Is the Assigned Risk making a comeback?

Having been working in insurance for over 30 years, I can recall the days of using carbon paper and typewriters.  Back when I started, rating auto policies was done manually, with limited rating factors.  Nowadays, rates are done through the computer using algorithms and it’s almost impossible to determine one’s rate.  Rates are driven in a large part by credit, prior coverage history together with tickets, accidents and other claims going back as far as 5 years. Some companies even charge more for claims involving personal injury regardless of whose fault the accident was.

Interestingly, over all those years, the Assigned Risk really hasn’t changed it’s rating structure. The Assigned Risk is a state’s auto program that is designed to write people that have trouble getting insurance. Although I haven’t used the AR for years,  I am beginning to now find that the AR or NYAIP can be a good fit in certain circumstances. This is because the  AR does not base a rate on one’s credit or on having prior coverage.  Furthermore, only tickets and at fault accidents, going back just 39 months, are rated. Not at fault accidents, hit and run accidents and no seat belt tickets are not rated.  The AR also does not begin charging for a ticket or an accident until it is at least 3 months old.

Knowing the ins and outs of the Assigned Risk aka the New York Auto Insurance Plan has come in very useful.
Posted in Blog

Why Should I get a Standalone Jewelry Insurance Policy?

Is there a benefit of having a standalone jewelry policy versus putting your jewelry on your homeowner’s policy? There are reasons to believe that keeping your jewelry off your homeowner’s policy will be better for you in the long-run if this worse-case scenario were to occur.

Think about your jewelry as an item in your home, if something where to happen to it, that means it would count as a homeowner’s loss. Any claims on your homeowner’s policy are never a good thing and can affect your policy in a negative way. It can be hard to get your homeowner’s policy back to the rate it was initially at once a jewelry loss is put on your policy. There can also be limitations on the homeowner’s policy that will have the jewelry claim hit capacity and it cannot be restored to what you originally paid for it. There are also a lot of carriers that do not support the higher-valued jewelry, which again means that there may be a problem when trying to get the exact money you paid for your item back to full capacity.

Some benefits to having a standalone jewelry insurance policy are the higher limits you can get for your jewelry as compared to having it listed on your homeowner’s policy. Even the most expensive of jewelry will be supported at a higher-value asset on your policy. You can also list a co-insured for the jewelry unlike a homeowner’s policy where you cannot list family members to be associated with your jewelry coverage. There are good perks available for having a standalone jewelry policy such as discounts for good appraisals, home alarm system and safe storage for when your jewelry is not being worn. Of course, let’s not forget the biggest savor of them all which is that on a standalone jewelry policy- jewelry claims do not impact homeowners’ coverage! So, you will not have to stress about these claims increasing your insurance premiums when they will be covered elsewhere.

Fun fact: According to a statistic from JIBNA Personal Jewelry Insurance, “70% of personal property theft losses are jewelry.” It goes without saying that jewelry is very important and even more so, expensive. All the more reason to protect it by designating a specific policy to help take care of a worse-case-scenario such as this.

Interested? Contact our office for a quote today!



Posted in Blog

Flood Insurance – The Facts

Don’t confuse Homeowners Insurance with Flood Insurance!

Here are some important facts about flood insurance.

  • Flooding can happen anywhere, at any time. In fact, according to FEMA, more than 40% of claims come from homes outside high-risk flood areas.
  • Flooding is not covered under a Homeowners Policy. A separate flood policy is needed.
  • There is a 15-30 day waiting period for new coverage to begin.
  • Contents must be purchased separately under a flood policy, and it has its own deductible. A detached structure would need a separate policy.
  • There are limitations to what is covered under a basement (exclusions include: finished walls, flooring and personal property is not covered).
  • Your home must be insured to at least 80% of its full replacement cost or you must carry $250,000 Dwelling coverage to avoid deduction for depreciation in the event of a claim.
  • Call us for a quote or to represent you on your existing flood policy that you insure elsewhere.
  • In addition to National Flood, we represent many private flood companies.

You can buy Water Backup coverage under a Homeowners policy.

Please do not hesitate to contact our office for any of your insurance needs!


Posted in News

Are You Prepared for Winter Storms? Check out these tips:

Posted in News

Is This Damaged Die Mold Covered Under Insurance?

That is a very good question, and it depends upon whether or not you have the correct coverage. No, standard insurance policies do not cover damage from breakage while the equipment is being utilized in the course of a business.

Basically to be covered, it has to be one of the named perils contained within the policy and if it falls outside of that there is no coverage. We would like to introduce you to “equipment breakdown coverage” and there’s one policy in particular that we feel is perfect for small manufacturing firms. Not only does it provide additional machinery breakdown such as boilers pressure vessels elevators and heating and air condition units, but this one could also cover your manufacturing equipment itself and in the case of what is shown in the picture above, that claim amounted to $20,000 paid to the client.

In this case, the device had to be sent to Italy to get repaired and repair with the expedited costs during the coronavirus, brought the repair up to that amount. The client was never the less very happy with the outcome and was even happier to have chosen to secure this coverage.

Come to Curran Cooney Penny Agency and let us help you ensure your world!

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Posted in Case Studies

Celebrating 30 Years – Thank You

Cheers to 30 years! This week Patti and I celebrate our 30th Anniversary at the helm of Curran Cooney Penny Agency. We are so fortunate to be able to do so, but it would not be possible if it wasn’t for all our wonderful clients, staff members and carrier partners.

Patti and I began our insurance careers at the young age of 23 and were given the opportunity to go into business for ourselves at age 26.  We worked tirelessly to gain the respect of others and loved being the small business owners that we were.  To this day, we still work extremely hard to try to lead by example,  respect others and be really good at what we do.

As we look towards the future, we will embrace all the changes coming while never forgetting where we came from.  We will never forget who we serve and the reasons why you chose to work with us.  Thank you for all your support.

Michael and Patti Wittkowski

Posted in Blog