Workplace Injuries Spike In Spring

Especially Following the Spring Switch to Daylight Saving Time

Spring Dandelion Bloom

Severe Spring Weather

There are risks associated with the weather during all months of the year, but extreme weather is especially problematic in the Spring months. Depending upon where your business is located, there can be snow, rain, sleet, hail, thunderstorms, or even tornadoes. If you have employees who work out in the elements, you need to have crystal clear procedures for how they should proceed during certain weather related scenarios.

Insects and Vegetation

There are many types of insects and vegetation that are just springing to life during the Spring Months. Many of the critters coming to life carry a number of diseases. In addition to insects and rodents, there are also plants like poison ivy that can cause a number of rashes. Because of these issues, it is important to have all employees wear proper clothes to prevent exposure to these dangerous insects, rodents, and plants.

Sun Exposure

Sun exposure becomes more of an issue as the warm weather appears more often. If you have employees who work out in the elements, it is important to prepare them for heat stress and sunburns. It can be easy to forget about the dangers of the sun when the temperatures are more mild. Sunburns in April are just as dangerous as sunburns in July. Help your staff deal with these exposures by providing proper breaks, shade and plenty of access to water.

Dust and Allergies

Seasonal Allergies can be a debilitating problem for many people. In some instances the problem is so severe it can cause some suffers to have problems with asthma. These problems intensify in the Spring Months because of the high levels of pollen. If you have employees who work primarily indoors, improving the indoor air quality with proper ventilation, maintaining the HVAC System, and using non-toxic cleaning supplies. If you have employees working out  in the elements, it is wise to have morning toolbox talks about what elements your staff are dealing with this time of year and how they can prepare to deal with those elements.

Slips, Trips, and Falls

In many parts of the country, Spring is a time when enormous amounts of snow melt. This creates a very muddy environment for your employees. If the area of the country your business operates in deals with snow melt, it is important to prepare your staff for slippery conditions. This preparation is paramount to creating a safe work environment during the Spring Months. If your business is open to the public, there is extra liability if customers are hurt on your property. Dealing with these issues in advance should reduce the frequency and severity of insurance claims.

 

Exterminator

6 Insurance Policies an Exterminator Should Secure

An Exterminator is someone whose occupation is primarily the extermination of troublesome rodents and insects. They attempt to rid a property of multiple types of insects for both personal residents and commercial dwellings. For purposes of workers compensation insurance exterminators are classification code 9014. Because the essence of an exterminator business is keeping unhealthy critters out of people’s lives. With this business, comes an enormous amount of risk. Here are six types of insurance all exterminator businesses should consider securing.

Exterminator

General Liability

General Liability Insurance is designed to cover basic liability a business faces to outside third parties. It covers common slips, trips, and falls that occur because of the actions of your exterminator business. It is crucial to remember the policy is not all encompassing. There are several types of liability that are not covered within a general liability policy. For this reason, it is important to partner with an independent insurance agent to make sure your business covers all risks.

Workers Compensation

Workers Compensation Insurance is required by law for most businesses in most states. Some states have exceptions for businesses depending upon industry, revenue, and number of employees. Even if your business is not legally required to carry coverage, it is usually in your best interest to secure coverage. Workers Comp covers employees when they are injured for medical costs and some lost wages when they are hurt and not able to work. It covers the business in the form of not having to risk being sued when an employee is hurt within normal business operations.

Professional Liability

Professional Liability Insurance will protect an exterminator business from the expert advice and services it offers. If an exterminator overlooks termite damage or misapplies a chemical, the business may be liable to damages resulting from those mistakes. Without professional liability in place, these are damages the business is liable for if a lawsuit is brought by a third party.

Pollution Liability

Pollution Liability Insurance is offered on either a claims made or occurrence basis. This means a Claims Made Policy covers insurance claims based upon the time period the claim was filed. An Occurrence Policy covers a company based upon when the claim occurred.  Pollution Liability provides coverage for third party bodily injury, property damage, defense, cleanup, and related defense costs as a result of pollution conditions.

Commercial Auto

If an exterminator business has employees who drive from location to location as a part of their job, some form of commercial auto insurance is necessary. If the business owns the vehicles being used, a standard commercial auto policy is all that is necessary. If the business has employees who use leased vehicles or their own personal vehicles, a hired and non-owned auto insurance policy should be added to the businesses Business Owner’s Package (BOP).

Umbrella Coverage

Umbrella Insurance is a cost effective way to ad to the limits of existing policies. The key portion of this policy for business owners to remember is that an Umbrella Insurance Policy only kicks in if the underlying claim is covered. This means that if a business has property damage that is covered by an in place commercial property policy and the damages are larger than limits of the policy, the umbrella policy will cover the additional damages up to the limits of umbrella policy. For this reason, it is a good idea to have an umbrella policy added to a business owner’s package.

Pet Services

Pet Sitting, Pet Waste Removal Services, and Dog Walking Companies 

There are many types of businesses related to pet services. Pet services companies all have unique risks that need to be protected. Not all insurance packages are created equal and it is important for packages in this industry to be designed specifically for each individual business. In today’s busy world, many pet owners do not have enough time to both play with their pet and also care for the dogs many needs. Some pet owners simply don’t want to deal with grooming and waste removal. Depending upon what services your business offers, the business can create an enormous amount of liability concerns. In order to properly insure your business, it is important to take an adequate amount of time to determine exactly what type and amount of insurance your business should secure. Here are three types of companies who are included in Class Code 9014, four tips to remember when purchasing coverage, and five types of coverage businesses in this industry need to secure.

Dog running along a trail.

Pet Sitting

Pet Sitting businesses are booming in many metro areas throughout the United States. Some provide services to walk a dog during the day while a person is at work, but most specialize in offering services for when a pet owner is away on vacation. Many pet owners like the idea of leaving their dog at home in a familiar setting as opposed to a boarding house.

Pet Waster Removal Services

Pet waste removal services help customers when they need one time cleanings or ongoing periodic cleanings. Some people may want cleanings when they buy a new property that has been used by a pet owner. Most customers are regular ongoing customers who have both indoor and outdoor pets and the pet owners need periodic deep cleanings.

Dog Walking Companies

Unlike pet sitting companies, dog walking companies specialize primarily on walking a dog during the day when a pet owner is away at work. As people work more hours and metro commutes get even longer, these services are needed by more pet owners.

Pet Services Companies include companies that walk dogs during the day or when pet owners are away on vacation.

How Pet Services Companies save on Insurance?

Partner with an Independent Agent

Partnering with an Independent Agent is one of the best ways to secure insurance for your business. This is because an independent agent is not connected to any one insurance carrier. An independent agent sells the products and services of many carriers. Because of this independence, an independent agent can tell you the positives and negatives of each policy and each carrier. A captive agent sells the products of only one carrier and they are only able to tell you the positives of that one carrier. In the long run this will get your business better coverage at a lower price.

Communicate Long and Honestly With Your Agent

It is important to speak long and honestly with your independent insurance agent. No one knows your business as well as you do and because of that it is important to talk about the ins and outs of your business with your agent. It is equally important to express to them your level of comfort with risk and what you value in a relationship with your insurance agent. Remember, your agent speaks with many people from many different walks of life throughout the day.  not all of those business owners value the same things in an insurance relationship as you do. Tell them what you value and set expectations on the front end in order to prevent many headaches down the road.

Shop Around Your Policy

It is important to shop around your policy periodically. It is not a good idea to switch carriers each year based on a slight drop in price, but it is important to make sure your carrier is competitive with the marketplace. Establishing a long term relationship with your carrier is important because when you experience a year when you have a severe claim or a large number of small claims. If you have purchased insurance from a carrier multiple times, they are more likely to work with you on premium after you have a bad year claims wise. At the same time, it is important to make sure your business is getting a fair price on premium.

Create a Safety Plan

A Safety Program can have an immense amount of impact on a businesses experience modification rating. This rating is the single most impactful aspect of what a carrier looks at when they are determining what to charge a business for commercial insurance. Setting a safety program for your organization can keep the frequency and severity of claims low. This will have a positive impact on what you pay for insurance.

What Insurance should a Pet Services Company Secure?

General Liability

General Liability Insurance is required by law for most business in most states. General liability covers the basic liability a business faces to third parties who are damaged by the actions of the business. This coverage is not all encompassing and it is important to speak with your agent to determine what it does and does not cover. When having this conversation, your agent should be able to help you determine what additional coverages your business needs.

Workers Comp

Workers Compensation Insurance is also required by law by most businesses in most states across the United States. There are some exceptions in each state depending upon the industry a business operates in, the state you operate, the number of employees, and revenue of a business. Workers comp covers a business for injuries that occur to employees on the job. It is referred to as the ‘Exclusive Remedy’ because it provides wage replacement and medical expenses to injured employees while businesses get the peace of mind that they cannot be sued for injuries that occur because of normal business operations.

Lost Key Liability

Lost Key Insurance covers a business who is responsible for keeping up with the keys of another person or businesses property. This coverage will pay to replace the locks of a client if you or an employee lose their keys. One thing to remember is that this coverage is specifically for the replacing of locks, but not other losses that occur because of the lost keys. For instance, if an employee losses a key and is forced to leave a clients property unlocked over night. This coverage will not cover losses that occur if the residence is broken in to over night and possessions are stolen. Also, lost key coverage does not cover criminal activity, like if your employee intentionally takes a key or has a copy made while in possession of the key.

Animal Bailee

Animal Bailee coverage provides covers your business in the event you are held legally liable for injuries or damages sustained by an animal in your care. It also can include a business personal property extension which covers loss and destruction of your property by others’ animals under your care. The bodile injuries that can occur to the pet may occur from fire, wind, theft, escape, flood, vandalism, and attack from other animals. It is important to speak with your agent about the specifics of your particular policy. Each carrier has their own exceptions to each policy. Some common exclusions include:  any criminal or dishonest acts by you or your employees,  theft of animals left in vehicles overnight, sickness, disease or natural causes, or neglect to use all reasonable means to save and preserve the pets.

Commercial Property

Commercial Property insurance is needed if you have a facility where you care for pets, but also if you use your residence for business purposes. Many claims that could arise while doing business are not covered under a personal home owner’s policy. Therefore, it is necessary to secure a commercial property insurance policy in order to properly protect the facility you are operating.

What is a Certificate of Insurance?

When does a Business need a Certificate of Insurance?

A certificate of insurance is a document that is used to provide info about specific insurance coverages. The certificate is issued to one entity and provides information about the insurance coverages another entity has secured. The certificates are usually required as part of a contract between a business, a contractor, and a subcontractor. A certificate of insurance can be offered for General Liability, Business Auto, Umbrella, and Workers Compensation.

Certificate of Insurance

What is Included with a Certificate of Insurance?

The certificate of insurance includes the type of insurance coverage that has been secured, the limits of those policies, and the named insured.  The certificate will also include whether there is an Additional Insured or Waiver of Subrogation associated with any of the policies included in the certificate. It should include detailed information about the company or person who receives the certificate that includes full address, contact name, email address, phone number, and fax number.  When requesting a certificate be sent to another entity, the more information you provide the better.

Who Might need a Certificate of Insurance?

Typically a certificate of insurance is needed when a business hires a general contractor for a job or a contractor hires a subcontractor to perform a specific part of a job. The certificate is provided as proof the business or the general contractor made sure the contractor or subcontractor they are interacting with has coverage in place at the time the work was done. It is important to always ask a contractor for a new certificate every time you work with them. Just because someone had coverage in place in the past does not mean they still have coverage. If a business or a general contractor hires a business who does not have proper coverage in place, the business or general contractor will take on the liability for damages in most instances.

What is a Waiver of Subrogation?

Why Might a Business use a Waiver of Subrogation

The term Subrogation refers to the right of an insurer (insurance carrier) to pursue an insurance loss to the insured (the person or entity being insured) in an attempt to recover funds paid in a claim. Conventional Subrogation refers to a relationship between the insured and insurer as defined in an insurance contract. A Waiver of Subrogation is a provision in a contract where an insured waives the right of their insurance carrier to seek reimbursement or seek compensation for losses from a negligent third party. A Waiver of Subrogation is between two parties where one party agrees to waive subrogation rights against another in the event of a loss. A Waiver of Subrogation can be used on a General Liability, Auto Liability, Umbrella Liability and Workers Compensation.

Waiver of Subrogation

What does it mean to waive your rights?

A waiver of subrogation is issued when one party within an insurance claim wants to relinquish the right of subrogation for damages paid out in a claim. Most of the time a waiver of subrogation is entered into between two businesses or a business and a contractor. When it comes to the workers compensation system the claim goes entirely on the insureds insurance history and will increase the experience modification rating of that business. The waiver is most frequently entered in to in order for one entity to force the other entity to not allow the insurance company of the insured to come after the other party within the insurance claim for damages that were the fault of that business or its employees. It is usually a requirement for a contract and the waiver gives a business the peace of mind they will not be held liable for damages if they are somehow partially responsible for a loss.

How do I obtain a waiver of subrogation?

Most insurance carriers accommodate a waiver of subrogation on most insurance policies. They are most commonly agreed upon with in General Liability, Auto Liability, Umbrella Liability and Workers Compensation Insurance. When engaged in to, the waiver increases the exposure of the insurer which may lead to a higher insurance premium. Before entering into a waiver, it is important to evaluate the probability that employees being injured while on the job. Additionally, it is important to consider whether your employees may be placed in situations where they could be injured themselves offsite due to the negligence of another third party.

Examples of Waiver of Subrogation

Construction Project

When a construction project requires adding on to an existing property. The engineers, architects, and construction company may want a waiver of subrogation for damages caused by the design and construction of the existing property.

Commercial Cleaning Company

A commercial cleaning company may be required to sign a waiver of subrogation in order to enter into a contract with a corporation to clean their property after hours. An example of where this might be necessary is if a cleaning company employee is injured on the property of the corporation they are cleaning, the insurance company of the cleaning company cannot sue the corporation for damages that caused the injury to the employee.

Landlord Tenant Agreements

When a Landlord is renting out a property to a tenant, it may require a two way agreement where both parties give up subrogation rights. The waiver subrogates rights against each other in the event of some kind of loss like damage to the building or fire.

What a Certificate Holder Needs to Know?

Certificates of Insurance are not common for most people in most walks of life. Unless you work in accounting, make purchasing decisions for your company, manage promotional events, or oversee contractors; you have probably never seen a certificate of insurance. A certificate of insurance is a document used to provide information about specific insurance coverages secured by one person within a contract. The certificate verifies insurance coverage has been secured, the types of coverage secured, and the limits of those policies. Also, it will include the insurance carrier, the policy number, the named insured, and the policy effective dates. Now that you know what a certificate of insurance is, here are some tips to remember when you are a certificate holder.

Business Meeting with a certificate holder.

Who is the Certificate Holder?

Being a certificate holder means that you are given proof that insurance is in effect. One of the most common examples of a certificate holder is when a business partners with contractors on a project and it is part of the contract for the contractor to carry their own particular coverage. Here are some additional examples of the types of businesses who frequently need to have certificate holders:

  • Food Truck
  • Yoga Instructor
  • Promotional Events
  • Owner/Operator Truck Drivers
  • Lawncare/Landscaping Companies
  • Maintenance/Janitorial Services Companies

What coverage does the Certificate Holder have?

One common misconception about a certificate holder is that they are not covered under the policy mentioned in the certificate. The certificate is just verification that the other party in the transaction has the required coverage. The person, people, or business covered under the policy is provided on the certificate. It may include both the named insured and the additional insured depending upon the specifics of each policy.

Engineering Contractors need to have a certificate holder when entering into a contract.

What Other Parties are Involved with a Certificate of Insurance?

The holder of a certificate of insurance is a third party to the insurance relationship. The insurance carrier and the named insured are the two primary parties involved with the insurance coverage. An additional insured can be added if it is necessary. Partnering with an independent insurance agent is the best way to determine how to best navigate these issues.

What Types of Coverage Frequently Need a Certificate Holder

 General Liability

General Liability Insurance needs to be provided to a ceritificate holder because it is the primary coverage that protects the business or person from third party liabilities for damages. This is essential when hiring contractors, because if a business hires contractors and fails to make sure the contractor has adequate insurance, the business can be liable for damages caused by the contractor.

Business Auto

Business owners who have employees who operate a motor vehicle as part of their job need to secure proper insurance. If the business owns the vehicles being used the policy is commercial auto. If the employee is driving their personal vehicle or a vehicle rented by the business, the correct policy is hired and non owned auto. This may be needed when a business is providing transportation for a special event like a limousine driver for a wedding.

Umbrella Coverage

Umbrella Insurance Coverage is also referred to as Excess Liability Coverage. Umbrella Insurance provides additional liability coverage above the limits of other existing policies. A certificate holder may need umbrella coverage added to the certificate because the contract requires a certain level of insurance limit for the contract to be valid.

Workers Compensation & Employers’ Liability

Workers’ Compensation Insurance is often referred to as the ‘Exclusive Remedy‘. It is called the ‘Exclusive Remedy’ because the coverage provides medical expenses and some lost wages for employees who are injured on the job. Employers benefit from the peace of mind they cannot be sued for injuries to employees who are hurt because of normal business operations. A Certificate Might be requested because the state laws and regulations require contractors to carry workers comp coverage in order to engage in certain types of work or contracts. The certificate proves the certificate holder made sure the contractor was up to date on all necessary coverages.

What is an Additional Insured?

According to the Insurance and Risk Management Institute (IRMI), an Additional Insured is, ‘A person or organization not automatically included as an insured under an insurance policy who is included or added as an insured under the policy at the request of the named insured‘. Now let me try to help you understand what that means in layman’s terms. An additional insured refers to any person who is not the policyholder, but is covered by an insurance policy. This coverage may be limited to a single event (wedding), or it could last the lifetime of the policy (for a contractor who will be working for the business throughout the entire year). First you need to understand the three different entities involved in a certificate of insurance. Those three entities are the additional insured, the certificate holder, and the policy holder. Here is a brief description of each entity and when it is best to add an Additional Insured or use a Waiver of Subrogation.

Additional Insured listed on a certificate of insurance.

Entities to an Insurance Agreement

Policy Holder:

The policy holder of an insurance policy is the person or business whose name is on the policy. It is important to distinguish this person from the name insured. The named insured is the person or business the policy is purchased to cover.

Additional Insured:

An additional insured is a person or organization that is added to an insurance policy and that person or organization enjoys the benefits of being insured under the policy. This coverage is in addition to the person or organization who originally purchased the insurance policy. The additional insured is named on a certificate of insurance. They only have a certificate if you send them a copy.

Certificate Holder:

The certificate holder is the entity that is provided a certificate of insurance as evidence of the insurance maintained by another entity. In its most simple form, a certificate of insurance is proof of insurance. The certificate holder is holding the certificate of insurance proves a business made sure to check the insurance coverages of contractors they partner with.

Digital picture of a certificate.

When Should Someone Add An Additional Insured?

One of the most common examples of when it is wise to have an additional insured is if someone is a landlord of a commercial building. Landlords commonly require tennants to add the landlord under their insurance policies in order to lease the facility. Another good reason to be add is your business rents a piece of equipment from another business. You may want to add the other business as an additional insured under your insurance policies involving the equipment.

Hiring Employees and Independent Contractors

Hiring employees can be a daunting task for a small business owner. Especially for a startup that is hiring their first employee. The decision to take on employees is a daunting task and should not be taken on lightly. Whether to hire an employee or a 1099 independent contractor depends upon a number of factors including your business, the industry you operate in, and the work that is needed to be done. There are very important legal distinctions between the two types of hires and it is important to get this decision right. Here are several things to consider the next time your business is thinking about hiring.

Hiring an Independent Contractor Electrician.

What are the Differences Between an Employee and a Contractor?

The major difference between an employee and an independent contractor is the level of control the employer has over the worker. When a business hires an employee, they have total control over how, when, and where the employee performs their job. With an independent contractor the employer only has control over the finished product the contractor has been hired to complete. When a business hires a contractor, the business is paying the contractor to perform a specific service for the business on their own time using their own resources. In addition to being on their own time, an independent contractor is responsible for declaring taxes on their own personal income.

When it comes to hiring an employee, the business is responsible for taking care of an enormous amount of paper work. This is especially difficult for startups who are hiring their first employee. Once the first employee is hired, it becomes more easy to deal with the paperwork as you hire more employees.

Employees are a little bit of a safer way to protect your business because when it comes to contractors each state has their own rules and regulations when it comes to interacting with those types of employees. In some states, some types of contractors are considered employees and must be covered by workers compensation insurance. There are other states where this is not the case. Also, if a business is caught interacting with a contractor in a fashion that is meant for an employee there may be fines and other penalties for the business.

Construction business discussing work and hiring an independent contractor.

When Should a Business Consider Hiring an Employee

A business should consider hiring a person as an employee when the work really required the supervision of someone within the business. Hiring an employee is also best when you as the business owner want to control the work hours, the tools used, and the way those tools are used. Employees are better when the work that is required is long-term or ongoing and when the work is essential to your business.

When Should a Business Consider Hiring a Contractor

A business should consider hiring a contractor when the work is not central to the business, the work can be done by a professional who does not need much supervision, or when the work is a short-term project.

Many businesses decide on hiring contractors instead of employees. Do Not Hire Employees Until Your Making a Profit

Employees are much more of a long term decision. If your business depends upon the income of one or a few companies, the loss of one of those customers can have a drastic impact on your business. If one of these customers leave your business shortly after you have added staff, it can be a substantial problem for your business. If your business is not stable and making a sustained profit, it may be a better time to partner with contractors until the business is more stable.

Communicate with all Contractors

The legal definition with a contractor is that the business gives them a task to accomplish, but the business cannot dictate how the employee goes about getting the task accomplished. This does not mean the business should have little to no contact with the contractor. It is important to communicate with the contractor about the actions of the business and the employees they may come in contact with. If the quality of their work is exceptional or not up to par, communicate the thoughts to them on a regular basis. No matter what type of contractor you are using, open lines of communication will make all work much more smooth.

Classify Employees or Contractors Properly

Each state has their own rules and regulations determining how you should classify contractors and employees. Some states have rules where some contractors are considered employees for taxes purposes and within the workers compensation system. It is important to partner with an experienced independent agent and to investigate with the proper governing body yourself. Your independent agent can advise about the proper classification for each individual type of employee, but they can only act upon the information you give them. No one knows your business as well as you do and no one is responsible for the actions of a business more than the owner of that business. Nowhere is this more evident than when it comes to hiring contractors and employees.

How Technology is impacting the Insurance Industry

The Insurance Industry has been Slow to Adapt to Technology

Many people within the insurance industry say the industry has not evolved since the Industrial Revolution. In some ways that is a true statement. With the introduction of several different forms of technology the insurance industry is advancing into the twenty first century. Technology has and will play a large part of the insurance industry for the foreseeable future. The insurance industry has been slow to adapt, but there the best companies are now using technology to gain a competitive advantage in both personal and commercial insurance.

Human Brain, Technology, Artificial Intelligence

Types of Technology Impacting the Insurance Industry

Wearables

Wearables have evolved far beyond wristwatches and clip-on GPS trackers. Some companies are adding smart vests and even boot inserts to monitor employees. What businesses are monitoring include heart rate, body temperature, and even the sweat rate. This helps businesses prevent employees from suffering from heat stroke or hypothermia. Motion sensors are being used to detect when a worker has fallen or in some instances when an employee has not moved for a period of time. These wearable technologies can alert supervisors or nearby colleagues of a potential danger.

Drone Technology

Insurance companies are using drones in a number of ways. One of the best ways carriers are using drones is to speed up the claims process in the aftermath of a natural disaster. Carriers will send an underwriter to an area and inspect multiple damaged properties with the drone saving an enormous amount of time in the claims process. In some instances, the underwriter can begin to process a claim even before the owner of the property is allowed back in to the area. In the future, many within the industry think the industry could use drones to view a property periodically throughout the year to record the condition of a property prior to a claim. Like most things with technology and the insurance industry, this will create new types of risks and privacy issues.

Autonomous Vehicles

Autonomous vehicles bring many different issues to the insurance industry. As autonomous vehicles work now, the insurance is held by the owner of the car. In the future, as autonomous vehicles move into other areas of the economy, the insurance industry will have to develop ways to deal with new types of risks. When a company like Uber or Lyft begin offering rides in unmanned vehicles, the liability insurance required will  change. When a company like Amazon begins using unmanned vehicles for deliveries; the insurance industry, along with the states and federal government, will have to adjust how the liability involved in these vehicles develops.

Computer Technology

How is Technology Impacting the Insurance Industry

Underwriting and Claims are quicker and more efficient

Insurance is a very specific product to sell. The price for one business is dramatically different than another business for a number of reasons. Insurance agents need a lot of information about a business before they can offer a quote on premium. There are a number of reasons for this and it is a frustration for both agents, underwriters, and business owners looking for coverage. Technology is helping to streamline this process.

Technology adoption is helping to better identify fraud and other crimes

There are numerous ways insurance companies are using technology to improve the insurance process for all policyholders. No where is that more evident than when it comes to policing fraud. Wearables and smart home devices are helping insurance companies determine when someone is committing arson or when someone is lying about a crime. A good example of how technology is being used to cover up a crime is in Arkansas in 2015, man was suspected of murder. Using the Amazon Echo and the smart water heater, prosecutors found that a large amount of water was used in the early hours of the morning on the night of the murder. The prosecutors used this as circumstantial evidence to show the man was covering up the crime.

Technology

Technology Requires New Types of Coverage

Cyber Insurance 

Cyber insurance is a necessary coverage for most business need in 2019. There are three types of policies that businesses may need. Cyber Liability and Data Breach Coverage are the two policies most businesses need and they are almost exclusively sold in tandem. The additional coverage some businesses need related to cyber insurance is Technology Errors and Omissions.

Data Breach Insurance deals with the first party damages to you and your business. Cyber liability deals with the third party liability a business faces to other people damaged by a data breach. Technology Errors and Omissions deals with businesses that provide or sell technology services and products. Thus far, carriers have had trouble understanding the risk factors related to cyber. For most policies, the carriers have years of historical loss information to determine the probability of claims. Most businesses have been operating over the internet for less than 10 years and a majority of that time they did not carry cyber insurance. Because of this lack of data, most insurance carriers either do not have a strong appetite for this coverage or they keep premium relatively high.