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Key Agent Newsletter
April 2020
Did You Know...? MiniCo's insurance solutions are now included in the IVANS Markets online directory.

Coronavirus Update

To Our Valued Producers,

MiniCo Video
At MiniCo, our promise is to help you when you need it most. So when it comes to managing our own business continuity and emergency preparedness, we are focused on doing what it takes to be there when you need us. In the weeks ahead, we know that you will need your partners at MiniCo to support you, your business, and your clients – and we will be there.

COVID-19 is not impacting our customer service, and MiniCo's systems and processes are in place so that we may continue to offer quotes, issue policies and endorsements, and provide quality claims handling. Our crisis management team is monitoring developments to mitigate any potential business interruption. As with many organizations, we are limiting non-essential travel in accordance with CDC and WHO guidelines. This is to protect not only our employees, but also our clients. In an unusual climate, it is business as usual at MiniCo. We are here, as always, to provide uninterrupted service.

Thank you for trusting us with your business. Please reach out to us with any questions. We look forward to serving you safely as we all work through this unprecedented situation.

Sincerely,

Mike Schofield
President and CEO

 

 

Hail and Storm Tips for Your Clients

Hail and Storm
The frequency and severity of billion-dollar hail events has significantly impacted our industry. Data from the National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) reflect five such events in 2019 alone. These events caused severe damage in 19 states with estimated losses totaling over $10 billion. The most costly hail event of the year occurred in May when a four-day severe storm outbreak produced 190 tornadoes, damaging hail, and straight-line thunderstorm winds. The resulting insured losses across 12 states exceeded $4.5 billion.

Hail storms historically appear during spring months, but the current trend demonstrates that severe storms can occur throughout the year. They can cause catastrophic damage to property and often result in repairs or replacement of the entire roof or the damaged portions of the roof. For property owners in areas prone to hail storms, this is an unwelcome potential peril and one that can't be avoided. However, property owners can take action to prepare for severe weather and help minimize storm damage. Here are some recommendations to help your clients protect and prepare their commercial facilities from the costly effects of hail damage.

Insurance
Schedule a coverage review with your client being sure to address potential exposures caused by hail and wind. In response to this loss trend, insurers are applying stricter underwriting guidelines with higher deductibles, increased premiums, and endorsements limiting coverage. In addition, carriers have become more likely to decline to quote wind/hail coverage or decline offering a quote for the entire risk. In the most challenging locations, wind/hail deductibles of up to five percent may be applied to property insurance policies, which can create a large financial exposure for the business owner in the event of a major loss. MiniCo offers a stand-alone wind/hail deductible buy-back policy that lets you mitigate the financial exposure by lowering the deductible to as little as one percent or a specific dollar value. It is critical that your clients understand their deductibles, weather-related endorsements, and the financial exposure they may face in the event of a severe-weather event.

Property Maintenance
Prepare commercial properties for severe wind and hail with maintenance tasks that can help reduce potential damage. Trim trees to prevent damage from falling limbs and falling trees. Make sure equipment is secured in a protective structure. Tie down construction materials and other items that could become airborne and cause damage during a severe storm.

Roof Inspections and Maintenance
roof inspections
Schedule regular inspections with a qualified roofer to evaluate the condition of the roof and perform necessary maintenance on any areas identified as defective.

Roofing Design and Materials
During new construction or when reroofing, the design and material quality are key considerations. It is important to consult roofing professionals with self-storage experience to assist in evaluating these critical building components in order to help mitigate potential damage from weather-related activity.

Protective Shields
Install protective shields or screens over skylights, HVAC units, and other roof-mounted equipment. Hail nets could also be a consideration.

Pre-Fund
For clients located in high-risk areas and for those with large percentage or flat deductibles, it is highly recommended that the business owner create an insurance fund to limit the financial impact of a catastrophic event.

Liberty Mutual Insurance, one of MiniCo’s carriers, has prepared a detailed hail action plan that is available for download at www.minico.com/hailplan. Resources for business owners are also available at the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) website www.ready.gov.

Wind/Hail Deductible Buy-Back

 

Cyber Insurance: Coronavirus Scams

cyber insurance
The world's attention is focused on the coronavirus COVID-19, and getting the latest information is important for all of us. Unfortunately, cybercriminals have seized on our interest in the pandemic to launch scams with the goals of stealing personal information, infecting devices with malware, circulating false information, and even selling bogus products.

What's the Scam?
An email scam may incorporate a logo of a trusted entity, such as the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) or World Health Organization (WHO), and offer a link that promises to provide breaking news about the pandemic or perhaps an interactive map of current confirmed cases of COVID-19, or other information that sounds legitimate. If a user clicks on the link, they may be asked to enter their email login credentials or other personal information that can be used to steal the user's data or hack into financial accounts. Clicking on the link may also install malicious software (malware) on the user's device.

Stay Alert to Protect Yourself
Identifying these types of scams can be tricky, so it's important to stay vigilant when encountering emails from unknown accounts. Here are some tips.

For information on COVID-19, visit reputable websites such as the CDC or WHO directly from your browser, not from a link in an email.

Before you click on a link in an email, examine the sender's details in the "From" line. If the domain name (the part of the address after the "@") looks suspicious, delete the email immediately.

Do not click links or open attachments on any email from an untrusted source.

Do not give your personal information to anyone via email.

Install computer security software and keep it updated.

Cyber insurance products from MiniCo Insurance Agency are designed for small and medium-sized businesses and include coverage for data extortion from a ransomware attack. Other coverages include security and privacy liability, crisis-management costs, data recovery and loss of business income, and regulatory defense and remediation costs. No supporting accounts are required, and premiums are competitive. For more information including a premium indication, contact Michael Attanasio at 800-998-5545 or michael.attanasio@minico.com.

Learn More

   

Simplified Claims Reporting

silified claims reporting
MiniCo's newly streamlined online claim forms make it easier and faster to report a claim. Our responsive claim professionals also are available by phone, fax, and email.

When reporting a claim to MiniCo, please provide all the information you have available about the loss, damage, or incident. Providing detailed information gives our adjusters a head start on processing and resolving the claim, which can translate into a quicker and more productive resolution for your client.

REMINDER: Please notify MiniCo immediately upon receipt of a notice of possible litigation or retention of an attorney involving any policyholder. Giving our claim professionals the maximum time available to respond is crucial to the effective resolution of the situation.

Report a Claim to MiniCo

Property Loss Notice GL Loss Notice

Email: claim@minico.com
Phone: 800-528-1056
After Hours: 855-861-0876
Fax: 602-678-3512
Fraud Hotline: 855-875-0775

   
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800-528-1056
www.minico.com

customercare@minico.com

10851 N. Black Canyon Highway, Suite 200
Phoenix, AZ 85029
California License # 0H04984

© 2020 MiniCo Insurance Agency, LLC.
All rights reserved.

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