Wednesday, December 30, 2015

New Years Eve: Bacon Mac & Cheese Bites

Makes 18 hors d’oeuvres

1 tbsp (15 g) butter for greasing tins
1 cup (140 g) tiny elbow macaroni
3 tbsp (45 g) butter
2 tbsp (15 g) flour
1 cup (240 ml) milk
1/4 tsp (1.25 ml) cayenne pepper
1 tsp (5 ml) salt
1 minced garlic clove
freshly cracked pepper
1 cup (240 ml) sharp cheddar cheese + ½ cup (120 ml) mozzarella for topping
1/2 cup (120 ml) cooked bacon, chopped
1 egg
2 egg yolks
1/3 cup (40 g) flour
¼ cup (60 ml) chives

Preheat oven to 375F (190C) 13-15 mins.

Grease a mini muffin tin lightly with melted butter and set aside.

Boil pasta according to package instructions.

Cook bacon in skillet or in microwave. To microwave line a plate with paper towel, place bacon on top, and then place more paper towel on top. Microwave on high for 6 mins until browned and crispy. Allow to cool on towel, and chop into a rough chop.

Then in a large skillet prepare the cheese sauce, melt 3 tbsp butter, add flour and whisk and cook for 1 minute then slowly whisk in milk, whisking all the while, a smooth sauce will develop. Add cayenne, salt, garlic and pepper.

Then add cheddar cheese, and whisk until smooth. Remove from flame and allow to cool slightly.

Drain pasta and transfer it into a large bowl. Add cheese sauce and stir to combine. Then add egg and egg yolks, flour, and bacon. Stir to combine.

Using a mini ice cream scoop portion out into muffin tin, and top with the mozzarella cheese.

Bake for 13-15 mins until golden brown and cheese has melted. Allow to cool to set up and become stable.

Place on platter and top with freshly snipped chives. Serve with champagne! Enjoy!

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Huge Tax Victory for Small Business

This week in small business (12.18.2015), Congress made small business expensing (Section 179) permanent at $500,000, indexed to inflation. This huge victory for small business owners allows them the certainty they deserve when investing in their business: Congress also passed the spending bill this week, addressing a handful of labor issues.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Last Minute Christmas Cake Recipe - SORTEDfood

A traditional Christmas cake can take months to perfect... you need to start in about September to leave enough time to dowse in booze. Not this one though. Ours you can do in less than a day!

Get the full recipe here:

Friday, December 18, 2015

'Twas The Night Before Christmas By NFPA

The holidays are upon us and NFPA wishes you and your family a very joyous and safe season! To celebrate this special time of year, NFPA's president, Jim Pauley, takes a moment to relax and read one of our favorite holiday stories - with a fun NFPA twist, of course! We hope you enjoy it as much as we did when he read it at our recent holiday breakfast get together!

Monday, December 14, 2015

List of New Employment Laws Affecting Businesses in 2016

The California Chamber of Commerce today released the list of new employment laws scheduled to take effect in 2016 or earlier that will have an impact on businesses in California.

CalChamber also released the latest CalChamber Capitol News Report, which features Erika Frank, CalChamber vice president, legal affairs, and general counsel, and Jennifer Barrera, CalChamber policy advocate, calling attention to the many challenges California employers face—including juggling news laws involving gender pay equality, employee time off for school or child care, and another hike in the minimum wage.

Friday, December 11, 2015

Economy Still Struggling + a Health Insurance Reminder

This week (12.11.2015) in small business, NFIB released its monthly report on Small Business Optimism, which dropped 1.3 points during the past month. NFIB Chief Economist Bill Dunkleberg calls the economy "lackluster" and says that the small business sector has no expansion energy whatsoever. An NFIB member testified before Congress this week, relaying the negative impacts of the administration's regulatory overreach. And finally, December 15 is the deadline to sign up for a health insurance policy that takes effect on January 1.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Renters Insurance

Your landlord probably has insurance to cover the house or apartment building that you live in, but if your bicycle or television is stolen, that's your problem. Landlord Jim Eury says his insurance covers his property only. It does not cover his tenant's belongings nor does it cover them in case there is a lawsuit against them. Renters insurance will replace your property if it is stolen or destroyed in a fire. It also provides liability coverage in case you are sued. Before buying, estimate the value of your belongings. Bill Bailey, Insurance Information Institute says insurance policies have limits on coverage for expensive items such as jewelry, furs, and computers. You will need a special floater for these items to be fully covered. The price for renters insurance varies by company. For more information, check with your agent or company representative.

For more information about insurance, go to the I.I.I. Web site at

Friday, December 4, 2015

Deck the Halls with Fire Safety

Create a beautifully decorated room for the holidays and keep it fire safe. NFPA’s winter holidays tips give you the guidance you need to create the holiday atmosphere you love, and the security of knowing you’re keeping yourself and your family and friends safer from fire.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Understanding Trees and Insurance

This video is from the Insurance Information Institute. For more information about insurance, go to the I.I.I. Web site at

Saturday, November 28, 2015

The Biggest Trials Of Being A Small Business Owner

Passion might drive someone to own a business, but that doesn’t mean the job comes without sacrifices and challenges. Here are owners’ top pain points.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

How To Deep Fry A Turkey

In this video I will be demonstration how to "Deep Fry a Turkey". Its extremely easy and safe if you take the needed precautions.
Step One: Get a turkey, a very large cooking pot, and some cooking oil. vegetable oilcan be used, but it's better to use peanut oil. Peanut oil is very expensive and several gallons are going to be needed.
Step Two: Prepare the turkey. It needs to be defrosted and washed. Make sure there are no pop up tender timer devices or anything left inside. And, most importantly it must be completely dry. I mean really, really dry. You know what happens when you put water in boiling oil, don't you. You will also need to truss the turkey, meaning you need to secure the legs, neck flap, wings and tail to the body of the turkey.
Step Three: To determine the perfect amount of oil you are going to be using, place the turkey in the pot and add water until the turkey is completely covered plus two inches. With the turkey and the water there should still be several inches of room between the oil and the top of the pot. If it's a close call, then you need either a bigger pot or a smaller turkey. Remove the turkey and measure the water. This is the amount of oil that will be needed.
Step Four: Dry and season the turkey. Various recipes will call for seasoning rubs or injection mixtures.
Step Five: Make sure that your frying pot is completely dry. Water left behind can cause some serious problems once the oil is added and starts heating up.
Step Six: Add the oil to the pot and bring it to a temperature of about 325 degrees. You should really get a good thermometer so you can get the temperatures right.
Step Seven: You need some very good cooking gloves and a way to put the turkey in the oil while you are a safe distance.
Step Eight: A deep fried turkey cooks at a rate of about 3 to 3 1/2 minutes per pound. A ten pound turkey should take 30-35 minutes. An instant read thermometer can help you test for doneness, but of course you will need to lift the turkey out to test it.
Step Nine: Remove the turkey from the oil when it's done. Do this slowly and after you have turned off the burner. Let the turkey drain a little bit and you're set to go.
Step Ten: Carve and enjoy. If you have never had a turkey cooked this way then you have not finished your life requirements. Do this and you may never put a turkey in the oven again. Despite what you might think this turkey is not oily or greasy. It's crisp, juicy and delicious.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Why Should You Shop Small on Small Business Saturday? | NFIB

Small businesses are the backbone of their communities. It’s not just about shopping small on Small Business Saturday, it’s about shopping small every day. Learn more:

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Insuring Expensive Items In Your Home

Dr. Hartwig of the Insurance Information Institute ( explains how to properly insure all of your possessions. While a standard homeowners policy covers you for most things in your home, luxury goods such as fine jewelry and furs, antiques, artwork, and other expensive items need special policies. To insure these types of items, contact your insurance agent and get an umbrella policy for them.

Monday, November 16, 2015

What Resources are Available to Promote Small Business Saturday? | NFIB

There are many resources available to small business owners who want to market their businesses for Small Business Saturday. Learn more:

Friday, November 13, 2015

Stranded Energy - How Little You Know Might Shock You

Did you know that there are over 3.5 million hybrid and electric vehicles on US roadways today? These vehicles can present unique hazards for emergency responders, one of which is stranded energy. For more information on alternative fuel vehicle safety training, please visit us at

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Monday, November 2, 2015

CalChamber Steers Helpful Bills into Law, Stops Costly Mandates, Secures Changes

The 2015 legislative year was very active in the labor and employment policy arena. Overall, the California Chamber of Commerce was very successful with bills that we supported, bills that we negotiated amendments to avoid opposing, as well as bills that we strongly opposed.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Senate Bill No. 467

Legislative enactment of Senate Bill No. 467 increases requirements for California Contractor’s License and Qualifying Individual Bonds from $12,500 to $15,000 effective January 1, 2016.

Click HERE To Read More

Monday, October 26, 2015

Estate Tax Takes Away Businesses | NFIB

NFIB member Maria Coakley David talks about how the estate tax threatens to destroy her family’s business.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Risks Of Insurance

Risks of Insurance. Part of the series: Overview Of Insurance. Getting insurance still has its fair share of risks associated with such a decision. Learn about the risks of insurance with help from an insurance professional in this free video clip.

Monday, October 19, 2015

California Blitz- Fall 2015

Video of undercover sting conducted in Moreno Valley during CSLB's California Blitz, fall 2015.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Governor Takes Action on Two Workers Compensation Bills; Signs One, Vetoes Other

(October 15, 2015) Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. has taken action on two important workers’ compensation bills, signing one bill that reduces medical disputes and increase timeliness of appropriate medical care and vetoing another that would have required employers to compensate certain pre-existing injuries or conditions that were unrelated to an industrial injury. These bills are the subject of today’s Capitol Report video.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Why You Need Liability Coverage From Your Insurance Company

Designed to cover professional practitioners against claims of negligence made by clients or patients, professional liability insurance goes by many names. When used in the medical profession, it is commonly called medical malpractice coverage. Notaries public also require this security, but they refer to it as errors and omissions insurance. Real estate brokers, management consultants, and even website developers are all eligible for protection.

What's It For?
Insurance is used to protect people in case something unfortunate happens. Auto policies protect them in the event of an accident; medical policies protect them from unexpected illnesses; commercial policies protect them from a number of mishaps. If there is a fire, theft, or an accident on the job, the commercial variety will cover it.
Why You Need It
Few companies are fortunate enough to survive for a protracted period of time without getting sued by a client, customer, or employee. Liability coverage from an insurance company is the only shield most businesses have against litigious attorneys. This goes double when an employer competes in a risky industry like construction. Why?
A construction site is arguably the most dangerous working environment on earth. Not because people are careless, but because making something, anything, is risky. Workers fall down stairs; they trip on cords; they cut themselves. Builders must assume this risk and purchase the right amount of coverage from their insurance company to protect them from financial ruin. But that's not all.
These policies not only shield the employer, but they also safeguard his workers. If an electrician falls off a ladder or a carpenter cuts himself, a liability policy will pay his medical bills. Commercial coverage will also cover most attorney fees and court costs if someone files a suit against you.
How Much Do You Need?
As you might expect, the size of the policy often depends on the size of the business. Most actuaries recommend at least one million dollars of professional liability coverage for small businesses. Large businesses and corporations obviously need a lot more and often carry huge policies. Because lawsuits are quite common in the medical profession, malpractice insurance is the most common form of liability coverage.
Most doctors have several million dollars of malpractice coverage at all times. When they work in a large practice, that figure might be five or even ten times as high. Lawyers and accountants must also carry liability because of the high rate of litigation in their fields. But what about everybody else?
Numerous Benefits
Any business that can be held financially responsible for failing to complete a project on time may need to purchase a professional liability policy from their insurance company. This includes general contractors, architects, builders, and many, many more. These policies also cover personal injury, breach of warranty, intellectual property, and security. In short, any company that has more than one employee should have liability coverage.

Article Source:

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Sparky on the Street - Smoke alarm replacement

Sparky the Fire Dog® asks people how often they should replace the smoke alarms in their homes. Find out the correct answer in this video.

Visit Fire Prevention Week for more information and free resources on smoke alarms.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Advice from Dummies: Smart Auto Insurance Tips

Kirk has an auto accident and Crystal tells him how to smartly save money on his insurance in the future.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

How Can Children Avoid Dog Bites

There are 4 million dog bites each year and 60% of the victims are children. Dr. Leslie Sinclair of the Humane Society of the U.S. says children often don't respect a dog's boundaries—they expect every dog to be friendly, and although most are some aren't. Dr. Tillman Jolly, an emergency room physician says he sees injuries every year because children often do things that they don't realize are annoying to dogs. The Insurance Information Institute cautions that parents should teach their children not to approach an unknown dog. Allow dogs to sniff you before petting them, never disturb a dog that's eating, sleeping or caring for puppies, don't try to run from a dog, and if one is chasing you, stand like a tree or look like a log. Insurance companies paid out $3.5 billion in claims in 2006 for dog bite claims.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Flooded Cars

Just because a used car looks good, be careful what you buy. Thousands of cars that were flooded by hurricane Katrina are making their way onto used car lots. Don't be fooled into buying one. Despite the insurance industries efforts to keep Katrina destroyed vehicles off the salvage market, officials say now is that time that these cars may show up in your home town. Bought cheap as salvage by dishonest dealers, cleaned up and turned around with their flood damage history illegally hidden from consumers. Ron Kennedy of the National Insurance Crime Bureau says these cars can be cleaned up and sold to an unknowing consumer by dishonest dealers trying to make a killing. The National Insurance Crime Bureau is offering a free search of a cars vehicle identification number so that you can learn if the car was involved in a claim caused by last years hurricane. Jeanne Salvatore of the Insurance Information Institute says flood damage is covered by auto insurance, unfortunately there's going to be a lot of flood damaged cars finding their way onto used car lots around the country, and you do not want to buy a flooded car. To avoid buying a flooded car, check the car for mildew, sand, and water marks. Look for rust on screws and check the seats and door panels for fading.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Small Biz Marketing At A Glance

Budgets are tight. See what marketing strategies do—and don’t—work for small business owners.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Sparky On The Street - Smoke Alarm Placement

When Sparky the Fire Dog® asks people where in the home smoke alarms should be located, he gets quite a few answers. Learn where smoke alarms should be installed in the home (and where they don’t belong).

Visit Fire Prevention Week for more information and free resources on smoke alarms.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Home Insurance Tips And Tools

Tips and tools for your home insurance to make sure you're covered well.
Make sure you have a home inventory.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Filing A Claim

Whether it's a major catastrophe or a small one affecting just you, first assess your damage, then call you insurance company, says the Insurance Information Institute. Claims adjustors say that if you have created a home inventory your claim will be process more quickly, also be prepared to describe the damage to your property and how it occurred. You should also make temporary repairs such as putting plywood over broken windows or holes in the roof. Keep receipts because you will be reimbursed for these simple repairs. Be sure to use licensed contractors to repair the damage to your property and make sure they have obtained the necessary building permits to do the job.

For more information about insurance, go to the I.I.I. Web site at

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Insurance For The Small Business Owner

From the Insurance Information Institute A Business Owner Policy, or BOP, may be what your need as a small business owner. A BOP covers your business for property and liability and helps keep your assets safe. Learn more in this video produced by Russell Productions in NYC in association with the I.I.I. For more info on business insurance, check out the Insurance Information Institute at

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Know Your Stuff Home Inventory

This video is from the Insurance Information Institute. For more information about insurance, go to the I.I.I. Website at

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Why You Need Contractors Insurance

If you are a contractor in any type of field, you understand that there are certain risks that you and your client undertake when performing the necessary work to accomplish the task at hand. These risks could be solely upon either party or involve each equally. Each party involved needs to have that risk minimized so it will not interfere with their own business or even their personal lives. Contractors insurance provides this coverage to give you and your client the peace of mind that you both are seeking.
Contractors Insurance is a policy which is acquired by the contractor themselves. This policy covers and protects the contractor from any kind of liability which can occur while performing the course of the work. These types of insurance policies not only cover the contractor themselves but, they also cover any agents, employees, partners and the like from any kind of claims that may arise.
Depending on the type of policy which you will want to take out, the covered occurrences could include, fire, leaks, acts of God, war and terrorism, safety issues, etc. Before signing any policy, be sure to review every article within the policy to ensure that the liabilities you could incur are covered. Be sure to also exclude any type of liabilities that would not apply to your certain field. You wouldn't want to purchase and pay for coverage which you will never need.
There is a multitude of professional fields that could benefit with the added protection of carrying some form of Contractors Insurance. Most of these fields are predominately grouped into the construction field. They would include roofers, electricians, plumbers, framers, architects, engineers, etc.
Other fields that could use a similar form of insurance would be computer technicians, designers, landscapers, any form of demolition contractors, any many more. To see if you could protect yourself with this kind of insurance, write down all of the circumstances that could go wrong during your normal course of project completion and consult with your insurance agent. They will have the final answers for you and be sure to bring up your concerns with them. Your agent might have a different kind of insurance that would be better suited to your specific needs.
There are five different options of insurance to consider when forming your policy. They are General Insurance, Workers Compensation Insurance, Inland Marine Insurance, Disability Insurance and Bonds. For your particular area, you may need one, two, three or even all of the available coverage's.
Be careful to not waste your money on insurance options that you will not need. For example, if you do not transport goods such as a trucking company or other courier service, you would not want to spend the money on Inland Marine Insurance for that is what this type of insurance is for. However, if you have employees that are on your active payroll, you will not want to pass up the coverage for Workers Compensation Insurance coverage. Consult with your insurance agent to get the best coverage at the most reasonable price.

Article Source:

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Preventing Trees From Falling

Cracks in the trunk, trees that learn dangerously off balance, and low hanging limbs are all signs of potential trouble. Wendy Rose, Institute for Business and Home Safety says homeowners often consult professionals to diagnose and repair trees, adding however, that homeowners themselves are the first line of defense. Tips: check for tree damage, Prune dead limbs or branches that hang low over your house. Jeanne Salvatore, Senior Vice President, Insurance Information Institute says that it is the homeowners responsibility to check their trees, but if one does fall on your house, your homeowners' insurance will pay $500 to remove the tree, and will repair the damage to your home.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Now’s The Time To Beat Procrastination

Understanding why you procrastinate and how you can overcome it will unlock the keys to your greatest productivity yet.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Firefighters: Powerful Advocates In The Push For Home Fire Sprinklers - Faces of Fire

Phil Tammaro, a Massachusetts firefighter and Third District Burn Fund Coordinator with the International Association of Fire Fighters, explains the importance of firefighters lending their voices in the advocacy of home fire sprinklers. Phil, who is also a burn survivor, stresses the level of safety sprinklers bring not only to the public but to firefighters. He shares his story for the Faces of Fire Campaign, a component of NFPA’s Fire Sprinkler Initiative that underscores the human impact of home fires.

Help promote the mandatory use of home fire sprinklers in your state or region. To learn how, visit

Monday, August 24, 2015

Life Insurance Quiz

Do you know the difference between Term and Whole life insurance? Permanent versus Variable policies? Make sure you understand the basics about life insurance.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Monday, August 17, 2015

Cyber Risks: The Growing Threat

"The cyber risk landscape is evolving rapidly,” notes I.I.I. president, Bob Hartwig. And in this video commentary, Hartwig introduces the white paper, Cyber Risks: The Growing Threat” by noting how data breaches and other attacks threaten businesses, government agencies and even the military—and how cyber risk insurance is growing in sophistication and rates of adoption to respond to this danger.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Sixteen Illegal Operators Caught By CSLB, Sanger Investigators

SACRAMENTO – Illegal contracting was plentiful in the Fresno County city of Sanger during a two-day undercover sting operation conducted by the Contractors State License Board (CSLB), with the assistance of the Sanger Police Departmentand California Highway Patrol.
Eleven individuals were caught on July 29 and five on July 30, 2015, after CSLB Statewide Investigative Fraud Team(SWIFT) investigators invited suspected unlicensed operators to place bids for renovation work at a former hospital near the Fowler Switch Canal. Bids were up to $10,000, while state law requires a contractor license for all work that will cost $500 or more in combined labor and material costs. All of the individuals caught for illegal contracting also failed to have a city business license to conduct their work (Sanger City Code 18-32a).
“Always check the contractor license first and don’t be lured by the least expensive bid,” said CSLB Registrar Cindi Christenson. “Many times, unlicensed operators underbid a project and add on costs once the project is under way.” CSLB also recommends having a timetable and payment schedule for each phase of a project and carefully monitoring the project to make sure payments don’t get ahead of the work.
Finding a licensed contractor is as simple as a quick check on CSLB’s website,, or call to CSLB’s toll-free information line, 800-321-CSLB (2752). Licensed contractors can be verified with CSLB by using the license number, business name, or the names of people associated with the license.
Each of the cited individuals faces a charge of contracting without a license (Business and Professions Code (BPC) section 7028). First-conviction penalties for contracting without a license include up to six months in jail and/or up to $5,000 in fines. A second conviction can carry a mandatory sentence of up to 90 days in jail. Penalties are more severe with each successive violation.
Fourteen of the 16 cited also face illegal advertising charges (BPC 7027.1). State law prohibits unlicensed contractors from advertising for construction-related work valued at $500 or more, although they can advertise jobs below that amount if the ad states that they are not licensed.
Five individuals were cited for failing to have workers’ compensation insurance for employees (Labor Code 3700.5), which puts the workers at risk of not being covered if they are injured and homeowners at risk of being held responsible for onsite injuries. Additionally, investigators issued three Stop Orders to the illegal operators, which meant they were required to halt work on all active projects until the appropriate workers’ compensation insurance is secured.
Suspects were ordered to appear at 8:30 a.m. on October 23, 2015, in Fresno County Superior Court, 1100 Van Ness Ave, Fresno, CA 93721. (MAP)


Monday, August 10, 2015

Before And After: Making A Home Firewise

Rapid City residents are Living Less Dangerously from Wildfire!Rapid City (South Dakota) Fire Department Lieutenant Tim Weaver and homeowner Judy Allen show how a partnership to treat a home landscape and the house itself made it more Firewise. The city has created a “Survivable Space Initiative,” partnering with the federal Bureau of Land Management to train military veterans to conduct wildfire mitigation projects such as thinning overgrown lots.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Firewise Virtual Workshop: Wildland "Urban Legends”

Join the Firewise Program at 1:00pm ET on Thursday, August 6, as wildfire and home safety myths and beliefs are put to the test. Wildfire expert Pat Durland will determine truth or bunk to questions we all have, drawing upon his long career as a smoke jumper, wildland firefighter, policy maker, insurance consultant, and wildland fire educator

Monday, July 27, 2015

4 Things Contractors Should Know About Contractors Insurance

Any company involved in construction work, building maintenance or installation and repair services is in need of contractors insurance. Contractors will be ill-advised to forego contractor insurance in a climate of high crime statistics, unpredictable weather conditions, negligent workers, faulty equipment, defective materials and a million and one other thing that can go wrong in the contracting business.
There is also an ever-growing propensity to be held responsible and accountable for damages caused to third parties. Think about it this way: Insurance premiums cost a mere fraction of stolen materials, damaged projects or compensating clients or third parties for losses incurred through the negligence of workers or the forces of nature beyond anyone's control. By having the prudence and foresight to take out builders' insurance, contracting businesses are safeguarding themselves against possible losses and lawsuits that could end up by severely crippling the company financially or, in the worst case scenario, even bankrupting it. A contractor's policy actually costs very little in terms of premiums and is worth its weight in gold.
The basics of builder's insurance
1. Builders' Risk Coverage (also known as construction coverage)
Builders' risk insurance indemnifies the contractor for losses or damages to a building while the building is under construction. Insurance usually covers the building for a specific time period and applies only while the building is under construction. This type of insurance usually covers fire damage and vandalism. The policy may also include materials in transit to the building site as well as materials and equipment stored on site. Tools, equipment, vehicles, materials and any other assets used on site may also be covered. For the amount of protection it affords (and the peace of mind that goes with it) builder's risk insurance is relatively inexpensive (as against general liability insurance).
2. Insuring Materials on site and in transit
Given the cost of modern building materials, it is common practice for constructors to insure their materials either on site or while in transit. However, the onus is on builders to make sure that all reasonable precautions are in place to protect materials from theft or storm damage as much as possible. This coverage can also include materials stolen in transit due to the vehicle being hijacked while en route to the building site.
3. The most common insurance claims made by contractors
The most frequent claims made by contractors entail materials theft, damaged materials while in transit, storm damage, or surrounding properties being damaged while construction is in progress.
4. Most expensive Claims
The most costly claims most commonly filed by contractor are usually damages incurred by third parties and their properties due to the contractor's "negligence" for example, materials being blown off structures in storms or high winds and landing on nearby cars or buildings. Also damage caused to existing underground pipes or cables. Other high claims are damages caused by fire, rainwater damage to structures, lightning damage or severe storm damage.

Article Source:

Friday, July 24, 2015

Perfect Service From First Service!

Welcome contractors and thank you for the opportunity to earn your business. We have made serving small to medium size businesses our first priority since opening our doors in 1997. Today, thousands of satisfied clients trust us with the coverage they need and rely on us for the service they want.

We earn our reputation by providing what you want and then going beyond to deliver the unexpected. Here’s what you get: First, you are handed your own dedicated support team made of licensed pros who really know construction coverage. Next, you get our fully-staffed certificate department at the ready. After that, anytime you need us you have the most highly-experienced group of specialty insurance people in the business. Wrapping it all up, you get a guarantee that puts in writing that you will continue to get this service all the time.

With us, you get the specialist in the field. The best. You usually expect to pay more for this level of service, but the people we serve happily report that our premiums are actually better. And, of course, no one else has the huge advantage of our experienced service and our written guarantee on top of it all.

Remember, with us it’s more than a slogan, we are Working for Contractors™.

The service I get from First Service is simply put - PERFECT!” –T.D. in NB

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Contractors Insurance Protects Your Business

General contractors call the shots in most construction projects, taking the lead in all important operations including coordinating subcontractors, supervising job sites, and many other responsibilities to ensure projects stay on time and within budget. The many risks involved with leading these projects makes contractors insurance essential to protect the business against losses that may result from a lawsuit.
One of the common misconceptions of contractors insurance is that it only applies to general contractors. But subcontractors such as carpenters, roofers, landscapers, masons, electricians, plumbers, and other trades are all liable as well. Since they are often involved in complex business relationships, contractors need to be able to rely on an insurance company that has their best interests in mind.
Most contractors understand the common risks of construction projects, such as injury to subcontractors, not being paid on time, not adhering to timeframe agreements, and other risks that should be considered when drafting the general construction agreement. A contractor's insurance policy may include provisions for issues such as negligence and workplace safety.
Speaking of contracts, all contractors should carefully read every contract and even ask their attorney to review the agreement before they sign on the dotted line. Depending on the size and length of the project, certain clauses can hold hidden fees and liabilities for which the contractor is unclear. This oversight can ultimately result in a situation that isn't covered by contractors insurance and therefore becomes out-of-pocket costs that can seriously damage a business.
Whether you're a contractor or subcontractor researching business insurance, coverage typically involves general liability, commercial automobiles, workers compensation, builder's risk, tools and equipment, bonds commercial umbrella, and employee benefits.
Remember to keep the following risks in mind when you speak with your contractors insurance company:
• Defective products: As a general contractor, you're responsible for all of the work performed by your subcontractors. So, what if, for example, your electrical subcontractor installs a kitchen light that catches fire and burns part of the ceiling? The manufacturer is ultimately responsible, but both you and the electrician will also likely be included in a costly lawsuit.
• Construction contracts: Everyone enters into a contract with the best intentions. But when things go wrong, fingers start pointing. As a contractor, you should make sure that the contract is reviewed by a lawyer to make sure your business has the right insurance for each and every job.
• Litigation costs: Whether you're a sole proprietor performing general remodeling, a specialty tradesman or anyone in between, you need to protect yourself from litigation by having a policy with an insurance company that has your best interests in mind.

Article Source:

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Now Is The Time To Get Flood Insurance

Dr. Robert Hartwig of the Insurance Information Institute ( explains how getting flood insurance is as easy as placing a call to your insurance agent. This type of coverage is NOT part of a standard homeowners policy and must be purchased separately either through the National Flood Program or a private insurer. Flood insurance can protect your home and assets and is vital for people living in places prone to flooding. Check out the I.I.I. for more details about flood insurance.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

The i's On Insurance: Life Insurance

Life insurance is a vital part of your family’s financial stability and well-being. But if you’re like most people, you probably have questions about what types and amounts of life insurance are best for your needs. Spend a few moments to see why planning for your family’s future isn’t just about money; it’s about life.

Be sure to tune in to the other videos in "The I's on Insurance" series for helpful knowledge for drivers, homeowners/renters, and small business owner

Sunday, July 12, 2015

General Contractors Insurance Policies

In the construction business, General Contractors operate as the traffic director on a project. With this responsibility comes some liabilities to help protect your business. General Contractors need certain types of insurance policies which will protect them from accidents that can happen on the job.
As a general contractor some of the insurance responsibilities of independent contractors fall under your control. Everyone knows it is hard to be everywhere all the time, so accidents do happen even if you are keeping a close eye on everything.
You have worked hard to build your business it would be bad if it all came crashing down because of an accident. With the rising costs of medical bills and the rising number of lawsuits it is important to have an insurance policy that can cover you completely.
Below you will find the top 2 insurance policies ever General Contractor should have.
Important General Contractor Insurance Policies:
General Contractor Liability Insurance
Liability insurance was designed to help pay for costs in case bodily injury or property damage happens to a third party. The insurance company will pay for the medical costs and all litigation costs associated with the claim.
General Contractors Liability Insurance Protects Your Company From:
Bodily Injury
Bodily injury is physical damage to someone that doesn't work for you. It can be a client that is on the job site, or it can be someone in the public if one of your employees causes an injury while during company operations
Property Damage
Property damage works a lot like Bodily Injury except it is to someone's property instead of to themselves. As a General Contractor you have electricians working for you, if they happen to cause a fire that damages the house you are working on plus the house next door, liability insurance will pay for the cost of the damage.
Personal Injury
Personal injury occurs from slander, copyright infringement, invasion of privacy, wrongful eviction, or false arrest. It is anything that can damage someone's reputation.
Advertising Injury
Financial loss to another company because of your advertising.
Contractors Workers Compensation Insurance
The Workers Compensation Insurance system was designed to help both employees and employers. Workers Comp acts as a no fault system, which means the fault of the accident is neither on the employee nor the employer. This is a great system to help claims move a long and stop from frivolous claims.
Workers Compensation insurance will pay benefits to employees if they are injured on the job. This could include immediate injury or a long term illness gain at work. The benefits that Workers Comp pays for is medical benefits and wage benefits to employees.
Workers compensation is not required in every state. Even though you may not be required to have Workers Compensation Coverage it is an important policy to have in the protection of your business. If you don't have Coverage you are still liable to pay for the medical and wage benefits for the injured employee..

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Thursday, July 9, 2015

Jet Ski Safety

Personal Water Craft, also called Jet Skis and Wave Runners are the fastest growing watercraft on the waterways. Along with their popularity has come increasing numbers of injuries and deaths. Commander Tom Martin of the U.S. Coast guard says riders need to follow the rules of the road, as well as wear life jackets and have other safety equipment on board. John Birkinbine, Personal Water Craft Industry spokesman, says no one under 16 should be allowed to drive a PWC because they lack the judgement necessary to operate one safely. This video is from the Insurance Information Institute.

For more information about insurance, go to the I.I.I. Web site at

Monday, July 6, 2015

Workers' Comp Costs Seen Rising; Frequency Drops

Jason Dapra, a senior account executive with Helmsman Management Services, says rising medical payments, which he calls 'alarming,' is to blame for higher workers' comp severity. (Aug. 13, 2013)

Friday, July 3, 2015

Grill Safety

For some reason, the first bar-b-cue of the season is always the best. Maybe it's the change in the weather, the family, or the food. But it's also when most fires and explosions occur. Anne Brown of the Consumer Product Safety Commission says if you have a grill that hasn't been used all winter, be sure to carefully inspect it and clean it, and make sure the gas container is properly attached to the grill. The Insurance Information Institute says to look for leaks, cracks and brittleness in the hoses leading to the burners. Make sure the grill is at least ten feet from the house, garage or trees. Never leave the grill unattended around children, says Captain James Resnick of the Montgomery County Fire Department, because there are so many potential hazards. And always keep a fire extinguisher handy. In an emergency, it can stop a fire before it spreads.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Saturday, June 27, 2015

How Does Contractor's General Liability Insurance Work? : Insurance Information

Contractors' general liability insurance policies are typically designed to work in a very specific way. Find out about how contractor's general liability insurance policies work with help from an insurance professional in this free video clip.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Swimming Pool Safety

Jonathon Rigsby can't function like a normal 20 year old. When he was just a toddler, he and his sister fell into their backyard swimming pool while they were in the care of a baby sitter. His sister drowned, Jonathon barely survived.
.Jonathon's mother, Nadina Rigsby says that the sitter was distracted and when she went looking for the children, they were face down in the swimming pool. The Consumer Product Safety Commissions says the most important thing a pool owner can do us create barriers around the pool. They include 4 foot fences and well maintained latches that will close automatically to keep children out. Door alarms are another safety device. Madeline Flannagon of the Independent Insurance Agents of America says many pool owners don't think this isn't a problem because they don't have children. But it is. If a child wanders into your pool, it's your liability, and it could affect you for the rest of your life.

For more information about insurance, go to the I.I.I. Web site at

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Capitol Report: ‘Job Killer’ Undermines Prop. 13 Protections, Would Raise Costs for Small Businesses

A recently amended “job killer,” SCA 5 (Hancock; D-Berkeley)/Mitchell; D-Los Angeles), now seeks to undermine the protections of Proposition 13 by unfairly targeting commercial and industrial property owners and increasing their property taxes by assessing their property based upon current fair market value instead of acquired value.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Why Companies Need Contractors Liability Insurance

Regardless of if you are a standard specialist or a sub-contractor, contractors liability insurance is one kind of insurance policy plan that you cannot afford to do company without. Not only will almost all jobs require your company to provide proof of general liability insurance before allowing it on their residence, but also ignoring to protect your resources with this wide-ranging kind of company insurance policy leaves you exposed to sometimes-catastrophic obligations if incidents or accidents happen during a job.
Contractors liability insurance policy has a number of important types of insurance coverage, that jointly guarantee witnesses, customers, sub-contractors, and employees against these types of claims:
* Marketing Harm (i.e., libel and slander)
* Individual Injury
* Physical Injury
* Items and Completed Operations
* Property Damage
In every case, the contractors liability insurance contains legal and judgment costs caused by statements being registered against the covered specialist. This generally contains the other entire person's hospital costs, earnings lost, and all suffering and pain that could have been sustained.
Examples of the Types of Claims Covered
Advertising Injury
Such a claim is protected by many contractors' general liability policies, but it's probably one of the most rare to actually be registered. Marketing injury is defined as damage continual due to another person's use of slander or libel against the complainant. If you are a specialist, one example might be a sub-contractor submitting an claim against a standard specialist on the assumption that his professional reputation and earning potential has been damaged by damaging reviews and advertising started by the normal specialist.
Individual Injury
A couple of the more-common statements made against contractors, bodily injury and accidents statements happen anytime a third celebration (e.g. a customer or bystander) is unintentionally harmed on a job website as caused by negligence on the part of the specialist. Harm statements sometimes can include psychological and psychological injury that outcome from either irresponsible or purposeful acts by the accused.
Damage to Property
The most-prevalent claim observed on job websites, residence damage statements develop from damage or loss of residence because of the covered person's activities. Such actions might be either purposeful (whereby the harmed celebration may additionally submit an accidents claim for psychological and psychological injury) or random, and are occasionally registered due to loss or accidents that happen after the specialist has already completed the project. One common illustration of this would be a plumbing technician who is charged because water pipes he installed begin dripping and causing harm to the walls and flooring near them.
Products and Finished Services
Products and completed solutions insurance policy is very critical to contractors, because it contains the statements that happen should a client considers that a job was not done properly. This might be by way of a foundation that eventually divides or a wall that breaks at some point after a job has been finished.

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Friday, June 12, 2015

Economy & Regulations, Plus 3-D Cars | NFIB's Week In Small Business

This week (6.12.2015) in small business, NFIB released it's May small business economic trends report, showing a slight uptick in optimism. In Congress, Louisiana Senator David Vitter introduced the Small Business Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act, which aims to give small businesses a louder voice earlier in the regulatory process. And, lastly, in a bit of fun news, meet Local Motors, a small business that's rolling out a 3-D printed car. Watch more Week In Small Business videos:

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

NFIB's Top 3: Obamacare Requirements

What do you need to do right now to comply with Obamacare? Members asked, and NFIB answered. Kevin Kuhlman, NFIB's healthcare policy expert, tackles three common questions about Obamacare requirements. Watch more NFIB Top 3 videos:

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Why Contractor Insurance?

Insurance is obviously a very important commodity in life, and for the modern day professional, it is essential. Professional/Business insurance is vital in the fast paced, often high risk commercial sphere, and it takes understanding its benefits to fully appreciate its importance.
Business Insurance comes in many forms depending on circumstance and situation, and each cover policy is designed with an area of professional risk in mind.
Contractor insurance specifically is small business insurance designed for those who are classed as contractors and work from a contract to contract basis.
Contractors are skilled professionals who are not under direct employment by any company or firm and instead work via their own limited companies. Although a contractor may be working for a firm or company, they are not employees, rather hired hands on behalf of their limited companies who will have agreed to a prior working contract (6 months / a year for example).
Contractors fundamentally are self-employed and work for themselves. As well as certain benefits that come with being a one man company hired within a larger firm, the largest advantage that contractors have is that their tax bracket is far lower than that of an average employee, thus making their take home pay considerably more.
Contractors are able to earn up to 25% more than the average worker due to a much lower tax bracket. This is because contractors work for their own limited companies therefore do not fall under the typical taxed payroll of an employee. This amount of freedom does however come with downsides, as being your own boss means that you are not covered with sick pay, health benefits or welfares that large cooperate businesses offer, and that is where the benefits of contractor insurance become apparent. Contractor Insurance provides the relevant and helpful protective cover to any contractor or freelancer.
Contractors protect themselves with appropriate Contractor Insurance. It can be extremely useful if mistakes are made throughout the course of a contract, or if misfortune such as accidents or illness occurs.
Without the proper insurance, tax investigations, negligence claims, illness and much more would be an extremely costly and harsh process. Insurance for contractors is designed in a way in which a contractor is covered both for all costs and efforts should any claims occur or legal action (IR35 for example) is taken against the contractor.
As a professional, insurance is obviously important, but as contractors are practically self-employed, their high risk position makes the need for specific insurance far greater. Contractor insurances range from Professional Indemnity Insurance, a policy designed to protect a contractor in any case of claims of negligence being made against them, to full IR35 insurance, a must have policy for any secure contractor.
Not all contractor insurance policies will be necessary to all areas of expertise, but most apply across the board and provide benefits to a vast number of contracting professions.

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Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Fire Prevention Week Message Presented in American Sign Language

In this presentation, an overview is given of the importance of having a working smoke alarm in every bedroom, outside each separate sleeping area and on every level of the home, including the basement.

To learn more about smoke alarm safety tips visit -

Sunday, May 31, 2015

What is WOTUS? | NFIB

What is the Waters of the U.S. rule and why should small businesses care about this regulation? Learn more:

Thursday, May 28, 2015

These 5 Simple Steps Can Help You!

Workers' compensation rates are a major concern for small business owners. Here, Beth Milito of the NFIB Small Business Legal Center offers 5 simple steps you can take to limit your insurance premium costs. Like what you see? Watch more Legal Ease videos:

Monday, May 25, 2015

2015 Memorial Day Tribute - Arlington - Trace Adkins

Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one's life for one's friends. John 15:13

Memorial Day – to some it’s merely the beginning of summer and to others it’s a solemn day to remember those who have passed from this life. However, to the war veteran and to the families of fallen soldiers, Memorial Day carries significance so deep that words cannot express their hearts.

When we look into the eyes of those who still mourn these once vibrant men and women, we often sense their loneliness and pain. We hear them choke back tears as they simply say the ranks and names of their military brothers and sisters at a Memorial Day service. White gloves, dress uniforms, rigid posture, and perfectly precisioned salutes represent the reverence and respect flowing from within. Those who have been personally affected by war understand and appreciate this day of remembrance.

What should we say to those who sincerely honor this day? "Happy Memorial Day" doesn't seem fitting. "I'm sorry for your loss" may be closer to appropriate. What would the fallen soldier want from their comrades and the rest of the country on this day?

In an often quoted Memorial Day speech given in 1884 by Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr., the speaker ended his address with these words, “Our dead brothers still live for us, and bid us think of life, not death -- of life to which in their youth they lent the passion and joy of the spring. As I listen, the great chorus of life and joy begins again, and amid the awful orchestra of seen and unseen powers and destinies of good and evil our trumpets sound once more a note of daring, hope, and will.”

The American soldier who gave his or her life for U.S. citizens to enjoy life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness won’t be telling us how to observe the holiday. But I believe that Holmes’ proposition to “think of life, not death” would honor the fallen soldier. Their sacrifice follows the example of Jesus Christ laying down His life for our freedom. It's selfless love for others – not so they can mourn forever, but live!

"We know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. So we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters." 1 John 3:16

Notice that in scripture and in military service, the willingness to give up one’s life is not dependent on the worthiness of the people who benefit from the honorable act. In a perfect world, all who receive freedom and grace would be worthy of such a sacrifice and full of gratitude. But that’s not the way it is anywhere on earth.

"But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners." Romans 5:8

We are blessed to be living in a free society. May we honor our American soldiers for the liberty we have in this country. May we also give thanks to Almighty God for the freedom we have to spend eternity with Him because of His gift of forgiveness through the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
By Beth Patch

Friday, May 22, 2015

Double Taxation Victory & EPA Testimony | NFIB's Week In Small Business

This week (5.22.2015) in small business, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down Maryland's double taxation scheme, a case in which NFIB filed an amicus brief supporting the over-taxed party. NFIB's Small Business Legal Center also testified this week in front of the Senate Small Business Committee on the EPA's latest overreach. And finally, a Bloomberg report draws a direct correlation between NFIB's economic optimism index and the sales of vans. Things are looking up for both! Watch more Week in Small Business videos:

Monday, May 18, 2015

Safety Tips For Grilling!

This grilling season, NFPA tests your knowledge and demonstrates the proper way to use your grill safely to prevent fires.

Friday, May 15, 2015

What Is Contractor Insurance?

To those unaware of the ins and outs of professional insurance products, dangers in the workplace and of course the many legal loopholes within our busy business world, never fear, as you are certainly not alone.
In everyday life, insurance exists as a means in which individuals can protect themselves against most of life's misfortunes. This is of course, what insurance companies and money lenders tell people, and although rightly so, often falls on unwanted ears. To most of us, insurance is a word that is met with a sigh, our minds conjuring up pictures of faceless men in suits, with outstretched arms and briefcases of bad news. This is of course a natural reaction, but in reality, insurers do, and insurance does work in our best interests... In a roundabout way.
Contracting is a popular profession in the 21st century, contractors working alongside employees as if they were the same, but in reality (concerning tax, status and of course insurance) they are quite different. Contractors are not employed by the companies that are hiring them, instead they work for their own limited companies, and it is these companies that are hired by firms who require the contractor to work. This is an overtly confusing concept to those who are not directly involved in contracting, but it is a professional way of life that exists and works well.
Contracting brings with it a number of perks to the contractor, their hours are versatile and they are beneficial to a lower tax bracket than the average employee. This being said however, as technically self-employed professionals, contractors are required to take out a number of specifically designed contractor insurance policies, each tailored to the professional risks of contracting.
Contractor insurance is so important, as being self-employed sole traders; contractors are 100% liable to any mistake or misfortune that may occur within the workplace, making the financial risk a potentially huge overhead. The policies themselves that are available to contractors range from cover designed to protect professional indemnity, to accident and sickness insurance should a contractor fall ill.
What makes contractor insurances unique however are its relevance to contractors and its advantages to limited company professionals. Each policy is designed to cover an eventuality that concerns contractors specifically, and each insurance cover aids contractors in different ways. Take PI insurance for example, which is a contractor policy that may not be required by an average employee. It would cover a contractor in a case of professional negligence that would result in financial loss. This would not be necessary for an employee to have for example, as their employing company would most probably have a policy similar to employer's liability that covers any employee's mistakes.
If you are a contractor, then insurance I'm afraid to say, is a necessary and advantageous commodity to have within your arsenal of professional weapons. Acting as a shield to protect your limited company assets and finances, contractor cover still remains a must-have form of protection, and its importance should never be overlooked.

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