Do I Need Flood Insurance?

Almost everyone has a risk of being flooded, regardless of where they live. According to the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency, more than 20 percent of all flood insurance claims come from areas outside of high-risk flood zones. That still means the vast majority come from high-risk areas. How can a property owner find out what his flood risk is? FEMA FEMA considers a property to be at high risk of flood if there is at least a one-in-four chance of flooding during the life of a 30-year mortgage. Geographic areas with this risk are known as special flood hazard areas (SFHA). Federal regulations require federally regulated or insured mortgage lenders to confirm that mortgaged properties in these areas carry 

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Insuring, Protecting Your Wine Collection

Are you a wine aficionado? Do you have a collection of fine and rare wines? If you fit the bill, you are surely storing the wine properly. But what if you had a major power outage in the summer that lasted for days and your collection simmered in the high heat? What if a hurricane, tornado or earthquake struck, breaking hundreds of bottles of wine in the process? Although broken thermostats and electrical power outages may not be avoidable, there are still risk management measures that can be put in place to help prevent or reduce the loss. While there are a number of measures you can take to protect your wine, in the end, your best efforts could be 

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Insurance for Tattoo & Body Piercing Parlors

Richmond, Virginia loves ink! Richmond has the 3rd most tattooed residents in the U.S. next to only Las Vegas and Miami. The last thing on most people’s mind when selecting a tattoo is insurance but before applying permanent ink, make sure the tattoo parlor and artist have insurance. Insurance Coverage General Liability Professional Liability Property Inland Marine Molestation or Abuse Assault or Battery Tattoo parlors often have General Liability insurance, which provides coverage if you trip and fall in their store, but General Liability does not provide coverage if the artist makes a mistake. Ask for a Certificate of Insurance Ask your tattoo artist for a Certificate of Insurance. This document will show which type of insurance they have and 

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Why Insurance Rates are Increasing

We are often asked why are insurance rates increasing? I didn’t file a claim or get a ticket. Insurance premiums are a function of these factors: The perception of future risks, recent catastrophic claims and the return available on investment. Huge fires and other disasters factor in, such as the Colorado Springs blazes earlier this year and other natural disasters have also forced large payouts. Even the devastating Japanese earthquake and tsunami from 2010 affects insurance premiums in the United States, since insurance companies routinely purchase re-insurance coverage from very large companies. And these reinsurance companies, such as General Re, have been increasing their rates. In addition, jury awards and settlement costs in a variety of commercial fields have put 

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Get Insurance for your Kids in College

Back in the day kids showed up to their college dorms with not much more than the clothes on their backs and a couple of suitcases, maybe a small stereo. A generation ago, laptops were nearly unheard of in college dorms. Obviously, those days are over. Today college students rely on a small arsenal of laptops, tablets, smart phones and other valuable electronic devices – all critical for socializing, as well as completing homework and studying. Access to a laptop isn’t a luxury for students anymore – it’s a must. Homeowners vs. Renter’s Insurance Fortunately, for parents with a homeowner’s insurance policy, most full-time students are covered against theft and other common hazards under that policy if their primary residence 

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Landlords May Be Legally Liable For Tenants’ Injuries

One of the risks from being a landlord is that tenants or visitors to the premises may get injured. Injuries may result from factors out of the landlord’s control. However, in some cases the landlord may be legally liable for accident. Negligence A landlord is legally liable for a tenant’s or visitor’s injury if he is negligent. The law considers a person’s actions to be negligent if: He owed a duty to someone else to be careful He was not careful The other person suffered some kind of actual harm The first person’s failure to be careful caused the harm. In the case of a landlord, this means: The lease or some other agreement made the landlord responsible for maintaining 

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5 Insurance Changes to Make When You Retire

Whether you plan to travel the world, run marathons, serve your community or spend more time with family, retirement will bring radical changes in the ways you spend your time. And whenever life changes, so do the risks you face — which means retirement is a good time to look closely at your insurance coverage. You might need more, less or different coverage, and you might also qualify for new discounts.   Here are five insurance tasks you should prioritize as you enter retirement. 1. Ask about car insurance discounts and coverage There are a couple of ways you can save money on car insurance once you retire: Tell your car insurance agent or company you’re no longer commuting. Driving 

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5 Crucial Insurance Changes After Divorce

Any major life change sends a ripple effect through your finances — especially a divorce. Insurance matters may seem trivial next to the emotional upheaval of ending a marriage. But minding the details now can prevent financial pain later. Here’s a look at five insurance changes to address after a divorce. 1. Life insurance Buying life insurance and naming an ex-spouse as beneficiary may be required under a divorce agreement. If a former spouse dies, the surviving ex-spouse can use the life insurance payout to replace alimony or child support payments. Term life is an inexpensive way to provide the safety net. You choose the term, such as 10, 20 or 30 years. Once the term ends, the coverage ends. 

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Misclassifying Workers as Independent Contractors is Bad for Your Business

Employer misclassification of workers as independent contractors is a large and growing problem. Employers trying to keep their costs down may inadvertently or deliberately misclassify workers who should be classified as employees. They escape employment taxes, unemployment and workers’ compensation insurance costs, and paying overtime rates required by law for employees. They also cheat workers and gain an unfair advantage over their law-abiding competitors. Federal and state authorities have begun to crack down. The U.S. Department of Labor won $79 million in settlements for 109,000 workers in 2014 alone. The employers caught breaking the rules come in all sizes and from many industries. To name a few examples: – In 2013, a federal judge ordered a large provider of information 

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The Importance of Insurance Company Ratings and Financial Strength

Insurance is a very special industry. The whole value of an insurance policy of any kind resides within a simple promise: The promise to pay a potentially large benefit in the event of a claim. But the claim could happen many, many years in the future. For example, life insurance policies routinely pay no benefit for several decades – during which time the policy owner is paying premiums. Is the insurance company capable of keeping that promise? Will the company even be around after many years? What if there were a major disaster or other event that would require a company to pay many claims at the same time? Does the company have the assets and liquidity to pay claims 

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