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A Better Way to Manage Your Group Benefits Program

Intro to Surety Bonding for the Construction Industry

Commercial Insurance for the Construction Industry

Why IA

Insurance Associates is a locally-based firm that has been advising and protecting clients for over 60 Years! We help them secure the right insurance, bonds, and employee benefits to meet their organization’s goals. We work with clients in all industries for their group benefit packages, but our expertise is in the construction industry for commercial insurance and surety bonding. Our clients stay with us because we work hard to earn their trust and confidence and they value the many extra services we routinely provide. For a little more about how we can help you please click on our three videos above. We look forward to meeting you!

Space Heaters – How to Keep Your Home and Business Safe This Winter

Space Heaters – How to Keep Your Home and Business Safe This WinterIt is almost that time of year again.  The time of the year when the weather turns cold and families and businesses use a variety of options to keep warm.  A popular choice is the use of a space heater.  Every year there’s stories about a home or business burning down because of a space heater.  As you have probably heard before, homes and buildings can be rebuilt, lives can’t. A widely talked about rule suggests keeping a minimum of 3 feet between the space heater and anything combustible.  Sounds simple.  The reality is that there are many precautions, not just that one.  Unfortunately the number of space heater fires is Read More...

Don’t Get Hosed By Your Water Damage Claim

Don’t Get Hosed By Your Water Damage ClaimWe all have a monster lurking in our walls, under our floors and above our ceilings.  Water seems so nice coming out of the faucet into our cup, or when waking us up in the shower each morning.  However, when a pipe ruptures, a fitting fails, or toilet overflows, it can ruin your day, and wreck your business. If your business is housed in a multi-unit development, especially a multi- level building, you are also surrounded by your neighbor’s plumbing and a mishap in their space can rain havoc onto you. As Murphy’s Law seems to dictate, water damage losses often seem to take place after business hours, during holidays and weekends.  Read More...

The Medical Marijuana Dilemma – RX for Workers Compensation Disaster?

The Medical Marijuana Dilemma – RX for Workers Compensation Disaster?The National Council on Compensation Insurance has addressed the issue of Medical Marijuana in two recently released articles with three still to come.  The series is titled “The Marijuana Conversation”.  The first two installments covered the questions that insurers are asking and the questions the employers are asking.  The third installment will cover the questions that employees are asking.  This is a topical issue with no easy answers to these questions.  Many states have voted to legalize marijuana for medical and recreational use which has led to this dilemma in regards to the various stakeholders in regards to Workers Compensation.  Twenty-nine states and Washington, D.C. have legalized marijuana for medicinal Read More...

The Reality of the 100 year flood – Separating Myth From Fact

The Reality of the 100 year flood – Separating Myth From FactBy now everyone has seen footage of the devastating flooding in Southeast Texas from Hurricane Harvey.  It seems like there’s always some catastrophic flooding somewhere in the US frequently.  Various terms relating to floods and insurance are thrown around; such as 100 year flood, flood plain, FEMA flood maps, etc.  It probably seems odd when you hear that some place has had a 100 year flood, but you remember how it seemed like yesterday that same place had another 100 year flood.  How can that be?  It was on the news that such-in-such area has a 1% risk of a 100 year flood, so the odds of that happening more Read More...

OSHA Proposes New Deadline for Electronic Reporting Rule

OSHA Proposes New Deadline for Electronic Reporting RuleIn 2016, OSHA issued a final rule that requires certain employers to submit data from their injury and illness records (forms 300, 300A and 301) electronically so it can be posted on the agency’s website. Although the rule initially required affected employers to submit this data by July 1, 2017, OSHA recently proposed a new deadline of December 1, 2017.  Today simply not participating is not an option, this is a rule that is REQUIRED, let us help you follow this new mandate. The proposed deadline is the result of a delay to the Injury Tracking Application, the online tool that OSHA will use to collect data. The Injury Tracking Application Read More...

Decreasing Preventable Auto Accidents: Key to Fighting Rising Commercial Auto Premiums

Decreasing Preventable Auto Accidents: Key to Fighting Rising Commercial Auto PremiumsCommercial auto insurance rates are increasing due to a significant spike in accidents in the last few years. More miles are being driven (about 3%) which combined with other factors, has led to a significant increase in commercial auto claims across the industry. The increase in miles driven is not linear to commercial vehicle accident rates. The increase in accidents is actually much higher than the increase in miles driven. As a business owner with a fleet of vehicles, it is more important than ever to keep accidents in company vehicles as low as possible. While miles driven is the biggest factor for the increase, other factors such as distracted driving Read More...

Internal Controls: Critical to Safeguarding Assets From Employee Fraud/Theft

Internal Controls: Critical to Safeguarding Assets From Employee Fraud/TheftEmployee fraud/theft frequency and severity continues to rise for all sizes of business each year.  Companies that have less than 100 employees are especially vulnerable, as that employer size has the highest percentage of frequency of fraud/thefts and the highest median amount stolen.  The single biggest denominator in almost all cases is the lack of internal controls that the company had in place.  As I will explain below, implementing the right internal controls can be the difference between experiencing a large theft and protecting those company assets. While there are many insurance options for this kind of loss, the preferable option is to never have to get to that point.  Because Read More...

The Scary Truth about Cyber Security Breaches

The Scary Truth about Cyber Security BreachesData breaches and the lack of proper cyber security continue to threaten businesses of all sizes, but the rate in which businesses properly respond to such threats with the appropriate insurance coverages remains underwhelming. 50% of U.S. firms do not have cyber risk insurance. 27% of U.S. executives say their firms have no plans to obtain cyber insurance, even though 61% of them expect cyber breaches to continue to increase in the next year. Even among those that have insurance, only 16% reported having cybersecurity insurance that covers all risks. The U.S. falls behind the U.K. and Canada in this regard, where only about 40% have no cyber coverage. The research behind these statistics Read More...

Swimming Pool Safety Tips

Swimming Pool Safety TipsWith warmer weather comes an array of outdoor activities for the whole family, including cooling off in a pool if you are lucky enough to have one. But with a pool also comes the responsibility of safety must-haves and best practices that any parent or home owner should be concerned with. With over 200 young children drowning in backyard pools each year, these tips are critical to ensuring a fun environment for anyone who owns a pool to keep both their friends and family safe and secure. Swimming Pool Safety Tips It is important to maintain secure fencing and a locked entrance around the pool and deck area to prevent access Read More...

American Workforce Drug Use at a 12 Year High

American Workforce Drug Use at a 12 Year HighAccording to the annual Quest Diagnostics Drug Testing Index, positivity in drug testing in the combined American workforce is the highest since 2004.  In 2016 there was a five percent increase over the prior year.  This was fueled by illicit drugs including cocaine.  This troubling increase was found among all testing specimens among virtually all sectors of business. From an employer perspective, the reasons for an employer to create a safe and drug-free workplace are clear.  This is especially the case for employers in the trades and the construction industry.  Implementing a company-wide drug testing program can be tricky.  Fortunately Insurance Associates can assist with your needs in getting this in Read More...

Pollution Coverage! What could happen?

Pollution Coverage! What could happen?As I meet with clients and we discuss coverages that are available and recommended, we always get to pollution coverage and the question always arises, “What are my exposures to pollution as a fill in the blank contractor?”  As you will see below, these scenarios in real-life settings are not unbelievable situations, but rather real life happenings that are common within each trade’s routine scope of work.  Pollution coverage should be considered to protect your business.  In addition to your need, we are starting to see the requirement for pollution coverage in more contracts, specifically trade contractors such as HVAC and masonry.  There are options available for job-specific policies when Read More...

Facts You Should Know For Distracted Driving Month

Facts You Should Know For Distracted Driving MonthApril is distracted driving awareness month.  Society has been lulled into a sense of security in that as long as one is using a hands-free device while driving that there’s no risk.  While this may be the law in many states, the reality is that the risk of crashing when talking on a hands-free phone conversation is about 4 times greater than when not using a phone at all while driving.  The TV show “Mythbusters” found that driving while using a hands-free device is as dangerous as drunk driving!  This should be an eye opener for everyone including employers that allow their employees/drivers to use hands-free devices. For most employers, an Read More...

The American Healthcare Act: What Does it Repeal and What is the Replacement?

The American Healthcare Act: What Does it Repeal and What is the Replacement?There has been much in the news regarding the proposed American Healthcare Act that is currently making its way to the House for a vote. Proponents think it is the answer to issues people have had with the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). Critics are concerned it either does not go far enough to repeal the Affordable Care Act and/or it may result in higher costs and loss of coverage. So, let’s take a look at what the American Healthcare Act, as it stands today, does NOT change. The AHCA maintains the following requirements: Coverage for pre-existing conditions Dependent child coverage up to the age of 26 Caps on out of pocket Read More...

PRESIDENT TRUMP’S TRILLION DOLLAR INFRASTRUCTURE PLAN

PRESIDENT TRUMP’S TRILLION DOLLAR INFRASTRUCTURE PLANThere is high expectation and generally strong political support for the Infrastructure Plan that President Trump has promised to announce shortly. Although the need to repair and replace the aging United States infrastructure is clear, the details of the promised Plan are somewhat vague, especially in regards to funding and project selection. To hopefully provide some insight, recently the Kansas City Star, A McClatchy Newspaper, published a “top 50” priority list of the infrastructure projects reportedly in the Trump Plan. The summary of the 50 projects makes for interesting reading, and does include some local projects; the Maryland Purple Line (No. 23), Washington DC Union Station (No. 22), Baltimore Howard Read More...

5 HR Compliance Resolutions for 2017

5 HR Compliance Resolutions for 2017As you may have heard, the Senate and the House have passed budget resolutions that instruct Congressional committees to begin working on legislation to repeal parts of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA).  Additionally, President Trump has signed an executive order calling upon federal administrative agencies to minimize the economic burden of the ACA, pending repeal of the law.  While we do not have a crystal ball so we can’t predict what changes are coming, it is a new year and a good time to review your company’s compliance with current federal, state and local labor law requirements.   The following includes a few highlighted items that HR professionals should Read More...

 

So great to help this amazing organization that does so much for their clients and our local community - Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless
www.youtube.com/watch?v=GNIeJe7Qv00This Thanksgiving, we asked the clients at our HBCAC Men's Emergency Shelter: What are you thankful for?
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Insurance Associates is bringing holiday cheer this year by purchasing gifts for the clients of Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless. We hope they have a great and blessed holiday season! ... See MoreSee Less

Insurance Associates is bringing holiday cheer this year by purchasing gifts for the clients of Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless. We hope they have a great and blessed holiday season!
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