Insurance

Merits of Wedding Insurance

merits of wedding insuranceHave you ever thought about the merits of wedding insurance? According to a survey by TheKnot.com the average cost for a U.S. wedding is now more than $35,000. That’s also about the average price paid for a new car, according to 2018 figures from Kelley Blue Book. And few would argue the merits of car insurance.

What if storms shut down a major airport, causing you to postpone the wedding? Or, what if that adorable ring-bearer drops the diamond-studded bands off the pier at your beach ceremony? Wedding insurance is a type of special event insurance (also called one-day insurance) that covers injuries and venue damages. It can also cover loss or damage of things like photos, attire, gifts and rings, as well as deposits in case of cancellation.

Before you buy insurance, check with your vendors to see what sort of coverage they have for their services and facilities. You wouldn’t want to pay for overlapping coverage if, for example, the reception hall has liability coverage for accidents. Ask for copies of any vendor policies, and then sit down with your insurance professional to determine where you may benefit from additional coverage.

Click here to read more articles on our site about assessing your insurance needs. 

By |2019-10-15T19:01:22-07:00May 7th, 2018|Current Affairs, Insurance|

Protecting Your Business From Liability

protecting your business from liabilityProtecting your business from liability is critical. If you or your business provides professional services or advice, professional liability insurance can help protect your assets if you are ever sued. It covers financial losses suffered by third parties as a result of errors and omissions in your services (it is also sometimes called E&O insurance).

Attorneys and physicians consider this type of protection a necessity; in fact, legal and medical malpractice insurance is required by law in many states. Other professionals who should explore and consider professional liability insurance include accountants, software developers, real estate agents and consultants.

According to the Insurance Information Institute, there are two types of professional liability policies: claims-made and occurrence. Most policies are claims-made, meaning that the policy must be in effect both when the event took place and when a lawsuit is filed for a claim to be paid. An occurrence policy is less common, but will cover any claim for an event that took place during the period of coverage, even if the suit is filed after the policy has lapsed (such as after you’ve retired or changed careers).

Policies will generally have a deductible ranging from $1,000 to $25,000. The amount of professional liability insurance you will need and how much it will cost depends upon the size of your business and the level of risk it poses. Coverage does not extend to losses caused by intentional or dishonest acts. Professional liability insurance also does not cover bodily injury or property damage claims (these are typically covered by commercial general liability policies).

Consult with your financial planner or inquire with your profession’s trade association about protecting your business from liability and to determine if you might need professional liability coverage.

By |2019-08-14T13:59:52-07:00September 6th, 2017|Insurance, Small Business|

Shopping for Auto Insurance

Mike Larriva, CFP shares personal insights on shopping for auto insuranceShopping for auto insurance is something I put off for years. I was happy with my existing company, and comparing new policies and rates was a hassle I just wouldn’t prioritize. My priorities changed recently, as my teen son is getting his driver’s license soon and I know teen drivers are expensive to insure. I had to bite the bullet and do some comparison shopping. Fortunately, I was pleasantly surprised how easy it is to get quotes now. Most companies were able to provide online quotes, which were emailed to make it easy to compare.

Most states require minimum coverage for bodily-injury and property-damage liability, to protect others when you are the driver at fault in an accident. But it’s wise to purchase more than the minimum required.

Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage is especially important because it protects you if another driver with minimum or no insurance causes an accident and you incur costly injuries and repairs. This happened to me in 2000. I was involved in a rollover accident. Our SUV was totaled and the young man who hit me only had minimum coverage. My underinsured coverage protected us by helping pay for a replacement vehicle and medical expenses. A typical level for this type of coverage is $100,000 or more in benefits.

There are additional coverage options to consider, as well. Collision coverage helps pay for repairs to your vehicle when involved in a collision. Medical coverage helps with medical expenses that might not be covered by bodily-liability coverage. Comprehensive coverage is for repairs not caused by collision (such as theft, vandalism or hail damage).

As you are shopping for auto insurance, be sure to ask about any discounts that may be available. When I added my son to my policy, I learned many companies offer discounts for students who get good grades (B average) and who’ve taken defensive driving classes.

Consider comparing your auto insurance rates every few years. I did and made some changes that will help reduce costs for our family.

 

By |2019-08-14T13:59:52-07:00July 31st, 2017|Financial Planning, Insurance|

Time to Update Auto Insurance

old car - Serge Bertasius PhotographyAuto insurance commercials have sure gotten fun in the past few years. Who doesn’t love the goofy spunk of Progressive’s Flo, with her bright red lipstick and blue headband? We’ve enjoyed the adventures of Geico’s gecko, and laughed at the silliness of the various “Jake” at State Farm ads. Though we often can recite auto insurance punch lines and slogans, how many of us have taken the time recently to explore options and compare rates?

According to an April Consumer Reports (CR) article, only 25 percent of consumers have shopped for auto insurance in the previous year and, of those, most researched only one or two companies. Because your coverage needs and credit scores change, and insurers generally update their prices every six to 12 months, CR recommends you comparison shop every two to three years. Also explore your options if your situation changes (marriage, new vehicle, adding a teen driver, etc.).

“Ask your insurer what the change will mean for your policy, then shop for a better deal,” CR suggests and notes that the more companies you research, the better your odds at finding a better deal.

Keep in mind, too, that finding the lowest premium shouldn’t be your sole objective. A company can offer low premiums and still cost you more overall by low-balling loss estimates, forcing you to pay extra for manufacturer parts versus knockoffs, and jacking up premiums after an accident. As you comparison shop, consider the insurer’s reputation and customer satisfaction, as well.

For insurer ratings and money-saving ideas, read CR’s car insurance buying guide online.

Photo courtesy of Serge Bertasius Photography at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
By |2019-08-14T13:59:57-07:00May 31st, 2016|Financial Planning, Insurance|

Social Security Disability Benefits

If you are unable to work because of a medical condition and expect that condition to last a year or more, you may want to consider applying for Social Security disability benefits.  Our 2-minute video provides a brief overview.

The information contained in the video was sourced from an article by Carrie Schwab-Pomerantz, CFP®, Senior Vice President, Schwab Community Services. For more information on who qualifies for social security benefits and how to apply, click here to read the full article.

The official Social Security Administration website has in-depth information Social Security disability benefits. Click here to access the government site.

Select photos in video courtesy of Felixco Inc, David Castillo Dominici, nongpimmy, alexisdc, stockdevil, nuttakit, and stock images at freedigitalphotos.net
By |2020-09-29T14:01:07-07:00January 21st, 2016|Health Care, Insurance, Video Blog|