Who Is Responsible if Someone Is Injured While in my Apartment?

Contrary to what many people believe, renters may carry a certain amount of liability if someone is injured while visiting their home. The key is determining where the divide between the liability of the renter and that of the landlord. Agents from Dern & Company serve residents who live in and around Milwaukee, WI. It’s their job to help their clients get the answers they need about their renter’s insurance.

Your Liability

When it comes to liability, a renter may be considered to be responsible for an injury in their apartment if it is caused by something they have done or not done. A good example of this is running an extension cord across a walkway. If a person trips and is injured, the fault would lie on the renter for creating a hazard.

Your Landlord’s Liability

If the accident was the result of tripping over a piece of torn carpet or linoleum, the landlord may be responsible. If a landlord has been notified of damage to the apartment and has not made the repairs in a timely fashion, any compensation due to the victim could eventually fall on the landlord. In some cases, it may be determined that both the landlord and renter are at fault.

Renters in Milwaukee, WI can call the agents of Dern & Company if they have any questions concerning their liability. It’s important to understand what you are responsible for as well as what your landlord may be required to cover. Call and talk to your agent today to have your policy reviewed and possibly upgrade it. Schedule your appointment now!!

Putting Your Boat Away for the Winter

If you live in Milwaukee, WI and own a boat, you need to start thinking about getting it ready for the colder months of the year. While some people don’t do much, if you want to protect your investment, it’s best to take a few steps to ensure the elements don’t cause damage. 

At Dern & Company, we can provide you the protection you need for your boat and at an affordable price, but the rest is up to you. Consider some of the tips here to ensure your boat makes it through the winter unscathed. 

Dry or Wet Dock

You have two basic options when it comes to boat storage if you plan to keep it on or near the water; a wet or dry dock. Both have their appealing qualities, but a dry dock is going to be a more significant investment. You can also pull the boat on your trailer to a garage or warehouse where it can be stored. All of these options come at a price, so be sure to keep that in mind. 

Get the Engine Ready

Just like your car, you have to take care of your boat’s engine in colder weather. This means making sure it is winterized. If you aren’t sure how to do this, hire someone to do it for you. That way, when you are ready to get back on the water, you won’t have any problems. 

While storing your boat during the winter months in Milwaukee, WI is up to you, our team at Dern & Company can help you with your insurance needs. Contact us today to learn about the policy options we offer and to find out how we can get you the protection you need. 

What to Expect When Filing a Commercial Insurance Claim

Filing an insurance claim is always going to be a little confusing, no matter how straightforward the issue may appear at first glance. Because every business is different (and every business owner has their own set of priorities), there will always be some clarification needed before any professional can properly fill out all the questions. Here are a few things to expect if you’re filing a commercial insurance claim in Milwaukee, WI, courtesy of Dern & Company.

You Will Be Asked for Documentation 

There’s a lot of paperwork when it comes to filing a claim. Insurance companies keep all this information to assist with everything from audits to lawsuits. If you’re requesting the company to pay for damaged inventory or replace a broken window, you may need to take photos, provide proof of value, or get formal estimates. They’ll use all of this information to justify their approval or denial, so it helps for commercial business owners to have as much data as possible. 

You May Not Agree With the Results 

Insurance companies have formal policies with each of their clients, but that doesn’t mean the policy can define the parameters of every situation. Because two people may view the same event two entirely different ways, it can lead to disappointed customers who expected more out of their claim. Insurance companies have an appeals process that commercial business owners can use to ask for their claim to be reconsidered. 

If you have questions about your commercial insurance policy, call Dern & Company today. We’re here to get you a policy that will keep your business safe from natural disasters, theft, and even slander. We’re here to help the people of Milwaukee, WI protect the enterprises they worked so hard to build. 

Home Security Tips for New Renters

As a renter, you need to be mindful of your home security to protect yourself and your property. Living in an apartment complex with high foot traffic puts you at greater risk of theft or intrusion. The following security tips from Dern & Company in Milwaukee, WI can be helpful in keeping you and your goods safe in a rental property.

Lighting

Make sure your apartment has good lighting, inside and out, to ward off intruders after dark. Your entranceway, hallways, parking areas, stairways, and elevators should all be well lit after dark to enhance safety.

Upkeep

A well-kept apartment building and landscaping is more likely to keep thieves at bay as it shows the landlord is concerned about safety and security. If your landlord is dropping the ball in this area, make your concerns known to ensure proper maintenance gets done.

Door & Window Locks

If possible, replace your door locks to reduce the risk of former tenants getting access to your apartment. Check window locks to ensure they’re working properly. This is especially important if your apartment is on the ground floor.

Fire Escape

If your unit is in a high rise complex, make sure there’s a workable fire escape for emergency situations.

Get a Renter’s Insurance Policy

Renters insurance from Dern & Company can protect your belongings from theft and natural disasters that could befall your apartment complex. Your landlord’s insurance protects his building, not tenants’ property.

If your apartment is burglarized or catches fire, renter’s insurance will cover the cost of repairing or replacing your belongings up to the limits of your policy. Renters insurance also protects you against liability claims if someone gets hurt while visiting your apartment and sues you for damages.

To learn more about renters insurance options and costs, contact Dern & Company in Milwaukee, WI.

What Are Commercial Insurance Plans?

Commercial insurance plans protect your business. You don’t want anything to happen that would cause you to spend more money than necessary. Unfortunately, life in Milwaukee, WI can be unpredictable. The last thing you want to deal with is someone getting injured on your property, an employee slipping and falling, or a commercial vehicle accident. With the right commercial insurance plan, you can be covered against virtually anything that can happen.

There’s no one-size-fits-all commercial insurance plan. At Dern & Company, we can assist you in creating a plan that works best for your business.

The average commercial insurance plan references liability. It protects your business if someone gets injured on your property or if one of your employees damages someone else’s property. If something like this happens, you can file a claim with the insurance company. You would only be financially responsible for the deductible.

Liability alone may not be enough insurance for all that you have going on. This is when you may want additional policies to protect your business in Milwaukee, WI. If you have commercial vehicles, you need commercial auto insurance. If you have a certain number of employees, the state will require you to have workers compensation. You may also want to look at business interruption insurance, ensuring that you can get compensated for lost sales while you recover from a disaster.

It’s important for a commercial insurance plan to work for you. Without sufficient coverage, you’re left vulnerable to what could happen. As such, it makes sense for you to have a plan built that focuses on your individual needs. Further, you want your plan reviewed annually because things can change inside of business from year to year.

You don’t have to figure out what coverage you should have on your own. Contact us at Dern & Company so that one of our independent insurance agents can help you every step of the way.

 

Commercial Insurance Add Ons to Consider

When it comes to your business it is of critical importance to protect it as best you can. This is why you have commercial insurance taking out on your business. With commercial insurance you’ll bring in essential protection, so you don’t have to completely pay out of pocket for unforeseen expenses. However, there are likely add ons you should consider that will take your commercial investment protection to the next level. If you live in or around greater Milwaukee, WI, Dern & Company is here to help. 

General Liability Insurance

This is an important form of insurance coverage that will extend the level of liability protection for your business. This way, if the product you produce or the services your business offers ever causes bodily harm to a customer the insurance policy will protect you (and help pay for any legal damages). 

Property Insurance

Even if you don’t own the property your business is in you probably own the machinery and other equipment within the business. Property insurance will help protect these investments and replace what is damaged. 

Commercial Auto Insurance

If you drive your vehicle for business, or if you have a vehicle designed specifically for business, you’ll need commercial insurance. This is because your auto insurance likely won’t cover damages sustained while using the vehicle for work. 

You have put a considerable amount of time, money, and energy into the opening and creating your business. This is why you already have commercial insurance on the property. However, standard commercial insurance may not always be enough. That is why you need to consider insurance add ons. For more information on these and other additions to your current commercial insurance policy and your place of business is around greater Milwaukee, WI, now is the time to reach out and contact Dern & Company. 

Caution Renters: Your Landlord’s Insurance Does NOT Protect Your Belongings!

If you are renting an apartment you may think that your dwelling is covered by your landlord’s insurance. This is often not the case, and many renters do not discover this fact until it is too late. Rather than hope that nothing bad happens to your belongings, why not gain the peace of mind that comes when you have adequate renters insurance? If you are living in the greater Milwaukee, WI area and do not have any insurance to protect your possessions you are living with an avoidable risk! The team at Dern & Company is here to provide the information you need to determine the right rental insurance policy to meet your needs.

When you have an appropriate rental insurance policy you will have protection for:

  • Personal belongings that are lost or damaged due to a catastrophic event at your place of residence
  • Burglary or theft of your possessions from your home
  • Off-premises damage, loss or theft of any items that are included on your rental insurance policy

Your landlord’s insurance will likely cover any damage to the structure itself or any common areas throughout the building. The contents of your unit will likely not be covered by such a policy and you will be responsible in the event of their loss. Your local insurance agent can provide a quote for a range of policy options to help you determine which type and level of coverage best suits your needs. Don’t wait until disaster strikes to find out that you don’t have the coverage that you need!

Don’t leave your belongings at risk for damage, theft or loss! Contact your Milwaukee, WI team at Dern & Company today to learn more about how the right rental insurance policy can protect you!

The Importance of Boat Insurance in the Winter

You may not use your boat very often in the winter, but it is still a good idea to have boat or watercraft insurance because many insurance claims are made in the colder months in Milwaukee, WI.

Is Boat Insurance Required?

Boat insurance is not required by the state of Wisconsin, however, if you have financed your boat, the lender will require insurance on it to recoup any losses on his asset until it’s paid off. Some marinas and docks also require you to have watercraft insurance for their own protection if you use their facilities.

When Old Man Winter Arrives

You most probably don’t go out on The Great Lakes too often in the winter due to the ice formations, however at the beginning of fall and spring when the waters thaw; you may want to go fishing. It is still the best idea to keep insurance on your boat all year round for your protection, as many losses do occur in the winter. Even if you store your boat in your garage, house fires in the winter often spread to the garage and you could end up with a total loss. Thefts of boats occur often in the winter because most people don’t think about checking their storage unit too often in the winter with a boat in it. Lightning is more prevalent with winter storms and can destroy your boat whether it is in open storage or a facility that is completely closed in Milwaukee, WI.

What is an At-Risk Boat Policy?

An at-risk boat policy from Dern & Company gives you the best protection for your boat. It protects you while operating the boat on the water and while it is stored. This policy can also cover losses that result from a failing part. You are covered in this type of policy for theft, vandalism, fire, grounding, sinking, and lightning. You can also add coverage for all of your personal items on the boat too.

Call us at Dern & Company or stop in to see one of our knowledgeable agents to learn more about your boating policy and find which will protect your assets to the fullest.

 

 

Major Catastrophe Planning Includes a Commercial Insurance Evaluation

An industry survey of 150 risk professionals, who are in charge of risk analysis for major companies, gave some startling results when they were questioned about their emergency plans for catastrophic events.

One of the questions asked by the survey was if the company had run a simulation drill for a catastrophic loss that included an analysis of the effectiveness of the coverage by commercial insurance to mitigate some of this risk.

The surprising answers to this question show a very low amount of preparedness:

  • Only about 25% had conducted such a simulation drill during the past two years.
  • Only 11% reported that there was such a drill conducted during the last five years.
  • Over two-thirds say they never conducted such a drill.
  • About 28% reported that they were not sure if the company ever had such a drill.

Best Practices for a Commercial Insurance Review

Work with your agent at Dern & Company, serving the Milwaukee WI area, to analyze the commercial insurance for the business and to discuss the scenarios possible that may cause a catastrophic loss.

The considerations for adequate commercial insurance include:

  • Review all policies before a loss.
  • Understand the coverage that would be available for a loss.
  • Analyze the detailed definitions in the policies in order to understand the exact terminology and what it means.
  • Make a plan for documentation of the information needed before and subsequent to a loss.
  • Upgrade and add to commercial insurance as necessary to make sure it is adequate.

Things to Look Out For

There are many things to consider with the help of your insurance agent that include total policy limits, sub-limits for specific items, deductibles and how they are applied, how property is valued, and how claims will be resolved if more than one policy applies to a loss.

Summary

In a catastrophic drill, imagine the worst-case scenarios. Get a comprehensive review of commercial insurance with the help of your agent at Dern & Company in Milwaukee, WI. Make sure the coverage is appropriate and adequate for the company’s needs before a loss occurs.

Should Short Term Renters Buy Renters Insurance?

If you are renting a home for a long period of time, you likely know the importance of purchasing renters insurance. But, not everyone rents a home for a prolonged period of time. You may be renting a home for a couple months while a new home you are having built is constructed. You may be renting a home for a month while traveling. Or you may be renting a space for a couple months while overseeing a business project. One of the questions that we at Dern & Company, serving the greater Milwaukee, WI area are asked is whether short-term renters should buy renters insurance. Here is our advice. 

When you are deciding whether to purchase a renters insurance policy, the first thing to consider is what belongings you are storing in the home. Some people may be renting a space that is completely furnished for them. As such, they may just have a suitcase filled with the clothing that they bring with you. If you don’t have much in the house, you really don’t have anything of value that will get damaged or stolen. As such, you may not really need a renters policy. 

On the other hand, if all of your belongings are in the house, regardless of how long they are there for, and/or you have items of value that can be damaged or stolen, it is a good idea to invest in a renters insurance policy. Most renters insurance policies are month-to-month, so you can buy one for a short period of time. 

Whether you are looking to buy a policy for the long term or a short-term renters policy in the greater Milwaukee, WI area, Dern & Company would love to help you. Contact us today to get started.