Showing posts from May, 2010

Alot of "noise" regarding agent compensation

I continually read where agents and brokers in certain States are fighting the legislators regarding disclosing what they make on insurance transactions. I can't quite figure out why. I tell my clients all the time what I make on thier policies and quite frankly many of them say "thats it?". With average commissions running around 10% and contingencies dropping to an average of 4-7% (not guaranteed), most clients are shocked and how little we make for what we do. So all you agents and brokers that are silent on this, just tell your clients what you are being paid. You will be surprised at the response you get.  Until next time be careful out there and know your risks.  K

Employment Practices, Are you protected?

If you are have employees then you need coverage for employment practices liability. This is the coverage for sexual harrassment, wrongful termination, discrimination, etc...  As the employer you are a target for these lawsuits from your employees. This risk has become more prevelant especially in this tough economy. For example one of my clients got sued because employee A felt that employee B was stalking her during the job. The employer knew nothing about it and was never warned there was a problem until the lawsuit papers came in. Another example came from the headlines today that pharmaceuticals giant Novartis just got hit with a 250 million dollar lawsuit for gender discrimination. This coverage is available to most businesses and has become affordable. I highly reccomend you buy this coverage in today's employer/employee world. Until next time be careful out there and know your risks.  K

Know What Your are Getting Into With The Contracts You Sign

Transocean was the unfortunate company that lost its rig and men in the Gulf. To make matters worse, BP has filed a lawsuit against Transocean to pay for the cleanup of the oil. The insurance companies that represent Transocean are saying they have no duty to pay for BP's cleanup. BP, however is referencing a contract that Transocean signed that "holds harmless' BP. So if the courts agree with BP then Transocean's insurance companies may be stuck with the clean up bill. Here again, it is important for business owners to understand the contracts signed in a contractor/subcontractor arrangement. If you don't then your business could be stuck with claims you may or may not have enough coverage for. Until next time be careful out there and know your risks!   K

Financial Over Haul Vote Could Affect Small Business

As a risk manager for small business owners, it is important for me to try to read through the lines and see what risk could fall onto my clients. As I read the headlines this morning and look into the Wall Street/Banking reform bill I can see a potential problem for small business. It may be all but impossible for small business owners to get loans from banks in the future. Most cash flow and capital loans to business owners come with a larger amount of risk for banks. Small business owners depend on bank loans to operate and have more uncertainty of success. With the new Federal over sight,  banks are going to be more risk adverse and most likely not want to make loans to small business owners, especially newly formed businesses. This will directly affect the growth of the employement engine of this country which is small business.
I hope I am wrong on this!!  Until next time know your risks and be careful out there.  K

What the oil spill can tell us about risk management

It is evident from the fact that 200,000 gallons of oil a day has been spewing into the Gulf for two weeks now,  that BP and others had no risk managment in place to handle this type of disaster. I can also guess that there was no risk management in place prior to the event either. From the largest corporations on the earth to the small Mom and Pop businesses, no one wants to think that things can happen to them  It is unpleaseant to think of the worse all the time and plan for it. Unfortunately in todays world, risk is increasing. Risk managment has to become part of our culture to survive and thrive in todays business environment. The good thing about risk managment is it is a process that can be followed by anyone and can be implemented in any business. Still , as we see with the oil spill and BP , risk management gets put on the shelf , or it is lowered to the last item on the "to do" checklist. When the "event" happens,  then and only then is the lack of a ris…