Helpful advice from the Cain Agencies
Decisions on what level of coverage, what company, even which broker or agent to utilize,
2. Plan ahead.
Re-read and review your current policies and your future insurance needs at least
6 months in advance of your policy expiration dates.
If you have questions, it is better to ask them far in advance rather than at the last minute.
3. Know your insurer.
Request a copy of the insurance company's annual report.
This might provide some insights on future needs for rate increases, cancellation
plans or market fluctuations.
4. Decide how much coverage you really need.
You must protect yourself from potential losses which you cannot afford.
Decide how much risk you can assume and increase your deductibles or lower coverage limits.
You do not want to be over-insured in today's high-cost market.
5. Clean house.
Evaluate your operations.
Do everything you can to minimize your chance of loss.
Ask you insurer for a loss control consultation.
Above all, when you make positive changes, keep a record to help you
with contract negotiations.
6. Before starting something new or making changes, think insurance.
As you develop new product lines, purchase new equipment, or make significant
operational changes, talk first to your insurer to get a better understanding
of the risk and the increased costs these changes might require.
7. Keep claim loss records.
A complete listing of any claims, open and closed, will enable you to present
your business' risk to an insurer.
If your insurance company provides loss information, make sure your records
and the insurance company's records are consistent.
If not, have the records corrected.
8. Know your rights.
Insurance law protects you in several ways.
Some key provisions include:
Written notice of cancellation must be sent at least 30 days in advance.
Insurers can cancel policies "midterm" for the following reasons:
Non-payment of premium
Policy obtained through a material representation
Insured violated any of the terms and conditions of the policy
The risk originally accepted has measurably increased
Loss of reinsurance by the insurer for all or substantial part could place
the insurer in violation of insurance laws.
9. Avoid shopping around.
Shop for coverage only when necessary.
Accept modest rate increases as a necessary business expense - after all, you raise prices
or you products or services, too.
If you shop too often or change insurance companies frequently, you will be labeled
a "carrier hopper" and insurance companies may refuse to bid on your coverage.
Also, when the insurance industry hits a slump, you have a better chance of getting
the coverage you want if you have a proven track record with an insurer.
10. Honesty is the only policy.
Whether you are changing insurance companies, adding coverage, or renewing your
current policies, give as much relevant information to the agent and insurer as is available.
This will prevent difficulties when a claim is submitted.
20 North Wacker Drive - Suite 960
Chicago, IL 60606
Phone (312) 621-2240
Fax (312) 236-5488
© 1999 Cain Insurance Agency. All rights reserved.