After decades of insurance experience, our team at Lowry has seen it all. From personal policies to business insurance, here are some of the most common insurance questions that we get each week and helpful answers to help point you in the right direction.
If you're a property owner, general contractor, subcontractor, lender, architect, or other professional that is financially involved in an ongoing construction project, builder's risk mitigates the threat of project failure in the case of an accident.
The primary focus of a builder's risk insurance policy is the structure that is under construction, but its coverage goes further. On-site materials, supplies, and equipment are also covered under many policies. Additionally, in the case of project downtime, it may help cushion that financial blow. Lost sales, rental income, additional interest on loans, and real estate taxes are often covered by builder's risk insurance.
The overall cost varies from between situations. Policyholders may need more or less coverage depending on the value covered structures and materials, the cost of the project itself, and more.
The Hartford, one of Lowry Insurance's trusted partners, defines cyber insurance as a type of policy meant to provide more coverage and prepare for, respond to and recover from cyberattacks toward their organization.
While each policy varies, cyber insurance generally covers both the cost of a breach and the cost of claims and lawsuits resulting from it. The cost of a breach can include crisis management, ransom payments for ransomware attacks, and the cost of data restoration, among other situational items.
Without large-scale IT departments, small businesses are even more likely to need cyber liability insurance to protect them in the digital world.
If someone claims that your business caused property damage or injury, general liability insurance provides peace of mind that you're protected. It can help cover responses to these claims, defense against reputational harm, copyright infringement, medical costs for customers and clients, or damage to rented property.
While general liability insurance is not a normal requirement for small businesses, it's good practice to keep your business covered from all angles. The Hartford analyzed over 1 million claims to find that 4 in 10 small businesses will face a property or general liability claim in the next ten years. Make sure that your business is covered.
As with all insurance policies, each varies depending on the needs of the policyholder and the provider's options. General factors that impact the cost are a company's age, size, location, building condition, and industry. Additionally, the number of insurance claims made by the company in the past is likely to impact the overall cost.
For companies that are regularly shipping materials around the country, inland marine insurance is essential. Even if your business doesn't rely on shipments to connect with customers, trade show sets and marketing materials may also be covered in transit.
Inland and Ocean Marine Insurance often covers the cost of repair or replacement of portable business properties explicitly covered in your policy. Storm damage, fires, water damage, and theft are all generally covered.
As with every business policy, the overall cost of a policy varies depending on a variety of factors. The size of the business, the value of the product in transit, and the industry itself are all examples of factors that can impact the overall cost of an inland marine insurance policy.
Workers' comp provides coverage for employees that become injured or sick from a work-related cause. A policy generally covers the cost of disability benefits, income, ongoing medical costs, and, in the case of death, funeral expenses.
Nearly every state requires all businesses to have workers' compensation insurance for their team - not offering workers' compensation can result in hefty fines for business owners. For independent sole-proprietors, you may be able to opt-out of providing workers' compensation for your own needs. It's best to check on the requirements of your own state before investing in a policy.
More than likely, yes. While some states may not require auto insurance, every state does require financial responsibility for drivers in the event of a wreck. Without proper coverage, the responsible party could be left with significant bills.
While each auto insurance policy varies, most states require drivers to carry bodily injury liability and property damage liability, covering both cars and drivers involved in accidents. Some states may also require you to carry medical payments or personal injury protection (PIP) to reimburse medical expenses for injuries to drivers and passengers, even covering lost wages and related expenses.
Each policy varies, though most basic policies cover damage caused by your car rather than damage to your car. For additional coverage on your own vehicle, it's best to add collision coverage, comprehensive coverage, and glass coverage to defend against any circumstance that may bring a surprise cost if your car is damaged.
Most homeowners insurance policies do not include flood insurance.
There are two types of flood insurance coverage: building property coverage and personal contents coverage.
Building property coverage normally protects the structure, wiring, plumbing, and A/C system within your home. It also covers any in-house decor a detached garage.
Personal contents coverage often protects items within the property itself, such as clothing, furniture, linens, electronics, and some valuables.
There is no difference between these three! They're simply different names for the same type of policy.
Generally speaking, homeowners insurance covers property damage, personal property loss, personal liability, and added living costs. These four sections come together to provide complete protection against threats in the unfortunate situation of damage or loss.
While the specifics of homeowners insurance policies vary depending on the provider and the plan, it's best to consider umbrella insurance after you've reached the maximum level of liability protection on your existing plan.
Umbrella insurance covers high costs that go beyond your existing policy, providing an additional layer of coverage in extenuating circumstances.
The necessity of umbrella insurance varies from person to person. If you are constantly searching for the utmost level of insurance protection, then umbrella insurance may be a wise investment for the peace of mind that it brings alone. However, if you are someone who isn't at an above-average risk of being involved in a lawsuit, then umbrella insurance may not be as valuable.
While umbrella insurance covers a broad swath of situations, there is no insurance policy that provides complete comprehensive coverage. Umbrella insurance generally doesn't cover damage to your own property, business liabilities, and war-related liabilities.
In general, the cost of umbrella insurance is relatively affordable - by design. The insurance Information Institute claims that most $1M policies cost between $150 and $300 per year, rising in cost alongside the amount of coverage. These affordable prices are due to the requirement that most providers have in place to have the maximum amount of coverage on another policy before agreeing to umbrella coverage.
Valuables insurance can cover jewelry, arts, wine and spirits, collectibles, and more.
It's good practice to have your valuables regularly appraised to ensure that you have the right amount of coverage for repair or replacement if they are damaged or stolen. The cost of insurance varies depending on the value of the item or items being insured.
While each policy varies, it's generally the case that basic homeowners policies have limited valuables insurance coverage and can leave you with no compensation in the event of a devastating loss. For those that want comprehensive coverage over their belongings, connect with a trusted insurance professional to learn more about what your policy covers and to explore options for supplemental valuables insurance.
Short-term policies may payout for up to two years, though the majority last for a few months to a year. Long-term policies often provide benefits for a few years or the entire duration of the disability.
It's essential to sign up for STD and LTD coverage as soon as possible during the initial enrollment period. By taking action as quickly as possible, no pre-existing conditions will impact your coverage eligibility.
Yes. While the waiting period varies based on the provider, most long-term disability coverage has a waiting period of 3-26 weeks after initial onboarding. This period aligns with eligibility for short-term disability that provides coverage during this transitional period.
Long-term disability policies generally have two disability periods: "Own Occupation" and "Any Occupation." Own Occupation is a period of up to two years of payable benefits in which the employee cannot perform their regular job or a similar position. Any Occupation is an indefinite period in which the policyholder cannot perform any job they are reasonably qualified to do.
LTD requires you to frequently share medical information with your provider to ensure that you maintain coverage eligibility. Most providers also require interested parties to apply for Social Security Disability benefits, assisting as necessary throughout the process.
Yes. Annual eye exams are an important part of maintaining your personal health and monitoring cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration, and other dangerous disorders and diseases. If your vision starts to falter with age, you're able to plan for corrective eyewear ahead of time.
Covered services vary depending on the policy and the provider. However, most vision insurance plans cover routine preventative eye care such as eye exams and fully or partially cover eyeglasses and contact lenses.
While each policy varies, elective eye surgeries like LASIK may provide a discounted cost. Connect with your provider for more information.
Your ability to visit any practice varies depending on your policy type. Some policies restrict policyholders to doctors within their specified network and bar out-of-network visits unless directly referred by an in-network doctor. Connect with your provider for more information.