Business Interruption Insurance

In a time like the current pandemic of COVID-19, we are all experiencing some serious interruption. As individuals, it’s come in the form our personal relationships, children’s schools, sports, social events, networking, and even the everyday errand of running to the grocery store. Those restrictions are inconvenient and may be aggravating but in the end, not totally life changing. After all, some may even be enjoying the forced slow down and more time at home with their families.

But for businesses, it’s a different story. Think about your favorite restaurant, retailer, hardware store, caterer or event venue… your dentist, your hair stylist, your daycare and your gym. Think about how difficult it would be to tell employees of 20 years that you can’t afford to pay them or that you have to close the doors. Think about the students that work hourly to pay their way through school and support themselves, already living paycheck to paycheck to make ends meet.

This is a tough time, no doubt about it. It’s terrible. And it’s forcing business owners to look anywhere and everywhere for options. One avenue business owners are exploring is Business Interruption coverage on their commercial insurance policy, which is what we’d like to clarify.

Unfortunately, in most cases, this type of coverage does not apply to any type of disease or outbreak. In the event of a natural disaster or man-made crisis, this coverage would help protect businesses against financial losses if they had to suspend operations or operate at a reduced rate/capacity.

Some of the things Business Interruption typically covers are:
• lost revenue
• rent and lease payments
• mortgage payments
• other loan payments and taxes
• employee payroll or relocation costs

This coverage may not extend for the situation we’re in right now but it’s comforting to know it’s there when applicable. If there’s property damage, closure, or lack of operations that does qualify for coverage, this could get a company back up and running rather quickly. Suffering from economic shock and financial losses is stressful enough, so the silver lining in those situations would be that this is there to help.

There really isn’t a great solution or magic answer to how we’ll recover from this Coronavirus situation but if we can stay positive, band together, and help where we’re able… surely, we’ll come out of it okay and as best prepared as we can be to get to work on recovering.

Prevent your next HR nightmare!

Think you don’t need an Employee Handbook or that yours is sufficient as is? Think again. It is extremely important to keep a current Employee Handbook.

Some misconceptions of business owners or HR directors may be:
• No time or resources
• It’s too much work
• Afraid we’ll miss important compliance/law changes
• Not a company priority
• Don’t think a Handbook is necessary for our business
• We’ve already finished our updates this year

Your Handbook does a lot for you that shouldn’t be overlooked, such as:
• It tells your story and you have the opportunity to be a really great narrator
• It sets the tone for your company culture and clearly communicates the mutual expectations with your employees
• It explains your purpose, your why and your how
• It defines and explains the benefits you offer to your staff, adding value and morale to your operation
• Your openness and transparency will go a lot further than you might expect
• Delivers brand or information change promptly and efficiently

There could be substantial consequences of not having an accurate, up-to-date Handbook:
• Your exposure to legal action being taken against you
• Missing or inaccurate information is misleading
• Employees may not feel comfortable going to management when they should be able to refer to the Handbook to avoid feeling hesitant
• Staff will not feel confident if there’s a lack of guidance and support from their leadership
• Changes in state/federal laws that affect your policies will be overlooked
• Harassment and discrimination issues could be avoided

As always, if there are ways we can help with your Employee Handbook or implementation of it, please contact us any time at (352)371-7977 or info@mcgriffwilliams.com.

Hurricane Dorian claims information

As a precaution for the upcoming storm, Hurricane Dorian, we have created a comprehensive list of phone numbers you should call in the event that you need to file a claim. During this time, we will be checking our emails and main phone line messages as often as possible to be available to all of our clients.

 

For personal insurance claims:

AAA: 1-888-929-4222

Allied/Nationwide: 1-800-282-1446

American Integrity: 1-866-277-9871

Auto-Owners: 1-888-252-4626

ASI/Progressive Home: 1-866-274-5677

Avatar: 1-877-233-3237

Bankers: 1-800-627-0000

Capitol Preferred: 1-888-388-2742

Chubb: 1-800-252-4670

Citizens: 1-866-411-2742

Florida Family: 1-888-486-4663

Florida Peninsula: 1-866-549-9672

Florida Specialty: 1-866-554-5896

Geovera: 1-800-631-6478

Hagerty: 1-800-922-4050, ext. 4

Heritage: 1-855-415-7120

Homeowners Choice: 1-888-210-5235

Mercury:  1-800-503-3724

MetLife: 1-800-854-6011

Assurant (Flood): 1-800-423-4403, ext. 3

Olympus: 1-866-281-2242

Progressive Auto: 1-800-776-4737

Safe Harbor: 1-866-482-5246

Safeco: 1-800-332-3226

Security First: 1-877-581-4862

Southern Fidelity: 1-866-874-7342

Stillwater: 1-800-220-1351

St. Johns: 1-877-748-2059

Tower Hill Home: 1-800-342-3407

Travelers: 1-800-252-4633

Universal: 1-866-999-0898

UPC: 1-888-256-3378

Wright Flood: 1-877-270-4329

 

For business insurance claims:

American Capital: 1-866-274-5677

Auto-Owners: 1-800-437-6164

Guard: 1-800-639-2567

Hartford: 1-800-553-1710

Liberty Mutual: 1-844-325-2467

Nationwide: 1-866-322-3214

Old Dominion: 1-877-425-2467

Philadelphia: 1-800-765-9749

Progressive: 1-800-274-4499

Tower Hill: 1-800-342-3407

 

If you do not see a number listed for your personal insurance carrier, please email us at mwi@mcgriffwilliams.com, and we will be happy to assist you in whatever way we can. For business insurance, you can email comm@mcgriffwilliams.com. We hope everyone stays safe during this time. Thank you.

Cybercrimes happen every 14 seconds… is your business next?

Cybercrime is a big business, in fact 58% of cyber-attack victims were small businesses in 2018. If your business is attacked, the damage could cause financial strain or cause you to close the business. The lost revenue due to system downtime, the money spent attempting to remediate a breach and the reputational damage can really add up. While spending time and resources on making sure your network is secure and up to date is extremely important, it’s equally important to provide training for your employees. The top cybersecurity threat to small businesses is internal, because employees mistakenly let the cyber criminals in. While cyber threats change daily, the two most common we’ve seen recently are:

Ransomware– A virus downloaded via employees clicking on phishing links that is intended to bring business to a standstill, by locking up data with a demand for extortion money or else… the complete destruction of all data.

Funds Transfer Fraud– Hackers manipulate businesses or their clients to wire money into the hacker’s bank account. Simply put, money is accidentally wired to the wrong place.

 

Can it happen to you?

If you don’t think it can happen to you, we encourage you to think again. In the last week, two Florida cities have been hacked and over $1 million dollars were paid in ransom to gain access to their system. The details for these are below:

Lake City, Florida

“The mayor of Lake City told CBS 47 Action News Jax on Tuesday that the small city in northern Florida would give the hackers $460,000 to hand back control of email and other servers seized two weeks ago. I would’ve never dreamed this could’ve happened, especially in a small town like this, Lake City Mayor Stephen Witt told Action News Jax.”

Riviera Beach, Florida

“The leaders of Riviera Beach, Fla., looking weary, met quietly this week for an extraordinary vote to pay nearly $600,000 in ransom to hackers who paralyzed the city’s computer systems.”

 

It’s projected that by 2021, cybercrimes will cost $6 trillion worldwide. This activity will not slow down as we increase technology use, it will only become more complicated. Please call your account advisor today to discuss cyber protection for your business.