November 5, 2015

agency, insurance

The language in property and casualty insurance policies can be very confusing, especially if you don’t take the time to ask about certain types of coverage; what they are? Why do you need it? What is the cost? What is the “worst case” if you don’t opt for a particular coverage? This confusion can cost policy holders a tremendous amount of money, either in a personal lines environment or a business setting. The use of a good, well-qualified and professional agent can help mitigate some of the risk inherent in determining what is the proper coverage for a certain situation. At Barnes Risk Management, we pride ourselves on being the kind of agents that can answer the questions that are important to our clients. Helping them make the proper choices to protect their businesses, homes, families and assets. Social media presents a whole new risk environment that really didn’t exist a few years ago. This is a risk that, left unaddressed, can utterly devastate an individual, association or business. We have all heard of the teacher who lost her job because she posted a picture of herself in Cancun, drinking an adult beverage. What do you think would happen if an individual, or worse yet, an officer of a business, made an offending comment on social media and the offended party files suit? There actually is coverage for that and it isn’t particularly expensive. But in order to properly insure, we must understand the terms insurance companies use. PERSONAL LIABILITY VS. PERSONAL INJURY Personal Liability – provides coverage for bodily injury and/or property damage sustained by others for which you, your family members or your business/association are legally responsible. An example would be someone getting injured on your premises from tripping on the steps. Personal Injury – provides coverage for OTHER THAN bodily injury or property damage. This includes false arrest, detention, or imprisonment; malicious prosecution; wrongful eviction; slander; libel; and invasion of privacy. This is more of a mental or psychological based claim. An example would be your child makes a harsh remark to a classmate and they mentally hurt them. Or you deny renting a property to someone because of their race. Personal Injury coverage is always excluded from a policy and it must be “endorsed” to the policy to provide coverage. With today’s social media sites like Facebook, Yelp, Instagram and others, you could be more at risk than you think for a personal injury claim. Keep in mind you can be vicariously responsible for the acts of others while they are on these sites as well. In our litigious society, people don’t hesitate to sue another because they have been “offended”. Mounting legal fees and plaintiff friendly court systems could leave a major hole in your pocket book without this coverage.


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