Connect with us

Investing

Scams To Avoid During The Holidays

Published

on

avoid holiday scams
The Holidays is a special time and makes us more aware of our blessings and the needs of other people. It is during this time of the year that many people choose to give a part of that blessing to people who are needy. Unfortunately for us, it is also the time for unscrupulous people to come out of the woodwork to take advantage of this generous spirit. Giving during the Holidays is good and it is encouraged. However, it is also better to be vigilant to ensure that the right people benefit from the generosity. Here are some charity scams to avoid during the holidays.

Fake Charities

During the Holidays, giving is at its peak. It is no wonder then that charities sprout like mushrooms during this time of year. While there are many legitimate charities, be wary of fake charities that aim to take advantage of people's generosity. If you want to give to charitable institutions, give to those who make a public record of donations. The Salvation Army or Toys for Tots are good examples. In order to weed out fake charities, limit your donations to charities that provide financial statements. Check your local business bureau or the chamber of commerce for documentation.

Unfamiliar Websites

Just like fake charities, websites should be taken with caution during the Holiday Season. The FBI cautions shoppers not to shop on websites that look dubious, do not have SSL certificates, or have third party payment systems. Most of these sites are easy to spot since most of them offer products at unbelievable discounts. If it sounds too good to be true, it’s probably a scam. The authorities also warn against wiring money as payment, because once money is wired, it cannot be recovered again.Be wary of emails from e-commerce sites too. Some of them contain links that lead you to purchase products at big discounts. The problem occurs when you pay and they ask for your credit card information. These sites are setup to fish for information so that the scammers can use your financial information later on.

Social Media Mash Ups

Social media is a popular way to connect, which is why it is now a popular way to dupe people out of their hard earned cash. Social media is now being used by scammers to plant malware in your computer. Users of social media should refrain from accepting friend requests from people they do not know.Aside from malware and viruses, scammers also use social media to monitor your whereabouts. If you frequently post what you’re doing or post purchases, they can use this information to track you down and possibly rob you. Think Kim Kardashian and France before posting anything sensitive online.

Apps

Did you know that downloading fake apps can lead to scams? When you download an app, it requests permission to access information about you that's already stored on your mobile device. If you download a fake app, it can use this information such as your credit card details to buy products. To avoid downloading fake apps, use apps of trusted developers and to look for reviews before installing.

Business

10 Things To Think About When Purchasing Business Insurance

Published

on

purchasing business insurance
When you’re purchasing business insurance, there are many options available. In fact, there is a lot of information to digest. The thought of wading through all of them is daunting. However, business insurance is a must because going into business is a risky venture. Even the most tenacious entrepreneur is not guaranteed success.
It is not enough to simply buy business insurance. You need the right kind of insurance based on your industry. Here are some things to consider before buying a business insurance.

1. The Best Fit

Just like personal insurance, there are many types of insurance that cover different aspects of your business. For example:
  • General liability covers lawsuits and legal fees.
  • Product liability covers problems of the products you sell.
  • Professional liability is for service-based businesses.
  • Property insurance protects the building where your business is located.
Do your research to find out what types are needed before purchasing business insurance.

2. State Requirements

Depending on where you are, some states require minimum coverage of different types of insurance. Make sure you have all the basics required by law.

3. Cost Varies

Cost can vary depending on the insurance provider. The best way to find the best value is to shop around by requesting quotes from different providers.

4. General Liability

If you think you're not going to get sued over small things, think again. You can get into an accident while driving to work or a customer could get injured while in your store. Be smart and consider getting general liability when purchasing business insurance.

5. Homeowner's Insurance Does Not Cover Home-based Businesses

If you run your business from home, your personal insurance can’t be used to cover business-related claims.

6. Insure Business Against Disasters

Natural disasters and accidents leave your business vulnerable. Get additional coverage by purchasing overhead insurance which will pay for rent, utilities, payroll and other necessities in the event that you get injured, sick or die.

7. Umbrella Policy

There are so many different types of insurance to consider. To make it a bit easier, consider an umbrella policy which is a "catastrophic care" type of insurance for your business.

8. Business Interruption Insurance

You can’t tell when a natural disaster will happen. Think about getting business interruption insurance in the event that your business has to stop operation due to natural or manmade disasters. It can also be used to reimburse lost profits.

9. Consider Higher Deductibles

Reduce your business insurance cost by considering paying for a higher deductible. Higher deductible means lower premiums. But be wise, you don’t want too little cash when you need it most.

10. Gauge Your Risk

Know your insurance needs and risks. Your vulnerabilities could leave you on the losing end of a lawsuit even if you have a well-run business. Also consider the risks to your employees and customers when they are in your business premise like slips and cuts which could lead to lawsuits. You will need insurance coverage that covers your all your weaknesses.Don’t just buy business insurance and ignore it as your business grows. As your operations expand and assets grow, you need to reassess your risks and weaknesses periodically. A good and competent insurance agent can advise you on the kind of insurance you need for maximum coverage with the least financial investment. The right insurance at the right time can help your business weather financial storms.
Continue Reading

Investing

5 Best Health Insurance Options For Startups

Published

on

best health insurance
Many startups and small businesses feel intimidated by the responsibility of providing the best health insurance for themselves and their employees. The fees are daunting and startups with limited capital are sometimes opting to forgo insurance coverage. But entrepreneurs are more at risk than ordinary employees. After all, many businessmen are fully invested in their company. However, a trip to the ER, an illness or a costly medical procedure can spell the end of the business. Here are options for health care insurance for startups and small businesses.
 

Individual Health Insurance

Individual health insurance can be with or without a defined contribution allowance. This plan allows employees to purchase their own individual health insurance coverage through the public marketplace or through a broker. Employees can select any carrier or any insurance policy and then access discounts on premiums by using individual health insurance tax credits.Startups can contribute to their employee's' premium and other health expenses using the health reimbursement arrangement (HRA). They can contribute any amount up to federally defined limits.Individual health insurance is an easy and cost-effective for small groups and startups to access insurance coverage that is priced out of the group health insurance. 

Private Small Group Plan

Purchasing a private small group plan is another option for startups. Small groups can find lots of options on the private market place. There are also states that offer plans for small groups so you can find the best health insurance for you. 

Co-Op

Joining a co-op is also a good option for startups. It gives you a boost in buying power and spreads the risks to a larger group. However, not all co-ops are structured the same way. It is important to find a co-op with good rates than the startup can get on the open market or SHOP. This depends on the market itself or regional underwriting insurance laws that dictate rates or the co-op itself. 

SHOP Marketplace

The Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) Marketplace is a public state or federally run exchanges that sell insurance to small groups or startups. This is a good place to find the best health insurance for small groups with less than 50 employees if they can meet certain requirements. Different states have different laws. In Massachusetts for example, startups need to contribute at least 50% of the premium amount; businesses with 1-5 employees should enroll 100%, while those with 6-49, 75%.If your business is eligible, SHOP gives access to small tax credits. Brokers affiliated with SHOP can help startups purchase the plan. 

Private Health Exchange

Brokers offer startups private exchange option by working with a defined contribution. Small groups give employees a set contribution that goes towards a menu of plan options. The plan can be individual or group based. This can be beneficial since employees can choose a health plan supplied by participants. Startups and small businesses don’t need to forgo insurance. A licensed health insurance broker can be a good resource if you are looking for ways to minimize your risk and ensure the coverage of your employees. As for a broker that specializes in small group policies, individual or family policies to help you assess the different ways you can get health insurance for your business.
Continue Reading

Business

Insurance Coverage For Your Business

Published

on

insurance coverage
If you are running a business, you must insure it. You should understand what kind of insurance coverage you need for your enterprise. If you have a consulting business, having a proper error and omissions (E&O) insurance is important. You should purchase a general liability insurance if you want to take the lease of a building. Small businesses have a lot of things to protect.

Property Insurance coverage

You have tangible things to protect, such as machinery, merchandise, etc. There can be natural calamities like flood or earthquake. There can be major fire accidents. A fire can destroy all the machinery, and you need a replacement. The insurance should specify in clear terms that how much coverage they will provide in case of any accidents. In general cases, the property insurance covers business building along with inventories, furnishings, etc. It can also provide coverage to equipment breakdowns and the cost of removing debris.

General Liability coverage

You must purchase a general liability insurance for your enterprise. This insurance covers your products, completed operations of the company and premises operations. If you rent a building and one of your employees falls, you will be covered. If you are into a restaurant business and someone gets food poisoning, you will be covered.

E&O insurance

This insurance is also called the professional liability insurance. It is important for the people who are in the consulting business. If your consultation does not meet your client’s requirement and your client sue you, you will be covered by the legal fees and defense costs.

Worker’s compensation insurance

If you have employees in your business, you need to purchase worker’s compensation insurance. The cost of this insurance depends on your residing state. You should remember that worker’s compensation insurance is subject to audit.

Auto insurance

If you own a vehicle for your company, you need to buy auto insurance. You should add a hired and non-owned automobile liability rider. Auto insurance is important if you face any accident when you or your employee use your vehicle during working hours.

Cyber Theft of your business bank accounts

Every year huge amounts of funds are stolen from different accounts through cyber hacking. You need some protection to save your business from this financial crisis. There is a new kind of insurance in the market to cover you from cyber theft and fraudulent wire transfers. Consult your insurance advisor to know more about the insurance policy.

Small business data compromise insurance

If you are running a small business, you need to protect your vital data from getting leaked. This insurance helps protect your company’s reputation of your customer’s personal data is stolen or your employee’s information is compromised from your business side.If you have a home-based business, the homeowners’ insurance policy usually provides very limited coverage for tools and equipment damages and business related property. Consult your insurance agent to understand each point of insurance coverage. Decide which insurance is more appropriate for your company. You can also consider buying more coverage to protect valuable data.
Continue Reading

Trending