Melendez Insurance

Blog Archives

Blog Calendar

November 2017
M T W T F S S
« Jun    
 12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
27282930  

RSS News You Can Use

  • A Hot Price for U.S. Businesses
  • Summer Grilling Fun
    Every year, what should be a fun outdoor occasion for family and friends instead turns into tragedy at nearly 9,000 homes, causing deaths, injuries and tens of millions in property damage. Your Trusted Choice® independent insurance agents can remind you that fire damage and potential liability for injury to friends will be covered by your […]
  • Home-Buying Tips for the Single Guy and Gal
  • Food Trucks: Let Your Food Keep on Trucking!
    Welcome to the world of food trucks! When you picture building your catering business, is the image more truck than tent? The mobile food industry has a long and tasty history in the U.S.
  • Staffing Your Catering Business
    Like many entrepreneurs, you may have begun your catering business as the sole cook and bottle washer. But at some point, you will discover that going it alone not only impedes growth, but is a recipe for burnout and collapse. And you’ll face the question of every successful catering business: How do I find and […]

Melendez Insurance Blog

Tag Archive

What’s the Difference Between a Certificate of Insurance and an Additional Insured?

Monday, April 3rd, 2017

You typically come across these issues when you’re talking about business insurance. It’s easy to get them confused.

The key difference between a certificate of insurance and an additional insured comes down to whether you have coverage under someone else’s insurance policy. This only applies if you’re named as an additional insured on a policy.

What’s an additional insured?

When you’re named an additional insured on a policy, you are typically insured for covered claims arising from the Named Insured’s negligence (or your joint negligence) with regard to the premises, project and equipment that’s described in the additional insured endorsement. This commonly will include defense costs should you need to hire an attorney if the claim falls within the terms of the additional insured endorsement.

Businesses typically request to be named as an additional insured on a policy if another business’s negligence could affect them. Two examples could include:

  • A general contractor hires a subcontractor to help with a project. The subcontractor does negligent work, which leads someone to get injured and file a lawsuit against both the general contractor and the subcontractor. By being named an additional insured on the subcontractor’s policy, the general contractor  may obtain coverage under the subcontractor’s policy within the policy’s limits.
  • A wholesaler-distributor distributes products manufactured by another company. A product injures someone, and the injured person files a lawsuit against the wholesaler-distributer and the manufacturer. By being named an additional insured on the manufacturer’s policy, the wholesaler-distributer may obtain coverage under the manufacturer’s policy within the policy’s limits.

A business is usually added as an additional insured via an endorsement to a business insurance policy. Many contracts spell out who should be named as an additional insured on a business’ policy.

There are two ways most policies treat additional insureds: on a specific basis and on a blanket basis. A specific basis is just that—a specific person or business is named as an additional insured on a policy.

Meanwhile, a blanket basis covers anyone who meets the definition of “additional insured” as it’s spelled out in the policy. The policy typically names broad types of parties like “contractors” or “landlords.”

What is a certificate of insurance?

A certificate of insurance is a document that shows that insurance coverage is in effect. It shows the dates of coverage, the limits, and the line of business that’s covered.

The certificate shows that a policy is in force—but that doesn’t mean the person or business requesting it is covered as well. As a certificate holder, you are only receiving proof that the insurance policy exists; the certificate of insurance is not an insurance policy and does not provide coverage or serve to amend or alter the terms of an insurance policy.

A certificate of insurance is usually requested by one party in an agreement, contract or transaction to make sure another party has the appropriate insurance coverage. A certificate of insurance does not entitle you to rights as an additional insured. For example, you aren’t provided any coverage under the other party’s policy in the event of a loss, unless the policy has been endorsed to provide coverage. For that reason, the best way to verify that you have been added to a policy as an additional insured is to request proof that the additional insured endorsement has been added to the  insurance policy. If the policy has been endorsed with the additional insured form, the certificate will often include the form number and specific information about the endorsement that reflects what has been added to the policy. Proof may therefore be a certificate with this information listed or an actual copy of the declarations showing the endorsement.

As you can see, additional insureds and certificates of insurance can be pretty tricky. And not having the right information can put you (as well as your business) at financial risk.

Three Things to Know about Fallen Trees and Business Insurance

Friday, December 9th, 2016

If a tree falls after a storm and hits your office building, is the damage covered by your business insurance? The answer? Well, it depends (on your policy).

Here are three things to know about business insurance and toppled trees.

1. Coverage details

You’re covered for the removal of the fallen trees and related damages if your policy specifically covers and lists your building and other property, such as fences, freestanding signs and outbuildings. This includes trees felled by a windstorm, lightning, hail or from the weight of ice, snow or sleet; but it doesn’t cover diseased or dead trees.

What if the tree lands on your work vehicle? If comprehensive coverage is purchased for your business vehicles, damage from fallen trees would be covered.

2. Where the tree falls is key

Where a tree falls is generally more important to an insurance company than its owner. So if the neighbor’s tree lands on your business property, you would file a claim with your insurance company. Similarly, if a tree on your business property falls in your neighbor’s yard, your neighbor should file a claim with his or her insurance carrier.

If your neighbor’s tree was in poor health or not properly maintained, then your insurance company may try to collect from the neighbor’s insurer through a process called subrogation. In some cases, you may be reimbursed for the deductible.

3. The claims process (and how to get started)

If a tree falls on your business property, take photos of the damage and contact your insurance company. Before you have the tree removed, get in touch with your insurance agent or claims adjuster, who will evaluate the damage and explain your coverage.

What about homes and cars?

You might also be wondering about damage to your home or a personal vehicle. If a tree damages your home, you may have coverage through your homeowners policy. If it smashes your car, you may have coverage on your auto policy for the damage if you have purchased the optional comprehensive coverage.

Bypass the risks with tree trimming

It’s also a good idea to keep a watchful eye on the health of the trees on your property. Most routine pruning can take place any time during the year with little effect on the tree. An arborist can help you manage tree hazards and risks. If you need to find an arborist in your area, the International Society of Arboriculture has an online directory.

Get in touch with Melendez Insurance for more information about tree damage and insurance coverage.