Due to Governor Whitmer’s most recent order, HDA will be operating remotely until December 8, 2020 or until notified otherwise.
All HDA staff are available via phone 517-694-0149 or via email. If you have the direct line to the Team member you wish to speak with, please use their direct line.
Payments and other documents may be put in the Drop Box located at the NW end of the parking lot.
We apologize for the inconvenience and wish you all a safe and healthy holiday season.
Be safe and mask up!!!
If you’re injured at work, you’re probably covered by worker’s compensation (WC) insurance. Laws vary by state, but in many states, including Michigan, employers must carry worker’s comp.
If you’re a business, you need to know what
worker’s comp WC covers, why you need it, and how to get it. Let’s dig into the basics.
WC covers work related injuries or illness.
- Missed wages: If an injured or sick worker is not able to perform their assigned duties they will be compensated during that time.
- Medical expenses: Any costs that come from treating the injury or illness.
- Rehab: If an employee needs ongoing care after initial care in order to return to work.
- Death benefits: If an employee passes away in a work-related incident, limited death benefits will cover funeral and other costs.
Injuries covered by WC must be work-related. This does not include normal commuting to and from work but would cover injuries sustained while traveling for work.
How It Works
When an employee is injured at work, they must report the incident to their employer as soon as possible. To be eligible to be covered by WC, incidents must be reported within 90 days. The employee will make a claim and the employer or WC carrier will either pay or deny the claim. In most cases, the only way a claim can be denied is if it’s found that the employee was injured as the result of misconduct.
When It’s Required:
In Michigan, employers must carry WC if they have three or more employees at any time of if they have one employee working 35 hours of more a week for 13 weeks. While there are some exceptions, generally, if you’re paid to perform services, you’re an employee. Some farm workers and contractors don’t fall under this rule.
How You Get It:
Call your Independent insurance agent. The Holt & Dimondale Agency has qualified professionals on staff to assist you with all of your insurance needs.
Given that your house is not just a roof over your head but also an investment, a source of equity and possibly savings, and a home, you want to make sure you, your money, and your family are protected if anything should happen. But the role our homes play as our protectors and main assets make them particularly vulnerable to disaster. Home insurance rates will vary based on where you live, the age of your home, and more.
Your home is one of your most valuable assets. How much would…or should…you pay to protect to it? Well that depends on a number of factors and it may not always pay to choose the cheapest policy. Let’s take a look at the price of home insurance, what types of protections you have, and what makes it cost what it does.
NOTE: Homeowners insurance is not required by law. Most lending institutions require it in order to cover their investment. There are endorsements and limits that can be added to every basic homeowner’s policy in order to cover all your assets and that can get confusing. We can help answer those questions and get you the coverage you need. Here’s a look at some of those endorsements and limits.
Types of Home Insurance:
Before we talk price, let’s talk about the different types of policies you can choose from to protect your home.
Homeowners Insurance: This policy covers specific causes of loss to the structure, attached structures (garages) and unattached structures (sheds) to the limit of the policy. Wind, hail, water, fire, theft and vandalism are the most common causes of loss to name a few.
Personal Liability: Personal Liability is part of your home owner’s plan and covers you if you are found responsible for an accident involving the home covered in the policy. This could be legal expenses and/or any cost associated if sued.
Medical Payments: This covers the medical expenses of someone outside your household who are injured on your property, no matter who is at fault.
Additional Living Expenses: This will cover some or all living expenses if you are displaced from your home and is another beneficial part of your homeowner’s policy.
Renter’s Insurance: This type of homeowner’s insurance covers your personal property and various forms of Liability. There is no coverage for the actual structure (the owner of the structure should cover that), but it should give you peace of mind in the event of theft, fire, water back up or other causes of loss. Renters insurance costs less because you are not insuring the structure.
Dwelling Fire Insurance: This is typically the type of insurance Landlords carry on rental properties. Dwelling Fire insurance covers the structure and liability but not the contents in most cases. Again, this is typically less expensive than an actual home owner’s policy because you are not covering the contents of the home(because the landlord doesn’t have contents within the structure).
Personal Property: This covers the personal belongings you keep in your home, like your clothing, furniture, and electronics.
Major Cost Factors of Home Insurance
Homeowners insurance will vary based on a number of factors and will depend what state you’re in. States with more densely populated area and a lot of major cities will likely have higher premiums due to higher home values.
Your state’s likelihood of experiencing a natural disaster also factors in to your insurance rates. For example, Louisiana has some of the highest premiums in the country due to its location on the coast and its regular occurrence of strong storms.
Before we take a look at Michigan’s rates, let’s dive into some of the other factors that will impact your home insurance rates.
Your Insurance Score: While this has nothing to do with your home itself, most insurance will check on this. Things that can affect this score include claims, late payments, and your ability to pay premiums or not paying your premiums.
The Age of Your Home: Older homes are beautiful but are more likely to have problems such as old plumbing and elements that are not up to code. Updating essential parts of the home like HVAC, electrical, the roof, or the plumbing can make a difference in your premium.
Replacement Cost: You might ask, “why do I have to carry insurance for $300,000 if I only paid $200,000?” This is where the replacement cost comes in. The cost to rebuild your $200,000 home in two, three, or ten years will be closer to $300,000 than $200,000.
Actual Cash Value (ACV): The ACV is a typical for older homes because you simply can’t replace many of the things in these homes. The ACV takes a value and then calculates depreciation to come up with a value.
- Consumer protection laws
- Proximity to a fire department
- Flood Risks
- Hurricane Risks
- Earthquake Risks
- Pools or Hot Tubs
Michigan Insurance Rates
Luckily, Michigan has some of the lowest insurance rates in the country, averaging just $908 per year, versus a national average of $1,173.
But you’re not in the clear just because you live in Michigan. Given what we learned about what can impact home insurance rates, Michigan residents are at risk for potential claims due to rough winters, windy lakeshores, and older homes.
What does that mean for you? It means you should talk to an agent to find out where and how to get your best insurance rates and that it may not always be advisable to choose the lowest rate Your number one priority should be covering all your risks and the Holt & Dimondale Agency can help you do that.
With nearly 60 years of experience as your local, independent insurance agency, you can trust the Holt & Dimondale Agency to find the best products to fit your insurance needs.
There are a lot of decisions to make when purchasing your home. If you’re purchasing your first home, those choices can seem overwhelming. But, even amid all the craziness, don’t forget about home insurance. This policy can play an important role in protecting you, your home, and your assets from future disasters.
Not sure where to start? Here are few things you should consider when purchasing home insurance.
The Rebuild Cost
What if tragedy strikes and you have to completely rebuild your home? When deciding how much building insurance you need, you should consider the rebuild cost. This can be easy to overestimate as many people tend to forget that this cost only includes the cost of building the house, not securing the land. You pay for that when you purchase your home. Land is included in the home’s market value so don’t assume that you need to cover the entire amount of your home’s market value.
Your insurance agent can help you find that value of the materials and labor needed to rebuild your home in the event of an emergency.
The Cost of Your Stuff
You keep all your stuff in your house. If something happens to your house, something happens to your stuff. Insuring your things can get tricky because it often depends on a number of factors like the value of the items, if they stay in the house or travel with you, and if they’re for work or pleasure.
But it’s important to try and accurately estimate the value of the items you would like covered and make sure you have the right right policies to cover those items. This might appear as an extra “contents replacement cost” on your policy so you need to know what to look for.
Your insurance agent can help you make both these estimates and choices.
There are none. That’s right, there are no state-mandated requirements for homeowners coverage (as there are for auto insurance in most states), and a mortgage lender may only require you to insure for 80 percent of the replacement value of your home. But keep in mind that no insurance, or even too little insurance, could be devastating in the event of an emergency. But no insurance, or too little, could leave you stranded.
We’ve talked about liability protection in terms of your business, but you should seriously consider purchasing it with your home policy. Like with your business, liability protection protects you and your assets in the event you’re sued. Depending on where you live, you could be sued for nearly all your assets— including investments, real estate, and personal property. So be sure to consider this when purchasing liability protection.
Even if a flood seems unlikely in your area, flood insurance is a good idea. Most policies cover flood damage even if it’s caused by a pipe bursting or other dysfunctional systems in your home.
Given the price of coverage—and the fact that about a quarter of flood claims come from low to moderate-risk areas—it’s a worthwhile expense for many people.
Ways to Lower Your Premium
If you’re looking into homeowner’s insurance, consider some ways to lower your premium when you purchase.
- Bundling coverage
- Choosing a higher deductible
- Adding a security system
- Replacing old plumbing
- Adding leak detection sensors
Anything you can do to help prevent accidents in your home will help you pay less for homeowner’s insurance!
Different policies cover different aspects of your home and while it can seem confusing or overwhelming, the best choice you can make for your home is choosing the right insurance agent.
Need an agent who can help you out? Give us a call today. With nearly 60 years of experience as your local, independent insurance agency, you can trust the Holt & Dimondale Agency to find the best products to fit your insurance needs.
With the upcoming changes to Michigan’s No-Fault Insurance Laws in 2020, we’re introducing a series of blogs that will fill you in on the basics and help you prepare. This is the first of those blogs.
In our first blog, we covered what exactly liability coverage is, why you need it, and what these changes mean for your coverage.
Today, we’re going to talk about the specific impact these changes could have on your family. Because let’s face it, when you hear about these changes, the first thing you think about is your family and if they will still be covered. Well, we have answers.
To find out how your family will be impacted by these changes, let’s take a look at a Before and After view of No Fault.
Who was covered?
- The driver of a car
- The passengers or pedestrians who are not a resident or relative (either they live outside the home permanently or live within the home but are not related) are covered.
No-Fault Reform in 2020
Who is covered as of July 2020?
- The insured
- The insured’s spouse and a relative of either individual who is living in the same household.
- Anyone who is related to you that lives in the same house will be afforded the same coverage that you have on your policy.
Household members have been covered in the past, even if they were not related. This is no longer the case.
Keep in mind, your child’s insurance travels with them. They’re covered under you, even if you’re not in the car.
One gray area that will come up is domestic partners, couples that live together but aren’t married. In this case, we recommend having your own, individual policy to be safe.
What will your family spend?
You’re always concerned about budget and the cost of insuring your family, we get it. With the current No-Fault policies, many Michiganders get discouraged with the amount they have to pay for Personal Injury Protection, a policy they didn’t get to choose.
With No-Fault Reform, they will have the option to choose the amount of Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage they carry. Those options will be:
- $50,000: The applicant or insured must be enrolled in Medicaid
- No policy: The applicant or insured must be enrolled in Medicare Parts A & B
What does this mean for cost?
While many assume this change will mean significantly lower insurance premiums, they are only partially correct. Yes, there will be a slight reduction in premiums depending on your choice. But, here are some things you should keep in mind when considering making the switch:
- The premium reduction is only on the PIP portion of your policy
- The reduction will most likely be incredibly small
- If you’re injured in a car accident, your medical bills could exceed $250,000 very quickly
- If you stick with lifetime medical, you won’t see much of a change at all
If you’re thinking of choosing a lower coverage amount in July, please reach out to your insurance agent to find out what this could mean for you and your family. If you don’t have an agent you can reach out to, please give us a call.
We want to make sure every Michigan driver is comfortable with their policy and covered when something happens.
Worker’s compensation insurance, insurance that can help employees cover medical fees and lost wages for work-related injuries or illness, is required in almost every state for businesses that have employees.
But, in an ever growing gig-economy filled with contractors and self-employed individuals looking to build their own businesses, set their own hours and be their own boss, it’s worth asking—if I’m self-employed, do I need worker’s comp?
The short answer is, “no.” But, hang on. While in general, self-employed individuals with no employees are not required to purchase worker’s comp, here are a few reasons you still might want to.
Some businesses require that contractors carry it
Many businesses have a strict rule…if you work with them, you have to be covered. This includes contractors and subcontractors. If this is their rule, you might be required to purchase it depending on the laws in your state. Depending on the business, even freelance writers may be required to purchase it.
You’ll be covered if injured while working
If your job often leads you into situations where you risk an injury, you might want to invest in worker’s comp. Regular health insurance does not cover work-related injuries so you risk losing out on income if you’re injured on the job. If you purchase independent contractor worker’s comp, you’re covered.
You might want worker’s comp if:
- You tend to work with companies that require it
- You do physical work like construction
- You are the sole provider for your family
- You hire subcontractors to help you out
Consider these types of Insurance:
If you opt out of getting worker’s comp, self-employed individuals may be better off investing in these types of insurances instead.
- General Liability: Protects you and your business from various claims
- Errors and Omissions: Protects you when a mistake is made
- Commercial Auto Insurance: Protects you and your vehicle if you use it to do business
There’s always some gray area when it comes to what types of insurance you may or may not need. If you’re not sure, just give us a call. We’re happy to answer any questions you might have and help you find the right policy.
With the upcoming changes to Michigan’s No-Fault Insurance Laws in 2020, we’re introducing a series of blogs that will fill you in on the basics and help you prepare. This is the first of those blogs.
Insurance is not always the hottest topic at family dinner or while pre-gaming before the big game, but the pending changes in Michigan’s current No-Fault Auto insurance should definitely be a topics of conversation.
First, let’s get a basic understanding of some of the key policy terms, because let’s be honest, most people have no idea.
The one thing that is required of EVERY auto insurance policy is Liability coverage. This is what covers you in the event you are at fault in a crash. The injured party or their insurance company can come back on you for damages either to their property or persons when you are legally responsible for the accident. You have the option to choose limits of liability ranging from $20,000 to $1,000,000 per occurrence for personal auto insurance.
The state minimum is currently $20,000 but will increase to $50,000 in July 2020 as a result of the new legislation.
What Is Liability Insurance?
Liability is one of the first choices you make. How much is enough? In today’s litigious society, everyone sues everyone and the sky is the limit. Don’t let that scare you into thinking you HAVE to have $1,000,000 in liability coverage.
Liability insurance provides the insured party with protection against claims resulting from injuries and damage to people and/or property.
Liability insurance policies cover both legal costs and any payouts for which the insured party would be responsible if found legally liable. Intentional damage and contractual liabilities are generally not covered in these types of policies.
How It Works
The new law will also have a “default” liability coverage of $250,000 unless you sign a form to acknowledge that you understand the potential risk of taking a lower liability limit. All you have to do is watch TV for 5 minutes to see three law firms that represent accident victims and get six figure settlements in court. The new law expressly states that if you are at fault in a crash that injures someone, they can sue you for any and all expenses over what their policy covers.
Example: You are ruled at fault in a crash that seriously injures the driver (Johnny) of the other vehicle. Johnny has a $250,000 limit on his Personal Injury Protection (PIP). Johnny spends a month in the hospital and 3 months in rehab with a total bill of $750,000 dollars. Johnny will now hire one of those fancy law firms to sue YOU for the $500,000 in uncovered medical expenses.
The “order of priority” is what defines who is actually covered under a particular policy. Starting in July 2020, this order of priority is very specific. The named insured, their spouse and resident relatives living in the same house, are covered. In the old law, those that lived in the same house whether related or not would be covered because they had access to the vehicle. So, if you are not related to the named insured or spouse of the named insured, you are NOT covered on the policy.
Come July, your policy is going to change. If you have questions about those changes, give us a call. And stay tuned for more information on the new laws!
You’re starting a business. You’ve got your business cards, a snazzy location picked out, a beautiful website and fun business name…now what? Besides all the fun stuff that comes with opening a business, you also need to look into the stuff that’s going to protect you if there is a problem…business insurance. And when it comes to business insurance, it’s not one-size-fits-all.
As you build a business insurance portfolio, it’s going to include all the different types of insurance that can help protect your individual business.
While you need to cover your bases, businesses could go broke thinking about the things that could wrong and trying to cover every single possibility. It’s important to think about your business, what you do, who your customers are, what liabilities you might face and which ones you won’t, and then decide which insurance is right for you. To make sure you’re covered, it’s important to talk to an expert.
That said, here are a few places to start when it comes to covering your business:
Worker’s Comp: Worker’s Compensation is required in most states. This insurance covers your employees in the event on an on-the-job injury or any illnesses suffered due to their job. If they have to miss work for any amount of time because of something caused by their work, this will cover their time off and their medical bills.
Property Insurance: Property insurance covers the actual location of your business. If you own the building where you house your business, this is an important coverage. It protects the building in the event of fire, natural disasters, or harm caused by an employee. Depending on your situation, this type of insurance may not apply to you.
Liability Coverage: This important policy covers you if you’re sued by a customer or employee. It does’t matter what type of business you are, you’re always open to lawsuits and you’re always at risk of being shut down by legal fees.
While business owners are always concerned with expenses and the price of multiple types of insurance might make you hold your check book a little closer, if you have a buiness, you’re open to risk—risks like:
- Loss due to theft or damage
- Mistakes that cause harm or destruction or customers or employees
The above policies protect your business from those common incidents, but, depending on your business, you could be open to even more risks.
Before you consider what types of business insurance you need, you should consider what types of risks you could face. Here are some of the most common risks faced by business owners:
- Data breaches: A data breach could cost your business up to $50,000 in recovery costs
- Business Interruption: If your day-to-day is interrupted by a power outage or inclement weather, you could lose a lot of money
- Reputation Damage: You could face damage to your reputation if a customers is unhappy
- Vehicle Protection: If you use vehicles to run your business, you need to protect them
These are just a few of the most common risks but your needs, and business insurance costs, will vary based on your business.
A few factors that could influence the cost of your plan include:
- The type of business
- Number of employees
- The types of goods or services you offer
- Your business risks
So, when you’re choosing business insurance, you’re not just picking one policy that could cover every risk you might face. While it can get complicated, you’ll be faced with a number of policies to choose from. On top of the ones we’ve already mentioned, you need to decide if your business insurance will include:
- Commercial Auto Insurance
- Cybercrime Insurance
- Employer Insurance
- And more
You probably need business insurance even if you think you don’t. So, before you start building your business insurance portfolio, it’s best to talk to an insurance agent familiar with the many facets of business insurance.