Premium Advice Blog
Professional Liability v. General Liability
As a business owner, you are liable for accidents, mistakes and injury in which you, your property or your employees may be involved. General Liability provides defense costs, covering damages, awards and legal expenses relating to property damage, personal and advertising injury (i.e. libel and slander) and bodily injury. For example, a client of your small Accounting Services business trips and injures themselves on the unstable front steps of your office building. Your General Liability will cover the impending medical bills or even the resulting lawsuit. However, if a client sues you for an error on their tax returns, your general liability will not cover the devastating costs associated with that lawsuit.
Many general liability policies specifically exclude coverage or claims related to the delivery of professional services. Furthermore, the liability of risk associated with your company’s professional errors, omissions and negligence can be far greater than the bodily injury and property damage associated with a General Liability policy. Consequently, how can you avoid potentially devastating costs associated with lawsuits arising from neglect associated with your professional services?
Professional Liability is essential for those businesses that provide a highly specialized service, including accountants, doctors, information systems specialists, lawyers, etc. In the event a client alleges they have suffered a financial loss as a result of your negligence, Professional Liability can protect you and your business from catastrophic litigation costs. Additionally, losses resulting from error or omission with regards to product or service being sold, personal injury, and even breach of intellectual property or warranty can be covered under Professional Liability coverage.
It is important to talk to a licensed insurance agent when considering this kind of coverage. Stop in or call for a free consultation.
Back to Basics - Side View Mirrors
Every vehicle comes equipped with side view mirrors but there are no instructions on how to properly set them. The idea may sound naive, but even some experienced drivers do not know how to efficiently use side view mirrors. If you can see the side of your vehicle while looking at your mirrors, they are not set properly. Side view mirrors are not intended to see what is directly behind you - that is why you have a rearview mirror. Side view mirrors, however, are intended to spot vehicles in your blind zone. When set properly, side view mirrors can help you avoid devastating auto claims.
Side mirrors should be turned away from the side of your vehicle so they reflect the image of cars in the left and right lanes that are approaching from the rear. Your left mirror should be set to relay the image of a vehicle after it has disappeared from your rearview mirror. The same goes for your right mirror. The previously described region is known as your blind zone. Although blind zones differ in severity, every vehicle has one. Unless you turn your body to look over your left shoulder, you cannot see an approaching vehicle in this spot.
How do you know if you have now set your mirrors correctly? Try this simple test: While driving in the right lane, watch an approaching car in the left lane through your rearview mirror. When it is no longer visible in your rearview mirror, it should appear in your left mirror. If it is not visible in your left mirror, you need to adjust it outward until it is even with you left rear fender. At that point, you should be able to view it by looking over your left shoulder.
Remember, each time the seat is adjusted for another driver, the side mirrors need to be adjusted accordingly!
What one should do if he/she is in an automobile accident…?
Although accidents are inevitable, drivers can follow these steps to make the process of reporting an insurance claim easy and quick.
- Make sure no one is in immediate physical danger - call 911 if an ambulance is needed.
- Notify the police.
- Exchange name, address, phone number and the name of the insurance company and/or agent with the other driver(s) involved. Obtain contact information of any witnesses. If possible, get the police report. Lassen, Marine & Webster can provide an accident report form to help obtain all the correct information
- Take note of details: date, time, location, and even weather conditions
- Get the make, model and license plate number of the vehicle(s) involved in the accident, and write down a description of the damage. If you have a camera or camera phone on hand, take photos of all damaged vehicles, as well as the scene of the accident (i.e. the intersection, any signs, traffic lights, etc.)
- Contact your insurance company to notify them that you have been involved in an accident, even if you are not at fault.
Tips for Teen Drivers
YIKES! Your teen just obtained a driver’s license and all you’re thinking about how much insurance will cost for his/her new car. We all want to save money, but automobile insurance for teens is always significantly higher than an experienced driver with a clean record. However, there are ways to lower your teen’s insurance. Here are a few helpful hints to keep you sane through this new chapter in your life:
- Shop around for the best policy – some insurance companies have fixed rates and can only offer one price. Your independent insurance agent, Lassen, Marine and Webster, represents many different companies. We can ensure you have the best price for the coverage that you need.
- When choosing a vehicle for your teen, make safety and affordability a top priority. Insurance companies will charge a much higher premium for that sports car that your child is hoping you for. Websites like Forbes and Consumer Reports offer a list of the safest cars for your young driver. Additionally, our customer service representative can coach parents on the vehicle with the most reasonable “physical damage cost symbol”.
- Avoid vehicle modifications. Enhanced speaker systems, exhaust systems, and body kits will increase your child’s car insurance.
- Pay your insurance premium in full. Most insurance companies charge a fee for paying in installments. Moreover, it may be enlightening to share the insurance bill with your children – there is a chance they will practice more caution behind the wheel when they see how much rates increase, even with a minor speeding ticket.
- Motivate your children to maintain good grades. Insurance companies correlate good grades to more responsible drivers, and therefore offer a discount to drivers who maintain a B or better grade average.
- And lastly, a higher deductible will lower your car insurance premium.
Introducing our new website
Lassen, Marine & Webster is excited to welcome you to our new website! Although we have been doing business in the Chesapeake Bay area since 1966, LMW has recently undergone changes to increase accessibility to the surrounding community, our existing clients and potential customers. Our new website offers a quick and easy way to view information about our products, services and employees.
Summertime is finally here! Grab your suntan lotion, bathing suit and towel - but before you head to the beach, make sure that you and your home are entirely prepared. These simple safety and prevention tips can give you the peace of mind to enjoy your summer vacation, and ensure that your home and possessions are secure: