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FAQs2017-07-15T07:54:37+00:00

If you have any additional questions or concerns feel free to give us a call at 951-296-2220

 

What is the best coverage for my boat?2017-06-14T02:12:17+00:00

It is best to have what is known as an “All Risk” policy, which will provide coverage for all types of losses except those specifically excluded in the policy. Typical exclusions may include wear and tear, gradual deterioration, marring, denting, scratching, animal damage, manufacturer’s defects, defects in design, and ice and freezing.

What other coverages can I expect with my policy?2017-06-14T02:11:29+00:00

The following are standard coverages with standard deductibles and average limits:

  • Medical payments, $5,000
  • $1,000 limit Personal effects, $250 deductible,
  • Uninsured boaters liability, between $300,000 and $500,000
  • $500 to $1000 limit Towing and assistance, no deductible
  • $1,000 limit Fishing equipment, $250 deductible
Who is allowed to operate my boat?2017-06-14T02:11:04+00:00

Most policies will allow anyone to operate your boat so long as you have given them permission. There are exceptions, of course, especially with high performance boats or personal watercraft so always read your policy. But beware, too many additional drivers often results in increased premiums.

I live in an area where I can’t use my boat in the winter, but my lender requires it be insured year-round. What can I do?2017-06-14T02:09:05+00:00

Ask your R.L. Frame insurance agent if they offer what is commonly referred to as a “lay-up” discount. You have year-round coverage with a discount for the months your boat is in dry storage.

What are the differences between boat and yacht insurance?2017-06-14T02:08:20+00:00

Generally “boats” are considered to be 26′ and smaller, and “yachts” are 27′ and larger. Generally speaking yacht coverage is broader and more specialized because larger boats travel further and have more unique exposures.

What should I look for in a yacht policy?2017-06-14T02:07:58+00:00

There are two main section s of a yacht policy. Hull insurance is all risk direct damage coverage that creates a very broad insuring agreement. It will include agreed amount hull coverage, meaning all parties agree at the time the policy is written on the value of the vessel and that value will be paid in the event of a total loss. A true yacht policy also includes replacement cost (new for old) coverage on partial losses, with the exception of sails, canvas, batteries, outboards and sometimes outdrives, which are depreciated. Protection and indemnity insurance is the broadest of all liability coverages, and because maritime law is unique, you will need coverages that are designed for those exposures. Such things as Harborworkers and Longshoreman’s coverage and Jones Act (crew) coverage can be critical, as an uncovered loss in this area could run into hundreds of thousands of dollars. Besides providing payment of judgments against you, P&I also provides for your defense in Admiralty Courts.

What’s not covered?2017-06-14T02:07:01+00:00

Exclusions on a yacht policy generally include wear and tear, gradual deterioration, marine life, marring, denting, scratching, animal damage, osmosis, blistering, electrolysis, manufacturer’s defects, defects in design, and ice and freezing.

How much should I insure my boat for?2017-06-14T02:05:45+00:00

Usually you should insure it for the purchase price plus additional equipment (and tax if you want).

What is a normal deductible?2017-06-14T02:05:21+00:00

A yacht policy usually carries a percentage of the insured value deductible, for instance a 1%, deductible means a boat insured for $100,000 would have a $1,000 deductible. Most lenders allow a maximum deductible of 2% of the insured value. Beware of “named special deductibles” such as storm damage of 10% or more.

What are some of the other standard coverages I can expect?2017-06-14T02:04:51+00:00

These standard coverages have standard deductibles and average limits:

  • Medical payments, $10,000 limit
  • $5,000 limit personal effects, $250 deductible,
  • $500,000 limit uninsured boaters liability, no deductible,
  • $1,000 to $3,000 limit Towing and assistance, no deductible,
  • $1,000 limit Fishing equipment, $250 deductible
  • $1,000 Hurricane haul out coverage. Small percentage of limit as deductible. Hurricane warning must be posted by NOA. Payment made to move boat to safe location, haul out or make special preparations to withstand storm.
What is Breach of Warranty?2017-06-14T02:04:19+00:00

That is coverage that primarily protects the lienholder’s interest in your boat, paying off the balance owed but nothing more. If you breach the warranties in the policy, such as promising not to go outside your navigational limits, not to use your boat during the lay-up period, not to use your boat for anything but private pleasure use, and you do NOT have this coverage and experience a loss, you don’t get paid for that loss and neither does the lender. You could end up making payments on a boat you cannot use.

What kind of coverage is legally required for a motorcycle?2017-06-14T02:00:28+00:00

The answer depends on the type of bike and your state’s minimum requirements. Generally, a minimum amount of liability insurance to pay for damages and/or injury to a driver in an accident you cause is required, just as it is for a car. However, required coverage limits vary.

Is motorcycle insurance the same as car insurance?2017-06-14T01:59:51+00:00

Yes, motorcycle insurance and car insurance work the same way. You pay a set premium and file a claim in the event of an incident. The insurance company will pay up to the limits you’ve elected, after you’ve paid your deductible.

Do I really need motorcycle insurance?2017-06-14T01:59:23+00:00

Like auto insurance, liability coverage is the law. Also, you are more likely to get into an accident on a motorcycle than in a car (and you are likely to suffer greater injury), so it is in your best interest to have proper coverage.

What type of coverage do I need?2017-06-14T01:59:00+00:00

The type of insurance coverage you need for your motorcycle depends on how secure you want to feel while riding the bike, and how much you want to be protected in the event of an accident. For older models with little resale value, liability may be enough. If you have a brand new bike, however, you might want to consider comprehensive coverage to protect against theft or other non accident-related damages.

Remember, liability insurance only covers the costs to the other party after an accident, so you might look into additional insurance to pay for your damages and injuries if you’re at fault, such as comprehensive and collision insurance, or medical payments coverage.

Uninsured motorist coverage can also come in very handy if you get hit by a driver who has no insurance to cover your costs.

Finally, you might consider additional coverages such as towing and labor if you get stranded, or rental reimbursement coverage if your motorcycle is your only vehicle.

How do I get cheap insurance coverage for my motorcycle?2017-06-14T01:58:09+00:00

Just like any insurance, there are a number of factors that affect your rates. For example, how much coverage you want and the deductible you choose will both affect how much you pay.

Additionally, depending on your insurance company, various motorcycle insurance discounts are often available to help you lower your costs. For example, you may be able to save by bundling different insurance policies together, such as your home, car, and motorcycle policies. You may also be able to lower your rates by taking a motorcycle safety course. Ask your R.L Frame Insurance Agent if you are interested in lowering your rates. We are dedicated to finding the best rates and coverage for your needs.

Will my rates go up if I have an accident?2017-06-14T01:56:12+00:00

Your accident history certainly is a factor in risk assessment, meaning a claim is likely to raise your rates; however, some motorcycle insurance providers do offer accident forgiveness if you have a good record overall.

What coverages will pay for damage to my custom parts?2017-06-14T01:55:48+00:00

Comprehensive coverage typically pays for theft; however, you may wish to look into custom parts and equipment coverage to ensure that all your special equipment is paid for if it gets damaged or stolen. This is especially important if you’ve made a lot of upgrades to your bike.

Are passengers and other riders covered on my policy?2017-06-14T01:55:19+00:00

This is an important question to ask, as it will depend on the your coverage. Your R.L. Frame Insurance agent can fill you in on the particulars of your policy. Please call 951-296-2200 to speak to an agent today!

What do I do if I have a racing bike?2017-06-14T01:52:30+00:00

Not all insurance companies cover a bike if it is ridden on a racetrack. Some, however, may cover the same bike if used only on the road. Speak to your motorcycle insurance agent from R.L Frame Insurance to discuss coverage for your racing bike.

Do all motorcycle insurance policies cover theft?2017-06-14T01:52:04+00:00

Your policy must include the right coverage to pay for theft. If you only choose to purchase the required liability insurance, you will only have coverage for someone else’s costs after a collision. If you elect to add comprehensive coverage, however, you should be protected in the event of a theft.

What Is Business Insurance?2017-06-14T01:50:48+00:00

Business insurance includes a broad range of policy options designed to protect a business from financial loss. Every commercial operation has its own unique set of risks, which means a commercial insurance policy must be tailored to the business. Many factors, from the size of your company, to the number of workers you employ, the materials they handle and whether you have business vehicles, will determine the specific coverage you need to mitigate risk and protect your company’s financials.

What Does Business Insurance Cover?2017-06-14T01:49:44+00:00

Business insurance coverage for a commercial operation can include the following and more:

  • General liability insurance: Covers third party liability claims for injuries to other people.
  • Professional liability and malpractice insurance: Covers professionals against loss due to negligent professional duty, wrongful acts, and advice and services that lead to another person’s loss or injury.
  • Product liability insurance: Covers against faulty products and damage, illness, injury or death that may occur from using a faulty product.
  • Property insurance: Covers loss and damage to your commercial business property due to fires, storms and other causes.
  • Commercial vehicle insurance: Covers commercial vehicles and drivers for collision, liability, property damage, personal injury and “comprehensive” (now known as “other than collision”).
  • Workers compensation: Covers your employees if they become ill or injured while working on the job.
  • Loss of income: Covers your business expenses such as rent and employee wages if you can’t operate your business.
  • Key person insurance: Covers loss of income that may result from the head of the business or other key personnel becoming incapacitated or passing away (also known as key man insurance).
  • Cyber-crime insurance: Provides protection for risks due to Internet use and online communications.
  • Records retention policies: Covers loss of important data and financial records.
  • Specialty coverage: Insurance that covers various specific business risks, such as those of andlords, farmers, and commercial operations that put on one-day events, such as seminars or concerts.
How Does Business Insurance Work?2017-06-14T01:49:08+00:00

Business insurance is a contract between the insurance company and the business. The insurance company agrees to share the business risk with the business entity in exchange for premium payments. In the event of a covered loss, the insurance company pays for the financial losses the business incurs up to the limit of the policy after the deductible amount is paid by the business filing a claim.

At the time of a loss, the business will typically file a claim. If a fire destroys a portion of the business premises, for example, the company will file a claim against the property insurance policy. An adjuster will assess the damage and process the claim. The company will then receive the appropriate amount of compensation for the loss.

There are many different scenarios with regard to business risk and how insurance claims are filed. For example, in the event that the incident is a loss suffered by a customer of the company, the injured party will likely file a claim against the businesses’ liability policy. How the claim is processed depends upon the size of the claim, whether the matter can be settled with an insurance payment, and if the claim results in a lawsuit.

How Much Is Business Insurance?2017-06-14T01:48:10+00:00

The cost of business insurance varies. A number of factors affect how much business insurance costs, because it depends on the type of business and the types of coverage appropriate for that commercial operation. Cost also depends on the size of the business. A small, home-based business can often be adequately insured for $500 per year, while insurance for a large company with many employees and a wide range of business risks could $500,000 per year.

The costs of business insurance can be reduced with effective risk management practices, and by comparing costs from several different insurance carriers. An independent agent from R.L. Frame Insurance who specializes in commercial insurance can help with this process, and can manage a company’s complete business insurance portfolio through one office.

Is Business Insurance Tax Deductible?2017-06-14T01:47:13+00:00

Business insurance is tax deductible, as long as the coverage is for the purpose of operating a business, profession, or a trade. Businesses may not deduct their business insurance premiums if the coverage is for the purpose of a self-insurance reserve fund or a loss of earning insurance policy.

Is Business Insurance Required by Law?2017-06-14T01:46:50+00:00

Business insurance is required by law, but only under certain conditions. The following business insurance is required by law if it is applicable to your situation:

Unemployment insurance: Applies to a business that has employees and may be obligated to pay unemployment insurance taxes under prescribed conditions; if these conditions are applicable to your business, then you must register your business with the state work force’s agency.

Workers compensation insurance: If your business has employees, you are most likely legally obligated to carry workers’ compensation insurance, either on a self-insured basis or through a commercial insurance carrier or a state worker’s compensation program. Workers compensation laws vary by state.

Professional liability insurance: Some states require specified professionals to carry insurance against professional liability.

Disability insurance: Several states require that a business have partial wage replacement insurance coverage for employees eligible for non-work related injury or illness. These states include California, Hawaii, New Jersey, New York, Puerto Rico and Rhode Island.

What Business Insurance Do I Need?2017-06-14T01:46:17+00:00

Depending on the nature of your business and any insurance which you are legally obligated to carry, the following types of business insurance should be considered essential:

  • General liability insurance: Coverage against accidents, injuries and negligence claims
  • Product liability insurance: Coverage against product defects
  • Professional liability insurance: Covers professionals against malpractice, negligence or errors
  • Commercial property insurance: Covers against damage to your business property, such as from fire or a severe storm
  • Business interruption insurance: Protects your business if you are no longer able to conduct your business because of a loss
  • Home-based business insurance: Covers against general or professional liability.

Because commercial insurance needs to be tailored to each business based on risks, it is critical to work with an agent who will get to know your company and ensure that your coverage adequately protects your business investment.

Does Business Insurance Cover Embezzlement?2017-06-14T01:45:52+00:00

If your business carries commercial crime/theft coverage, your business insurance will cover employee fraud and embezzlement.

There are several different forms of employee dishonesty coverage. For example, you can purchase several types of fidelity bonds, either to protect the business in the event of dishonest acts by all employees, or by named employees.

Does Business Insurance Cover Flood Damage?2017-06-14T01:45:28+00:00

In order for your business insurance to cover flood damage, your company must carry a separate flood insurance policy or endorsement. The typical commercial property insurance policy covers specific water damage situations but excludes flooding. The wording and water damage exclusions vary from one insurance company to another. Be sure to review your policy carefully and discuss your specific risks and concerns with an R.L. Frame Insurance Independent Agent who can help you get the coverage you need.

Does Business Insurance Cover Lawsuits?2017-06-14T01:44:33+00:00

Business insurance covers lawsuits as long as you have the appropriate business liability insurance for your situation and enough liability coverage to pay your legal costs. To ensure that enough liability coverage is in place for extreme circumstances like a lawsuit that exceeds $1 million in damages, many businesses buy a commercial umbrella liability policy.

Certain liability exclusions also apply, such as if an injury or damage was expected, or was caused intentionally. Some policies also have something called a “workmanship” exclusion, and some exclude coverage of punitive damages.  Liability insurance is available in many different forms, including:

  • General liability
  • Professional liability, “errors and omissions” and malpractice
  • Directors and officers liability
  • Product liability
  • Premises or property liability
  • Employer’s liability
  • Employment practices liability
  • Environmental and pollution liability
What Does General Liability Insurance Cover?2017-06-14T01:44:02+00:00

General liability insurance provides insurance protection for a company’s assets, financial obligations, legal defense, and any settlements or judgments awarded to an injured party. It may also include claims for copyright infringement, false or misleading advertising, or libel and slander. If a patron is injured in some way in the course of doing business with your company, your general liability insurance will provide coverage.

What Is Errors and Omissions Insurance?2017-06-14T01:43:14+00:00

Errors and omissions insurance (or “E and O”) covers a business for a service rendered which did not have the expected or promised results, or which results in a loss or personal injury suffered by the person receiving those services. It also covers situations where the individual or company failed to render service at all. These are known as errors and omissions. As an example of errors and omissions insurance, if a financial advisor provided investment advice that resulted in a client’s financial loss, those circumstances could result in an errors and omissions liability claim.

This type of insurance is also known as malpractice insurance (for medical practitioners) and professional liability insurance for practicing lawyers and other professionals.

What Is a Business Owner’s Policy?2017-06-14T01:42:41+00:00

A business owner’s policy or “BOP” is insurance coverage designed specifically for small or medium-sized businesses. Depending upon the insurance company, the size of business that qualifies for a business owner’s policy may be based on revenues or number of employees. A BOP combines several types of insurance coverage in a packaged format, and can be customized to suit a particular business. Generally, this type of policy includes both property and liability coverage.

Policies may also provide coverage to include the following:

  • Property claims
  • Breakdown of equipment
  • Loss of income/business interruption
  • Professional liability
  • Copyright infringement
  • Libel
  • Products and completed operations
  • Premises liability
Is there a comprehensive insurance policy for business owners with many coverage needs and a budget?2017-06-14T01:41:28+00:00

Yes. Many businesses are eligible for a business owner’s policy (BOP). A BOP combines many important features of commercial property, general liability and business income policies. The BOP does not cover everything and is not available for everyone. However, those who qualify, appreciate the ability to manage so much coverage under a single policy.

Do I really need insurance for my home?2017-06-14T01:33:54+00:00

Yes. Insurance is your protection against the many property and liability risks you face as an owner or renter. For example, if somebody sued you for an injury or damage caused by you or your property, the cost of defending that suit could run into thousands of dollars just for legal fees-regardless of the outcome of the suit. And if you were to lose your home due to a fire or to have the contents damaged or stolen, you probably could not afford to replace everything all at once. That’s why mortgage lenders, as a rule, require homeowners insurance.

What does a homeowners insurance policy cover?2017-06-14T01:32:57+00:00

With about 900 insurance companies writing property/casualty policies in the United States, individual homeowners policies vary. However, 80 percent of homeowners policies are based on a standard form, and all homeowners policies cover two important areas: property and liability. Moreover, your policy may cover you for additional living expenses should your home not be livable for a period of time due to a covered peril.

At a minimum, homeowners insurance usually covers damage caused by:

  • Fire or lightning
  • Windstorm or hail
  • Explosions
  • Aircraft
  • Vehicles
  • Smoke
  • Theft or vandalism
  • Falling objects
  • Weight of ice, snow or sleet
  • Freezing of a plumbing, heating, air conditioning or other such household system
Are the backyard shed and my television covered in my homeowners policy?2017-06-14T01:32:27+00:00

Yes. Real property and personal property are covered. The value of your real property—your home, garage, shed and other structures-is generally based on the value of the main structure, the house itself. So, if the house were insured for $75,000, other auxiliary structures would be covered for 10% of that, or $7,500 worth of damages.

Covered personal property includes the contents of your home and personal belongings used, owned, worn or carried by you or members of your household-basically, everything and the kitchen sink! This coverage is also based on the house coverage, and there are limits on the losses that can be claimed. Higher limits can be purchased for both real and personal property.

Who decides how much my property is worth?2017-06-14T01:32:01+00:00

State laws may dictate how losses are to be figured, which means the same insurance company may use one method in one state and a different method in another. The common methods are:

  • Actual Cash Value. The replacement cost of the item minus depreciation. For example, a new television set may cost $500. But if your 7year-old TV set gets damaged in a fire, it might have depreciated 50 percent prior to the damage. Therefore, you would be paid $250 for that set.
  • Replacement Coverage. The cost of replacing an item without deducting for depreciation, but limited to a maximum dollar amount. Today’s cost for a TV set with features similar to the 7-year-old one damaged by fire would determine the amount of compensation. If it still costs $500 today, that would be the replacement coverage. (It’s important to remember that there are limits on this policy and you need to keep up-to-date on your coverage).
  • Extended Replacement Cost. An extended replacement cost policy, one that covers costs up to a certain percentage over the limit (usually 20%). This gives you protection against such things as a sudden increase in construction costs.

Important Note: Replacement value should not be confused with market value. The market value is what your house, for example, would actually sell for and is generally more than the replacement cost. This is because replacement value does not include the land-which almost always does not need to be replaced.

Check your policy. If you prefer replacement or extended replacement coverage and do not already have it, this coverage can be added to your policy. Typically, the difference in premiums is 10 to 15 percent to upgrade from actual cash value coverage to replacement coverage. Your agent can advise you of the costs and benefits.

How much will I be paid for damage to my personal property?2017-06-14T01:31:27+00:00

Your policy lists the specific monetary limits for personal property under what is called “Special Limits.” Those limits usually are:

  • $200 for money, bank notes, gold and silver (other than gold ware and silverware), platinum, coins and medals.
  • $1,000 on securities, accounts, deeds, evidences of debt, letters of credit, notes (other than bank notes), manuscripts, passports, tickets and stamps.
  • $1,000 on watercraft, including their trailers, furnishings, equipment and outboard motors.
  • $1,000 on trailers not used for watercraft.
  • $1,000 for loss by theft of jewelry, watches, furs, precious and semiprecious stones.
  • $2,000 for loss by theft of firearms.
  • $2,500 for loss by theft of silverware, silver plated ware, gold ware, gold-plated ware and pewter ware.
  • $2,500 on property on the resident premises used for business and $250 on this property damaged or lost away from the premises.

If these limits seem low to you (maybe that engagement ring is worth much more than $1,000), you may wish to talk to your agent about additional coverage for specific items.

Remember that homeowners insurance is designed to cover general personal possessions, not valuable collections like antiques, jewelry or original art. Insurance companies deliberately limit their coverage of expensive possessions so that household premiums are more affordable to everyone. After all, if they had to cover museum-level art collections under standard homeowners policies, we would all end up paying higher premiums to cover those expensive items.

Does my homeowners insurance cover my possessions even when I go on vacation?2017-06-14T01:30:32+00:00

Yes. Homeowners insurance is a package of insurance coverage that extends to all your possessions no matter where they are. If you take a round-the-world vacation and lose a valuable item, as long as the loss is by a covered event or peril, the location does not matter, you’re covered.

The liability component also extends well beyond the boundaries of your home. Should you be found legally at fault for injury or loss to another individual, whether you unfortunately and unintentionally cause a tumble down a San Francisco hill or a fall in an Indiana barn, for example, your homeowners policy likely will cover you.

As in the property section of a homeowners policy, there are limits and exclusions to personal liability. Your business activities, for example, are not covered under your homeowners policy. You also are not covered for injuries or damage you deliberately cause. Your policy lists specific exclusions and limits.

I rent out my basement. Are my tenants covered by my homeowners policy?2017-06-14T01:30:04+00:00

No. Your property and the structure (the basement) are covered by your policy, as is your personal liability. However, the tenants’ possessions and liability are not covered by your policy. Therefore, they may wish to purchase their own renters insurance. Whether you are a leaser or a renter, you should check with your agent to make sure you have the coverage you need.

What about our vacation home in another state, is it covered?2017-06-14T01:29:09+00:00

Because insurance companies can operate in more than one state, the company that carries your primary residence may issue a policy for your vacation home. Personal liability is covered in the first homeowners policy, so the second policy needs to cover only property. This second type of policy is called a “dwelling policy.”

If you rent out your second home for all or part of the year, your homeowners policy may need to be endorsed (added to) to cover the increased liability exposure. The renter’s property is not covered under your dwelling policy. Should damage occur while someone is renting your property, they will need to check with their own agent about their coverage.

I work out of my home. Are my inventory and business property covered?2017-06-14T01:28:16+00:00

Yes, within certain limits. Both inventory and business property are covered as personal property used for business purposes. However, like all personal property, there are monetary limits on reimbursement. Whether your home business is your primary occupation or a hobby that nets you a few hundred dollars a year, it is still a business, and you should treat it as such. If you’ve invested quite a bit in equipment (woodworking tools, for example) and sell the occasional decoy, you should consider whether the personal property limits are sufficient.

Also, keep in mind that the personal liability protection in your homeowners policy does not extend to business liability. Check with your R.L. Frame Insurance agent concerning your business insurance needs.

Help! I’ve lost everything! Where do I start?2017-06-14T01:27:12+00:00

The best place to start after a great loss of property is with an inventory of that property. And the best time to make an inventory is before all is lost. If most of us suddenly found ourselves without anything due to some calamity, we would be hard pressed to know all that we had lost.

When was the last time, for example, that you counted the number of shoes or CDs you own, not to mention furniture, dishes, drapes, and audio/video equipment? How much is it all worth, and where would you start if you had to replace it?

Now is the time to make a list of major house, hold items and possessions. To make the job easier a home inventory form is available by clicking here. Where possible, it is wise to list the items’ serial number, the date and the cost of purchase and the receipt.

Perhaps an even easier way to inventory your home is to use a still or video camera. As you take the video, you also can talk about the items, when you purchased them and how much they cost.

Whatever method you choose, have a copy made. Ask a friend or family member to hold on to it. Store your copy in a safe deposit box. Check with your agent, who may be able to store a copy for you. If the worst happens and your home is destroyed, the inventory will be safe at another location.

Why does my insurance company want to know where the nearest fire hydrant to my home is located?2017-06-14T01:25:54+00:00

The insurance company has to weigh many factors in determining a premium to charge for your policy. One factor is access to water (hence the question about the location of the nearest fire hydrant) as well as the dependability and proximity of your local fire company and police. Rural homes more than five miles from a water supply are more at risk for severe damage from fire and lightning. Therefore, they can be more expensive to insure. Rural homeowners may even have difficulty obtaining insurance.

The age and the construction quality of your house are also factors. Generally, brick and stone homes are cheaper to insure than ones constructed of wood.

The number and dollar amounts of lawsuits in your state also can influence your premiums. Residents in states that experience a large number of lawsuits or of verdicts in excess of $1 million may face higher premiums to cover the cost of those suits.

What do I do when my property is damaged or stolen?2017-06-14T01:24:51+00:00

Contact your R.L. Frame Insurance agent or company representative as soon as possible. If there is damage to your home or possessions, make “emergency” repairs to protect yourself and your property from further damage. For example, if some of the windows in your home have been blown out by wind, you may board them up to prevent additional damage. In fact, your policy covers the cost of these emergency measures.

However, before making permanent repairs, call your agent. The insurance company has the right to inspect the property in its damaged condition. They may want to send a claims adjuster or have you get an estimate from an independent contractor.

If your property is stolen, notify the police immediately and call your R.L. Frame Insurance agent or company representative.

Is there anything I can do to lower my premiums?2017-06-14T01:23:41+00:00

Yes. Because your premium is based partly on the level of risk the insurance company must take, there are things you can do to lower your premium. Speak to your R.L. Frame Insurance agent today if you have any questions or would like more information on how you can lower your premiums.

What if I am sued or found responsible for injuring another person?2017-06-14T01:22:31+00:00

Liability covers bodily injury and property damage to others due to your negligence. The coverage applies to non-auto accidents that occur either at your residence or off the premises. You may owe medical expense payments, such as first aid, to the injured party. Should you be sued as a result of your negligent actions or suspect that you might be sued, contact your R.L. Frame Insurance agent or company representative immediately.

I own a condo. How is my policy different?2017-06-14T01:21:13+00:00

Condo owners insurance (an HO-6 policy) covers the same general areas outlined throughout this guide for homeowners in the important areas of personal property and liability. In addition, condo owners insurance provides coverage for some situations specific to condominium unit owners.

Usually, the condominium association buys insurance to cover the property (building and structures) and liability coverage for the general association. If you own a condominium unit, you may be responsible for covering your unit from the “walls in.” That means you must cover your personal liability, your personal property and the interior of your unit – essentially whatever is excluded from the condo associations policy.

What Isn’t Covered by Home Insurance?2017-06-14T01:20:19+00:00

Many homeowners policies cover damage caused by “just about anything,” unless specifically excluded. Most catastrophes are covered. For example, wind damage from hurricanes or tornadoes is covered as a windstorm peril.

But, flood damage and earthquake damage are NOT covered by a standard homeowners policy. A separate policy is required.

There may be other exclusions spelled out in your policy such as neglect, intentional loss, “earth movement (landslide)”, general power failure and even damage caused by war. If you neglect to take care of your property (i.e., a leaky roof), you may not be covered. Obviously, if you intentionally lose an object or damage your property, there is no coverage.

One other exclusion that can be costly is the “Ordinance or Law” exclusion. Building codes that drive up the cost of rebuilding or repairing may not be covered by your insurance policy. Thus, if you discover when replacing damaged property that current law demands higher-grade or more expensive materials than the original ones being replaced, the new materials may not be covered for the full price. Laws and building codes are constantly being updated. Coverage to include ordinance or law requirements can be added to your homeowners policy with an endorsement-an addition that could save you money in the long run.

What is Auto Insurance?2017-06-13T23:47:48+00:00

Insurance, by definition, is a contract between you and the insurance company. The contract stipulates that as long as you pay the premium, the insurance company agrees to pay for your covered losses if you experience an accident, theft or vandalism, or your car is damaged by certain causes. The amount you receive in compensation is based on several factors, including your deductible and the limit you choose for your policy.

What Does Auto Insurance Cover?2017-06-14T00:44:37+00:00

There are several categories of auto insurance, each of which covers a different aspect of your risk as a driver. Here is a brief overview of these types of coverage:

  • Liability: If you are deemed at fault in a car accident, liability coverage will pay for repairs, medical costs for injuries suffered by others in the vehicle, plus other expenses related to the accident such as legal fees. Your liability limits are set at the time you purchase your policy. There are two parts to liability coverage: Bodily injury liability and property damage liability. The limits are the maximum amount the policy will pay out; anything above that would come out of your pocket unless you have other insurance.
  • Collision: If you hit another vehicle or an object (like a guardrail), your collision coverage will pay for damages or repairs to your vehicle after you pay a deductible (up-front amount). In other words, if you have collision coverage with a $500 deductible and you suffer damage that costs $1,500, your collision coverage will pay $1000 after you pay the first $500.
  • Comprehensive: Comprehensive coverage, which is also known as “other than collision,” pays for losses to your vehicle if it suffers damage from something other than an accident. For example, if a tree falls on your car or you hit a deer while driving, some portion of that loss will be covered if you have comprehensive coverage. Like collision, comprehensive has a deductible attached to it.
  • Medical Expenses: This coverage pays for injuries that you, a family member or anyone else riding your vehicle may suffer in an auto accident, regardless of who is at fault. It also pays for injuries you or your family members may incur while riding in other vehicles.
  • Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist: This coverage pays for injuries and property damage you suffer in an accident when the driver at fault either is uninsured or does not have enough insurance to cover your injuries and damage. It will also cover you in the event that a hit-and-run driver flees the scene and you cannot file a claim against that driver’s insurance company.
  • Roadside Assistance: Many insurance companies offer this optional coverage. If you need a tow or service for a flat tire or dead battery, roadside assistance will provide that service for a nominal premium.
  • Rental Reimbursement: If your car is in the shop for several days and you need a vehicle, this coverage will provide that for you for a nominal premium.
How Does Car Insurance Work?2017-06-14T01:08:59+00:00

Car insurance helps you to recover from damage, injuries and expenses related to a collision or other incident. It is not designed for you to come out ahead financially, but it is designed to keep you from suffering major financial hardship due to an accident, whether it’s your fault or not.

Car insurance is about risk transfer. If you don’t have insurance, the financial risk is on you in the event of an accident. Buying auto insurance mitigates some of that risk. For the cost of your premium, the insurance company will take on much of that risk for you.

Why Is Auto Insurance Important?2017-06-14T01:07:25+00:00

When you get behind the wheel, you take a risk. You may attempt to be the best possible driver, but you also have to trust that everyone else on the road is driving well and paying attention, too. Auto insurance provides a safety net when drivers make mistakes.

In the event of an accident, you are at risk financially. If the accident is not your fault, and the other driver does not have adequate insurance, you have to pay for all damages to your own car plus pay for any medical bills if you are badly injured.

When you are at fault, you are typically liable for damages to the other person’s vehicle as well as the medical costs of injured victims. Additionally, you must cover the repairs to your own vehicle and the costs of legal fees if you are sued. All of your assets are at risk if you are uninsured or underinsured.

How Do I Get Car Insurance?2017-06-14T01:06:19+00:00

There are a number of ways to get car insurance. It is important to understand that there are well-established insurance companies that offer excellent car insurance coverage, and there are companies that were built solely to sell car insurance and make money. Some auto insurance companies gain customers through advertising and others through word-of-mouth and excellent service.

When you buy insurance through an independent agent from R.L. Frame Insurance, you can eliminate confusion and find the best policy for your budget and insurance needs. Independent insurance agents do not sell policies for one company; they shop from many different companies to find you the best rates and coverage for your situation. No matter where in California you are located, an independent agent from R.L. Frame Insurance can get the answers you need about auto insurance before you buy.

Is Auto Insurance Required?2017-06-14T01:04:27+00:00

Forty-seven states require vehicles to have some level of insurance coverage before they can be on the road. Failure to have insurance can mean a fine and/or jail time in these states, not to mention suspension or revocation of your driver’s license. In most of those states, the minimum required coverage is liability insurance to cover damage and injuries you may cause, though a handful of states require additional coverage, such as collision and comprehensive.

How Expensive Is Car Insurance?2017-06-14T01:04:00+00:00

Your vehicle just might be the most expensive possession you have other than your home. However, your auto insurance won’t necessarily be costly.

While rates vary from state to state and take into account a variety of factors, car insurance is usually fairly affordable. The factors that affect your costs include whether your car is new or used, the overall safety rating of the car, your driving record, your age and gender, and even your ZIP code, as certain areas tend to have a higher occurrence of accidents and claims than others.

The discounts you may qualify for include:

  • Good student discount: May apply if the young driver in your family has good grades
  • Good driver discount: May apply if you’ve been accident-free for a period of time
  • Multi-car discount: May apply if you insure more than one of your vehicles with the same company
  • Multi-policy discount: May apply when you insure both your home and car with the same company

Your local agent can also talk with you about these discounts and determine the ones that would benefit you and save you the most money on your policy.

Is Auto Insurance Tax Deductible?2017-06-14T01:03:14+00:00

If you are self-employed and use your personal vehicle for business, you can take a tax deduction for your car insurance. For example, an independent sales professional who travels for work can take the deduction. However, only the actual mileage used for business travel is deductible. In other words, if you drive a vehicle 15,000 miles for business and 15,000 for personal use (a total of 30,000 miles annually) your deduction will cover half of your overall use.

Can Auto Insurance Companies Drop You?2017-06-14T01:01:15+00:00

Auto insurance is a contract, and as with many contracts, it can be canceled or voided by either party. You can drop the contract by changing to another company; the following are circumstances in which an insurance company can drop you:

  • If you fail to pay your premiums
  • If you present fraudulent information on your application for coverage
  • If your license is suspended or revoked for any reason, such as too many accidents, or driving under the influence

Some states allow companies to drop coverage for other reasons; to learn about the laws in your state, contact an R.L. Frame Insurance agent today.

Can Auto Insurance Companies Deny Claims?2017-06-14T00:59:49+00:00

There are a few reasons that your claim can be denied, including:

  • Filing a fraudulent claim exaggerating or fabricating an accident or loss.
  • Filing a claim under coverage you don’t have.
  • Filing a claim for a loss that is not included in your policy – for example, if you suffer an accident while using your car as a business vehicle.
  • Making improvements to your vehicle, such as giving it a fancy paint job, without notifying your company. The company might deny the claim or compensate you based on the original value of the vehicle.
  • If you miss a premium payment, you may have your coverage suspended until you catch up your payments; if you file a claim while your insurance is suspended it will be denied.

Some states allow companies to deny claims for other reasons, so it is a good idea to understand the fine print in your policy.

Do Auto Insurance Companies Check Credit?2017-06-14T00:59:09+00:00

Credit scores and credit reports don’t always tell the full story about a person, but they do indicate your ability to pay your bills.

Car insurance companies do check credit as to determine your insurability. Your premium is a bill like any other, and a poor credit score can alert an insurer of financial trouble. If there is a chance that you may miss premium payments, an insurer may decide you are too risky to insure.

Do Auto Insurance Quotes Affect Credit?2017-06-14T00:58:31+00:00

Car insurance is not an application for credit, so while insurance companies check your credit to determine your responsibility and financial security, they are not extending credit.  A credit check for a car insurance quote is called a “soft pull” and it does not affect your credit rating.

Credit scores have become very important in recent years as lenders have tightened restrictions. Many families are focused on eliminating debt and getting caught up on payments so they can improve their credit scores and get better rates when getting a mortgage or a car loan. Every time you fill out an application for credit, your credit score can be affected because a good percentage of your score is based on how much total credit you have and the number of accounts you have.

Do Auto Insurance Companies Check Driving History?2017-06-14T00:57:30+00:00

An insurance company may check your driving record when you are looking for a new policy, renewing your existing policy or modifying the policy by adding a new driver or additional vehicle.

You may also wonder whether your driving record can prevent you from getting insurance. Your driving record check typically will not prevent you from getting coverage, but it does help the company determine the risk they will take when issuing a policy to you.

If you have a record that includes tickets, accidents or points on your license, these factors indicate to the insurance company that there is a higher risk of paying a claim. In order to compensate for that, the company may charge a higher premium than someone with a clean driving record.

Do Auto Insurance Companies Share Information?2017-06-14T00:55:27+00:00

When you make an insurance claim or begin the process to switch insurance companies, information about your claims history is placed into a national loss-underwriting database. That information can be accessed by all insurance companies that are considering insuring you.

However, insurance companies do not share your personal information directly with each other. The information included on the claims database is not shared, per se, but it is available for all companies to find. Keep in mind that since your driving record is on file with your state’s motor vehicle department, your information is public record – including tickets and accidents.

Does Auto Insurance Cover Rental Cars?2017-06-14T00:53:35+00:00

This is a common question. If you make sure you have your own vehicle covered, do you need to get the special coverage offered at the rental counter if you go on vacation and get a rental car?

You will have to double-check your particular policy, but most policies do provide the same coverage for a rental car that you have for your personal vehicle, unless the rental is being used for business purposes. It’s always a good idea to check your policy. If you are seeking a new policy, an independent agent from R.L.Frame Insurance can help you find one that does cover rentals.

Does Auto Insurance Cover Theft?2017-06-14T00:49:45+00:00

If your car is stolen, a number of things need to happen for you to be compensated for your loss. First, you will need to file a police report and wait while there is an attempt at recovery. If your car is not recovered, you can file a claim with your insurance company if you have comprehensive coverage.

Because of the risk insurance companies face with fraudulent claims, you will need to complete some paperwork to file your claim. But providing you have documentation for the stolen vehicle, your insurance will compensate you for the value of the vehicle up to the limit of your comprehensive coverage.

Can I Get Car Insurance with a Suspended License?2017-06-14T00:47:30+00:00

Most insurance companies will not issue or maintain insurance for someone who has a suspended or revoked driver’s license.  If you need to get from home to work while your license is suspended, you are not out of luck.

You can work with your local DMV to get a hardship license, or you can file an SR 22 form through your insurance agent who can file that with the DMV. If you are allowed behind the wheel due to a hardship license and/or an SR 22 form (which guarantees insurance coverage for a period of time), then you will be able to get car insurance.

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