- Learn how to safely use alternative heat sources and generators during a power outage: disastersafety.org/disastersafety/build-a-plan-for-a-power-outage.
- An Emergency Preparedness Kit should have three days of food, water, prescription medications and other supplies ready (ready.gov/build-a-kit).
- For current weather conditions during a power outage, consider getting a NOAA Weather Radio.
Winter Storm Harper can bring heavy snow plus high winds. And, that folks, can mean power outages. Here are tips to help you prepare:
If you — the insured and the occupants of your vehicle — were injured in an auto accident, who would cover medical expenses? Two coverage options are available — Medical Payments (Med-Pay) and Personal Injury Protection (PIP).
Med-Pay covers the insured, family members and passengers in a covered car for medical and funeral expenses (subject to per person policy limits below) if they are injured in a car accident by a vehicle designed principally for use on public roads regardless of who is at fault (1). It also pays medical and funeral expenses arising from the accident including accidents in which the victim is a pedestrian or bicyclist.
In Connecticut, Med-Pay Limits apply per person and range from $1,000 to $10,000 for Personal Auto Policies and from $5,000 to $25,000 per person for Commercial Policies.
PIP provides the same coverage as Medical Payments for your medical expenses in the event of a claim without regard to fault (2). However, PIP can also provide lost wages, transportation expenses, and miscellaneous household assistance expenses, like cleaning or lawn care, while you recover from your injuries.
Because PIP provides more coverage than Med-Pay, it's a little more expensive.
Who would benefit from purchasing Med-Pay or PIP?
Understanding Policy Limits
Minimum auto liability limits in Connecticut are 25,000 (bodily injury to one person), $50,000 (bodily injury total), and $25,000 (property damage). In many cases, minimum limits will not adequately cover losses. Considering the average cost of a new vehicle in the first quarter of 2017 was $31,400 (3), then these limits are inadequate for most people, especially when significant injuries result from an accident.
Read more about policy limits here or speak with a Connecticut Insurance Exchange agent.
Uninsured and Underinsured Motorists (UM/UIM) coverage is mandatory in Connecticut, at the above minimum limits of $25,000 bodily injury per person and $50,000 bodily injury total. UM/UIM does NOT apply to property damage. It's a good idea to purchase a UM/UIM limit equal to your own liability limits.
UM/UIM protects you in the event that you and/or your passengers are injured by someone who:
Beginning in January 1, 2019, Connecticut homeowners will see a $12 increase in their homeowner's policy. The Healthy Homes Fund Surcharge was passed by the Connecticut Legislature (CT HB05209) to raise as much as $100 million in the next 10 years mainly to assist Connecticut homeowners with crumbling foundations. The legislation is set to expire on December 31, 2029.
The surcharge is not a premium and applies to policies on residential dwellings with four or fewer units and on condominiums. Renters policies are exempt.
The bulk of the money collected in the Healthy Homes Fund Surcharge will be used for grants-in-aid to homeowners with homes located in the immediate vicinity of the West River in the Westville section of New Haven and Woodbridge for structurally damaged homes due to subsidence and to homeowners with homes abutting the Yale Golf Course in the Westville section of New Haven for damage to such homes from water infiltration or structural damage due to subsidence. The fund will also go toward programs designed to reduce health and safety hazards in residential dwellings in Connecticut such as lead, radon and other contaminants or conditions and pay for the removal, remediation, abatement of these contaminants.
'Tis the season to deck the halls with boughs of holly. But be aware — all that holiday cooking and decorating has the potential to cause serious hazards in your home.
Knowing the risks — and how to help avoid injury, theft and damage to property through the holiday season — can help save you from expensive homeowners’ insurance claims.
Did you know…
Check out these three tips to keep your holiday merry and bright!
Practice safe holiday decorating and have a Happy New Year!
*According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)
As you start preparing your holiday meal, follow a few simple safety tips so you can enjoy your holiday and keep yourself and your family safer from fire.
Download our safety tip sheet here
Source: National Fire Protection Association
Two facts about Halloween: 1) Children are more than twice as likely to be hit by a car and killed on Halloween than any other day of the year according to Safe Kids Worldwide. 2) The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that Halloween is one of the top three days of the year for pedestrian injuries and fatalities. So, drivers and parents need to pay extra attention.
Here are a few tips to keep Halloween safe for all
Related Links: Umbrella Liability
1. Phishing. Phishing attacks are the means by which most malware finds its way into any business. When someone within your organization clicks on a link or attachment in a phishing email the malicious code gets downloaded.
The best defense against ransomware is offense with a well-defined disaster recovery/backup and restore program. Best practices include backing up your assets regularly and testing the restoration process. If you can restore your organization from backup, why pay a ransom?
3. Insider threats. These come in two categories – unintentional and intentional.
Physical security of employee devices can help reduce losses. An asset management solution can help prevent lost or stolen devices, preventing attackers access to valuable information. Connection to insecure networks, especially unsecured wireless networks, has the potential to give anyone in the world access to your business! Secure connections and firewall software is another preventative measure that can help loss from unintentional insider threats.
What reasons would employees have to become an intentional threat? Many do it to steal property or information for personal gain or to benefit another organization. Over 80% of the reported cases of insider threat to date have been done during working hours, with the activity planned beforehand, and for financial gain.
Remember, half the battle against cyber security risks in knowledge and taking proactive measures.
Related links: Commercial Insurance
If your dog is like Connecticut Insurance Exchange's Special Agent Norma, they'll eat just about anything. Honestly, sometimes we think she is really a goat in disguise!
Here's a helpful chart we found that shows what is OK (and NOT OK) to give your dog...
If your pet eats anything they shouldn't, then keep a close eye on them and seek professional help.
Related links: Affordable pet insurance
What's a Fourth of July celebration without fireworks?
Who didn't handle sparklers as a kid? I know I did. But did you know hand-held sparklers burn at temperatures of around 2,000 degrees F? That's hot enough to cause third-degree burns and melt some metals!
Let's let these facts* tell the story...
Misuse and malfunction were the primary causes for injury including:
If you're going to handle fireworks, use them responsibly, safely and follow the law. Have a safe and enjoyable Independence Day!
Fireworks safety tips
*Source: U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC)
Many people who fly to a vacation destination reserve a rental car online. At the airport car rental pick-up counter, the agent offers insurance to cover the vehicle during the rental. They will say the renter of a car is fully responsible for any loss (theft) of the vehicle as well as any damage that occurs to the vehicle during your rental period. They will also tell you it's likely loss-of-use costs are NOT included in your personal auto policy.
And they may be correct.
Car rental companies are now asking for reimbursement of the lost revenue (loss of use) that vehicle would have generated had it not been in a repair shop.
So, what options do you have?
What you need to know before you sign that rental car agreement…
First things first.
EXAMPLE: If the insured DOES NOT have Collision, Other Than Collision (Comprehensive) coverage on their own vehicle, then they DO NOT have it on the rental vehicle. That means the insured would be responsible to pay for any damage to that rental vehicle.
Credit Cards and Car Rental Protection.
Many — but not all — credit card issuers cover damage to rental cars when their credit card is used to rent the car. Some even include protection for loss-of-use claims.
This is great, right?
Well, there is a down side — credit card issuers rarely provide liability coverage and dealing with a credit card company for a claim can be a difficult and long process.
Understanding your insurance options before planning a trip is the best way to protect yourself from any unpleasant surprises if you happen to be involved in an accident with a vehicle you rent.
Contact a Connecticut Insurance Exchange agent today at 860 666-5443 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Our agents will be happy to review your policy and discuss cost-effective coverage options.
Related links: Auto Insurance
News you can use from Connecticut Insurance Exchange covering topics ranging from your home, auto, business, liability and more.
Melanie Thomson-Tregoning is a Licensed Insurance Agent and VP of Marketing for Connecticut Insurance Exchange, Ltd.