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Cranford, NJ 07016

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Insurance Blog

Commercial Insurance 101 for Small Businesses

Entrepreneurs help drive the economy in New Jersey, so we at O’Donnell Agency LLC are proud to offer you a quick primer on the benefits of commercial insurance for your new business.

What Does Commercial Insurance Do For You?

Your commercial or business insurance policy will be made up of a selection of coverage that goes beyond what a typical person needs for their personal property and dwelling policies. For just a small sample: Professional liability coverage handles damage caused by your business due to an error, workers’ compensation coverage helps cover issues like employee injuries on the job, and business income coverage provides relief during temporary shutdowns. The full list of options will vary between providers.

Working from Home Considerations

More jobs and businesses are moving to remote work for reasons like the reduction in transportation and office costs at no loss when you can just as easily make a call from New Jersey to New York from your living room. While running a business out of your home, commercial coverage related to your storefront could be covered by your homeowners’ insurance policy. Whether or not it will be covered depends on the type of business you’re running, since adding heavy equipment, changing the general use of your home, or other major alterations will factor into the risk assessment.

For a service that you operate over the phone or Internet without changing the use of your home, your homeowners’ or renters’ insurance policies should help with anything that’s a covered peril in the policy. What it might not cover are other potential risks of doing business. That’s where the versatility of insurance policy coverage becomes convenient, even if it makes the process more complicated. Since you’ll be purchasing less coverage, your insurance bill should see a decrease.

To find out the options available for your new small business, O’Donnell Agency LLC can tailor your answer for New Jersey residents.

Setting Up Your Home Insurance Before Buying a First Home

Buying your first home is going to be an exciting but challenging experience. For instance, you might not know when New Jersey law requires you to purchase insurance. At O’Donnell Agency LLC, we can help you understand these factors and make it easier to find the type of coverage you need.

Buying Your Policy 

When you’re buying a house, you need to buy your insurance before you close. Your lender and the seller will not let you close if you do not buy a policy. The different options available for you will vary based on your area and your needs. The insurance company understands this and tries to pre-approve an approach to speed it up. 

Once you get this pre-approval and Proof of Insurance from the provider, your home is almost yours. The insurance company will fax a record of your insurance to the seller and the lender, helping to set you up for closing. Once the deal is closed and money exchanged, the home insurance goes into effect. 

Policy Coverage to Consider 

When choosing coverage that meets your needs, it is essential to pay attention to various elements. Just a few things that you’ll need include:

  • Liability protection from different damage 
  • Natural disaster policies that make sense for your area 
  • High-quality coverage for fires and lightning 
  • Temporary living coverage options 

All of these policy elements help to make your insurance more in-depth and beneficial for your needs. Your agent will work with you to find the best balance between coverage and payments.

Take Control of Your Coverage 

If you’re buying a home and want the best coverage for your needs, please reach out to us at O’Donnell Agency LLC. We serve New Jersey and strive to help find the most appropriate options for your clients’ needs. Talk to us today to learn more about the policy types we provide.

What Does Workers Compensation Insurance Cover?

As a business owner in New Jersey, the moment you hire your first employee, you take on some form of risk as anything can happen to them while at work. That is why you need workers’ compensation insurance that protects you and your employees as well.  To understand more about this form of commercial insurance, O’Donnell Agency LLC explains what it covers.

Medical Expenses

Workers’ compensation insurance helps cover employees’ medical bills resulting from a work-related injury or illness. This can include a visit to the hospital, surgery, and prescribed drugs. For example, if your plumber falls and twists his ankle, workers’ compensation insurance will help pay for their visit to the emergency room.

Missed Wages

After a work-related injury or illness where your employee needs to take some time off to recover, workers’ compensation insurance can help replace that lost income. If one of your roofers slips and falls and cannot come to work for a week or two, this type of insurance will help cover those lost wages.

Ongoing Care

At times, a work-related injury or illness can be so severe that one of your workers will need ongoing care like physical therapy or follow-up treatment. Workers’ compensation can help cover the cost of continuing care.

Funeral Expenses

In extreme cases, an employee may lose their life due to a work-related accident. In such circumstances, workers’ compensation insurance helps cover the funeral costs as well as provide death benefits for the beneficiaries of the deceased.

Illnesses

There are working conditions that can expose some employees to dangerous chemicals that can cause an illness. If one of your employees gets sick and requires treatment and ongoing care, this form of commercial insurance helps cover those expenses.

It is essential that business owners in New Jersey find the right insurance company to work with. If you are shopping for commercial insurance, you can contact us at O’Donnell Agency LLC. Our agents are ready to help ensure that your business and your employees are covered if you are exposed to risks.

Renter’s Insurance: A Guide for College Apartment Renters

At O’Donnell Agency LLC, we help many New Jersey college students protect their belongings when they rent a home. However, many students may not even realize that this option is available for their needs. As a result, it is crucial to consider finding a renter’s insurance policy for your needs.

How Renter’s Insurance Helps 

When you’re renting a place during college, you may not realize that the homeowner’s insurance policy does NOT cover your belongings. That’s because it only covers the structure and any items that they own within the home. As a renter, you do not own the house – so your items are not protected. 

However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t get protection. Renter’s insurance is a simple type of policy that covers any items within a rental that the renter owns. You can find many types of policies that easily fit into a challenging budget and help keep most students safe. 

When living in a multiple-person home (such as if you live with your buddies), you should note that your policy will only cover YOUR belongings. So, you might want to talk to your roommates about what kind of rental policy will work the best for their needs. Doing so is a great way to help your friends.

Protect Your College Investments 

If you’re a college student renting an apartment or a home and you want to avoid severe complications with your financial needs, please don’t hesitate to contact us today at O’Donnell Agency LLC. We serve the New Jersey area and provide high-quality rental insurance that will easily fit into even the most demanding students’ needs. We’ll do what we can to make sure that you are delighted.

Umbrella Insurance Essentials

Many people in New Jersey are completely unfamiliar with Umbrella Insurance and what it is for. The professionals at O’Donnell Agency LLC are well versed in Umbrella Insurance and why it is important for New Jersey residents to carry this coverage.

Umbrella Insurance is also referred to as personal liability insurance. The most basic definition is that this is a type of personal liability insurance designed to cover claims that exceed what your regular insurance policies cover.  It serves as an additional layer of protection to protect your assets in the event of an incident or lawsuit. Umbrella insurance covers situations that don’t involve your property or your vehicle, which means it is incredibly useful for scenarios that are outside of normal insurance claims.

Umbrella insurance is not the same as excess liability coverage. It covers not only items that you are already insured for, but a wide range of contingencies that a typical insurance policy will not cover. Umbrella insurance covers you and your co-insured against items such as:

  • Lawsuits involving injury to others (such as your dog biting your neighbor)
  • Damage to other people’s property
  • Slander or defamation lawsuits
  • Landlord liability

It’s also important to note what Umbrella Insurance does not cover. Examples of non-covered instances are:

  • Damage to your personal property (this is what your homeowner’s insurance is for)
  • Damage that you or a member of your household caused maliciously or on purpose – for example, spray painting someone else’s home or car or tripping someone and causing them to fall and be injured
  • Liabilities occurring during the course of business or professional activities (those would fall under business insurance)

The team at O’Donnell Agency LLC wants to help make sure you are properly protected and are waiting to answer all of your questions about Umbrella Insurance!

The ABCs of Flood Insurance

Floods are always a constant flesh in the thorn of residents living in New Jersey and other parts of America. In fact, floods account for about 90 percent of all disasters in America! When floods strike, property damage is always on the card. And because your typical home insurance doesn’t cover flood damage, you need a stand-alone flood insurance coverage to protect your dwelling from floods. 

If you have been thinking about flood insurance, here is a guide from O’Donnell Agency LLC to help you understand this coverage in detail.

Is flood insurance mandatory?

New Jersey doesn’t require you to carry flood insurance. However, if you reside in a location considered flood-risk, your mortgage lender will insist you purchase flood insurance alongside home insurance. But whether flood insurance is mandatory or not, every homeowner should consider this investment since all homes are at risk of flood damage.

How do I get flood insurance?

Most of the flood insurance plans are administered through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). However, you can purchase flood insurance from private carriers. 

What does flood insurance cover?

The flood insurance coverage from NFIP covers your building up to $250,000 and contents up to a limit of $100,000. However, you can increase this limit at an additional premium. The dwelling coverage protects the foundation, floors, electrical and plumbing system, and other fixtures of your building. The contents coverage protects your cabinets, appliances, electronics, furniture, and other assets.

Does flood insurance take effect immediately?

Not at all. Flood insurance takes effect after a 30-day waiting period. With this in mind, you need to plan ahead if you want coverage against a looming storm. 

Buy flood insurance today!

Given that your home insurance doesn’t protect your New Jersey home against flood damage, buy flood insurance from O’Donnell Agency LLC to avoid a bad experience when the unexpected strike. Contact us today for a competitive quote. 

Can adult children remain on their parents auto policy

With more than 6 million licensed drivers, chances are you will have plenty of company on the roads in New Jersey. More drivers mean more risks and more chances of an accident. Making sure you have the coverage you need is vital to your financial security. Having an independent agent you trust makes all the difference. In New Jersey, O’Donnell Agency LLC has an experienced team who is here to help make sure you get the right policy at the best rate. Our agency is locally owned and operated, and we have the experience you need.

Families have changed a lot in recent times. In the past, most children were eager to get out of the parental home and launch their own lives. That was in the days when there was some possibility that an adult child would earn enough money to be able to afford a place of their own. As the price of apartments and homes has risen, it has become harder for adult children to afford a place of their own. 

Auto insurance is designed to cover the owners of a vehicle and others who live in their homes. One exception to this rule is college students. Most insurance companies will allow an adult child who lives on campus for most of the year to remain on their parent’s auto policy as long as their main permanent resident is still the family home. What has been happening increasingly is that once college is over, adult children move back home and stay there. This does allow them to remain on their parent’s auto insurance policy. But once the children have moved to another location and settled there, they need to get their own auto policy. 

Contact O’Donnell Agency LLC in New Jersey with any of your auto insurance questions or needs.

Why Should I Invest In Home Insurance?

At O’Donnell Agency LLC, we might be biased here, but there is no better place to call home than New Jersey. Whether it’s Robbinsville, Beckett, or Mountain Lakes, NJ, the state is full of serene neighborhoods to own a home. However, without home insurance for your prized asset, your investment is never complete. 

Why home insurance is a worthwhile investment

Regrettably, most homeowners view home insurance as just another unnecessary expense. However, when the unthinkable happens, it’s when they realize how powerful home insurance can be. Below are reasons why you should buy home insurance.

  • Liability protection: Despite how careful we are, accidents are bound to happen. Your dog might bite a neighbor. A friend can slip and hurt their leg on your premises, and so forth. The good news is that when you have invested in home insurance, liabilities are taken care of up to your policy limit.
  • Structure protection: Your home costs hundreds of dollars, if not thousands. However, perils like fire, theft, vandalism, storms, and hail can turn your invaluable asset into a nightmare. When you carry home insurance, repairs and even rebuilding of your home is compensated when the covered risk strikes.
  • Personal belongings’ protection: Home insurance safeguards your clothing, electronics, furniture, and sporting equipment if they are damaged or lost. 
  • Additional living expenses (ALE) coverage: Is your home unlivable due to hail, fire, or storm damage? Don’t panic. Home insurance pays for additional living expenses when you seek temporal shelter in a hotel.

Is home insurance mandatory in New Jersey?

While New Jersey law doesn’t require home insurance, your home lender may require you to carry standard home insurance until you settle the mortgage liability. But whether home insurance is compulsory or not, it’s a worthwhile investment for every homeowner.

Are you ready to get started with home insurance? Please contact O’Donnell Agency LLC today for all your home insurance solutions.

Who should get commercial insurance in New Jersey?

Owning a business is a dream for a lot of people in New Jersey. If you are looking to start your own business here, there are a lot of ways that you can be successful. However, there are also some risks that you need to think about when running a business. Anyone that is going to start a business here can mitigate some of these risks with commercial insurance. There are several situations when someone here should get this coverage.

When Contractually Required

A key reason that you should get a commercial insurance plan in this area is that you could be contractually required to do so. Any business owner would benefit by raising outside capital, taking out a business loan, or even leasing a place of business. If you do enter into any of these agreements, you will likely have insurance requirements. You should understand these requirements and then get a policy that allows compliance.

When Looking to Protect Investments

It would be best to have a commercial insurance plan to protect your business and investment in the company. Starting a company comes with a lot of need for investments. This may require that you purchase equipment, inventory, or other assets. In any of these cases, you will want to know that your assets are protected properly. With commercial insurance, you will know that you have the means to replace them and protect your investment.

A New Jersey business owner needs to get commercial insurance. When looking for coverage, you may find that many choices need to be made. The team with the O’Donnell Agency LLC can help you assess all of your insurance needs. O’Donnell Agency LLC will also answer your questions and guide you so you can build an ideal plan. 

When Does the Law Require Workers’ Compensation?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the private industry had 2.9 million nonfatal injuries in 2019. Cases of workplace injuries are not new. As an employer, the law requires you to ensure that your workers operate in a safe environment. 

Regardless of the safety measures that you have put in place, accidents can still happen. It would help to get workers’ compensation insurance. If you’re in New Jersey, O’Donnell Agency LLC can help you with your workers’ compensation insurance. 

When to Buy Workers’ Compensation Insurance 

Most states require companies to have workers’ compensation depending on the number of employees. Workers’ compensation is a great way to protect your business from financial losses and reputational damage. It’s vital to understand when to buy workers’ compensation, whether your company is well-established or an upstart. 

You need to get the coverage as soon as you hire your first employee. If any of your workers got an injury in the workplace, you wouldn’t be held financially responsible if there’s an insurance policy in place. It is best to comply with laws relating to workers’ compensation insurance to prevent cases of criminal or civil penalties. 

Workers’ Compensation Insurance in New Jersey

In New Jersey, the law requires businesses to have workers’ compensation insurance. Some employers under federal programs or those in partnerships get some exceptions. Those without employees also don’t have an obligation to get this kind of insurance. 

The insurance should also cover part-time employees if they are paid wages and taxed. However, the coverage doesn’t apply to volunteers, interns, and contractors. Business owners must understand workers’ compensation insurance and cases where it applies. 

Workers’ compensation insurance can be a challenging concept, especially for new business owners. For businesses in New Jersey, check out O’Donnell Agency LLC to know more about this coverage. The team will guide you on workers’ compensation per the law.  

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Why Work With Us?

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