FAQ

1. Personal Insurance

What should I do when I buy a new car?

You should call, email or click the link below (link directed to “make a change to your policy”)to let us know about the new vehicle. In your communication indicate the year, make model, if you will be adding the car to your policy or replacing an existing auto and if you want to keep coverage the same or make a change. If the car is bought through a dealership that will be registering for you, give them our phone and fax number. 617-965-1777 phone and 617-964-1888 fax. 99% of the time everything can be done via fax or email with a dealer and you should be able to pick the car up same day that you notify us of the change.

If you are buying from a private party or if the car is being gifted or sold through your family then you need to give us the year, make, model and VIN number of the car to obtain a RMV1 form to take the department of motor vehicles. The RMV1 form must be accompanied with the title to obtain license plates. If the transaction is within a family then the MVU-26 form should be completed to avoid paying sales tax. (link to form). If this doesn’t answer your questions feel free to call one of our agents and we can explain this process further.

What should I do if I am getting a divorce or separation?

We understand that at this time the last thing you want to do is deal with insurance. Hopefully these tips can make your lives a bit easier. If you are separated then you want to make sure that the garaging of your vehicles are listed correctly on the policy should you move to a different town. Garaging a vehicle correctly is extremely important and in the event of a claim can make sure that you get paid.

You should also notify us if there will be changes to the home insurance. If one party moves out and relinquishes ownership then they need to be deleted off the policy and obtain insurance for their new location. If one party moves out but maintains ownership then they should be removed as a named insured and listed as an additional insured. This can all be done with a quick email detailing what is happening.

What does comprehensive cover on my auto insurance?

If an object such as a tree branch or piece of ice damages your vehicle it is covered under comprehensive and is subject to your deductible. For example if a tree branch does $1,000 worth of damage and you have a $500 deductible you will be paid $500. However, if it does damage to the body of your vehicle and the windshield, then the deductible will only apply to the body damage. There is never a deductible for glass unless specifically asked for.

If your car is vandalized this too will fall under comprehensive coverage and your deductible will apply. Other common cause of losses that is covered under comprehensive is fire, theft and glass. However with glass remember your deductible will not apply unless you have specifically requested a glass deductible. Our company will never put a glass deductible unless it is requested. The glass deductible is $100 and usually doesn’t save much money. We advise against this having this deductible.

What do I do if my car gets broken into or stolen?

The first thing you should do if your car gets broken into or stolen is call the police and report the crime. Your next step would be to call your insurance agent to discuss what has happened. After that it is recommended to call the insurance company so that they may take a recorded statement from you of the event. Next you should go to the police station and file a formal report. In the report you should make a list of all items that are missing.

A lot of people will be surprised to know that items inside the car such as personal belongings are not covered under auto insurance. This would be a separate claim to be reported through home insurance. Home, renters and condo insurance all have coverage in place for such an event.

Should I notify the insurance company or agent that I have a pet?

Pets can be a wonderful addition to any home. Most of our agents are dog owners. All pets should be reported to your home insurance to provider to make sure that you are eligible for their plans. Honesty is always the best policy, especially come claim time you want to make sure that everything has been done correctly.

There are some breeds that most insurance companies do not allow on their policies. Give us a call to see if your pets are on the list. However, even if your dog is on the list there are training programs your pet can undergo to become eligible for certain insurance companies. Sometimes this can be the difference of saving $1,000 and being in a higher tiered insurance company. Because of those two reasons, it definitely makes it worth it to take the class. Not all insurance companies are on the same playing field and having the best provider can make all the difference in the world come claim time.

How do I determine the value to insure my house at?

We insure all homes to 100% replacement cost coverage; in other words the cost to rebuild the house due to a total loss. There is a computer program used to determine this amount and it can be done in as little as five minutes. However, the best way to really know what the replacement cost is would be to have a licensed inspector come out and take a look at the property.

All of the insurance companies will do an inspection once the policy has been initialized. After the inspection the insurance company can recommend changes be done to your house to help loss prevention and advise whether an increase or decrease to the replacement cost (dwelling limit) be made. Sometimes, a homeowner can be unaware of the potential risks that their property may have and an inspection is a great way to figure this out. For instance; hand rails on stairs, evened out driveway, gutters needing to be replaced, repointing to bricks and much more.

There is no extra charge to have an inspection completed and can help prevent an accident.

My child just got their license what do I do?

Having your child become of legal driving age can be an exciting and scary time. Hopefully after reading this it will put you at ease a bit more. When your child gets their learners permit they do not need to be listed as drivers on your insurance policy. However, once they have their driver’s license they should be on the policy if they will be driving your car.

To have a driver added to a policy it must be done in writing via email, mail, fax or stopping by the office. After you have made your request to add them to the policy we will confirm that this transaction has been completed. Unfortunately, there will be a charge to your policy for putting a newly license operator to the policy. To find out this amount give us a call or email. For policies that have multiple cars you will only be charged once for the newly licensed individual. So the increase will be to one vehicle not all of them. However, your child will be able to drive all cars. If your child has taken drivers ed, advanced drivers ed, has a high gpa or is away at school you may be eligible for discounts. Ask an agent today to see if you qualify for any of these.

Stay safe newly licensed operators!

Can I take coverage off if I’m going to be away or if my car is seasonal?

If you are going out of town or your vehicle is used seasonally you can take coverage off during this down time to save a few dollars. It is recommended to have all coverage removed except for comprehensive. The reason to keep comp on is in case of fire, theft, falling object or weather related damages. It is not a problem to change coverage multiple times per year. We are here to help! To remove coverage simply email, fax, mail us written notification of the changes you would like to make. If you are still confused about what coverage you would like removed give us a call and we can and we can clear things up.

2. Business Insurance

There are all sorts of businesses out there that ponder the question do I need insurance and if so why. Business insurance offers real protection from problems that truly do exist in todays society.   Many business owners do not believe this and when thinking about business insurance feel the following.  Insurance is unnecessary and they have been forced to buy it to do business with a client or perhaps the state.  Other feel that the likelyhood of anything happening to them is just so slight that it is often in the back of their minds until an unfortunate circumstance happens to either them or someone they know that is close to them. As you should come to realize,  it is or paramount importance to have insurance and there are several varieties.  It not only buys peace of mind but also puts a financial deposit into the protection bank for the vitality of your most valuable investment - your business.

Here is a brief guide to how business insurance can work for you and what kinds of products you will need for your industry.

All entrepreneurs realize that in order to be successful, you need three things.

  1. An idea that you believe in
  2. Money
  3. Protection

So we all know why we need the first 2,  Lets explore why a business needs protection.  All business owners face a variety of risks that threaten their financial wellbeing, including:

  • Loosing valuable property due to a circumstance that leads to damage or loss
  • Causing a situation where someone (a third party) gets injured because of their operations conditions of their property
  • The risk that because of their professional services, one of their clients is hurt financially and is looking for restitution
  • An employee gets injured, is no longer able to work and requires their medical bills to be paid as well as lost wages.

These are some of the points we will touch on with regards to business insurance.

Most small business weather retail store, restaurant, corporate offices, condo associations, doctors etc usually fit into an insurance product offered by many companies called a BOP or a Businessowners policy.  A Bop usually contains the most broad form coverage in an all risk all in one form so to speak as follows

  1. Property insurance for buildings and contents owned by the company
  2. Liability protection, which covers your company's legal responsibility for the harm it may cause to others. This harm is a result of things that you and your employees do or fail to do in your business operations that may cause bodily injury or property damage due to defective products, faulty installations and errors in services provided.
  3. Business interruption insurance, which covers the loss of income resulting a claim that disrupts the operation of the business. It can also include the extra expense of operating out of a temporary location.

  

3. Commercial General Liability

Other types of businesses such as contractors and consultants may want to buy just General liability which will cover them in the event that someone is injured as a result of their work on the job site or even after they have left. General Liability Insurance  is the baseline of coverage for any business. It protects against claims that your business caused weather personal injury or property damage to clients or other third parties. Benefits from a general liability policy typically include payment for court costs and payments for settlements or judgments for which you're found liable.

4. Professional Liability and Cyber Insurance

Further to general liability, anyone providing any kind of professional service  should purchase  Errors and Omissions Insurance : Also called Professional Liability. These policies will pays benefits in the event that a client alleges that your professional work including advice you may have given caused physical injury or financial loss. As with other types of small business insurance, E&O coverage pays for the cost of your legal defense as well as any actual damage.

Another coverage point that many consultants that fall into the technology class should consider cyber liability insurance: This coverage protects businesses against the costs of data breaches and related cyber incidents that expose your clients' sensitive information.

5. Workers Compensation Insurance

Most businesses by law must carry Workers' Comp Insurance protects your business from the costs associated with workplace injuries or illnesses. In the event that one of your employees becomes sick or injured on the job, your Workers' Comp policy will pay for the costs of defending yourself against the employee's claim as well as any damages (medical bills, medications, etc.) you're found responsible for covering.

6. Commercial Umbrella

In Addition to these primary types of insurance, businesses should consider Commercial Umbrella Liability This type of insurance allows you expand all liability coverage limits on most primary insurance policy(s)