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Comment on Will insurance cover all that you do 
July 13, 2023
Comment on Will insurance cover all that you do from article on June 22, 2023
               Very well said, The main take away from your article “Will insurance cover all that you do” on June 22, 2023 is to be open and honest with your insurance broker.  Don’t try to hide anything from him/her.  The percentage of business you do in each line item is very important.  The insurance carrier wants to know all that you do. 
               The Insurance Center represents dozens of insurance carriers, and depending upon what you do, will depend upon the insurance carrier that is right for you.  Some carriers don’t like fire, while others don’t like PERS, others don’t like drones, and some don’t like commercial.  Tell your broker everything you do or may do.
               If you are not honest and up front with your insurance carrier, then there is a high probability if a claim arises, the insurance carrier will find exclusions in the policy based on incorrect information from your application.  Every insurance policy has exclusions.  Make sure you know those exclusions and that none of the exclusions are part of your business. 
               Have open communication throughout the year with your insurance broker.  If you are thinking about adding a new line of business to your current repertoire talk to your broker before starting.  This includes mergers and acquisitions.  Let your broker assist you with any possible changes in your business.  Do it before making the change, as there may be exclusions in your policy for the item you want to start.  You may even have to change carriers if the new business line is a significant percentage of your total business. 
               It is critical you speak with your insurance broker for your insurance policy AND the Kirschenbaum law office to make sure your contract applies to your new line of business.  Your insurance broker and your attorney are there to “have your back” and make sure you have the correct policies and contracts in place for the type of business you do.  No one likes paying attorney fees or insurance premiums… until a claim arises and then that insurance agent and attorney can become your best friend!!
Shawn Iverson, CIC
The Insurance Center, llc
               A few things I’d like to add, though Shawn says it very clearly, and he knows because he’s the one submitting the insurance applications and he sees the underwriting coverage letters to when a claim comes in.
               Most carriers, at least those with alarm industry programs [or even tolerance for writing alarm companies] consider you their customer and they want to retain your business, though the carrier certainly expects you to pay for it.  That will include premium enhancements and increases if you have a claim or change operations to add what the carrier considers additional risk [that could be something they aren’t familiar or comfortable with].  But carriers acting in good faith will not look to exclude claims when they are presented, as a general rule.  But that can change fast if the claim is for significant damages, be they for theft, property damage, personal injury or death.  The higher the potential for damages the more closely the carrier will look at coverage.  Some claims are just not covered claims.  Most common among these are the straight breach of contract for return of money paid or looking for money because the customer had to hire someone else to finish your job.  That’s plain old breach of contract and typically not covered.  But when you get a breach of contract claim that usually also alleges negligence by performing or not performing something that is believed to have caused the alarm not to work the carrier will have to work much harder if it wants to limit or deny coverage [and there should be coverage].  Most Plaintiffs suing alarm companies are not looking to avoid the alarm company getting insurance coverage, so claims are usually couched in broad allegations with multiple causes of action, some or all of which will fall within the E&O policy for coverage.
               Submitting an honest application is a good start [only start] for insurance coverage.  An application that crosses the line from a few mistakes to intentional concealment or outright lying just so you can get the policy or keep the premium lower may end up just fooling yourself, because the coverage won’t be there when you need it most, for the catastrophic loss.  And, by the way, read “catastrophic loss” as a relative term because for some of you $50,000 may be well above your financial tolerance level while others may not lose too much sleep over a few hundred thousand dollar claim or even damages. Being honest with your carrier and staying within your coverage areas of operation will ensure that it’s your insurance carrier who has to deal with and pay your claim, and that’s why you carry the insurance in the first place.

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Ken Kirschenbaum,Esq
Kirschenbaum & Kirschenbaum PC
Attorneys at Law
200 Garden City Plaza
Garden City, NY 11530
516 747 6700 x 301