Allied Public Risk Acquisition Announcement

Allied Public Risk is proud to announce the acquisition of Alteris’ WaterPlus, FirePlus, and JPRIMA programs. Twenty-one Alteris employees transitioned to Allied Public Risk as part of the acquisition. The agency’s new leadership team comprises Paul Fuller (CEO), Stephanie Gilmore (President/COO), Vickie Kartchner (President-in-Transition/Primary Practice Head), Margaret Zechlin (Executive Vice President/Alternative Practice Head), and George Pappas (Senior Vice President/Distribution).

Allied Public Risk has a rich tradition of providing innovative pooling, reinsurance, excess casualty, retention, and primary products to a wide array of public entities. The Primary Practice will consist of MuniPlus, WaterPlus, FirePlus, and JPRIMA programs. The Alternative Practice portfolio remains unchanged.

Allied Public Risk is a subsidiary of K2 Insurance Services, LLC of San Diego which was formed in 2011 by industry executives Pat Kilkenny and Bob Kimmel, in partnership with Endeavour Capital.

If you have any questions, please contact Paul Fuller at pfuller@alliedpublicrisk.com

Improving Onboarding Practices

Improving Onboarding Practices

Regardless of the industry or size, every business needs to vet and hire qualified employees. As the staff is the backbone to any successful operation, retaining them is just as important as hiring them. While many believe the onboarding process is a trivial one, research indicates that a proper training and hiring process is critical to retaining valuable staff members. In order to minimize Employment Practices Liability, here is how to effectively improve the onboarding process.

Write it down.

Rather than ramble on about processes and procedures, business owners should have a written, documented plan. This will help to guide the process, ensure consistency over various training groups, and keep it organized. Keep in mind that whoever is in charge of onboarding should evaluate its effectiveness and add and remove sections as needed.

Train onboarders.

While an enthusiastic employee might be eager to show off what makes the company so stellar, it’s important that they have the skills needed to thoroughly train and answer any questions the new hires might have. Ensure they set expectations, introduce the company, and establish a foundation for future training, explains Small Business Trends.

Pace the training.

It might seem better to throw new hires into their roles, but having them start slow and adapt to their surroundings is better for productivity and employee retention. Introduce job duties one at a time, allow room for questions, and try not to overwhelm them.

Emphasize culture.

According to the Association for Talent Development, company culture is one of the most important considerations for job seekers. Allow new hires to engage with other workers and get to know the company and the perks of the job.

Consistency is key.

The more onboarding sessions are completed, the easier the rhythm will be. Consistency is critical to ensure all new hire orientations run smoothly and obtain the same information as their predecessors.

About K2 Insurance Services

At K2 Insurance Services, LLC, we are dedicated to creating a leading underwriting and distribution franchise both in the standard and specialty program insurance markets. K2 was formed by two insurance industry veterans with the purpose of acquiring managing general agents and developing multi-line programs. Our goal is to distribute innovative products through retail and wholesale distribution channels. To learn more about our services and partners, please contact us today at (855) 976-8113 or visit K2INS.COM.

Wellness Program Compliance in the Workplace

midwestern logoHealth insurance providers often provide financial incentives for businesses to offer wellness programs. Therefore, in order to promote healthier lifestyles and receive benefits, it’s become more and more popular over the last few years for employers to implement these programs. While these programs are intended to encourage a healthier standard of living, they have recently come under fire by the EEOC for violating federal law. Therefore, a comprehensive Employment Practices Liability Insurance policy is a critical component for all businesses to mitigate risk and financial liability in the event of a lawsuit.

According to Inside Counsel, the EEOC issued a final rule on May 17 to amend the regulations, and the accompanying interpretive guidance, implementing Title I of the Americas with Disabilities Act for employer wellness programs. The EEOC also amended the regulations and interpretive guidance implementing Title II of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act. The final rule indicates that a spouse may be provided with limited incentive to give information about the other spouse’s health status as part of the wellness program. However, as the program is voluntary, the law indicates that only limited incentives can be offered to those who choose to answer health-related questions.

In order for the programs to be voluntary, the following must apply to the workplace wellness program:

  • It must be voluntary, not mandatory.
  • Health coverage must still be provided to those who opt out of participating in the wellness program.
  • No retaliation can be taken upon those employees who don’t wish to participate.
  • Employers must be diligent in notifying employees explicitly how their medical information will be handled.

About K2 Insurance Services

At K2 Insurance Services, LLC, we are dedicated to creating a leading underwriting and distribution franchise both in the standard and specialty program insurance markets. K2 was formed by two insurance industry veterans with the purpose of acquiring managing general agents and developing multi-line programs. Our goal is to distribute innovative products through retail and wholesale distribution channels. To learn more about our services and partners, please contact us today at (855) 976-8113 or visit K2INS.COM.

A Complete Guide to Street Bike Safety Gear

a17_cStarting out on a street bike is no easy task. Apart from doing the research, finding a reputable dealer, and pulling the trigger, the right gear is just as important in the buying process. Not only will this gear provide your clients with the necessary protection, it will ensure the rider’s comfort during the trip. Therefore, here is a comprehensive list of all the pertinent safety equipment needed for both new and experienced riders. Further, ensure a customized Street Bike Insurance Program is carried at all times to mitigate risk and financial responsibility, and share the following with your clients.

Helmet.

First and foremost, the right helmet is a must. While there are plenty of different types, ensure a full-faced helmet is worn all the time. According to a study published by Dietmar Otte, 45% of all impacts to motorcycle helmets occur around the face, in an area not covered by open-face or ¾-type helmets. Says Ride Apart.

Further, get the right type of helmet for the riding that will be done. Remember, street bikes are much different than dirt bikes. Like the crumple zone in a car, helmets are also designed to destroy themselves in a crash, thereby dissipating the energy that would otherwise be transferred to your head. Sometimes, a helmet can experience a crash without external signs of damage, but still sustain unseen effects. To ensure that your helmet is fully capable of protecting you, always buy a new helmet from a reputable retailer and then treat it like a baby, never allowing it to fall to the ground or otherwise be damaged, says Ride Apart.

Jackets.

Not only does the jacket protect the skin against abrasions in the event of an accident, but it protects the organs, the back, and ribs, as well. Purchase a jacket that is weather-resistant to keep the rider dry and cool during rides. Further, the jacket should be strong enough to absorb potential impact and should come with a “CE” safety rating. Lastly, ensure the jacket fits snugly but also allows full movement of the arms.

Riding pants.

Like jackets, pants are available in leather or textile materials and should be equipped with CE-rated armor in the hips, shins and knees. They should fit snugly, but comfortable and allow full leg articulation. Try them on a bike, in a riding position close to that of your own to determine if they’ll work, says the article. While jeans may be comfortable, they are not going to protect against abrasion and other injuries in an accident, so dress appropriately to ensure safety.

Aegis Powersports provides specialized dealer F&I products to powersports dealerships, including service contracts, road hazard protection, priority maintenance, gap, etch, GPS tracking, theft deterrent and appearance protection. All Aegis Powersports products are backed by Aegis Security Insurance Company, rated “A” (“Excellent”) by A.M. Best and operating on an admitted basis in all states.

At K2 Insurance Services, LLC, we are dedicated to creating a leading underwriting and distribution franchise both in the standard and specialty program insurance markets. K2 was formed by two insurance industry veterans with the purpose of acquiring managing general agents and developing multi-line programs. Our goal is to distribute innovative products through retail and wholesale distribution channels. To learn more about our services and partners, please contact us today at (855) 976-8113 or visit K2INS.COM.

What to do When an Employee Becomes Injured

midwestern logoThere are a variety of incidents that can constitute a Workers’ Compensation Insurance claim. While businesses of all types do their best to prevent against injuries, accidents happen. Therefore, securing the right insurance policy is a must. Further, here is how employers can navigate the incident when an accident happens to increase efficiency and get the employee back to work as soon as possible.

According to an article on Business.com, businesses should follow certain guidelines when formulating a Workers’ Comp plan. They are as follows:

  1. Take quick action when it comes to injuries. If the injury is life-threatening or requires emergency medical attention, immediately call 911.  Failing to seek immediate medical assistance could cause the business to become entangled in a lawsuit.
  2. Employers are required to file a claim with the insurance company immediately. Failing to do so can result in heftier fines, delayed treatment, and increased risk for workers’ compensation fraud. In fact, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, workers’ Comp scams cost businesses $7.2 million a year. Therefore, it pays to report the incident immediately.
  3. Never prevent an employee from filing a claim. Instead, employers should follow up with the injured employee, communicate with their treating physicians, and implement their return to work programs.
  4. Update claim paperwork during the process of waiting to hear back from the claims administrator. As it can take up to 90 days for approval or denial, ensure the employee’s health and recovery are processed and updated and stay up to date with their compensation.

The staff members at Midwestern Insurance Alliance are experts in providing Workers’ Compensation coverage, and view their relationship with policyholders as a partnership. To learn more, please contact MIA today.

K2 Insurance Services, LLC was formed by two insurance industry veterans with the purpose of acquiring managing general agents and developing multi-line programs. Our goal is to distribute innovative products through retail and wholesale distribution channels. To learn more about our services and partners, please contact us today at (855) 976-8113 or visit K2INS.COM

Hiring Freelancers: Employment Practices Liability?

midwestern logoAs the shift from a traditional 9-5 to a gig economy continues, it’s important to recognize how it impacts both employers and workers alike. With this change comes more Employment Practices Liability for the employer in terms of classifying the worker and paying them properly. As such, heed the following advice for ensuring compliance with hiring freelancers versus full-time employees.

Misclassifying employees affects all parties. Without being classified as a full-time employee, workers miss out on benefits including 401 k, health insurance, and vacation time while businesses can face penalties, fines, and even jail time for failing to classify their workers correctly. In fact, According to a report from SIA, a global staffing and workforce solutions advisor, more than one-third of midsize businesses have been fined or penalized for not complying with laws about how they manage their workforces.

However, classifying workers correctly continues to be a struggle. “Where worker classification is concerned, no hard-and-fast criteria exists, despite the fact that the Department of Labor, National Labor Relations Board, IRS and a host of state labor-related agencies have their various interpretations,” said Jeff Wald, Work Market co-founder and president, in a telephone interview with Small Business Trends.

Therefore, it’s recommended that employers that hire freelancers take the compliance test to ensure they won’t get fined for improper employment practices. IRS 20-Factor can help to determine how much financial and behavioral control the employer holds over the worker, determining if they are actually an employee or a freelancer. Further, the Economic Reality Test will help to identify how reliant the worker is on a paycheck from the employer which will also indicate whether or not they are considered an independent contractor or not.

At K2 Insurance Services, LLC, we are dedicated to creating a leading underwriting and distribution franchise both in the standard and specialty program insurance markets. K2 was formed by two insurance industry veterans with the purpose of acquiring managing general agents and developing multi-line programs. Our goal is to distribute innovative products through retail and wholesale distribution channels. To learn more about our services and partners, please contact us today at (855) 976-8113 or visit K2INS.COM.

Employer Tips for Preventing Workers’ Comp Fraud

midwestern logoWorkers’ Compensation Insurance is a necessary coverage for the majority of employers. Unfortunately, businesses of all types are at risk for experiencing some kind of workers’ compensation schemes. In order to prevent these fraudulent activities from occurring in the first place, employers can practice the following techniques.

  1. Report injuries immediately to insurance provider- According to EHS Today, the primary goal is to make sure the injured worker receives the proper treatment and that the recovery protocols are followed to facilitate a speedy recovery so the injured worker is returned to health and the job as quickly as possible- when this process is followed, the possibility of fraud is less likely.
  2. Provide proper training and supervision- As the manager of the company is often the point of contact for the injured employee, ensure they know how to handle workers’ compensation claims. In addition, managers should accompany the injured worker to their medical appointments whenever possible in order to reduce the chances of fraudulent claims. Next, managers should be encouraged to communicate with the physician and the worker about the status of their recovery. This will prevent the worker from feeling neglected and reduce the chances of a potential lawsuit.
  3. Investigate the accident immediately- While the injury is still new, investigate how and why the accident occurred. This can help to determine where the issue lies and identify how it can be prevented from happening again in the future. Further, the more facts and evidence gathered can prevent a scam from occurring.
  4. Background checks- Past criminal history can indicate a theme for fraud. By performing background checks, employers can understand who exactly they are hiring to protect their business in the long run.

The staff members at Midwestern Insurance Alliance are experts in providing Workers’ Compensation coverage, and view their relationship with policyholders as a partnership. To learn more, please contact MIA today.

At K2 Insurance Services, LLC, we are dedicated to creating a leading underwriting and distribution franchise both in the standard and specialty program insurance markets. K2 was formed by two insurance industry veterans with the purpose of acquiring managing general agents and developing multi-line programs. Our goal is to distribute innovative products through retail and wholesale distribution channels. To learn more about our services and partners, please contact us today at (855) 976-8113 or visit K2INS.COM.

Using Content Marketing to Grow MGA Business

It should come as no surprise that all functions of business and marketing have moved online. From sales to promotions to research, conducting a business is completely different than it was even a decade ago. However, the good news is this: it is now easier than ever to both attract and retain clients. The internet allows for businesses of all types to interact and engage with prospective customers, and MGAs are no exception to this.

A big component of digital marketing is the content portion- which is used to build relationships, strategize new leads, and engage in practices to promote a business. By implementing a content marketing strategy, an MGA can demonstrate their expertise in their field, provide valuable and educational information, and give prospective clients a reason to consider their products.

An MGA can achieve this by publishing blogs, newsletters, white papers, bulletins, e-books, articles, and more via their website and social media channels. Ensure the material is relevant to the target audience, is consistent and fresh, and portrays the MGA as an expert. Ultimately, this will help to attract future clients and promote a positive brand and reputation for the MGA.

According to State of Inbound, 41 percent of marketers agree that content marketing has an absolute positive return on investment. Not only is outreach maximized by implementing content marketing, but target markets can be reached on a level that was not possible before. Marketing practices have come a long way in the last decade, and content marketing techniques are now vital components to helping an MGA grow their business.

K2 Insurance Services, LLC was formed by two insurance industry veterans with the purpose of acquiring managing general agents and developing multi-line programs. Our goal is to distribute innovative products through retail and wholesale distribution channels. To learn more about our services and our partners, please contact us today at (855) 976-8113.

Understanding Municipality Insurance

allied-public-risk-NEWRisks are nothing new for the public sector. From managing fiscal responsibilities and planning a budget to ensuring their residents are protected, there is no shortage of liability for these professionals. While a comprehensive Municipality Insurance Program can help to curb these risks and financial obligations for these cities and towns, it’s important to understand the components of such policies.

City officials must realize the municipal laws that they are in charge of; this includes property liability, zoning laws, crime insurance risks, law enforcement liability, cyber risks, educators’ legal liability, and more to fully comprehend the securities that municipality insurance provides.

General Liability

This broad coverage protects against any bodily injury or property damage claims that occur in any municipal entity. This can stem from uneven sidewalks and roads, construction zones, and even as a result of natural disasters.

Employment Practices Liability

This coverage is essential and provides municipalities protection against claims from employees including alleged discrimination, wrongful termination, harassment, retaliation, unfair discipline, wrongful hiring, supervision, demotion, failure to promote, misrepresentation, defamation, libel, slander, disparagement or invasion of privacy, and breach of implied contract.

Crime Protection

Background checks and proper screening practices can help minimize crime activity for municipalities. Hiring legitimate employees can reduce the risks of fraud, tax evasion, and other criminal activities, so these entities must be proactive against reducing crime. However, this coverage protects against potential losses.

The above mentioned coverages are just a basic outline of what a comprehensive municipality insurance program provides. At Aegis General Insurance Agency, through one of our divisions, Allied Public Risk, our municipality insurance package also includes: property insurance, inland marine coverage, auto liability and physical damage coverage, cyber liability, educators’ legal liability, public officials’ liability, law enforcement liability, and umbrella liability. For more information about these products and services, please contact Aegis General today at 855.399.0966.

K2 Insurance Services, LLC was formed by two insurance industry veterans with the purpose of acquiring managing general agents and developing multi-line programs. Our goal is to distribute innovative products through retail and wholesale distribution channels. To learn more about our services and partners, please contact us today at (855) 976-8113 or visit K2INS.COM.

Law Enforcement and Social Media: Increasing Risk

allied-public-risk-NEWWhile it may come as no surprise that the majority of people have at least one social media account, the threats that it brings are not as widely considered. From exposing personal information, preferences, views, and locations, social media increases the risk for many, law enforcement individuals are no exception. Therefore, these professionals need to carry the best Law Enforcement Liability and promote proper risk management solutions in the workplace to reduce the threat of exposures.

In recent years, law enforcement has worked to accommodate the influence of social media. For example, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) states that while departments are concerned with minimizing the negative impact that speech not protected by the First Amendment may have on the department’s interests, they sometimes may neglect their responsibility to protect their employees. Especially as social media has diminished the barrier between personal and professional lives, there must be proper steps taken to protect law enforcement and their families.

Therefore, it’s recommended that a social media manager be hired in order to protect the core functions. Any red flags or potentially threatening posts can be mediated and even removed by the manager, if necessary.

In addition, ongoing training must be provided. Simply signing an agreement isn’t enough anymore-especially as social media continues to progress and become more advanced. To take it a step further, these professionals can petition to have their personal information removed from public and social websites. As law enforcement personnel are viewed as public figures, many websites will comply if questioned.

Lastly, it may be beneficial for law enforcement agencies to pay close attention to the conversations regarding their department on social media. This way, potential issues can be brought to light and in turn, mitigated and corrected.

Simply stated, the FBI notes that departments should initiate programs to foster awareness, education, and diligent management of employees’ online exposure. While not all claims can be predicted, becoming aware and prepared for such concerns can be an effective line of defense.

These claims are just some of the most common lawsuits our professionals hear about at Allied Public Risk. Allied Public Risk is dedicated solely to the underwriting of public entity exposures supported by our staffs’ years of experience and expertise in this niche market. Our seasoned professionals offer decades of specialized knowledge derived from helping manage and mitigate risks faced by public entities.

K2 Insurance Services, LLC was formed by two insurance industry veterans with the purpose of acquiring managing general agents and developing multi-line programs. Our goal is to distribute innovative products through retail and wholesale distribution channels. To learn more about our services and partners, please contact us today at (855) 976-8113 or visit K2INS.COM