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How Can You Limit the Damage Caused by Identity Theft?

by Anita Byer3/20/2017
anonymous-hacker

What’s worse than filing your taxes? Finding out that your return was already filed and your refund check was already cashed. Yep, that’s definitely worse. Unfortunately, tax season has become the time of year when many first discover that their identities have been stolen.

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Does Homeowners' Insurance Cover Damage Caused by a Meteorite?

by Anita Byer3/9/2017
asteroid-meteor-meteor-strike

Nearly 95 percent of homeowners have some form of homeowners’ insurance. Most have a basic understanding about their insurance policies. But, a survey by the Insurance Information Institute revealed that many homeowners have significant knowledge gaps about what is and what is not covered by a standard homeowner’s insurance policy. As you might imagine, these gaps can be very costly.

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Are Transportation Network Companies Putting You at Über-Risk on the Roads?

by Anita Byer2/23/2017
Uber-driver-transportation-network-risk

Have you ever heard of a Transportation Network Company or TNC? If you don’t think you have, think again. Uber, Lyft and Sidecar are all TNCs that arrange transportation for a fee using technology platforms like mobile apps and websites. Given their relative infancy, TNCs are experiencing some growing pains, particularly when it comes to insurance.

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The Affordable Care Act: What Does President Trump’s Executive Order Mean for Employers?

by Anita Byer2/6/2017
ACA-insurance-affordable-care-act-repeal

It wasn’t long before campaign promises to repeal Obamacare became official White House policy. On his first day in office, President Trump issued an Executive Order stating that “it is the policy of my Administration to seek the prompt repeal of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.” This clearly marks the beginning of a long period of uncertainty about the future of Obamacare. What isn’t so clear is how the President’s Executive Order will affect employers.

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Keep Conflicts of Interest Out of the Condominium Association Board Room

by Anita Byer1/26/2017
board-room-dispute-conflict-resolution

Condominium board members are required by law to act in the best interests of the association and the unit owners. Unfortunately, this duty of loyalty can be compromised by conflicts of interest. Even the appearance of conflicting interests can cause unit owners to lose faith and trust in the board. This cannot happen.

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Save Money on Homeowners' Insurance with Wind Mitigation Credits

by Anita Byer1/19/2017
wind-mitigation-homeowners-insurance

Did you know that 15 to 70 percent of your homeowners’ insurance premium can be attributed to the risk of wind damage? Taking steps to prevent or reduce wind damage is known as wind mitigation. These steps can save your home from catastrophic storm damage. They can also save you money. In some cases, wind mitigation credits can reduce the wind-specific portion of a homeowners’ insurance premium by more than 50 percent.

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Risk Transfers: Indemnification and Additional Insured Status

by Anita Byer1/11/2017
Proceed at your own risk

Risk allocation involves identifying who is responsible for what and for how much. In some cases, a contract requires one party to assume the liability of another party. These risk transfers are commonly found in construction and landlord/tenant agreements, and are becoming common practice in other industries as well.

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Can Your Car Be Hacked?

by Anita Byer12/22/2016
cyber-hacking-car-technology

Cyber threats and data security remain a big concern for individuals and businesses alike. But sometimes, the most effective cybersecurity comes down to the little things, like using strong passwords, installing security updates and keeping your car’s key fob in the freezer. Wait, what?

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IRS Extends Deadline to Furnish ACA Forms to Individuals and Good-Faith Relief from ACA Reporting Penalties

by Anita Byer12/14/2016
IRS extends affordable care act deadline

On November 18, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service gave employers averaging at least 50 full-time or full-time equivalent employees in 2015 (Applicable Large Employers or ALEs) an early holiday gift. The IRS extended the Affordable Care Act’s due date to furnish 2016 Forms 1095-C to individuals from January 31, 2017 to March 2, 2017. The IRS also extended last year’s transition relief to protect ALEs from penalties if they make a good-faith effort to comply with the ACA’s 2016 information and reporting requirements.

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Federal Judge Blocks New White-Collar Overtime Regulations

by Anita Byer11/30/2016
FLSA affects commercial insurance

A federal judge in Texas has blocked the Fair Labor Standards Act's new white-collar overtime exemption regulations. Ten days before their effective date, District Court Judge Amos Mazzant issued a nationwide preliminary injunction that temporarily prohibits the Department of Labor from implementing and enforcing the new white-collar overtime exemption regulations. As a result, the new regulations will not be going into effect on December 1, 2016.

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What Does Florida’s New Medical Marijuana Law Mean for Employers?

by Anita Byer11/18/2016
medical marijuana

Florida has joined the growing number of states that regulate and permit the medical use of marijuana after more than 6.5 million Floridians voted to approve Amendment 2. As a result, the Florida Constitution now includes the right for people with one or more of the following Debilitating Medical Conditions to use marijuana if such use has been certified by a physician:

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Florida’s Minimum Wage Will Be Going Up In 2017

by Anita Byer10/31/2016
Florida Minimum Wage 2017

On January 1, 2017, Florida's minimum wage will be going up five cents to $8.10 per hour. The minimum wage for tipped employees, which is in addition to tips, is also going up five cents to $5.08 per hour. The Florida Minimum Wage Act, which is the result of a 2004 voter-approved amendment to the Florida Constitution, applies to those employees entitled to receive the federal minimum wage under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

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Florida Workers' Compensation Insurance Rates Increasing 14.5 Percent

by Anita Byer10/12/2016
Workers Compensation Rate Increase 2016

In a previous article, we discussed the possibility that Florida employers may soon be paying substantially more for workers' compensation insurance. Unfortunately, this possibility has become a reality.

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Insurance 101: Understanding Certificates of Insurance

by Anita Byer9/28/2016
Certificate of Insurance

Have you ever been asked to provide or review a Certificate of Insurance? If not, chances are you will. A growing number of business agreements have mandatory insurance requirements, including those involving landlords, contractors, subcontractors, manufacturers, suppliers, vendors and service providers, to name a few. Certificates of Insurance are used when these businesses need to prove or confirm the existence of satisfactory insurance coverage.

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Insurance Applications: Small Lies Can Create Big Problems

by Anita Byer9/15/2016
Insurance Application

Is it wrong to lie on an insurance application? Many believe that it's no big deal, like lying to the IRS. In reality, it can have serious consequences, like lying to the IRS. If an insurance application contains false or incorrect information, a claim that may have otherwise been covered may end up being denied. To keep this from happening, it is important to understand what is required when completing insurance applications.

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Don’t Lose Sight of Security Among the Internet of Things

by Anita Byer8/31/2016
image of a computer with code

Did you know that there will be nearly 21 billion devices connected to the Internet by 2020?

According to Gartner, an information technology research company, 5.5 million new devices are connecting every day. This rapidly growing network of Internet-enabled physical devices capable connecting, communicating and identifying with other devices is commonly referred to as the Internet of Things. Not surprisingly, businesses are looking for ways to harness its power and potential. Unfortunately, hackers are too.

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Will 2016 Be a Record Year for Motor Vehicle Fatalities?

by Setnor Byer Insurance & Risk8/25/2016
picture of a safe driver

Are you planning to hit the road one last time before summer comes to an end? If so, we have some advice—BE CAREFUL!

According to the National Safety Council (NSC), the number of motor vehicle deaths from January through June 2016 is 9% higher than during the first half of 2015. At this pace, the number of motor vehicle fatalities in 2016 could exceed 40,000, which would be the highest in nearly a decade.

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Business Interrupted? Don’t Let a Property Loss Jeopardize Your Business

by Anita Byer8/18/2016
Closed Sign

Did you know that nearly 40% of businesses do not reopen and another 25% fail within a year after a catastrophe or disaster? The actual loss or damage to buildings, facilities and property is often the reason for this frightening statistic, but it isn’t the only reason. Businesses are increasingly struggling to recover after a property loss because of the economic impact caused by the interruption of business operations during and after the event.

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Gender Identity and Sex Stereotyping Under the Affordable Care Act

by Setnor Byer Insurance & Risk8/3/2016
Gender Fluidity

Did you know that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) contains a civil rights provision? The ACA prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age or disability in certain health programs and activities. Despite becoming law in 2010, final implementation rules were not issued by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) until May 2016. On July 18, 2016, the Nondiscrimination in Health Programs and Activities final rule went into effect.

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Best Practices for Avoiding (Most) Data Security Breaches

by Setnor Byer Insurance & Risk7/27/2016
prevent data theft with these tips

Did you know that 93% of data breaches could have been avoided? Everyone should be interested in this somewhat shocking statistic because cyber threats and data security remain primary concerns among virtually every organization, regardless of size, industry or purpose. It’s true that some cyber threats simply cannot be avoided, which is why businesses should do everything in their power to avoid those that can.

The first step is recognizing and addressing some of the more common avoidable causes of security breaches and data loss. According to the Online Trust Alliance, these include:

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Setnor Byer Insurance & Risk's newsletters and publications are intended as an information source for the clients and friends of the firm. Their content should not be construed as legal advice, and readers should not act upon the information in these publications without professional guidance. Please note that newsletters and publications that are archived by Setnor Byer Insurance & Risk are not updated after initial publication and may not contain the most current information available.

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