something is off kilter.  For more information about job classifications and controlling workers’ compensation premiums, contact American Insuring Group at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848.

Tags: Workers Compensation Insurance, Business Insurance Reading PA, Business Insurance Berks, Business Insurance Philadelphia Pa, Business Insurance Lancaster Pa, Business Insurance Harrisburg Pa, Business Insurance York Pa, Commercial Insurance, Business Insurance Allentown PA, Business Insurance

Safe Lifting Tips to Avoid Workers Comp Insurance Claims

Posted by David Ross on Sat, Jun 14, 2014

Reduce workers' comp insurance claims with these safety lifting tips. Serving Philadelphia, Reading, Allentown, the Lehigh Valley, Lancaster, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, Erie, PA and beyond with affordable, high quality workers compensation insurance.A Leading Cause of Workplace Injury

OSHA reports, “Lifting heavy items is one of the leading causes of injury in the workplace.”  This is particularly true in the healthcare industry.  Improper lifting can cause back sprains, muscle pulls, wrist injuries, elbow injuries, spinal injuries, etc. 

Sharing the following smart lifting practices with your employees will not only help improve the health of your employees, but also help reduce the number and cost of lifting-related workers’ compensation insurance claims.

There are several factors that contribute to lifting injuries:

  • Weight of Objects
  • Awkward Postures
  • High-Frequency and Long-Duration Lifting
  • Inadequate Handholds
  • Environmental Factors

Avoid Workers Comp Injuries - Follow These Safe Lifting Tips.

Here are some tips from OSHA to help your employees avoid injury from lifting:

  • Limit the weight you lift to no more than 50 pounds.  When lifting heavier loads, use two or more people to lift the load.
  • Use ramps or lift gates to load items into trucks rather than lifting them by hand.
  • Use your legs instead of your back when lifting an item from a low location.
  • Avoid twisting, especially when bending forward while lifting.  Turn by moving the feet rather than twisting the torso.
  • Keep your elbows close to your body and keep the load as close to your body as possible.
  • Break down loads into smaller units and carry one in each hand to equalize loads.
  • Rotate tasks so employees are not exposed to the same activity for too long.
  • Take regular breaks and split tasks into shorter segments.
  • Move materials from containers with poor or no handholds into containers with good handholds.
  • Wear proper personal protective equipment to avoid finger injuries and contact stress.
  • Adjust work schedules to minimize exposure to extreme temperatures.
  • Drink lots of water to avoid dehydration in excessive heat.

More Safe Lifting Tips

For more information about safe lifting techniques, go to

Be Prepared for the Unexepected with Quality Workers' Comp Insurance

Contact us for all your workers compensation insurance needs.Following these tips will help ensure the safety of your employees and reduce workers’ comp claims; however, injuries may still happen. 

The right workers' compensation insurance will protect your business from these unforeseen incidents. 

Contact American Insuring Group at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848.  We can help with all of your business-related insurance needs, including workers’ compensation.

Tags: Workers Compensation Insurance, Business Insurance Reading PA, Business Insurance Berks, Business Insurance Philadelphia Pa, Business Insurance Lancaster Pa, Business Insurance Harrisburg Pa, Business Insurance York Pa, Commercial Insurance, Business Insurance Allentown PA, Business Insurance

3 Easy Tips for Buying Business Insurance

Posted by David Ross on Tue, May 13, 2014


Commercial insurance buying tips from American Insuring Group, serving Philadelphia, Allentown, Reading, Lehigh Valley, Lancaster, York, Lebanon, and Harriburg PA with business insurance for over 30 years.If you’re a small business owner, chances are good that you have a considerable amount of time, money, and – let’s face it – sweat and tears invested in your business.  Although it is generally not required by law (unless you are an employer), business insurance is a great investment in your business because it protects your business assets and minimizes financial risks in the event of unexpected catastrophes.   

But how do you know what types of commercial insurance are best for your business?  Or how much coverage you need?  As a business owner, you probably wear many hats, but an insurance expert hat is probably not in your wardrobe!

Here are three basic things to consider when buying business insurance for your company:

  1. Determine Your Risks – The insurance company will determine the level of risk it’s willing to accept when issuing a policy and may decide to provide all or just a portion of the coverage you request.  Your broker will then offer a policy that includes a premium and a deductible.  Premiums depend on a number of risk factors, such as your location, proximity of fire protection services, and your type of building structure, in addition to the amount of coverage you want to purchase.  A higher deductible will probably lower your premiums, but it will also increase your financial risk. It’s important to determine the level of risk you’re willing to take.

  2. Keep it Simple: Consider a Business Owner’s Policy (BOP) – You can purchase insurance separately or as a package called a Business Owner’s Policy.  A BOP usually covers property, general liability, vehicles, business interruption, and other types of coverage common to most types of businesses.  BOPs simplify the insurance buying process and typically save you money.  But, it’s important that you understand what is and isn’t covered by a BOP.  Unique risks may require additional coverage. Your independent insurance agent can help clarify your options and help you identify your needs.

  3. Review Your Insurance Coverage Annually – As your business grows, so do your liabilities.  As you purchase or replace new equipment or expand operations, you may need more coverage.

Contact us for help with all your business insurance needsThe Small Business Administration (SBA) says, “Finding a good insurance agent is as important as finding a good lawyer or accountant.”   At American Insuring Group we're interested in your needs, we understand the risks associated with your business, and we can help you get the right commercial insurance for your business needs. 

So give us a call at (800)947-1270 or (610)775-3848 or use our online quote system to get a free business insurance quote.

Tags: Business Insurance Reading PA, Business Insurance Berks, Business Insurance Philadelphia Pa, Business Insurance Lancaster Pa, Business Insurance Harrisburg Pa, Business Insurance York Pa, Small Business Insurance, Commercial Insurance, Business Insurance Allentown PA, Business Insurance

Food Safety and Restaurant Insurance

Posted by David Ross on Mon, Apr 28, 2014

Get the right restaurant insurance to protect against food-related illness claimsWorking in the food service industry often means hard work and long hours.  You also face many unique challenges, including the responsibility of ensuring that the food you serve to your customers is safe.  As any restaurant owner knows, a foodborne-illness can cause the loss of thousands of dollars and, in some cases, your entire business. 

The National Restaurant Association estimates the average cost of a foodborne illness outbreak at more than $75,000.  This doesn’t even take into account the human cost. Does your restuarant have the proper insurance to handle such an occurence?

Millions of people become sick each year and thousands die after eating contaminated or mishandled foods. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimated in 2011 that contaminated food caused 47.8 million illnesses a year in the United States (that includes food eaten at home and other places besides restaurants).

Ten Factors That Often Cause Food-borne Illnesses, According to the CDC:

  1. Improper cooling of foods — the leading cause of foodborne illness outbreaks.
  2. Advance preparation of food (with a 12-hour or more delay before service).
  3. Infected employees who practice poor personal hygiene.
  4. Failure to reheat cooked foods to temperatures that kill bacteria.
  5. Improper hot holding temperatures.
  6. Adding raw, contaminated ingredients to food that receives no further cooking.
  7. Foods from unsafe sources.
  8. Cross contamination of cooked food by raw food.
  9. Improper use of leftovers.
  10. Failure to heat or cook food thoroughly.

Here are five steps you can take to minimize foodborne illnesses in your restaurant and decrease the risk of an insurance claim:

  1. Wash your hands.
  2. Thoroughly wash all produce, since it is often served uncooked.
  3. Maintain a temperature at or below 40°F in your refrigerators to minimize bacterial growth.
  4. In order to kill any bacteria present, cook foods to the minimum recommended internal temperature and sustain that temperature for at least 15 seconds.
  5. Clean and sanitize all food contact surfaces, such as countertops, cutting boards, utensils, pots, and pans.

Have the Right Restaurant Insurance When All Else Fails

If, in spite of all your efforts to keep your food safe, your restaurant does experience an outbreak of a foodborne illness, there’s only one thing that can save you – the right insurance.  One option you may want to consider adding to your basic policy is business interruption insurance to help your business stay afloat if you’re forced to shut down for any length of time.  Another good option is food contamination coverage, which covers your restaurant from financial loss and helps rebuild your restaurant’s reputation.

Don't Leave it to Chance: Contact us Today

Get the right restaurant insurance. Providing restaurant insurance for small businesses in Berks county, Philadelphia and Montgomery county, Allentown and the Lehigh Valley, Harrisburg, Lancaster, PA and beyond.You’ve worked hard to establish your restaurant business. Don't leave things to chance. Be sure you can survive any potential issues with a comprehensive restaurant insurance policy tailored specifically to your business.  The agents at American Insuring Group understand your unique challenges. Contact us at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848.   

Tags: Restaurant Insurance, Business Insurance Reading PA, Business Insurance Berks, Business Insurance Philadelphia Pa, Business Insurance Lancaster Pa, Business Insurance Harrisburg Pa, Business Insurance York Pa, Small Business Insurance, Commercial Insurance Allentown PA, Commercial Insurance Lancaster PA, Commercial Insurance Harrisburg PA, Commercial Insurance, Commercial Insurance Reading PA, Business Insurance Allentown PA, Business Insurance, Commercial Insurance Philadelphia PA, Commercial Insurance York PA, Commercial Insurance Berks County

4 Top Reasons for Using an Independent Insurance Agent

Posted by David Ross on Sat, Oct 05, 2013
Your Trusted Choice independent insurance agent serving Berks County, Reading, PA, Philadelphia, Lancaster, York, Harrisburg, Allentown, Bethlehem, Pittsburgh, Erie, Pennsylvania and beyond

Considering the millions of dollars spent daily on TV commercials for single-brand insurance offerings, you would think that the independent insurance agent is a thing of the past. It's tough to go an hour on TV without seeing at least one commercial for AllState, Nationwide, GEICO, State Farm, or other single brand ("captive") insurance solution. That's because with few exceptions, only the big brands can afford to run national TV ads.

Bigger May Not be Better When it Comes to Insurance

Most people realize that big budget advertising does not necessarily equate with the best solution for all kinds of things in life. That's why, for example, many people avoid the pay-per-click ads found on search engines and instead click on the unpaid search results: they seek a high-quality answer to their search instead of one paid for by the competitor with the deepest pockets. In plain English, they don't want to be "spun" by the marketing machines behind the ads.

Let's apply the same thinking to an independent insurance agent vs. the mega-brands. Here are 4 reasons why an independent agent is likely to provide a superior personal or business insurance solution to satisfy your needs.

#1. Your Needs are Unique and Your Insurance Policy Should Fully Meet Your Needs

Insurance is complicated. It is difficult, if not impossible, for those outside the insurance industry to understand all the insurance options for meeting their needs. Only an independent insurance agent understands the pros and cons of each insurance company and their policy offerings as it pertains to protecting you against your unique combination of risks and liabilities.

#2. Independent Insurance Agents are a Valuable Advocate, and They Cost You Nothing

Your independent insurance agent will check multiple companies and insurance solutions in detail to arrive at the best combination of value, price, and insurance protection to properly and fully address your individual or business insurance needs. That can be very time-consuming, but that service typically costs you nothing.

#3. Your Independent Agent is a Single Source for All Your Insurance Needs

Insurance companies typically handle only certain types of insurance. However, your independent insurance agent handles insurance from multiple companies, thereby covering virtually any need, including business insurance, homeowners and car insurance, boat, RV, and motorcycle insurance, life and health insurance, umbrella insurance, pet and vacation insurance, workers compensation insurance, disability insurance, and virtually every kind of liability insurance to protect any type of business need. Being a single source with access to multiple insurance companies and solutions, your agent can create the best blend of policies to provide the right protection with minimal overlap and waste between and among your insurance policies.

#4. Unparalled Service

When you have an insurance question or need, your independent agent is there for you. You are not relegated to a faceless, nameless individual connected to an 800 number. Instead, you have the comfort and confidence of dealing with someone who you know, like, and trust for all your insurance needs. Think about it. Doesn't that kind of service and flexibility mean more to you than putting yourself in the hands of someone you don't know, and who offers only one solution or brand? 


We're Independent Insurance Agents, and We're Ready to Serve You

At American Insuring Group we pride ourselves in helping our customers not only save on insurance, but also in finding the right insurance protection. We'll put together a plan that will meet your needs, and we'll review your needs on a regular basis to see if it may be time to adjust your insurance to meet your changing needs, or to take advantage of better pricing that may become available as your needs change. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Learn more. Contact American Insuring Group today to learn about your options for business insurance, personal insurance, health and life insurance, car and house insurance, commercial liability insurance and more.

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