Governor Newsom signed SB 1159 on September 17, 2020 that created new laws that significantly affect California employers who have employees who test positive for COVID-19.

One of these, Labor Code Section 3212.88 applies to California employers who have 5 or more employees. The law says if a COVID-19 outbreak takes place at a place of employment it is assumed employees who test positive for COIVD-19 contracted it at work.

This law creates new reporting obligations for employers.  Employers are now required to report to their claims administrator via email or fax, when the employer is aware that an employee tested positive for COVID-19.  The report must be made within 3 business days.

Employers are required to report:

-Notice that an employee has tested positive.  Not to include any Personal Identifiable Information (such as SSN, DOB, etc.).

-The date the specimen was collected for the positive test.

-Positive PCR COVID-19 test or other FDA approved viral test. Serologic (antibody) testing is not a viable test.

-All locations where employee worked at your direction during the 14-day period prior to the positive test result.

-The highest number of employees who worked at the employee’s specific work location(s) in the 45-day period preceding the last day that the employee worked there.

-If an employer is aware of an employee who tested positive prior to the effective date of this statute, between July 6, 2020 and September 16, 2020 they have until October 29, 2020 to report those cases to their claims administrator. The employer reporting requirements are the same as above for items 1 through 3, however the data under 4 should indicate the highest number of employees who reported to each specific work location during the period of between July 6, 2020 and September 17, 2020.

Failing to submit this information or providing false or misleading information can result in an employer being assessed with a $10,000 civil penalty and/or a citation.

An outbreak occurs if, within a 14-day calendar period, one of the following happens:

-Employers with 100 employees or less at a specific work location and 4 or more employees test positive at that specific location; or

-Employers with more than 100 employees at a specific work location and at least 4% of employees test positive at that specific location; or

-A specific place of business is closed by local public health department, State Department of Public Health or school superintendent due to risk of infection with COVID-19.

-A “specific work location” means the building, store, facility or agricultural field where the employee worked at your direction.  Many workers may transition between multiple places of employment during their shift. So tracking the locations that they are required to work at is essential.

In addition, the employee must:

-Have worked on or after 7/6/2020; and

-Have worked outside their home or residence at the employer’s direction; or worked to provide home health care services to another individual at their home or residence; and

-Have a positive PCR COVID-19 test or other FDA approved viral test (does not include serologic (antibody) test) within 14 days after performing the labor or services; and

-The positive COVID-19 test must have occurred during a period of outbreak at the employee’s specific place of employment.

Claims administrators are tasked with using the reported information to calculate whether an outbreak has occurred.  So providing timely, detailed reporting is critical.

Additionally, if a claim becomes accepted under this section an employee is required to exhaust any paid sick leave benefits specifically available in response to COVID-19 before temporary disability benefits may be paid.

This information was derived from the State Compensation Insurance Fund Website but applies to all California employers regardless of their insurance company.

For more information or to file a claim, please contact our office at 626-815-1550.

 

Source: https://www.statefundca.com/Home/StaticIndex?id=https://content.statefundca.com//employers/SB1159.asp

 

According to their website, GuideStar gathers, organizes, and distributes information about nonprofits in the United States. They gather data from various public sources and aggregate the data into GuideStar Nonprofit Profiles, one profile for each organization in the database. Each nonprofit is encouraged to update their profile on the website, which is available free of charge. 

 

GuideStar is a powerful tool, last year more than 9 million people visited the website and millions more utilized the data through third party sites. With a virtual footprint so powerful, it is important to harness that power to the advantage of your organization. That is why we took some time to explain how GuideStar can help your organization. 

 

Free Marketing and Exposure to Clients and Donors 

Updating your profile on GuideStar costs nothing. Profiles are automatically created for 501(c)3 organizations who have filed as tax exempt with the IRS. The reach GuideStar has to the public is massive. Their data is used by more than 200 websites and applications including, Facebook, Network for Good, AmazonSmile, and JustGive. Updating your profile on GuideStar will ensure that YOUR message is told and data the public sees is accurate. 

Fundraisers and donations can be accepted on GuideStar directly on your profile as well. This is another fundraising avenue that can be used for either a robust fundraising campaign or used passively. 

In addition to directly raising funds, it is important to note that foundations and donors are using GuideStar data to make their decisions. 

 

Boosts Trustworthiness and Transparency

GuideStar promotes transparency and allows Nonprofits to share information about their organization. They have a “Seal” system with badge levels ranging from Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum. These levels are determined by the level of data that is provided about your organization on GuideStar. The Bronze level shares basic information so that your organization can be found. The highest level, Platinum, shares your progress and results so you can show the difference that your organization is making. 

Once you reach these transparency levels, GuideStar will provide your organization with a seal of transparency badge. This image file can be downloaded from GuideStar, they even offer a widget that can be installed onto your website and linked directly to your GuideStar profile. 

 

If your organization has not yet updated your profile, please visit GuideStar’s Help Center for instructions on how to create and update your account. View your existing profile on guidestar.org using the search function to find your organization.

The outbreak of COVID-19 acute respiratory disease may cause a significant economic impact for Nonprofit & Social Service Organizations. Numerous cities across America have closed popular gathering places including sports facilities, schools, theaters, museums and other venues to limit the spread of the virus. Business closures and lost sales has lead to inquiries regarding business interruption coverage under property insurance policies. We have complied information from our partner insurance carriers to shed light on how Business Interruption/Business Income applies to these inquires.
Coverage Trigger
The trigger for any property insurance policy is physical damage to insured property by an insured peril. Insurance carriers are likely to argue that the introduction of a virus does not constitute direct physical loss or damage to insured property. Many policies may also contain a contamination exclusion which includes virus, disease or illness causing agent in the definition of contaminant. Most policies do not cover a loss resulting from a virus.
Another coverage that has been put into question is Workers Compensation. The answer depends on the facts established during an investigation and the laws. Generally, for such a disease such as Coronavirus to trigger coverage, the illness or disease must be occupational, meaning that it arose out of and was in the course and scope of employment and the illness or disease must arise out of or be caused by conditions peculiar to the work.
It is important to note that every situation is unique. If you feel that your organization has a covered claim, you are encouraged to file a claim report.
We cannot answer questions about what may or may not be covered in hypothetical situations however we are available to consult with you to the best of our abilities at this time.

Charity One Insurance Agency is proud to launch our new insurance program specifically designed for Residential Care Facilities! After over 19 years of providing insurance coverage to Nonprofit & Social Service Organizations, we are proud to have a program focused on Residential Care. 

Our program focuses on providing coverage to the following homes:

– Group Homes for Children

– Senior Housing

– Transitional Living

– Halfway Houses

– Adult Residential Care Facilities

– Homeless Shelters

– Assisted Living

– Shelters

– Recovery Homes 

 

What kind of insurance coverage does a Residential Care Facility Need? 

If your organization is contracted to receive residents from a Government Entity or other Organization, they may impose insurance requirements. Please review your contract to determine the coverage that is required to accept clients. 

At the same time, it is important to keep in mind that insurance requirements mandated by contract may not cover all of your exposures. Please review the following list of minimum requirements we recommend for Residential Care Facilities:

General Liability

Professional Liability

Abuse & Molestation

Directors & Officers

Employment Practices Liability 

Workers Compensation

Hired and Non Owned Auto

Business Personal Property

 

Are Residential Care Facilities Required to Carry Workers Compensation?

Please refer to your Contract Insurance Requirements to determine if Workers Comp is required. California State Law requires employers to carry Workers Compensation upon hiring their first employee. Harsh penalties will be imposed by the state if a Worker is injured and the business did not have a Workers Comp policy to cover their on the job injury. 

 

What type of risk is associated with Residential Care Facility operations?

Resident neglect. Abuse & molestation between residents or staff. Accidents while transporting clients. Theft of property. Slip and fall. General negligence. Liability on the board of directors for decisions that they made while serving. Claims surrounding hiring and firing staff. Harassment and wrongful termination of staff. Liability of volunteers or employees driving their own vehicle on behalf of the business. Injuries to staff or residents while transporting. Fire damage. Theft of money and securities. Speak with an agent to determine the best risk mitigation plan for your residential care facility. 

 

Can I combine all of my residential care facilities into one insurance policy?

Depending on the organizational structure you may be able to combine all homes onto one insurance policy. If the ownership is the same throughout all facilities then combining all homes onto one policy will be simple. If the ownership varies please speak with an agent about your options. 

 

How long does it take to obtain a certificate of insurance? 

The quoting process takes an average of 5 days to obtain options with all of the required information provided. Rush quotes can be obtained if needed. Once the organization has selected a quote option, provided payment and all bind conditions then a certificate of insurance will be released within 24-48 hours. 

If you require Additional Insureds on your policy, please let your agent know as soon as possible as this could affect pricing and turn-around time. Providing the insurance portion of your contract will also help your insurance agent quote the required coverage, issue the certificate correctly and minimize errors. 

 

What information is required to obtain a quote for my residential care facility? 

We can obtain quotes with minimal information obtained during a 15 minute phone call. The insurance company will rate the organization based on a number of factors including:

-Location Address

-Number and Type of Residents

-Number of Employees

-Annual Operating Budget

-Payroll

-Number of Years in Business

-Owner/Operators Experience 

-Claims History

-Building and Property Values/Information

-Vehicles Information

Please be prepared to share details regarding the business operations to properly underwrite and protect your organization. 

 

How do I select the best insurance company for my residential care facility?

The best place to start is to find an Insurance Agent or Brokerage Firm that you can trust. It helps to find a Company that specializes in insuring your operations. The reason this is important is because a specialized Agent will have access to multiple insurance companies that provide products for your type of operation. Each insurance company will have a different “appetite” or business types that they prefer to work with. Each insurance Agent will work with a different group of insurance carriers. It is in the clients best interest to have quote options from multiple insurance carriers to ensure they are receiving the best products, price and service. 

Once you have multiple quotes from various insurance carriers, you can select the lowest quote but be sure to review the terms and conditions, including the following items:

-Insurance Coverages Included

-Limits of Insurance (also check sublimits which can narrow down coverage)

-Deductibles (also known as retention) 

-Coverage Type (Claims Made vs. Occurrence Form) 

-Retro Date/Full Prior Acts (if moving a claims made policy)

-Quote Conditions

-Exclusions

-Definition of a Claim 

-Defense inside/outside of the limit

-Rating Details (locations covered and rating factors used) 

-Risk Management Services/Additional Product Benefits

Reviewing quotes simply based on price may leave you with limited coverage or missing out on access to free or low-cost risk management products that other carriers offer. Speak with a licensed professional to review your options in depth. 

Charity One Insurance Agency specializes in insurance for all types of Residential Care Facilities. Contact our office for a free consultation today!

 

Full coverage is a misleading term. Making the assumption that you have full coverage in any sense can lead to uncovered claims and losses. We always recommend discussing your coverage concerns with a knowledgeable broker or agent to find out what type of coverage gaps exist and develop a plan to close those gaps. 

A Nonprofit Organization contacted our office to inquire about a potential Auto Insurance coverage gap and needed assistance finding a product that would close the gap. This organization employs Social Workers that go into the field to visit clients and occasionally transport clients. The organization does not own any vehicles and carriers Hired and Non Owned Auto Insurance. 

They require their employees to carry their own Auto Insurance HOWEVER if an employee were to get into an accident, the employees personal auto insurance could potentially decline the claim due to the fact that the employee was using their vehicle for business purposes. 

The organization was under the assumption that the Hired and Non Owned auto would extend coverage to repair the employees car if it was damaged. They even obtained Hired Auto Physical Damage in an attempt to close the gap. Unfortunately, Hired Auto Physical Damage is intended to cover vehicles rented by the organization on a temporary basis. If the vehicle you rent is damaged then the rental car company could bill you for the “loss of use” and the repair or replacement costs due to the damage that was caused. Hired Auto Physical Damage will cover those costs. 

IT IS THE EMPLOYEES RESPONSIBILITY TO INSURE THEIR PROPERTY

Ultimately it is the responsibility of the employee to obtain the correct coverage for their lifestyle. The staff member should work with their insurance agent to write a policy that will extend coverage while using their vehicle for their job. Some companies will extend coverage, others will exclude coverage for business use. The team member may have to obtain a Commercial Auto policy if their vehicle is used extensively for visits and client transportation. 

Best practice would be to alert your team of this coverage gap and provide them with the tools to protect themselves. It should be clear that the employee is responsible for their own vehicle repairs if their car is damaged. This can be addressed in a company wide memo or added to your employee manual/employment agreement. 

A running list of solutions and precautions has been developed to address this concern:  

Send a Memo/Advise Staff – clearly explain to the team that they must properly insure themselves.

  1. Set Up a Fund – some organizations have set up an emergency fund to assist employees with vehicle repairs that were not covered by insurance. 
  2. Company Cars – if it is in the organization’s budget to purchase a vehicle, this is a great solution. 
  3. Employees Buy a Commercial Policy – carriers can not decline claim for business use.
  4. Employees ask Personal Lines Carrier to Extend Coverage  – some personal carriers will extend coverage for business use. 
  5. Increase the mileage reimbursement to cover the increased insurance costs – help staff cover the additional cost of insurance by increasing mileage reimbursement. 

Explaining to a team member that the organization does not provide coverage for their car after it is in a wreck can lead to an upset team. Proactive insurance talks are an informative way to show your team that you care.

For more information about how to protect your Nonprofit or Social Service Organization from Non Owned Auto Physical Damage claims, contact our office at 626-815-1550.

Over the years we have seen an increase in employee related claims and disputes. There is only 1 insurance product that will provide the coverage that you need when an employee dispute arises, Employment Practices Liability.

Employment Practices Liability, also known as “EPL”, is a coverage generally purchased with Directors & Officers Liability. It is rated on the organizations annual budget, payroll and number of employees. The organizations type of business and employee turn over are also important rating factors.

This coverage will defend the organization from employee disputes such as Wrongful Termination, Harassment, Discrimination and other common claims. The policy is very dynamic and can have any of the following:

-Claims Made/Retro Date

-Defense Inside or Outside of the Limit

-Duty to Defend

-Deductible Options

Like Workers Compensation, there are attorneys willing to draw-up lawsuits against your business on a contingency basis. This means that your current or former employee can sue your organization without spending a dime and the attorney will make a percentage of the settlement earned from the insurance company. Without this coverage the organization will be subject to defend themselves out of their own pocket or be forced to draw from the organizations operating budget!

Obtaining a quote is simple, just call our office and we will work with you to obtain quote options. If you currently have coverage in force, we have multiple markets and can provide you with quotes to compare. Don’t go another day without this coverage in place because in today’s litigious society, the question isn’t if you will get a claim, the question is when

Workers Compensation can be a confusing policy to purchase. Completing a Workers Compensation Audit can be frustrating. Don’t allow this policy to be a source of annoyance, allow our office to analyze your insurance policy for discrepancies to avoid problems during your next Audit. The following is a snap shot of items to be mindful of when writing your policy:
-Incorrect payroll projections can be detrimental. The best advice that can be given is to take the time to report accurate figures and class codes at the inception of the policy. If mid-term hiring or staff reductions create a significant impact in your reported payroll then please contact our office to update your insurance immediately. Insurance carriers will allow you to make adjustments at any time. Adjust your monthly payment based on updated figures or put away funds so you can start budgeting for the additional premium you may be responsible for once the audit is conducted at the end of the policy term.
-You must make sure each employee is classified correctly. If not, you could be paying more than you should be. Or in another worse instance, you may be paying less and when your Workers Comp Audit comes around at the end of the policy term, you will find yourself getting hit with a costly bill you were not expecting due to misclassification. Contact our office to review staff job duties and ensure everyone is classified correctly. Class codes can not be added at the time of Audit or afterwards, so please address this matter prior to binding or as soon as possible.
-Use Independent Contractors with Caution. Most insurance carriers will add payroll for uninsured independent contractors to your policy at Audit. Merely agreeing with someone on an independent contractor status does not make it so. In addition to having a contract in place, the contractor should carry their own Workers Compensation policy. In absence of a policy, there are other factors that the insurance company will use to determine if an employee is truly Independent. Please contact our office before your Audit to ensure your policy is rated correctly.
-Be Aware of the Exclusion Requirements for your Organization. Each corporate structure has their own set of exclusion requirements. Contact our office to see if your company’s Owners and Officers are eligible for exclusion. Only owners that are excluded on a Named Exclusion Endorsement are excluded on the policy. In absence of an endorsement, the insurance company will charge premium for paid owners and officers.
-Owners & Officers are Subject to Minimum/Maximum Payrolls. Compensated Owners, Board Members and Officers are subject to a Minimum and/or Maximum payroll rating. If a compensated Officer has a payroll of only $1,000, they are subject to being rated at a current minimum of $52,000. If a compensated Officer receives $150,000 payroll then they are subject to being rated at the current maximum of $133,900. Please consider this when reporting payroll. Contact our office if you have any compensated Owners & Officers to determine if your payrolls are reported correctly.
Don’t let audit season get you down! Reporting and estimating accurately will save you the headache of additional premium bills. As always, we invite you to contact our office for a policy review at any time!

A common property insurance mis-conception is that you as a policy holder can determine the limit in which you WANT to insure your building or contents. Many people look around their office and say, “if the place burned down, I’d only want to cover the computers and electronics… those would be roughly $5,000… let’s put $5,000 as my property limit to keep the cost down.”. That is not the way that property insurance works in most cases.

Insurance companies require for you to insure up to a percentage of the value of all of the property and contents. The most common co-insurances are between 80%-100%. The lower the co-insurance the better, you will have a higher margin of error and incur a lower penalty if you undervalue your property.

For example, a building with a value of $100,000 and a policy with a coinsurance of 80% must be insured for $80,000. If the insured amount is found to be under the coinsurance percentage at the time of a loss, then a penalty is applied which will reduce the amount of the claim payment. This situation could be detrimental when it comes to replacing or repairing your property.

Calculating the Penalty

The penalty percentage is calculated by the amount that the building was underinsured. Let’s review an example with the following values:

Building Replacement Cost Value: $100,000

Building Insured Value: $60,000

Value of Property Damage Claim: $20,000

Policy Co-Insurance: 80%

For this example, if an organization owns a building $100,000 building, the least they could insure it for is $80,000. However in this example the building was insured for $60,000. Then a property claim occurred which resulted in $20,000 of damage.

To calculate the penalty factor the insurance company will divide the limit on the policy ($60,000) by the limit the building should have been valued at ($80,000). For this example the difference is 75%.  This amount is then multiplied by the amount of the loss as follows:

$20,000 x .75 = $15,000

The policy holder will receive $15,000 (less the deductible) for the $20,000 claim. These numbers become more alarming as the margins increase.

Coinsurance will never overpay on a claim. It will only reduce the payment or have no impact at all. Ask your insurance broker what your co-insurance is and how to reduce or eliminate it. Charity One Insurance Agency has insurance consultants standing by to answer your nonprofit insurance and social service insurance concerns. Call us at 626-815-1550.

 

There is an overwhelming about of insurance coverages available on the market. Navigating your way through insurance terms and jargon is not a great way for a new nonprofit direct to spend their time. That’s why we have put together this list of core coverages for a start-up social service organization to consider.

General Liability Insurance

Why – If your organization is operating anywhere other than your home, then the venues that you secure to host your event, raise funds or operate out of will want to make sure that their assets are protected. Aside from venues, many funders and government agencies will require that your organization have an insurance policy that will not only insurance you, but their interests as well. The number one coverage that is required is General Liability. The most common lawsuits covered by General Liability are slips and falls. Other claims that are addressed by General Liability are personal and product injuries as well as damage to premises that are rented to you.

PRO-TIP! – If you are aware of any venues, funders, landlords or entities that require a certificate of insurance and to be named as Additional Insured, make sure that you request to add their names to your insurance policy up-front to avoid a mid-term additional premium. Always ask if the company they are quoting with charges for special events and additional insureds.

Directors & Officers Liability

Why – Most Nonprofit & Social Service Organizations are run by a board of directors. The board of directors purpose is to help your organization operate to its greatest potential. The board will help your organization raise funds and make great decisions. However, there is a risk of being on a board of directors, they can be personally named in a lawsuit, putting their personal assets as risk. Many movers and shakers are aware of this risk and will only join boards that have Directors & Officers Liability. Protect your board by placing this coverage as soon as possible.

PRO-TIP! – Directors & Officers Liability often has Employment Practices Liability built into it. Employment Practices Liability is valuable for organizations that have employees. Unlike Workers Comp, it does not cover inquires to employees, it covers the organization for employee related lawsuits such as discrimination, wrongful termination and harassment. If your organization does not have employees, then ask your broker to explore options for D&O only, without employment practices to save a few bucks. Keep in mind however, sometimes; this coverage is extended to volunteer related claims and this coverage may still be relevant to your organization.

Workers Compensation

Why – It is the law to provide employees with coverage for workplace injuries. Make sure you have coverage in place as soon as they are hired

PRO-TIP! – Workers Compensation is rated off payroll and audited by the insurance company on an annual basis. Consult with your broker on the many ways to avoid paying additional premium at the end of the year!

This was a small list of the MOST important insurance coverages to have for a new organization. Keep in mind that General Liability does not cover EVERYTHING.  Ignorance is not bliss when a claim occurs and you come to find out that your property, professional exposures, abuse and molestation, earthquake, money, and securities were not covered. Consult with an insurance professional to find out the most important coverages to protect your mission.

Selecting an insurance broker can be time consuming and draining, that’s why we’ve compiled this list of tips and tricks to make finding an insurance agent easy and rewarding! Here are the top 4 tips on how to find the best broker for your organization!

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