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Protecting Your Company from Employment Practices Liability Claim

Managing a workforce of any size carries exposure to legal claims made by employees. Employment liability claims can be based on a variety of issues such as a hostile working environment, unfair hiring practices, discrimination, and improper classification of job status. Discrimination is a particularly prevalent type of claim that employers need to be conscientious of.

Risk Mitigation

It’s imperative for employers to adopt policies designed to promote fair and statutorily compliant employment practices. It’s especially important for employers to take active measures to ensure that policies are followed consistently. In addition, employers need to maintain comprehensive insurance coverage aimed at addressing claims related to employment practices liability.

Examples of Employment Liability Claims

Employment practices liability claims can take on many forms. The following are examples of actual claim scenarios from Axis Insurance Services:

  • An employee claimed that derogatory remarks made on an online bulletin board resulted in defamation and emotional distress.
  • An employee claimed that she was sexually harassed when coworkers said that she was having a sexual relationship with a colleague and asked her inappropriately sexual questions about her personal life.
  • An employee was allegedly terminated for complaining about not being paid due overtime. A second employee discussed the situation with upper management and claimed that he was improperly terminated as a result.

3 Factors That Affect Your Workers Compensation Costs

For many businesses, Virginia workers compensation rates seem to increase every year. Business owners need to find ways to reduce their expenses, including insurance coverage, in order to stay profitable. Are you wondering what may make your premiums higher? These three factors may be part of why your workers compensation cost more than the average policy.

1. The Size of Your Company

Virginia workers compensation is based on a business’s total payroll. The greater the amount your employees are paid, the higher your rate may be. You can ask your agent to explain how payroll affects insurance rates.

2. Your Line of Work

If your company is in manufacturing or requires manual labor or hazardous conditions, you can expect to pay more for workers compensation. Likewise, if the majority of your task force performs sedentary work in a traditional office setting, you may pay less for your coverage.

3. Previous Claims

Companies with several claims against their policy for accidents or injuries on the job represent a greater risk for the insurance company. If your business has used the policy, you can expect your premiums to be greater.

The good news for businesses is that you may qualify for discounts or credits for your Virginia workers compensation plan. Ask your agent to review your policy and make recommendations to reduce your expenses. You may be surprised at ways you can save your company money on this and other insurance coverage.

Top 3 Tips for Buying Business Liability Insurance

Florida is a great place for launching your new business. As one of the major economies in the United States, it offers vast opportunities for realizing your entrepreneurial dreams. With that said, there are realities that can put your company at risk, such as lawsuits. Buying liability insurance in Florida will protect your startup against financial losses. Below are suggestions on how to secure the best coverage.

Consult With a Licensed Broker

A licensed agent has met all the state’s requirements for selling insurance policies. Reliable sources for finding agents with this credential are Florida’s Department of Financial Services or the Florida Association of Insurance Agents.

Compare Insurance Agencies

When seeking liability insurance in Florida, compare agencies. Every insurer is different. For example, some firms only provide coverage for certain types of businesses. Yet, others service a broad range of industry sectors, ranging from construction to technology. Additionally, look for a company with decades of experience and a solid reputation.

Calculate the Risk

Risk impacts insurance premiums. In other words, if you’re in a high-risk business, then you’ll pay more for coverage. For example, a building contractor carries a higher risk than a marketing consultant, so the premiums are more costly.

The last thing you need to worry about is unforeseen financial losses. This is why obtaining liability insurance in Florida is essential to the success of your company.

 

Restaurants Have a Need for Hospitality Insurance Programs

From a restaurant’s risk management perspective, owners need to understand the many risks associated with restaurants and do their best to prevent accidents and injuries from occurring. There are tons of operational risks that should be addressed, including injuries resulting from slips and falls (a common problem both for customers and employees), workers may injure backs, cut fingers, or be burned by hot liquids, and kitchens are the place where fires are likely to break out.

Many operational risks associated with restaurants can be controlled through the use of hospitality insurance programs, along with sound risk management strategies, such as having rigorous cleanliness practices, employee education, and protective devices such as sprinkler systems for protecting cooking equipment and the building.

Reputational damage cannot always be overcome

Any peril or negative event can result in serious risk to reputation. Outbreaks of food-borne illnesses often devastate food suppliers and restaurant chains even when it affects only one location, causing a loss of customers new and old. While maintaining proper cleanliness and employee education are crucial, restaurants also need to develop a plan to address unexpected disruptions since maintaining customer confidence requires careful planning and communication.

As the restaurant industry continues to grow and be profitable, restaurants will face increased competition. Attracting new customers and maintaining current customers may require offering additional services, such as entertainment and catering. These changes may also affect financial risk and present other concerns. Any new strategy must be carefully aligned with a client profile that reflects the restaurant, its menu, and its reputation, while expanding its ability to attract the target consumer.

Considering the perfect location can be key to success

In the restaurant industry, location is key, so restaurant owners must pay close attention to demographics when choosing a new location for business. Even the most minor changes in policies or pricing can have a major effect on a restaurant’s access to their target audience.

Restaurant owners should consider risk management practices, along with any strategic goals being implemented. Many risks certainly cannot be easily controlled, but by identifying risks, and utilizing hospitality insurance programs that address the many issues you may encounter, you can make a difference in your ability to succeed or fail.

Small Business and Commercial Crime Insurance

It can be difficult managing a small business these days, so when your business is really doing well you need to protect your assets in order to continue being successful. As customer satisfaction soars and sales increase you may determine you need to expand your staff in order to continue to provide the type of quality service that has gotten you this far.

Unfortunately you begin to notice that the inventory is not adding up against the amount of sales that have taken place. In addition to this, your petty cash receipts seem to have become smaller since the new hires have come on board. It’s pretty clear that someone within your organization has taken to stealing from the very person that provided him or her with an opportunity to make a decent wage. Commercial crime insurance is just the policy needed to deal with circumstances of this nature.

Risk management can help to reduce losses

It’s hurtful to think that someone you’ve entrusted to take part in helping your business grow would take unfair advantage of you. But this is only part of the problem. Shoplifters, burglars, and robbers can all play a part in decimating the very company you’ve spent your time trying to build up into a successful venture. Insurance will certainly aid you in compensating for any losses that you may experience, but it makes equal sense to also implement a comprehensive risk management program.

An effective risk management program helps owners and managers prepare for these types of risks and concerns before any actual losses occur, and that preparation can be the difference between having a profitable or unprofitable business.

How to manage risk

Just a little bit of risk management can yield a greater return on investment than using that same time pursuing new business because good risk management addresses important factors, such as employees, materials, operations, facilities, and other processes in place.

Take a good look at the areas where your business faces vulnerability, and then develop a program to deal with the things that are most likely to go wrong in each one of these areas. It’s important to take steps to prevent potential problems. Keep accurate records of your inventory and beef up security, installing cameras, locks and other safety features geared to reduce your exposure to crime. Commercial crime insurance will be a valuable asset to have, but prevention is still worth a pound of cure.

Understanding the Mechanics of Ransom Insurance

Companies that send employees overseas for business purposes expose themselves to risks in the event that the workers become hostages of a hostile group in a foreign country. Businesses should have a ransom insurance plan in place for such a scenario. Ransom insurance in PA is complicated but necessary.

Non-Disclosure to Employees

In most cases, companies are prohibited from informing employees that there is a ransom insurance policy in place when they travel. This is necessary to prevent fraud. Employees who know they are covered may fabricate a hostage situation or collude with their kidnappers. If you discuss the policy in any capacity, it may be declared null and void.

How Ransom Money Moves to Captors

When the captor makes a demand for ransom in exchange for the kidnap victim, the ransom insurance policy does not provide the payment. All ransom money must be paid by the business directly. Once the crisis has passed, the insurance policy provides for reimbursement of those payments. Many policies will also cover any payments that are lost on their way to the captors. Note that ransom insurance only covers up to the policy limit. Any expenses beyond the dollar amount in the policy will remain the company’s responsibility.

Keeping employees safe when they travel overseas includes having a plan in effect if the worst happens. Look into ransom insurance in PA to keep your company covered in any situation.

2 Qualities You Want to See in Workers Compensation Brokers

When dealing with brokers to negotiate an insurance policy, you want to be certain you are dealing with the best. While every business owner’s needs are going to differ, there are key qualities you want to see in all workers compensation brokers you deal with. This will ensure you get the best workers comp policy possible.

1. Understanding

You do not want a broker who just tries to sell you a policy without knowing everything you need. Pay attention to how the broker treats you during a consultation. Does he or she actually listen to your needs and concerns? An excellent broker will listen to you diligently and then offer a policy that works ideally for you.

2. Comprehensive Knowledge

A good broker should do more than just sell you a policy and leave. He or she should also inform you of what your policy entails. You may have certain tax obligations as a result of acquiring workers compensation insurance, and it would be handy if your broker simply told you everything you needed to know.

Honesty, tactfulness and accessibility are qualities any experienced broker will have. Schedule consultations with as many workers compensation brokers as you need to in order to find a policy that makes you completely confident.

Many Employers Rely on Vendor Management Services

The primary purpose of vendor management services (VMS) is to provide clients with a primary point of contact for any and all staffing needs. A VMS helps to control the flow of job orders to and from the supplier community, giving the clients the ability to track and control spending on necessary resources while also ensuring that the needed requirements are being met in a timely and cost-efficient manner.

The contingent workforce is vital to the success of these entities. This is a provisional group of workers hired by a firm to participate on daily work assignments on a temporary basis (commonly known as freelancers, independent contractors, independent professionals, and temporary contract workers). VMS is a type of contingent workforce management and there are several other terms associated with VMS, all of which are relevant to the contingent workforce or staffing industry.

This arrangement provides employers with a simple way to find qualified staffing when required from any number of local agencies across the nation. This also helps to measure the quality of service that staffing companies are providing to their clients, but it takes a great deal of effort from clients to manage the literally hundreds of staffing vendors that provide such services.

 

Managed Service Providers aid staffing companies

The managed service providers (MSPs), many of whom originated from staffing agencies, realized their need for employing agencies, used their own expertise when it came to managing many of these programs. Due to their own background in providing temp staffing services, they understand many of the intricacies involved in the process. Like most other companies, they also understand that there are certain risks and exposures involved, and the need to purchase staffing insurance to protect their investment.

This entire process gives them the ability to find the best candidates for the staffing agency while focusing on speed of delivery, all associated costs, and reliability of the candidates and the program. This process has proven to increase efficiency, reduce many of the costs involved and also increase the level of competition. In the end, having vendor management services can easily make many of the difficulties associated with the staffing industry a lot easier to deal with.

The Ever-changing Landscape of Claims Management

With workers compensation claims on the rise, state governments and insurance companies are scrambling to find a balance between a worker’s rights and an insurer’s rights. Your clients rely on you to find them the most affordable policies for their clients’ needs, alongside workers claims management to help them weed out employees who try to take “paid” vacations.

Don’t Stop at the Policy

The policy isn’t all that matters. As an insurance broker, you seek more than just a great deal. You’re the middleperson, and you need to ensure that the wholesaler with whom you work can address all of your clients’ needs, including workers compensation coverage for high-risk employees. This coverage is hard to find, which makes it a lucrative market for your agency.

Why Proper Management Is Important

This isn’t your only concern, however. On the East Coast, New Jersey and New York are embroiled in legislative changes to workers compensation systems, which complicates the claims management process. You’re the agent. Your job is to find the policy; it’s the policy issuers job to understand the legal mumbo-jumbo.

A wholesaler that offers workers claims management helps you and your client. By providing educational programs designed to turn your clients into worker’s compensation whizzes, you’ve just brokered the perfect insurance policy and know-how to go along with it, which, in turn, increases your client base.

Staffing Insurance and New Start-Ups

A staffing company is considered essential in today’s market for any business in need of temporary employees to cover the position of a regular employee who, for whatever reason, is unable to report for work. Their primary goal is to develop relationships with employers in order to place qualified individuals in any positions for that employer when a vacancy occurs. It’s the job of the staffing company to help fill short-term and long-term positions and, at times, provide direct placement assistance for employers.

Starting a staffing company can actually be a much easier endeavor than many other businesses when it comes to start-ups. In general, a staffing company requires fewer licenses and needs only to address minimal requirements in order to proceed with licensing and permits. Though the licenses and requirements are few, the requirements must be met in order to operate the business legally and place applicants with business clients. Staffing insurance is an important part of this plan.

 

Keeping it legal

Just like any other business, a temp agency must have a legal business structure in place. In many cases it’s preferable for the company to have a corporate entity that protects the owners from legal liabilities that may result from any errors and omissions conducted by their placed employees. They may elect to have a partnership or corporate business structure, however the business structure doesn’t have to be chartered within the state in which it operates.

Once it has secured its legal business structure, it must then register its operations with the state in which it will be operating. The registration process varies by state and requires a registration fee. Once completed, the state will provide the staffing company with a state tax identification number that must be referenced when paying the business’s taxes, including staff and employee withholding.

 

No business can succeed without insurance in place

Any business that farms out temporary workers needs a staffing insurance policy that will help protect the company from liability issues and also aid the company in meeting its legal requirements. Most staffing company start with a general liability insurance policy, as well as workers’ compensation for its full-time staff members. Workers’ comp insurance is especially important when a staffing company offers long-term staffing services.