Insurance Coverages & Claims

Think about your business and its insurance needs like you think about your health and your family’s health insurance needs. 

As an adult, you should be getting an annual physical to assess the status of your health and you should have health insurance to cover major medical expenses when they arise. Why is this important? Medical expenses that require insurance can certainly be related to emergencies but they can also be related to health problems that can be proactively discussed with your doctor and managed over time. These efforts can help ensure that you stay as healthy as possible for the long haul. And they can also lower the cost of your health insurance and out-of-pocket healthcare-related expenses over time.

As a business owner, you should be meeting with your insurance providers annually to update them on the status of your business, and to review the insurance you have to determine what coverages you may need more (or less) of. Why is this important? Because you need business insurance in place to provide coverage in case of emergencies but situations related to other liabilities that your business also takes on can be proactively discussed with your insurance provider and managed over time. These efforts can help ensure that your business (also) stays healthy for the long haul. And just like healthcare expenses, staying on top of your business insurance needs can also lower costs your business has to cover if you don’t have the right coverages in place and even open up new business opportunities that might not be open to you if you don’t have adequate coverages in place.

One thing for you to keep in mind as you review your business insurance coverage with your agent and carrier is confirmation that your coverage levels are satisfactory to cover an unexpected, large claim. For Standard, an example of such a scenario took place July 2, 2012. On that morning, Standard’s 70-year old headquarters office, sheet metal shop, and warehouse were completely destroyed by a catastrophic electrical fire. Fortunately, Standard’s CFO worked with our agent and carrier a few months prior to the fire to update coverages in many areas of our insurance policy. And, because of some of the requirements of the updated insurance coverages, we had also instituted the practice of backing up our server nightly to tape and to ensure there were several of the most recent previous night’s tapes off-site every night.

Despite some early “foot-dragging” by the insurance carrier in funding the rebuilding, we soon had an architect and contractor team signed up to initiate a fast-track rebuild. Within seven months, Standard had moved into a new headquarters office and fabrication shop, outfitted with all new replacement equipment. However, had it not been for the thorough review of insurance coverages, our story could have turned out much different than the ultimate result.

What will your story be?

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