Blog Tag: Property & Casualty
It's been said that "a comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there." Perhaps Wayne Simmonds knew this when he began selling dust mop services for an up-and-coming franchise business known as Dust-Tex in the late 1950s. Fresh from active duty in the U.S. Navy, Wayne returned to Omaha, Nebraska with his young family and worked for the business until it was eventually acquired by American Uniform Company.
Since late 2013, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has been working on a revision to Title 29 of the United States Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Parts 1902 and 1904. The primary purpose of the amendment is to improve the tracking of workplace injuries and illnesses. Adoption of the final ruling was released on May 12, 2016, and the components applicable to reporting are set to become effective on January 1, 2017. Anti-retaliatory regulations were initially slated to become effective on August 10, 2016, but due to industry concerns with the scope of these regulations, the implementation date has been delayed (at the time of this writing) to November 1, 2016. The delay will impact the anti-retaliatory components that directly affect the ability of employers to perform post-injury drug screens. Given the current and impending changes, it is important that employers understand the new rules and ensure that their post-injury drug testing policies are compliant with the guidelines set forth and enforced by OSHA.
Terrorism looks quite different than it did 15 or 20 years ago. In the 1990s and 2000s, terrorist acts were typically carried out by large groups against high-profile targets. However, recent attacks have mostly been carried out by small cells or lone attackers seeking maximum casualties in crowded venues. This shift in terrorism trends has insurers and business owners evaluating new risks as attackers go after “soft targets” (people who are relatively unprotected or vulnerable) in events that result in significant loss of life and business interruption, but minimal property damage. There are a number of basic questions business owners should ask to begin reassessing their terrorism risk management programs and determine if new or altered coverage is needed.
Owning your own business can be an exciting challenge. The stakes are often high, but the rewards can be great. When managed strategically, companies have the potential to develop into profitable businesses that experience continued growth and success. This can translate into comfortable and secure futures for the owners and the employees. However, it is important for business owners to have a clear, in-depth understanding of the risks tied to their businesses. A thorough risk assessment can help business owners identify vulnerabilities and protect their companies from financial downfalls resulting from unprotected liabilities. Is your company protected from the wide variety of risks and exposures that exist in today’s business environment? If you can’t respond with a confident “yes,” then you need to keep reading.
Getting hurt on the job can be a pain – in more ways than one. Expensive medical bills and lost time at work often follow serious injuries, making an already bad situation worse. Many states have a statute that requires employers with one or more employees to provide workers’ compensation coverage. Sometimes, however, states exempt certain employees from this mandate. For example, Nebraska exempts federal employees, railroad employees, most volunteers and casual workers, independent contractors, household domestic servants and some employees of agricultural operations. Exempting classes of workers from the statute does not mean that an employer can’t be held liable if an injury, illness or death occurs; it simply means that an employer is not subject to a state’s workers’ compensation law to insure those employees. It also means that those individuals are not restricted by the offerings of the workers’ compensation system and, in the event of injury, illness or death, they can sue the employer. If they can prove negligence, their potential payout could far exceed what the law would have allowed under the workers’ compensation policy.