Category Archives: Commercial Insurance

Protect your business from inventory loss

The value of your inventory probably makes up a sizable amount of your company’s overall assets. It’s important to have adequate coverage in the event of a covered loss. The team at Colling Insurance Services Inc. understand how important protecting this aspect of your Lakewood, CO area business is, and we are here to help. With the right commercial insurance policy, you can rest assured that you have the coverage you need to meet your inventory loss needs. Don’t be caught with an inadequate policy level because you miscalculated your inventory coverage needs.

Make sure you have sufficient coverage for inventory loss

Commercial policies need to do a lot of work, they’re there to protect your plant and equipment, injuries sustained by employees or customers, commercial vehicles, property, and the list goes on. With all of the assets that businesses need to protect it is not surprising when some are overlooked. Inventory can often fall by the wayside when firms are calculating exactly how much comprehensive commercial coverage they need. There are also times when inventory is valued in the moment rather than looked at on an annual basis. If you determine your coverage when inventory is at a seasonal low, you may be underinsured if an incident occurs when your inventory levels are at their highest. Make sure that you protect your inventory, no matter the time of year, with a comprehensive policy that is calculated properly. Your local agent can take the time to review all of your needs.

Is it time to review your current commercial insurance policy and make sure that you have the coverage you need? Call or stop by Colling Insurance Services Inc. today and let us help you protect your Lakewood, CO area business from inventory loss. 

Is Workers Comp Required For Self-Employed or Independent Contractors?

Lakewood, CO, like many cities, towns, and states across America is seeing a surge in the numbers of companies working with independent contractors, as well as a surge in the number of people running a small business, being self-employed, and working as an independent contractor due to the shift toward the gig economy. Whether you are a small or large company, an Uber driver or a carpenter, it can be confusing trying to figure out where you understand without talking with your Colling Insurance Services, Inc. Agent. Here’s some information to give you the basics. 

Is Workers Compensation Required For Self-Employed or Independent Contractors? 

The State of Colorado requires all employers to carry workers’ compensation insurance, with very few exceptions.  You are required to carry workers comp if you: 

  • Employ any workers in Colorado, even part-time. 
  • Hire workers, even if you don’t consider them employees.  

There are common law guidelines to help you distinguish employees from independent contractors, but Colorado has a strict workers compensation system and is firm about independent contractors and subcontractors being considered employees unless they don’t qualify under specific exceptions in Colorado state law. 

Here are the few exceptions:  

Corporate officers and members of an LLC – If you own at least 10% of the company you can opt-out of coverage if the rejection is done in writing, otherwise, Colorado includes you in coverage.

Sole proprietors and partners — You have the option to include yourself but are excluded from required coverage. 

Maintenance and domestic workers: Some maintenance and domestic workers may not need to be covered by the law if they only perform work on a part-time, limited basis for a homeowner. 

Do Self-Employed and Independent Contractors Need To Buy Their Own Workers Comp? 

While workers’ compensation insurance is not required in Lakewood, CO, it is a good idea for self-employed and independent contractors to provide coverage for themselves, as the chance of injury still exists for entrepreneurs.  

Whether you are an SMB or a large corporation, an independent contractor or self-employed, if you have questions about your worker’s comp needs, give the insurance experts at Colling Insurance Services, Inc. a call or come by our office for answers today. 

How to Tell if Your Business Needs Workers’ Comp Insurance

If you’re starting up a new business in the Lakewood, CO area, you may be curious if you will need to carry workers’ compensation insurance.  In Colorado, all private and public employers are required to provide workers’ compensation insurance if one or more persons are hired for full- or part-time employment.  By law, a person hired to perform services is considered an employee and there few exceptions to this definition.  Here are the few exceptions to a business being required to carry workers’ comp insurance.

Exceptions

  • Some casual repair or maintenance work is done for a business that does not exceed $2,000 in a calendar year.
  • Domestic work for a private homeowner that is not full time.  Work consisting of over 40 hours a week or five or more days a week.
  • Licensed real estate brokers and agents that work on commission.
  • Independent contractors that perform hire for transport jobs and other independent contractors that do not fall under the employee definition. 
  • Drivers under a lease agreement that have a common contract carrier.
  • Some volunteer work may be an exception.
  • Host home services that are part of residential support services.

There may be other situations that can fall under the exception rule, but you want to be sure.  In general, unless your business falls under these few exceptions, your company will need to carry workers’ compensation insurance.

Colling Insurance Services, Inc.

Colling Insurance Services, Inc. operating in Lakewood, CO specializes in customized insurance products to meet the simple or complex needs for your business. If you are uncertain about the need for workers’ comp insurance for your business, contact a Colling agent today.  Our agents can help you navigate the workers’ compensation laws and feel confident you have the coverage necessary.

What are the benefits of commercial insurance?

If you are a business owner, you likely have spent a lot of time and effort to get your business off the ground and running well. Because it is such an important asset, you need to make sure that you keep your business properly insured. Having a quality commercial insurance policy in place at all times will provide a Lakewood, CO area business with a variety of different benefits.

Protects Your Assets

One of the main benefits of having commercial insurance for your business is that it will help to protect your business assets. Every business will need to invest some money in inventory, equipment, and even real estate in order to grow their organization. If you have commercial insurance in place, you will have financial protection in the event this these assets are damaged. 

Liability Protection

As a business owner, you are taking on a lot of liability whenever you sell a product or a service to a customer. If someone happens to get injured as they are using your product or service, you could be facing major liability even if it is a freak accident. If you do not have liability commercial insurance in place, the amount of money you could lose could be very devastating for your business. Commercial insurance will help to ensure your financial stability remains intact even if you are sued for liability.

When you are looking for insurance coverage for your business in the Lakewood, CO area, you should speak with the insurance professionals at Colling Insurance Services Inc.  The insurance professionals at Colling Insurance Services Inc. are very knowledgeable about the commercial insurance options available to you. They can then help you get into a new policy that will give you the right level of coverage. 

Legal Issues About Worker´s Comp Insurance

Not everyone understands that workers’ compensation insurance is designed to protect both the worker and the employer. The protection for the employee comes from the fact that employers in the state of Colorado are required by law to carry workers’ compensation insurance. The employer must pay for this insurance and cannot deduct the expense from employees.

By having workers’ compensation insurance, employers are protected from lawsuits by employees due to on-the-job injuries. Employers who need help with workers’ compensation insurance should contact an agent at Colling Insurance Services Inc. serving Lakewood, CO.

Legal Responsibilities of Employees

If an employee suffers an on-the-job injury, the worker must promptly report the injury, file a claim with the help of the employer, and follow the rules. When an employee does this properly, the employee is entitled to compensation for medical expenses and may be entitled to lost wages for the time the employee is unable to work. If an employee dies due to an on-the-job accident, the employee’s surviving family members or beneficiaries receive a death benefit.

Legal Responsibilities of Employers

Employers in Colorado must have workers’ compensation insurance if they have a single worker or more.

Additional requirements for employers are:

  • The business must put up a poster called “Notice to Employer of Injury” in a prominent place where all employees are able to see it.
  • The employer must maintain records of all the on-the-job injuries and occupational diseases that happen and the work-time lost because of these.
  • Employers must report injuries that cause lost work-time within ten days of injury’s occurrence by using the “Employer’s First Report of Injury” form. This form is sent to the insurer and then the insurer forwards a copy to the Colorado State Division of Workers’ Compensation.
  • Upon an injured employee’s return to work, employers submit a “Supplemental Report of Accident” form to the insurer and then the insurer forwards a copy to the Colorado State Division of Workers’ Compensation.

The Extra Benefit of Maintaining a Safe Working Environment

Employers with a worker safety program in effect for one year and those that can document their safety record may qualify for a certificate that gives them a 10% reduction on the payments for workers’ compensation insurance.

Get a quote from your agent at Colling Insurance Services Inc. in Lakewood, CO for any workers’ compensation needs.

How to Insure a Second Location as Your Business Expands

Having a successful small business is terrific. Many business owners who find success with a particular business style do well by expanding it. They take a successful style and copy it by establishing a second branch in another location. Work with your agent at Colling Insurance Services Inc. serving Lakewood, CO and the nearby areas, to replicate your business success with a commercial insurance review that incorporates the needs of the original and the new location(s).

If the new location is within the state of Colorado, it is possible to combine coverage in ways that are beneficial to the business owner. If the new location is not within the state of Colorado, your agent can help with recommendations of how to get commercial insurance coverage in another state.

Commercial Insurance Review

In general, having a yearly review of commercial insurance is a good idea. A review is critical before establishing a new location(s). Commercial insurance needs to be put in place prior to starting the business operations to make sure there is no gap in coverage. Even during the period when a business sends staff to get a new location(s) ready for operations, there needs to be commercial insurance already in place.

It is important when considering the impact on the business by a new location to think about business interruption insurance. If a business has two locations or more and there is a business interruption, it can take substantial resources to keep the business from failing. This type of commercial insurance helps the business survive if there is no cash flow coming in to the business.

Compare Increasing Policy Limits with New Policies

Increasing policy limits may be an alternative that may be possible and advantageous when compared to getting a brand new policy for the new location(s). Other considerations include thinking about the use of any commercial vehicles that may be driven by employees from more than one business location.

It is an exciting time when a business wants to open a new location. Contact your agent at Colling Insurance Services Inc. in Lakewood, CO to make sure you have adequate commercial insurance in place for your business expansion.

Protect Your Business with Business Insurance

When running a business in or around Lakewood, CO it is important to do what you can to protect the investment. While you put your best foot forward to help grow the company, there are always unforeseen issues that might spring up at any time. This is where proper business insurance is critical. With the team at Colling Insurance Services Inc. you’ll discover what insurance options are available and what you should do to improve the security of you and your employee’s livelihood. 

Property Business Insurance

There is a host of business insurance options you need to consider. Property business insurance isn’t just if you own the building. It also goes into protecting valuable equipment and resources you use during a production process. So whether you use a meat slicer for sandwiches or plastic injection molding hardware for container manufacturing, this is an important form of insurance protection to consider. 

Business Insurance Add-Ons

Depending on where your building is located you may want to consider flood insurance. Other insurance add-ons can include protecting your windows. A broken window is expensive to repair, so having protection for this is desirable. You may also want to consider an umbrella business insurance. This way, if someone attempts to sue your place of business you will have financial protection in this case. No matter what kind of business you have, having the right insurance coverage is critical for your company’s wellbeing. 

At Colling Insurance Services Inc. it doesn’t matter what kind of business you have. If you’re in need of business insurance the team of insurance agents will sit down with you and go over your options. This way, whether the company is based out of Lakewood, CO or a surrounding community, you’ll discover just how insurance can protect your company. 

Reasons Why You Might Need Commercial Insurance and Not Know It

The experts at Colling Insurance Services Inc. in Lakewood, CO can answer any of your questions about commercial insurance.

If you have a home office, your home insurance is adequate coverage, right? Not necessarily. If you regularly sell at public events, like art fairs, farmer’s markets, or at flea market do you need commercial insurance? Probably. Here are the reasons why having commercial insurance is important.

Innovative Business Models

Entrepreneurial efforts, especially by the age group of millennials are creating a massive expansion in business efforts that are not tied to a specific location. They may work from home-based offices or from shared workspaces.

Just because the work is done in a virtual way, does not necessarily mean that there is no need for commercial insurance.

Let’s take the example of a small manufacturer that sells products on the Internet and display items at the local flea market or farmer’s market to sell them directly to consumers. The order fulfillment for Internet orders is done in the garage of the home of the business owner and one part-time worker is hired to help out. Having a single worker who is not an owner of the company and is paid wages, triggers the need to have worker’s compensation insurance.

The home-based business could also benefit from having product liability insurance and commercial property insurance to cover the equipment and supplies used in the garage for packing and shipping, plus any inventory stored on the property.

Most home insurance policies have exclusions for business uses of the property, so without commercial insurance, if the house burns down and the entire valuable inventory is lost, the insurance would probably cover the home and the personal property, but not cover the cost of the inventory used for commercial purposes. Every policy is different, so check with your insurance agent to understand the specifics.

Any type of commercial operation, even a very small home-based business can benefit from having commercial insurance. Contact the helpful agents at Colling Insurance Services Inc. in Lakewood, CO, to learn more about commercial insurance for your small business.

Does My Small Business Require Commercial Insurance?

“I have a small business, basically I work from home, make just enough to pay the bills and have a little left over. Do I need a commercial insurance policy?”

“I have a property that I own. I have five employees including myself and a small cargo van we use for deliveries. Do I need to purchase commercial insurance to protect my business and my personal wealth?”

In either of the above scenarios if you were to ask one of the talented insurance agents at Colling Insurance Services Inc. the answer will be a resounding “Yes!”

You can never be too careful in protecting your assets and your financial stability.  As a small business owner you are liable for your employees welfare while on the property and when travelling for the purposes of the benefit of the company. With all that liability you would do well to be covered in the event of an unfortunate incident.

Colling Insurance Services Inc. has expertise in the area of commercial insurance and would be able to serve you and your commercial insurance needs. Commercial insurance encompasses different facets.

  • Business auto insurance which would cover your employees and your business vehicles in the event of an accident adequately.
  • Serving the state of Colorado, Colling Insurance Services Inc. will assess your companies need for Colorado Liability Insurance Plans which covers against damages that occur on your property or if medical bills need to be paid. It is that added extra insurance for the extenuating liability that may occur when you own a business and something goes wrong.
  • Property Insurance may also be conducive for your business protection needs. This insurance covers problematic issues that may arise concerning an employee, consumer or client while on your business property.

3 Risks Every Small Business Owner Needs to Know

Do you own a small business? While operating your own company can be immensely fulfilling, it does come with a few extra risks. Here are three risks every small business owner needs to know and ways insurance can help.

Risk #1: Property Damage

Just like with your home and personal auto, property damage can happen at any time. Protect your business against fire, theft, vandalism, and other unfortunate incidents by having appropriate insurance coverage. Most business policies include a layer of coverage for your office or storefront location, while a commercial vehicle policy can help insure company cars against damage.

Risk #2: Injuries to Workers and Customers

Another important risk for small businesses to consider is injury to either worker or customers.  Sometimes accidents happen where a visitor to your location slips, falls, or is otherwise involved in an accident. In certain cases, your employee may even be the one who is hurt.

These injury scenarios actually fall into two categories: worker’s compensation insurance and liability coverage. A worker’s compensation policy is often required by law and takes care of your staff’s medical bills and other associated costs if they are injured while on the job. Liability insurance covers claims where your customer is injured. Both are two key policies to have if you own a small business.

Risk #3: Other Liability Issues

Another risk to look out for when you own a small business is other liability issues. While a liability policy does cover customer injury, it also encompasses many other types of incidents. For some companies, this can be a simple accident where a client’s home is damaged while your crew is working nearby or a situation where someone claims a product you made caused them harm.

The exact extent of liability risk greatly depends on the industry you are in and the tasks your firm is engaged in. Thus, there are a wide range of different liability policies available to help you find the one that meets your needs the best.

So, how do you know which commercial insurance policies cover the risks of your small business? Speak with one of our dedicated team members as Colling Insurance Services, Inc. We will sit down and review the details with you to determine your exact needs.