Are You Required to Have Commercial Business Insurance?

If you own a small business or are looking into opening one, you may be trying to learn more about commercial business insurance. One of the questions that FM Insurance, serving the greater Oklahoma City, OK area, is asked is whether you are required to have or carry commercial business insurance. Unfortunately, the answer to this is not a straight yes or no. You may be, or you may not be. Here is some more information about this.

There are a few individuals who are required to carry business insurance. If you use vehicles for your business, you are likely required to obtain commercial auto insurance. If you own the building in which you do business out of, and it is not used primarily as your place of residence, you are likely required to obtain commercial property or building insurance. If you have taken out a business loan to start or fund your business, the lender may require you to obtain a commercial business insurance policy to protect their investment or stake in your business. And in some cities and counties, there are laws that state you must have a minimum commercial business insurance policy to obtain a business license in that city or county. If any of these apply to you, you are required to obtain a policy. If any of them are not applicable to you, you may not legally be required to obtain a policy.

While having business insurance may or may not be required, it is always strongly recommended that you obtain a policy to protect the investment you have made in your business. To learn more about commercial business insurance or to obtain quotes today, contact FM Insurance, serving the greater Oklahoma City, OK area.

Summer Travel Can Mean Rental Car’s

Do you need rental car insurance?

 

You’ve probably been at the rental-car counter, listening to the representative ask if you want to purchase the company’s insurance. And the thoughts start racing through your head. “Is this a rip-off? Doesn’t my regular auto policy cover me? What about my credit card? Why didn’t I figure this out before I left on my trip?”

 

At Freeland Insurance, we are here to help. And while not every situation is the same, we’ve got some general tips that will help you make an informed decision the next time you’re standing at that counter.

 

  1. Know your personal auto policy.

Because insurance policies vary, it’s a good idea to give us a call — before you rent a car — to make sure you have the coverage you need. In many instances, your personal auto policy will provide coverage for a rental car — but that coverage may be limited to the value of the car you own, rather than the one you’re renting. Of course, if you don’t have a personal auto policy, you’ll need to purchase coverage from the rental company.

 

And keep in mind that in the event of an accident, many rental companies will charge fees beyond repair costs. They may assess a loss-of-use fee for each day the car is unusable, as well as charge you because the value of the car has decreased. Not all insurance policies cover these fees.

 

  1. Also know your homeowners or renters policy.

If you’re traveling with expensive electronics or other valuable items, you probably want to consider what coverage you’ll have in the event they are stolen. Your personal auto policy and/or credit card coverage likely won’t provide protection for this scenario.

 

  1. Check your credit card protection.

Most credit cards will also provide some coverage, but often payment is limited to reimbursement of your personal auto policy deductible (after that policy pays for repairs). Generally, loss-of-use and other fees are not covered, but it’s important to check with your credit-card provider to determine their policies. And while some cards may offer additional protection for a fee, usually coverage is limited to damage to the car, not liability for any injuries to others. Remember, to receive any sort of benefit from your card, you must use that card to pay for your entire car rental.

 

  1. Consider any unique circumstances.

Are you renting a car in a foreign country, or for more than a week? You’ll definitely want to get confirmation of coverage from both your insurance carrier and credit card company because different rules might apply. Also, no matter where you are, vehicles such as trucks, RVs or exotic sports cars often aren’t covered under standard agreements. And if you’re using a car for business purposes, your personal coverage might not apply. Finally, if multiple people will be driving the car during your trip, make sure your coverages will apply to them.

 

  1. Learn about the insurance offered by the rental car company.

According to the Insurance Information Institute, rental companies offer four main types of coverage.

A Loss Damage Waiver (LDW) relieves you of responsibility if your rental car is damaged or stolen. This may also provide coverage for loss of use.

Liability Protection provides protection from lawsuits if you are sued after an accident.

Personal Accident Insurance covers you and passengers for medical bills after an accident. You may not need this if you have adequate health and auto coverage.

Personal Effects Coverage protects you if items are stolen from your car. You generally are covered for this under your homeowners or renters policy, but keep in mind that the loss must exceed your deductible for you to receive payment. If you have a high deductible, it may make sense to purchase this coverage from the rental company.

 

When you go on vacation, you don’t want to stress out about insurance. So give us a call before you leave. Then, when you head over to the rental-car counter, you can stop worrying about your coverage — and start enjoying your trip!

 

 

Do You Know What to Do If You Are on the Road During a Weather Emergency?

People generally plan to be at home or in a safe location during extreme weather conditions. However, sometimes it is not possible for a variety of reasons. If you find yourself on the road during a weather emergency, we at FM Insurance want you to have the peace of mind of knowing the steps to take to increase your safety in any event.

Steps to Take if You are on Road in Weather Emergency

  • Remain calm. This is key, in many situations clear thinking can be the difference between life and death. It can be harder than it sounds but reminds you often to stay calm and think out your options.
  • Keep your car stocked with supplies such at drinking water, meal bars, a first aid kit, and even an extra cell phone for emergency calls.
  • There is no one answer as to whether you should pull over or drive out of the weather, you must make this choice at the time but remember to never drive through standing water and if you do choose to pull over do so slowly and turn on your flashers.
  • Follow instructions that any law or emergency personal gives. Even if your house is just a few miles away or whatever valid reasons you have for not listening, you may not have all the information.
  • If you see a tornado, it is recommended that you duck and cover inside your car after parking it in a low area such as a ditch. Do not leave your car and remember that an overpass is not a shelter to seek out.

Contact us at FM Insurance if you are in Oklahoma City, OK and the surrounding areas for great rates and fast quotes.

The Best auto insurance for teenage drivers

Oklahoma City, OK is a city that requires most of the residents to have cars if they want to get around, which means that all of these drivers will need some form of auto insurance. Ideally, policies should be set up with a local broker like FM Insurance, who serve the Oklahoma City area. And some of the most important drivers to insure are the newest ones, the teenage drivers, who are more prone to having accidents than anyone else. Below are the best auto insurance policies for teenage drivers in a place like Oklahoma City, OK.

LIABILITY INSURANCE

Liability insurance covers other people who are involved in an accident or other people’s property when the accident has been deemed the fault of the teenaged driver. Which means that this type of policy is definitely needed since teenagers are usually at fault. While it’s only required to have a minimum amount of liability insurance coverage, the more you have will protect the teenager and you from having to go out of pocket to cover expenses or even having to pay for a possible future lawsuit.

COLLISION INSURANCE

Collision policies for a teenager will be a higher premium for sure, but will add an extra layer of insurance protection that you will be glad you have. It will fix damage to your own vehicles that may be the teenagers fault, as well as protect them from medical issues that may arise from an accident. If you can afford it for your teenager’s insurance policy, this is an excellent addition for the safety and security of them and their vehicle.

PERSONAL INJURY PROTECTION

You want to keep your teenager safe on the road, as well as others who may be injured in the event of an accident. So having personal injury protection on their policy is a good idea, to ensure all medical costs would be covered in the event of an accident.

What Home Insurance Companies Don’t Tell You

Home insurance companies don’t always tell you everything you need to know. If this means that as you look for home insurance in Oklahoma City, OK, you need to do your due diligence. It will allow you to get the insurance policy that will give you peace of mind throughout the year.

Basic Policies Don’t Include Everything

Every home insurance policy will cover protection to the home, your belongings, and liability. However, a basic policy may not cover the full extent of your belongings, such as if you have expensive artwork or art collector of something. At FM Insurance, our insurance agents will take the time to learn more about you and your home in order to build a more customized policy so that it does include everything needed to provide financial protection.

Not All Claims are Accepted

When you file a claim with the insurance company, is not automatically accepted. Often, research will be done in order to determine whether everything happened the way you said it happen or it additionally, if you don’t have the coverage within your policy, you would be financially responsible for everything.

Deductibles Vary

Just as with every other type of insurance, you will have to pay a deductible before the insurance company pays anything. Deductibles can vary from policy to policy. This is why it’s important to know what yours is so that if you need to file a claim, you know how much you will have to pay out-of-pocket.

There are plenty of things you should ask when you are seeking home insurance in Oklahoma City, OK. The more you know, the easier it will be to develop a better home insurance policy. If insurance companies aren’t disclosing everything, it is within your right to ask questions and learn more about what is being offered to you. Contact FM Insurance today to learn more about home insurance policies.

 

 

Is Your Auto Insurance Up to Date?

When it comes to auto insurance one of the worst things that can happen is for your insurance to be out of date. This can mean one of two things, either the insurance has expired, or your insurance no longer covers what you need it to cover. There are a few different ways to check your coverage and to make sure your coverage is up to date. For those in Oklahoma City, OK, your coverage needs may be different from someone that lives in another part of the country.

The first way to check your coverage is to simply look at your insurance cards. These cards will display the date that the card expires, the coverage expires, and when you need to get a new card and to renew your coverage. You can pay for your premiums in a variety of ways and in a variety of different increments as well. Most people simply pay monthly to help offset the cost but you can also pay your premiums for 6 months or for a year.

It is always helpful that if you are not sure how to check your coverage, that you talk with an agent to help you determine when your coverage lapses and when it needs to be renewed. You can also check online if your agency has a website and find out when your coverage expires. You should also take the time to find out when you need to up coverage, add more coverage, or change your coverage to keep it up to date and to make sure your coverage is going to work if you are in an accident. Your coverage is important and if you live in the Oklahoma City, OK area you need to make sure your coverage is perfect for you.

Home Renovations and Insurance Coverage

Planning for an Oklahoma City, OK home renovation comes with a number of permit applications, tasks, reminders, and resources to arrange to make sure everything falls into place per plan. However, one that many people tend to forget is the simple task of checking the coverage on their homeowner’s insurance before making any big renovations. And when something goes wrong, the lack of coverage becomes apparent after the fact.

Homeowner’s insurance in Oklahoma City, OK doesn’t automatically adjust just because a change is made to a home. It is not designed to be an automatic, umbrella-type insurance protection. Instead, homes are evaluated and insured based on their current condition. However, because many homes fall into similar categories of use and risk, the initial evaluation process often seems to come across as automatic to the homeowner.

Big changes that need to be checked ahead of time include the installation of a backyard pool, replacing the house roofing system, changing a room to be a business office with significant structural changes like a business entrance door, or building out a room by removing walls or putting in an expansion. The other big component player involves kitchen and bathroom system replacements as they frequently involve putting in gas and power appliances and changing the plumbing which can all be source of damage when not installed properly.

It’s also important to notify one’s policy provider because doing so can trigger big savings, according to FM Insurance. For instance, a new roof can produce a 10 to 20 percent reduction in insurance costs because the external protection has been upgraded with a new, long life barrier.

When notifying, it’s not enough to just call up and say a renovation is occurring. Photos and documentation are frequently necessary to update a policy correctly. To go over the process and know exactly what is needed for a home upgrade, contact FM Insurance for more information.

Reasons Why Employer Sponsored Life Insurance May Not Be Enough

Life insurance has become a very popular benefit that many employers are offering their employees. While it is a nice benefit to have, it is a mistake to rely completely on the life insurance your employer is providing to you. Instead, it is very important to consider getting additional life insurance from another source. Continue reading to discover a few reasons why you may want to get more than what your employer offers as basic benefits.

  • If you leave the company, your life insurance is canceled. While having life insurance through your employer is a great benefit to have, if you ever leave the company, whether it is y choice or not, you lose the life insurance they purchased on your behalf. It does not come with you to your new position or after retirement.
  • You can only get the option the employer has chosen for you. By sticking with the plan your employer has for you (and we are not saying you should decline the insurance offered to you), you only get the option that they have chosen for you. You do not get to choose the life insurance plan that you want.
  • Your employer likely does not provide enough coverage. Many employers offer life insurance that is equal to one to two times the annual base salary. This may seem like a lot but it is recommended by experts that you have at least five to seven times your annual base salary.

If you are interested in getting more life insurance and exploring your options, be sure to contact FM Insurance serving Oklahoma City, OK. You can get a quote for additional life insurance that fits your budget as well as take a deeper look into the policy your employer has for you.

What Home Insurance Covers

Homeowner’s insurance, like all other kinds of insurance including FM insurance, is part of a heavily regulated industry with many rules to follow and standards to uphold. Because of this, sometimes it is difficult to figure out exactly what is covered by your home insurance policy. Home insurance covers damage due to certain events, typically including fire, theft, burglary, and vandalism.

Additionally, this insurance covers both your home itself and the belongings inside it. In some rarer cases, specific outlying structures are also covered by the homeowner’s insurance policy. However, as this is the exception and not the rule, it is not necessary to discuss those insurance policies that protect outlying structures in greater detail.

So, what happens in the event of a covered disaster? In this case, the insurance company will take care of paying for the repairs of your home and the replacement of your belongings up to a certain amount. Your deductible is subtracted from this amount. If the disaster or event is uncovered, then the homeowner is fully responsible for the financial burden. In Oklahoma, most homeowners cannot afford to pay to repair their home and replace their belongings themselves. Therefore, FM  Insurance offers affordable policies and quotes for a wide variety of insurance companies in the state of Oklahoma.

With this in mind, you might be wondering whether or not you can afford a homeowner’s insurance policy to protect your home and belongings. FM Insurance has an excellent variety of homeowner’s insurance policies, differing in the level of coverage, cost, and the required deductibles. They have agents serving Oklahoma City OK that can assist you in finding the correct policy for your home.

Whether your home is cheaper and you want a less expensive policy or if your home is more expensive and you need a more substantial policy, they will help you find it. Their agents serving Oklahoma City are capable and eager to work with you so that your home and belongings are protected by an appropriate and affordable policy.

 

What to Consider When Comparing Home Insurance Quotes

Choosing home insurance is an often daunting task, and one that comes with a lot of questions. One way that people typically try to simplify the process is to focus solely on the price. Here are 3 reasons why that might not be the best strategy. 

1. Pay Now or Pay Later 

An unfortunate fact of life, but a lesson that you shouldn’t have to learn the hard way. The amount of money you spend on insurance can pale in comparison to the financial ramifications of a disaster happening to your property. Whether it’s a flood or a guest tripping over their shoelaces and blaming it on the linoleum, there are a lot of situations that may not be covered in the cheaper quotes. 

2. Will Help Be There?

Calling up your insurance company is never going to be a fun task, but some experiences can be better than others. Choosing a company that understands the importance of providing value in an emergency is of vital importance. When something horrible happens, you want someone you can turn to — a partner who will be able to direct and guide you to a better solution. 

3. How Much Do the Agents Know?

The companies who serve Oklahoma City, OK who have the best home insurance have the best people who can really answer questions at a deeper level. When you talk to a person who has done their job for many years, you can be sure that you’re getting advice that is custom-made for your situation. 

FM Insurance wants to know more about the specifics of your situation. We have staff serving Oklahoma City, OK to keep you feeling safe and secure in your own home. When you’re comparing quotes, there is so much more to consider than just how much it costs. The service and coverage you get is far more valuable. Give us a call for more information.