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Key Agent Newsletter
April 2021
Did You Know...? MiniCo's insurance solutions are now included in the IVANS Markets online directory.

MiniCo Welcomes NIF Specialty Programs

MiniCo Insurance has joined forces with its Jencap affiliate company NIF Group, Inc., as part of Jencap Program Administrators, a newly formed program division under the Jencap umbrella. NIF's specialty programs moved over to MiniCo on April 1st. As a result, MiniCo has added three programs to its portfolio of specialty insurance products: ArtisanPAK Construction Insurance, Landscaping Insurance, and MiniCo NIF Nonprofit Social Services Insurance.

The ArtisanPAK and Landscaping programs are led by Executive Vice President-National Programs David Daniels, formerly of NIF Group. Executive Vice President-National Programs Vince Terlaje, formerly of NIF Pacific, oversees the MiniCo NIF Nonprofit Social Services program. The related management and underwriting staff of these three programs also have joined MiniCo to provide a seamless transition and uninterrupted service experience for brokers, producers, and policyholders.

Click the links below to learn more about these programs and hear a message MiniCo President & CEO Mike Schofield.

Learn More

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Nonprofit Social Services Insurance

 

New Architects and Engineers Professional Liability Program

MiniCo Insurance Agency now offers an Architects and Engineers Professional Liability Insurance program to provide errors and omissions (E&O) coverage for a vast spectrum of architects, engineers, construction managers, and other professionals serving the construction, manufacturing, and environmental industries. Professional liability insurance helps to protect service providers and businesses from claims that may arise in the performance of professional services. Bryant Michels will be the program leader within the MiniCo Casualty Division located in MiniCo's Woodbury, N.Y., offices. Coverage under this program is now available.

MiniCo's Architects and Engineers Professional Liability Program will offer worldwide coverage on a claims-made form with a schedule of professional services crafted for each risk and capacity of up to $2 million on a primary basis. Coverages will include duty to defend, supplemental payments, and regulatory/administrative actions reimbursement. This is a sampling of available coverages. Each risk will be underwritten individually, and additional coverage options may be available.

Targeted classes of business include:

Architects
Mechanical engineers
Structural engineers
Electrical engineers
Construction managers
Solar system designers
Civil engineers
Product designers
Technical consultants
Testing/inspection
Surveyors
Automation engineers
Design-build and design/manufacture
Material handling system designers

The program will be available through a select group of wholesalers. Contact Bryant Michels at bryant.michels@minico.com with submissions or to request an appointment.

Learn More

   

Preparing for Hail, Wind, and Severe Storms

The impact that catastrophic hail and wind events have had on property owners and the insurance industry would be difficult to overstate. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) recorded 5,396 major hailstorms in 2019. Those storms affected more than 7.1 million properties in the U.S. resulting in losses of more than $13 billion according to the Verisk report U.S. Hail Damage Insights.

We generally think of hail storms occurring during spring months, but data from the past several years indicates that severe storms can occur throughout the year. The Verisk report notes that the threat of severe hail storms now extends well outside of "hail alley" (Colorado, Nebraska, and Wyoming) to include the Midwest, Gulf Coast, Appalachia, and the desert Southwest. In 2020, the states with the highest number of major hail events were Texas, South Dakota, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Nebraska.

Hail events can cause catastrophic damage to commercial properties and often result in repairs or replacement of the entire roof or the damaged portions of the roof. For property owners, this is an unwelcome and unavoidable potential peril. However, property owners can take action to prepare for severe weather and help minimize storm damage. Here are some recommendations for insurance agents and their clients to discuss.

Insurance – Total reconstruction costs, including materials and labor, increased nearly 5 percent on average from July 2019 to July 2020 with increases shown in all states. Steel prices are projected to continue to rise in 2021. Given the current underwriting and reconstruction cost trends, a mid-term review and adjustment to your client's policy may be a wise decision to ensure that valuation and out-of-pocket exposures have been appropriately addressed.

Facility Maintenance – Property owners should perform maintenance tasks that can help reduce potential damage such as trimming trees, securing equipment, and tying down items that could become airborne and cause damage during a severe storm.

Roofing – Property owners should schedule regular inspections with a qualified roofer to evaluate the condition of the roof and perform necessary maintenance on any areas identified as defective.

Wind/Hail Deductibles – For commercial properties located in high-risk areas and policies that include large percentage or flat deductibles, agents may wish to discuss adding a wind-deductible buy-back policy.

For coverage questions about MiniCo's commercial property policies, contact your MiniCo underwriter directly or email info@minico.com.

Wind/Hail Deductible Buy-Back

Hail Action Plan

   

Guard Dogs and Animal Liability Exclusions

If your commercial property clients are considering adding guard dogs as a security measure, it is critical that they be advised of the liability exposure involved and their need for specific insurance protection to address those exposures.

In general, guard dogs are permitted to roam freely in a building or fenced property during non-business hours. If your clients choose to use professionally trained guard dogs on their property, it is advisable to review their insurance coverage to identify exclusions that would leave the policyholder unprotected in the event of a claim or lawsuit. For example, MiniCo's specialty self-storage BOP specifically excludes animal liability.

Understanding the legal responsibilities of having a guard dog, or even a pet dog, on a business premises is also important. Dog owners are strictly liable for any damage or injuries caused by their dog. In most jurisdictions, the liability rules of tort negligence state that the injured party only needs to show that the dog caused the injury directly or indirectly to be entitled to damages.

Signage on the property such as "Danger Guard Dogs" or "No Trespassing: Not Responsible for Injuries or Accidents" are not sufficient protection for a business owner. The first example is an admission of liability, and the second example is unenforceable.

For questions about animal liability exclusions in MiniCo's commercial property policies, contact your MiniCo underwriter directly or email info@minico.com.

Online Claim Forms

   

Simplified Self-Storage Claims Reporting

MiniCo's streamlined online claim forms make it easier and faster to report a claim for self-storage risks. Our responsive claim professionals also are available by phone, fax, and email. Agents also may report claims via an ACORD form.

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

800-528-1056
www.minico.com

info@minico.com

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

© 2021 MiniCo Insurance Agency, LLC.
All rights reserved.

MiniCo
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