Additional Insured

Protection for Project Owners and Developers: Which Policies Work Best?

project developerA realistic evaluation of the risk that confronts project owners during and after construction indicates most owners are exposed to considerable liability. The ownership of property (including the ownership of buildings undergoing renovation) and construction work completed by contractors are two obvious examples.
While much of the risk is with the contractors, it is a mistake to conclude the owner has no potential for liability. While obtaining the status of additional insured on the contractor’s CGL policy or requiring the contractor to provide an OCP policy helps protect the owner, such coverage is quite limited and should not be the only liability coverage available to the owner. 
Owners of construction projects should have their own liability coverage. The Owner’s Interest CGL policy should be in place during construction to close the gaps in the owner’s liability insurance program and assure more adequate protection.
A Case Study

Condo Builder, Inc. is to build a residential development of 50 condos on a parcel of land that has been acquired by Condo Builder’s newly formed subsidiary, Haven Hills, LLC. As the project owner, Haven Hills will contract directly with Quality Contractors, Inc., an unrelated general contractor, to perform all construction work. At this point, the owners of Condo Builder begin to think about liability insurance to protect Haven Hills as the project owner. Which coverage works best for Haven Hills?

Additional Insured Protection – General Contractor’s CGL Policy
In the past, Condo Builder had not purchased liability insurance for the project owner, but instead had relied solely upon the owner’s status as an additional insured on the general contractor’s CGL policy. After all, the general contractor is in control of the construction site – so how could the owner be liable?

Unfortunately, Condo Builder learned some hard lessons on their last project – the Garden Estates project – whose owner was Garden Estates, LLC.Read More »Protection for Project Owners and Developers: Which Policies Work Best?

Certificates of Insurance Law

certificate of insurance lawThe Massachusetts Division of Insurance (DOI) issued a bulletin to provide guidance on the implementation of Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 175L, concerning the issuance of certificates of insurance.

Chapter 175L was signed into law on Jan. 7, 2015, by then-Gov. Deval Patrick and became effective on April 7, 2015. The DOI stated in its bulletin 2015-02 on May 8 that the purpose of this new law is to regulate and standardize the practice of using certificates of insurance.

Chapter 175L defines a certificate of insurance as “a document or instrument, regardless of how titled or described, that is prepared or issued by an insurer or insurance producer as evidence of property or casualty insurance coverage.” The bulletin notes that the term shall not include a policy of insurance, insurance binder, policy endorsement or automobile insurance identification or information card. Chapter 175L explicitly regulates certificates of insurance for the first time in Massachusetts.

The new law codifies the long-time rule that insurance certificates may not modify the terms or conditions of the underlying insurance policies that they evidence. In this regard, Chapter 175L requires that all certificates of insurance must be both true and accurately reflect the policy they represent, and mandates that no one may knowingly prepare, issue or require the issuance of a certificate of insurance that contains any false or misleading information or that alters, amends or extends the coverage provided by the underlying referenced policy.

The new law applies to all certificates issued in connection with property, operations or risks located in Massachusetts, regardless of where the certificate holder, policyholder, insurer, or insurance agent is located.

The bulletin further stated that a certificate of insurance that violates the requirement of Chapter 175L will be deemed to be null and void. Under the law, the insurance commissioner is authorized to examine and investigate the activities of any person that the commissioner reasonably believes has been or currently is engaged in an act prohibited by Chapter 175L. Additionally, Chapter 175L grants the commissioner the authority to enforce the law by imposing a fine of up to $500 per violation.

Key provisions of Chapter 175L are as follows:

Read More »Certificates of Insurance Law

Additional Insured Endorsements – After the Work is Done

Additional_Insured_Endorsements_–_After_the_Work_is_DoneAdditional Insured – Completed Operations
How often the general contractor denies “blanket” additional insured, or CG 20 38 Additional Insured-Owners, Lessees or Contractors – Automatic Status for Other Parties When Required in a Written Construction Agreement? The problem is that in the construction contract between the general contractor and subcontractor, the subcontractor may be required to include the general contractor as an additional insured for completed operations coverage for a period of six years after the subcontractor’s work is finished. While the current “blanket” additional insured endorsement CG 20 38 does meet a portion of the insurance requirements – to protect the additional insured for certain bodily injury or property damage claims that take place during the project – the CG 20 38 specifically excludes any bodily injury or property damage that takes place after her customer’s work is finished.

And why in the world would a general contractor want to be an additional insured six years after the subs work is finished? Let’s review an example that shows the rationale behind completed operations coverage for an additional insured.

Example: A general contractor has been hired to remodel a building. Much of the work, such as HVAC, electrical, plumbing, and site preparation, is completed by trade subcontractors hired by the general contractor. Eight months after the building has been completed by the general contractor and put to use as an office space, a small fire breaks out in the mechanical room, injuring two workers of the office. When it is determined that the fire was the result of sloppy electrical work, the general contractor is sued by the injured people for bodily injury.

Additional Insured – Completed Operations CG2037
On the other hand, if the electrical subcontractor had listed the general contractor as an additional insured on its policy using CG2037 – Additional Insured – Owners, Lessees or Contractors – Completed Operations, the general contractor would have been covered as an additional insured by the electrical contractor’s CGL policy, provided the electrical contractor’s acts or omissions, at least in part, caused the bodily injury to the workers.Read More »Additional Insured Endorsements – After the Work is Done

Tips for avoiding slip, trip and fall accidents

Slips, trips and falls are a leading cause of injury for businesses and workplaces. Employees and other parties on your premises – visitors, customers, vendors, contractors and subcontractors – could be at risk for this type of accident or injury.

It is a common misconception that slip and fall injuries “just happen” and that there is little that can be done to prevent them. Years of experience show that proper slip, trip and fall prevention can help in reducing the number of injuries and in reducing loss costs.

Slips-Trips-Falls

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Preparing your business for potential holiday hazards

prepare businessMenorahs and Christmas trees light up Main Streets across America during the holidays, but there are risks associated with these decorations. Risk management professionals and insurance agents can help business owners understand how to keep their stores festive yet hazard free during the holidays.

The holidays usually bring several things to a small business – more foot traffic, celebratory decorations and additional staff to help with boosted sales.  However, with added customers and distractions, slips and trips are never far away. So when getting into the holiday spirit, you should make safety a priority.Read More »Preparing your business for potential holiday hazards

Get Liability Insurance for Holiday Lights

Whether you are a main street business owner in Buffalo, N.Y.’s or small cafe in San Francisco, CA don’t wait for the city threatening to pull the plug on a holiday tradition. You better not take your chances and plug holiday light displays into street light poles unless you hire licensed electricians to do the work and take out liability… Read More »Get Liability Insurance for Holiday Lights

Additional Insured Form Comparison

CG 20 10 ED 11 85: Ties Additional Insured status to liability arising out of “your work”- i.e., the named insured’s work – for the additional insured. Applying the coverage to “your work: encompasses liability incurred while the named insured’s work is in progress and also the named insured’s completed operations. Addresses a coverage requirement that is frequently imposed by project owners on contractors doing… Read More »Additional Insured Form Comparison

Insurance for Personal Trainers and Fitness Studios

Insurance for personal trainers and fitness studios is specifically designed to meet the unique insurance needs of Fitness Trainers, Group Fitness Instructors, Spinning Instructors, Dance Instructors, Martial Arts Teachers, Pilates Instructors, and many more categories of fitness instruction without any restriction of age or gender of your students.

The Fitness and Wellness Insurance program for Fitness Studios covers many types of studios including Aerobics, Exercise, Spinning, Fitness Training, Strength Training, and Pilates Studios with equipment. It also covers activities such as weightlifting, swimming, sauna, tanning booths, sport courts and group exercise. Dance Studios are eligible under Performing Arts.

Coverage available for:Read More »Insurance for Personal Trainers and Fitness Studios

Risk Transfer: Managing 3rd Party Relationships

Introduction: Case Scenarios – A painter’s scaffold collapses resulting in severe injury to the painter and a pedestrian. The painter had no insurance. The building owner is held liable for all losses. – A cabinet installer puts a long screw into a wall. It punctures a water pipe causing water damage. The installer’s insurance policy was not renewed. The homeowner’s… Read More »Risk Transfer: Managing 3rd Party Relationships

Purchase Order is Not Formal Contract

How many times, we as insurance agents, process requests to add additional insured to the policy of our client? At least several times a day. Some insurance agencies have dedicated staff that is primarily working on underwriting those requests. It is not complicated, but could a time consuming function, specifically, when such request must be processed by the insurance carrier, to properly endorse… Read More »Purchase Order is Not Formal Contract