Category: Business Insurance

14 Nov 2019

Why Your Business Needs Employer Practices Liability Insurance

What is EPLI and Does My Business Need It?

Are you wondering if your business needs Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI)? The real questions to ask yourself are: Do I have employees? Will I be hiring employees? If so, then the answer is unequivocally yes! In this litigious society, you should be aware that your business is at risk from the moment you interview a prospective employee. Current, former, and potential employees have the ability to raise a claim, whether one is warranted or not. Therefore, you should secure EPLI coverage for your business.

What is EPLI?

Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI) is coverage that protects businesses against potential employee lawsuits including sexual harassment, wrongful termination, discrimination, invasion of privacy, pregnancy, and more. Although you may be thinking that you have general liability insurance and workers’ compensation coverage in place, be aware that these policies typically exclude employee lawsuits and discrimination allegations. Without EPLI coverage, you leave your business exposed.

Does my business need EPLI coverage?

If you employ even one person, you are at risk for an employment-related claim. These claims tend to be expensive and distractive. Fortunately, with EPLI coverage, you can mitigate the damage from such costly lawsuits and keep your business running with minimal interruption.

How can I reduce my chances of a claim?

Even if you have all of the correct policies and procedures in place, your company is still open to liability. To help prevent an issue from arising, secure insurance and then take note of these proactive steps:

  • Conduct background checks
  • Ensure consistency in your hiring practices for every single candidate
  • Establish defined roles, responsibilities, and performance expectations for all positions
  • Outline employment policies in company handbooks
  • Enforce a zero-tolerance policy towards discrimination, harassment, and substance abuse
  • Implement an open-door policy to help employees feel comfortable reporting harassment or other infractions without fear of retaliation
  • Accurately document every violation or incident and store this information in each employee’s file

As a business owner, you always want to stay one step ahead. EPLI coverage can help your business stay protected. At CAV Insurance Agency, we work with each business to determine their individual needs and budget. Serving Wellesley, Needham, Natick, Brookline, and neighboring towns, contact us today on 781-237-4107 to get started.

18 Jul 2019

Builder’s Risk Insurance During Home Renovation

Home Remodeling and Insurance Coverage 

When you’re planning to renovate your property, insurance may be the last thing on your mind. However, you may face exposures not typically covered under a standard homeowners insurance policy when making changes to your property. If a loss occurs during the project, you could be left having to face the expenses on your own. When preparing to add on to the existing structure or update it with new features, your homeowners policy might not provide you with the coverage. If you are doing major renovations to your home you will need a builder’s risk insurance policy.

Builder’s risk insurance is policy for construction projects, including interior and exterior home remodeling and property renovations. It is also used if you are building a new home from scratch. The builders risk policy provides coverage for the materials and structure during the course of construction.

When your home construction project is not properly insured, you risk devastating losses to your home and finances. To properly protect your home during the construction process you will need a builders risk policy.Whether you’re making minor structural changes, or doing a gut rehab, it is important to discuss the project with your insurance agent to see if a builder’s risk insurance policy is needed.

When you’re looking for homeowners insurance and builder’s risk insurance, the team at CAV Insurance can help. Your local agents in Wellesley are ready to find the right coverage to suit your needs, home, and budget. We serve homeowners in Dover, Needham, Brookline and surrounding cities in Massachusetts. Contact us to get started!

28 Feb 2019
Developing a Data Breach Incident Response Plan

Developing a Data Breach Incident Response Plan

Get Breach Ready with the Help of a Cyber Incident Respond Plan 

Cyber breaches are a very real threat for every business, no matter what the size, location or industry. These days, it’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when. Because of our reliance on digital technology, storage, and communications, hackers are getting smarter at stealing vulnerable data. Having a solid data breach response plan in place can make the threat of a security breach less intimidating. A data breach response plan is a course of action intended to reduce the risk of unauthorized data access and to mitigate the damage caused if a breach does occur. Alongside reliable business insurance in Wellesley, MA, a cyber incident response plan can help protect your business.

Planning Ahead

  • Establish a response framework. An effective incident response plan contains a framework for action where key decisions are made ahead of time and don’t have to be made last minute and under pressure.
  • Contact an IT firm. Set up a contract with an IT firm who will assist with setting up firewalls and other security measures for your business.
  • Inform all personnel. The information should be shared with all personnel, including employees and contractors. It can also be part of new hire orientation and routine employee awareness activities.

Steps to Take if a Breach Occurs

  • Determine what was stolen to understand what kind of information was lost in the data breach.
  • Change all affected passwords to prevent further damage. Ask employees to change their passwords and PINs, too.
  • Investigate the breach. Your response team should also continue to monitor the status of the breach.
  • Reach out to all relevant parties. It’s wise to notify your local police. If the theft included Social Security numbers, then major credit bureaus can be of assistance.
  • Identify and secure all affected data, machines, devices, and systems. Isolate and preserve the compromised data. Your network should also be cleaned of malicious code.
  • If your customers’, vendors’ or clients’ information was exposed, be sure to alert the affected individuals. Your public affairs staff should work with legal counsel to word the notification in a straightforward and honest manner.
  • Learn from the breach. Your company should hold a meeting after the recovery phase to refine your data security program and breach response strategy.

Although you cannot completely prevent a data breach from affecting your business, the steps you can take today are critical to how you can recover after a breach. Ignorance isn’t bliss when it comes to cybersecurity. Mitigating digital risks can help you and your business to stay safe. To discuss the cyber insurance options that are available for your business please contact CAV Insurance, serving Wellesley and Newton.

 

For a cyber liability insurance premium indication, please complete and return this form to us.

CAV Cyber App

14 Feb 2019
Creating a Workplace Fire Safety Plan Can Help Protect Your Workers and Business

Does Your Business Have a Workplace Fire Safety Plan?

Steps to Create a Fire Safety Plan for Your Business

Fires can occur anywhere and at any time. If you own or manage a business, it is your responsibility to put fire safety measures in place and protect your employees, company, and yourself from the devastation that can result in a workplace blaze. Does your business have a workplace fire safety plan in place? A comprehensive plan provides information to your team on how to handle a fire emergency and helps to ensure that your business is prepared for the unexpected.

If you don’t have an emergency fire plan for your business, now is the time to create one. Being prepared means that you’re one step ahead of a disaster, and that means your business can quickly get back on its feet after a disaster. If you need to create a safety plan, we can help.

Your fire safety plan should highlight emergency procedures that should be used in the case of a fire, including sounding the alarm, alerting the fire department, and carefully evacuating building occupants. It is critical that all employees and managers read through the plan and understand what is expected of them in a fire. Remember, the plan should be discussed before any disaster – the time to learn safety procedures is not during an emergency.

The elements of your plan should include the following:

  • The duties and responsibilities of staff during an emergency
  • Instructions for building occupants and staff on fire prevention methods
  • Steps on what to do in case of a fire
  • How to conduct a fire drill
  • The frequency of fire drills
  • Detailed maintenance procedures for fire protection systems and building facilities
  • Location of fire alarms, extinguishers, and sprinklers
  • Detailed instructions on the use of any emergency equipment, such as the fire alarm system, smoke control system, and fire extinguishers
  • Procedures for the use of elevators and the evacuation of employees requiring special assistance
  • An accountability system that can account for all occupants following evacuation, including notification to the fire department of any missing occupants and their last known location

Although you cannot completely prevent a fire from affecting your business, the steps you can take today are critical to how you can recover after a disaster. Mitigating fire risks can help you and your business to stay safe. To secure reliable business insurance, please contact CAV Insurance, serving Wellesley and Weston.

24 Jan 2019
How Cyber Planning Can Help Protect Your Company

How Cyber Planning Can Help Protect Your Company

Protecting Your Business From Cyber Breaches

Every business owner will know that cyber breaches are on the rise. After all, with our increased reliance on technology, software, and devices, comes the rise of risks to our data and information. Hackers see businesses – of any size – as a goldmine of important information. It’s incredibly important that your businesses acts to protect confidential data and all of your systems so that your company can keep running smoothly. Establishing a cyber plan and securing reliable business insurance in Wellesley, MA can help your business recover quickly if the worst does happen.

Believe it or not, but the human has become a weak link and the number one target. Research has found that over half of all malware is installed via malicious email attachments. With that said, as a business owner, you can your team recognize malicious emails and report them as necessary. Take a look at these pre-breach steps you can take to protect your business.

Train your employees for today’s threats. Regularly update your cybersecurity training to reflect the latest risks and potential ways of hackers gaining entry into the business’s system. Test employees on their skills of how to respond to phishing emails and how to identify other communications with malicious intent. If your team sometimes work remotely, train them on how to protect your network when working remotely or when using mobile devices.

Encrypt and back up business data. If the worst does happen, you want to ensure your data is safe. Encrypting your data means that a hacker is less likely to gain access to your information and readily understand it. Backing up your data means that you don’t just have one copy to rely on.

Consider cyber liability insurance. Cyber liability insurance is designed to protect your business if it falls victim to a cyber breach.

Although you cannot completely prevent a data breach from affecting your business, the steps you can take today are critical to how you can recover after a breach. Ignorance isn’t bliss when it comes to cybersecurity. Mitigating digital risks can help you and your business to stay safe. To discuss the cyber insurance options that are available for your business please contact CAV Insurance, serving Wellesley and beyond.

06 Sep 2018
How to Prepare Your Business for Winter Storms

How to Prepare Your Business for Winter Storms

Prepare Your Workplace for Winter Weather

 

The approach of winter means different things to different people. You might be eager for holiday events and snowy days, but if you’re a business owner in the northeast, it’s important to prepare your business for the inevitable wintry weather. In the fall and winter, Massachusetts can get hit with some nasty hurricanes and blizzards. We can’t forget that only last year, the northeast got hammered by winter storms, including Storm Niko, and faced serious snow and flooding. If you’re familiar with storms in the northeast, you’ll know that winters can range from freezing rain and ice to a moderate snowfall over a few hours to blizzard conditions with blinding snow that lasts weeks.

 

Whether your business’s location is in Needham, Natick, or surrounding towns, you should adequately prepare it for the season ahead.

 

  • Prepare your office building

Extreme winter storms can cause expensive structural damage to your building. The most common culprits are frozen pipes that burst, meaning that melting water seeps indoors. Be sure to check your building carefully for drafts, leaks, and cracks. Replace old weather stripping at the bottom of doors to hold off melting snow that piles up outside. Maintain a supply of floor mats to keep by the door, and encourage employees and customers to wipe their feet before entering the building.

 

  • Make a plan for snow and ice removal

Whether it’s a removal service or close friends on speed dial, have a plan in place to get rid of the snow and ice that has built up on your building and surrounding property. Snow and ice can cause structural damage and limit customers’ access to your business if you’re able to stay open. The latter is a potential safety hazard that could result in expensive liability claims, so be sure that pathways leading to and from the building are clear and safe.

 

  • Keep employees in the know

Communicate an emergency plan to employees before an emergency hits. Pay attention to warnings and alerts, and let your employees leave when they can still get home if it is feasible to do so. If there is a chance the business could close in the event of a storm, let employees know ahead of time how they will be notified (text, email, etc.).

 

  • Keep a detailed inventory

While it’s a good idea to maintain your inventory list year-round, it becomes especially important before winter storms. Take photos of your building and all of its contents. Store these pictures in a safe place, and keep detailed records of all equipment and assets. If anything is damaged or destroyed in a storm, the inventory list will make replacements easier.

 

  • Gather digital items

There are certain phone numbers you should have stored in your cell phone. These include your local fire and police lines, the power company, the nearest hospital, and your insurance providers.

 

A small investment in winter storm preparation for your business can pay huge dividends when a blizzard hits. These tips will help your business weather north-eastern storms. To find out if your business insurance is ready for a fall or winter storm, call CAV Insurance Agency on 781-237-4107. We serve business owners in the Metro West areas such as Natick, Wellesley, Dover, Sherborn, and Weston.

26 Apr 2018
Steps to Eliminate Uncertainty for Small Businesses

Steps to Eliminate Uncertainty for Small Businesses

How to Reduce Uncertainty in Business

As a small business owner, you know how the uncertain can hit your business at any time. The consequences of these misfortunes can impact your business negatively, from reputation to finances. While you can’t read the future, you can make smart choices to prepare well for it. One sure-fire way to protect your business’s future is to secure business insurance in Wellesley, MA. This coverage can help your business financially after an accident or incident. Read on for more tips on how to eliminate small business uncertainty.

Have a Plan

Do you have a clear and coherent strategy that will get you from where you are now to where you want to be? Do you have a detailed plan that connects your purpose to your goals and your tactics? If not, then you could be leaving your business vulnerable. While you can hope that you make the right choices at the right time and that your business benefits, but it much more reliable to have a detailed plan in place.

Prepare for Multiple Outcomes

It’s wise to stop assuming the most likely outcome will turn up at the conclusion of every situation. A successful company prepared for multiple outcomes, regardless of what’s expected. A great way to prepare is to include all departments and employees in the planning process.

Consistently Review

A forward-thinking company understands the value of analysis. Are you consistently reviewing your business plan to ensure it is current? This is particularly helpful to combat changes in consumer demands. If you want your business to evolve, you should review tactics, strategies, and analytics often.

Secure Insurance

A large part of keeping your business safe is to protect it from unexpected accidents and disasters. While you may not think that your small business has many risks of damage or loss, leaving your company exposed could end up costing you. Once you have coverage, be sure that you review it often as it will need to grow when your business grows.

For reliable business insurance in Wellesley, MA, contact the team at CAV Insurance! We can help you secure your needed coverage so that you can focus on building your business.

15 Feb 2018

Small Business Cybersecurity: 3 Risks to Watch

What small businesses should know about cybersecurity.

Why would anyone want to steal your company’s data? Believe it or not, but every small business has or is connected to data that is worth stealing. You may have heard horror stories at giant companies being taken down by hackers and crackers, but it’s not just the large corporations that are at risk. Even small businesses should do what they can to protect themselves and their valuable data against cybercriminals.

Cybercrime can cause massive damage to a young business’s reputation, such as a loss in assets, expenses to fix the damage, and stained status. To help keep your small business safe, check out these risks to watch.

Personal data

Your company will have a lot of personal information in customer databases, employee records, and vendor information. Sensitive information like phone numbers, addresses, and even Social Security numbers could be stored in your unprotected files. Ensure that these files are stored in a safe location, password protected, and that employees get adequate training on how to keep data protected.

Wandering eyes

If you have a retail presence and take credit cards, you should ensure that your business equipment is safe from anyone who may want to tamper with it to gain access to credit card information. Be on the lookout for wandering eyes when credit cards and PIN numbers are involved.

Practice good cyber hygiene

Keeping your digital systems clean can help to protect your business’s health. Security tools should be regularly maintained, employees should be trained on how to spot suspicious activity, and disaster recovery plans should be in place.

Ignorance isn’t bliss when it comes to cybersecurity. Mitigating these risks can help you and your business to stay safe. For the business insurance your company deserves, contact CAV Insurance, serving Wellesley and beyond.

08 Feb 2018

Tips to Help Prevent Employee Theft

Know how to protect your business from thieving employees.

All business owners want to think that their employees are honest and loyal. They want to believe that their employees would never steal from them. Unfortunately, that isn’t the case for many. The employee may not show it, but a disgruntled team member can quickly turn on the business. Employees and workers are deemed to be the most important assets of any company or organization. To help prevent employee theft in your business, read on.

  • Hire the right people

A simple background check is all it takes to determine if an employee is trustworthy or not. Be sure to call their references and see if they have been a reputable employee before. While it may look good on paper, what the business owner says has a lot to do with if you should proceed with a candidate’s application. If possible, perform drug tests, too.

  • Set up the buddy system

Since many thefts happen when an employee is alone, it makes sense to have two employee work for both opening and closing to limit the odds of being tempted to (and able to) steal. Always have refunds and voided transactions witnessed by a manager, too.

  • Make it easy for employees to report theft

Set up an email for employees to send in anonymous employee theft tips. Be sure that you take each case seriously and reward loyal employees that turn others in for actual theft. If a dishonest employee knows that all their fellow co-workers are watching out for theft, they will think twice before doing the deed.

  • Set up surveillance cameras

If someone is confident enough to steal from you, your video camera system will help to catch them afterward. Setting up signs that declare that you are monitoring your business and storage rooms may even help to deter thieves.

  • Get to know your employees

It’s hard to steal from friends. Take the time to get to know your employees so that they would feel dishonest and guilty if they were to steal from you. What’s more, getting to know your team will help to identify if they are in financial trouble, which could indicate a desire to steal.

While you focus on getting to know your team, leave your insurance policies to the professionals. Contact CAV Insurance to learn about your options for business insurance in Wellesley and surrounding cities in MA. We can help you assess your needs and determine ways for you to save!

11 Jan 2018

Fall Prevention tips to Make Your Workplace Safer

Preventing Slips, Trips, and Falls in the Workplace

Slips, trips, and falls have the potential to be a major cause of injury for your employees and visitor to your premises. There is a common misconception that slip and fall injuries just happen and that there is little that can be done to prevent them. However, this is not always the case. In fact, as a business owner, you can do a great to prevent such accidents and injuries.

It’s important to understand where on your premises the greatest potential for danger lies. Common hazards are:

  • Slippery surfaces, such as glossy tiles and polished stone
  • Holes or broken surfaces
  • Uneven walking surfaces
  • Poorly marked or poorly lit walkways
  • Wet surfaces caused by spills or poor drainage
  • Slippery conditions due to mud, ice, or rain

So, what can you do to make your workplace safer for everyone? Follow these tips to minimize the risk of slips and falls.

  • Make sure to always put appropriate signs to let people know when floors are wet.
  • Clean spills up immediately.
  • Put non-slip mats inside the doorway so that those coming in from the outside can wipe the mud and water from their shoes.
  • Ensure all carpet is secure and without any frayed edges.
  • Keep cabinets and drawers closed when not in use.
  • Tidy away cords with cable ties so that there aren’t any wires on the floor.
  • Walkways and heavily trafficked areas should always be kept open and clear. Avoid placing furniture or other items in these paths.
  • Make sure your office has proper lighting. Remember to check areas such as staircases and hallways.
  • Routinely check staircase handrails to make sure they are secure.

Staying safe is important. Securing reliable business insurance is equally important so that you are well-protected if an accident does occur. Contact CAV Insurance, serving Wellesley Hills and neighboring cities in Massachusetts.