3 Ways To Tell if a Wall Is Load-Bearing

Modern real estate and home improvement shows depict the stars successfully making dramatic changes to a home’s layout by simply knocking down a few walls. Real life is a bit trickier. Because removing a wall could impact the integrity of the structure, it’s best to hire professionals who know what they’re doing and carry contractors insurance in case things don’t go as planned. If you’re still interested in going it on your own, you can figure out if the walls are load-bearing by examining three factors.

Built Perpendicular to Joists

The orientation of the wall in relation to the floor joists is a solid indicator of what role that wall is playing in the home’s construction. If it sits perpendicular to the joists, chances are it’s load-bearing.

Continues on Multiple Floors

Take measurements on each floor to determine whether the wall is in the same spot on each floor. If the placement of that wall is consistent on multiple floors of the home, the wall is likely supporting some of the home’s weight.

Goes Through to the Attic

If there is access to the attic, you can easily figure out of a particular wall is redistributing the roof’s weight. A load-bearing wall will have beams that extend through the attic to support the main beams.

It’s vital to the structure of your home to figure out whether a wall is load-bearing before you remove it. When in doubt, hire a professional.

Why Your Insurance Agency Needs EO Coverage

As an insurance agency, you focus a lot of time and energy on protecting your clients against liability exposure. Your insurance agency needs an Errors & Omissions policy to address your risks.

Types of Errors That Require E&O Coverage

Mistakes happen in the insurance industry. E&O covers your agency against professional mistakes, allegations of negligence, failures to deliver promised services and more. When a client files a lawsuit claiming that you or your agency made a mistake that led to their financial loss, you have to pay the legal fees to fight the allegations. If the court finds you liable, you have to pay the settlement costs.

Factors to Consider When Purchasing E&O Coverage

When it comes to E&O coverage, you have to consider several different factors. These factors include your operation’s exposures, how much of an increase your exposures have had in the last several years and the net worth of your clients.

The coverage that you choose needs to correspond with your risk profile. If you are a large, multi-faceted insurance agency or a smaller organization, you need customizable options.

Every industry is vulnerable to lawsuits. As an insurance agency, if you make mistakes and your clients allege that you misled them, you could lose everything. E&O insurance for insurance agents and agencies protects your business against financial losses.

What Is Manufacturing Liability Coverage?

Manufacturers have always faced unique challenges when designing a risk management plan, even before the last few decades of industry globalization made issues of jurisdiction a major point of your insurance planning. Traditionally, there have been coverage options for third party liability to protect you from claims made by customers and others who use your goods long after they’ve left your shop. Companies also need on-site liability coverage that protects visitors and employees alike in the event of an accident leading to injury. Today’s manufacturing liability insurance is even more complex, though, because it needs to provide coverage no matter where your goods end up and it needs to protect you against supply chain interruptions and other issues that can disrupt your ability to fulfill customer orders.

Benefits of Comprehensive Liability Protection

You can seek out individual liability policies for all the areas you need covered, but there are a few really good reasons to seek a combined liability policy for manufacturers that puts all your coverage on one bill.

  • Streamlined costs for coverage by combining liability protections
  • Simplified insurance review annually
  • Complementary language across classes of liability coverage
  • One point of contact for liability-based claims

In addition to all these benefits, a combined manufacturing liability insurance policy from an insurer who makes your industry, the center of their business brings you the benefits of that insurer’s experience with companies just like yours, making it easier to fine-tune your coverage and get answers to your questions.

The Basics of the Longshore Act

Not every employee is guaranteed workers’ comp coverage in the traditional sense of the word. Most workers’ comp policies exclude coverage for employees that work in or around water. In these situations, federal law mandates that company’s carry U.S. Longshore and Harbor coverage to address employee injuries. This coverage is for maritime workers in employment locations in or around U.S. navigable waters. Some states may allow for dual coverage between a workers’ comp policy and USL and H coverage.

Getting Coverage

When it comes to getting USL&H coverage, you may be able to add an endorsement to your existing workers’ comp plan. However, not all insurers are willing or able to underwrite these additional risks. The application of this coverage extends to a number of situations, including:

  • Marine railways
  • Terminals
  • Dry docks
  • Wharfs
  • Piers

It can also include any adjacent areas where the building, repair, dismantling, or loading and unloading of a vessel is taking place. These numerous job locations also include a variety of different personnel, with longshore or maritime workers including categories of shipbuilders, repairmen, construction crews for wharfs, dock workers, warehouse or forklift personnel, to name a few.

Failing to provide the required amount of coverage can lead to steep fines and consequences. Since the law is complex and the challenges many, it is best to work with an insurance agent specializing in USL&H coverage to ensure your company has what it needs.

Types of Insurance Policies for Homeowners

As a homeowner, you need to protect your assets. However, when it comes to owning property, your insurance needs may vary from someone else’s. Here is what you need to know about different homeowners insurance policies.

Homeowners’ Insurance

If you own your own home and use it as your personal property, then you need coverage that will protect your home and your assets in the case of fire or other disasters that could result in financial loss. Insurance coverage can include protection for fine art, heirlooms, jewelry, and more.

Flood Insurance

Flood insurance is a separate add-on policy. Even if you do not live in a high-risk flood zone, you could still be at risk. In fact, about 30% of all homes damaged by floods were not in flood zones. Flood insurance covers direct physical damage and may also cover coverage for personal belongings.

Vacant Property Insurance

Vacant properties require specialized coverages. Most standard homeowners’ policies exclude vacant properties. Even if a property is vacant, you need to have appropriate protections in place, in case of a fire, storm or other hazards.

Condo Insurance

Condo associations have a master insurance policy but it is very limited when it comes to your own unit. Personal condo insurance will protect your belongings in case of a loss and will provide coverage if someone is injured inside of your condo.

If you own a home, you need insurance. What you do with your home will dictate what type of insurance coverage you need.

Understanding the Basics of Stop Gap Insurance

When you run a staffing firm, it is easy to get confused when it comes to your insurance coverage. Finding an appropriate plan for an agency that finds temp work for contractors is a lot different than insuring a more traditional business. Luckily, you can discover the right plan for your needs with a little research. The key to finding suitable coverage is making sure you have a firm understanding of all the options available to you. If your state doesn’t believe standard employers liability protection is enough, for example, you may need additional coverage.

What Is Stop Gap Coverage?

In monopolistic states, businesses are required to have a type of liability insurance known as stop gap insurance. If you send a worker to a business that does not protect the contractor in a suitable manner, this type of insurance acts as a way of safeguarding the employee. From workplace injuries to the contraction of a disease bred of an unhealthy environment, this is a type of workers’ compensation that is invaluable when it comes to making sure your team is totally covered no matter where you send them. This insurance is required if your business is located in:

  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Washington
  • Wyoming

When Should Stop Gap Insurance Be Considered?

When you run a business that falls outside the realm of standard coverage, you need to go above and beyond with your insurance considerations. The more you know about the options before you, the easier it is to make decisions that have a positive impact on your future.