Protecting Your Business During Civil Unrest & Riots

Civil unrest can create unique challenges for Michigan businesses. Specifically, business owners face the risk of vandalism, stolen or damaged goods and extensive property damage. With this in mind, it’s crucial to take steps to mitigate the risk of potential damages to your business during periods of civil unrest.
Review the following guidance to help keep your business protected in these situations.

Stay Informed
First and foremost, make sure you stay informed via local Detroit or Grand Rapids authorities, news outlets and social media on potential events or issues that could lead to civil unrest within your community. This practice will allow you to be more aware of when civil unrest is most likely to occur and take a proactive approach to protecting your business.
Assess Property Vulnerabilities
Next, it’s important to assess your business property for potential vulnerabilities. In doing so, you will be able to better determine where to focus your mitigation efforts.
Be sure to conduct a thorough inspection of both your own property and the surrounding area—including neighboring businesses, parking lots, alleys and streets—for specific risk management issues (e.g., gaps in security measures, potential traffic or crowding concerns, the type of property at risk and concerns for employee and customer safety).
Protect Your Property
After assessing potential vulnerabilities, make sure you implement adequate security measures to help keep your business fully protected. Potential security practices to consider include:
• Utilizing security cameras
• Implementing an intruder alarm system
• Boarding up property windows and doors
• Ensuring proper locks on all windows and doors
• Installing motion-sensing external lighting and glass break sensors
• Hiring security guards
Remove Valuables
Try to remove as much cash, merchandise and high-value supplies or equipment from your property as possible. In particular, if your business utilizes a fleet of vehicles, consider moving them to a temporary, secure storage location. This way, you will be able to proactively minimize your losses in the event that your business is targeted.
Further, consider utilizing signage to communicate that money and high-value items have been removed from the premises to help deter potential thieves.
Alter Business Hours
If you suspect that that civil unrest could take place near your property, consider temporarily altering your business hours (e.g., opening or closing earlier than normal) to avoid putting your employees and customers in a dangerous situation. However, make sure you properly communicate these changes with your staff and customers to prevent any confusion. In some cases, it may make sense to temporarily close your business.
Avoid Unnecessary Conflict
In the event that civil unrest takes place while your business doors are open, it’s crucial to educate your staff on how to respond appropriately and avoid unnecessary conflict. Establish an evacuation plan that allows for employees and customers to safely leave the area during a dangerous situation. Designate specific staff to be responsible for securing the property (e.g., locking doors and boarding up windows) before evacuating.
If a potentially dangerous individual confronts any of your employees before an evacuation can occur, encourage them to react calmly and avoid using violence or responding aggressively. Designate specific staff to be responsible for contacting the local authorities or emergency services, if necessary. If the individual attempts to loot or rob your business, allow them to do so—no items are worth the risk of an employee injury or fatality.
Consult Local Authorities
Be sure to express any concerns you have regarding civil unrest in your community with local authorities—including the police department, fire department and government officials—and utilize any resources or guidance that they provide. Consider requesting additional police presence or temporary street closures near your business if you are particularly concerned about the threat of civil unrest.
Secure Proper Insurance
Apart from these loss control methods, you can ensure ultimate protection during periods of civil unrest by securing proper commercial insurance coverage. For additional risk management guidance and insurance solutions, contact PKIG today.

Commercial Insurance Options To Consider

Your business is the culmination of hard work, determination, and the investment of time and money. It represents so much more than a way to earn a living. It is a reflection of yourself. With so much poured into your company, it is important to do what you can to protect it. One of the best ways to do this is with a form of commercial insurance. However, there are all kinds of commercial insurance options and add-ons. With so many options to choose from you’ll need some help selecting the right insurance for your commercial business. At Phil Klein Insurance Group, if your business is located near West Bloomfield, MI the staff here is ready to help you find the right insurance coverage for your company. 

Property Insurance

Even if you don’t own the facility your business is in you should consider property insurance. This will protect the equipment that is found within the building. This way, if there is a fire or other kind of damage, your equipment will be protected. 

Worker’s Compensation

This is a valuable form of insurance to take out if you have employees who are a potential risk of injury. Paying for their medical bills out of pocket is especially expensive. Worker’s compensation will help cover this. 

Protect Your Business With Commercial Insurance

It doesn’t matter if your business is run out of a garage or a hundred thousand square foot warehouse. With so many different variables at play, you need to do what you can to protect it. That is why there are all kinds of commercial insurance options to choose from. So, if your business is based out of West Bloomfield, MI and you’re in search of commercial insurance coverage, our staff here at Phil Klein Insurance Group is ready and waiting to help. Give us a call today. 

COVID-19 Paycheck Protection Program: What You Need To Know Now

Through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), the U.S. Treasury Department has established a $349 billion fund that is available to help small businesses and the millions of small business employees across Michigan and the United States. The goal is to keep as many people employed during the pandemic shutdowns as possible. The program provides forgivable loans of up to $10 million, through approved lenders, to companies with less than 500 employees.

Take Advantage Today

Any small business that affirms that “current economic uncertainty” makes the aid necessary to support their “ongoing operations” is eligible.
Aid will be given on a first-come, first-serve basis until the fund is exhausted – the application window opened on April 3rd and loans are already being disbursed, but there’s still time! It’s also possible the fund will be supplemented by further government action.
The loans are forgivable and will allow small business owners to pay for up to eight (8) weeks of payroll costs if they use the money to retain workers or hire back positions they had to cut. Other expenses like your mortgage interest, rent, and utilities are also eligible for forgiveness. Some restrictions apply so make sure to check out the resources below and confirm the terms of forgiveness with your lender. Many of the usual requirements for these loans have been cut to streamline the process. There is still quite a bit of paperwork but we think it’s more than worth it for this unique offer.

How to Get Started

You have to apply through a bank or other lender, so contact yours today and mention the Paycheck Protection Program or do an online search for their application.
If your current bank is not an eligible lender, contact a nearby eligible bank using this search tool. More key information on who can and how to apply can be found here.
Gather your documents—each lender will have their own application, but you should begin collecting records of payroll, rent, and utilities.

Here is a short video our own Christina Welch with more information.


When is commercial insurance needed in Michigan?

If you are in the West Bloomfield MI area and are looking for a new career path, starting your own business could be a great option. When you have a business here, you can benefit a lot from a good local economy and a growing population. If you do want to start a company here, you need to carefully consider all of your commercial insurance needs. There are several situations when you may need commercial insurance in this area. 

When Staff is Hired

One situation when you are going to need to have commercial insurance is when you have employees working for you. Those that have employees on their payroll are required by the state to have workers compensation insurance, which ensures someone is covered if they are hurt while working. Those that have employees and do not provide this insurance could face serious penalization. 

Lenders and Stakeholders

Many businesses need to get commercial insurance because of requirements set forth by their lenders and other stakeholders. Having commercial insurance can help to ensure a company remains solvent during some challenging times. Due to this, a lender will require that a business carry this insurance as it will help to protect their investment. Most lenders will also escrow for annual payments. 

Those that have a business in the West Bloomfield MI area need to take their commercial insurance needs seriously. When you are looking for this form of insurance, it would be beneficial to reach out to the Phil Klein Insurance Group. The insurance team at the Phil Klein Insurance Group knows very well how important it is for a business owner to get a commercial insurance policy. They can review your situation and risks and help you to get into an appropriate insurance policy. 

PKIG Winter Driving Tips

Severe weather can be both frightening and dangerous for travelers. Winter storms, bad weather and sloppy road conditions are a factor in nearly half a million crashes and more than 2,000 road deaths every winter, according to research by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.  Drivers should know the safety rules for dealing with winter road emergencies.  PKIG urges drivers to be cautious while driving in adverse weather.

PKIG & AAA recommends the following tips while driving in snowy and icy conditions:

Cold Weather Driving Tips
•Keep a bundle of cold-weather gear in your car, such as extra food and water, warm clothing, a flashlight, a glass scraper, blankets, medications, and more.  Stop in to our office for a scraper or car emergency tool.
•Make certain your tires are properly inflated and have plenty of tread.
•Keep at least half a tank of fuel in your vehicle at all times.
•Never warm up a vehicle in an enclosed area, such as a garage.
•Do not use cruise control when driving on any slippery surface, such as on ice and snow.
Tips for Driving in the Snow
•Stay home if you can and only go out if necessary.  Even if you can drive well in bad weather, it’s better to avoid taking unnecessary risks by venturing out.
•Drive slowly.  Always adjust your speed down to account for lower traction when driving on snow or ice.
•Accelerate and decelerate slowly.  Apply the gas slowly to regain traction and avoid skids. Don’t try to get moving in a hurry and take time to slow down for a stoplight.  Remember: It takes longer to slow down on icy roads.
•Increase your following distance to five to six seconds.  This increased margin of safety will provide the longer distance needed if you have to stop.
•Know your brakes.  Whether you have anti-lock brakes or not, keep the heel of your foot on the floor and use the ball of your foot to apply firm, steady pressure on the brake pedal.
•Don’t stop if you can avoid it.  There’s a big difference in the amount of inertia it takes to start moving from a full stop versus how much it takes to get moving while still rolling.  If you can slow down enough to keep rolling until a traffic light changes, do it.
•Don’t power up hills.  Applying extra gas on snow-covered roads will just make your wheels spin.  Try to get a little inertia going before you reach the hill and let that inertia carry you to the top.  As you reach the crest of the hill, reduce your speed and proceed downhill slowly.
•Don’t stop going up a hill.  There’s nothing worse than trying to get moving up a hill on an icy road. Get some inertia going on a flat roadway before you take on the hill.
Tips for Long-Distance Winter Trips
•Be Prepared: Have your vehicle checked by a AAA Approved Auto Repair facility before hitting the road.
•Check the Weather: Check the weather along your route and when possible, delay your trip if bad weather is expected.
•Stay Connected: Before hitting the road, notify others and let them know your route, destination and estimated time of arrival.
If you get stuck in the snow:
•Stay with your vehicle: Your vehicle provides temporary shelter and makes it easier for rescuers to locate you.  Do not try to walk in a severe storm. It is easy to lose sight of your vehicle in blowing snow and become lost.
•Don’t over exert yourself: When digging out your vehicle, listen to your body and stop if you become tired.
•Be Visible: Tie a brightly colored cloth to the antenna of your vehicle or place a cloth at the top of a rolled up window to signal distress. At night, keep the dome light on if possible.  It only uses a small amount of electricity and will make it easier for rescuers to find you.
•Clear the Exhaust Pipe: Make sure the exhaust pipe is not clogged with snow, ice or mud.  A blocked exhaust pipe can cause deadly carbon monoxide gas to leak into the passenger compartment of the vehicle while the engine is running.
•Stay Warm: Use whatever is available to insulate your body from the cold.  This could include floor mats, newspapers or paper maps. Pre-pack blankets and heavy clothing to use in case of an emergency.
•Conserve Fuel: If possible, only run the engine and heater long enough to remove the chill.  This will help to conserve fuel.

Michigan Auto Insurance Reform Update

Some Michigan auto insurance reform changes have already gone into effect.  Others start in July 2020.  With so many drivers unaware of the impact of the new law on their current car insurance policy, now is the time to review coverage.  To help identify potential coverage gaps, please consider these questions:

• Are there drivers listed on your policy that do not reside with the named insured?
• Are there residents in the home that are not family members?
• Are there resident family members of driving age that are not listed on your policy?
• Is any vehicle on the policy owned by someone other than the named insured(s), spouse or resident family member?
• Does any driver not listed on the policy have regular use of one of the vehicles?
• Are any vehicles used for business purposes such as Uber or Lyft?

If the answer to any of these questions is “yes,” your existing policy may have a gap in coverage and needs to be reviewed immediately.  Please call us at 248-682-7445 to begin your policy review today.

Why Commercial Insurance Is Necessary For Your Business

When a West Bloomfield, MI business is looking to become established, they will need to meet with Phil Klein Insurance Group to learn more about the necessity of commercial insurance. There are few investments that are more important when a new company is being started.

That’s why the top businesses in the region will always take the time to obtain commercial insurance. For starters, the establishment must ensure that they are protected from all of the usual losses that take place in these instances.

Whether the business experiences theft, employee injury or property damage, the commercial insurance policy offers the proper coverage. When a business has already obtained the correct insurance policy, they are able to receive the compensation that they need to move on from the losses that they sustain.

Without commercial insurance coverage, the company is taking a major risk. When theft, employee injury or property damage takes place, the company is placing themselves in serious jeopardy. In many instances, the business will no longer be operational. All it takes is one lawsuit to put a business out of commission for good.

When it comes to commercial insurance, there are three types for a client to consider: workers’ compensation, property insurance and liability coverage. All three forms of coverage are needed if the company is going to survive over the long haul. There are also additional forms of coverage that are more specialized in nature and an experienced agent will be glad to explain each of them to a West Bloomfield, MI client.

That’s what makes the assistance of skilled insurance agents so important. A client that is looking to learn more about the options that they have available to them from a commercial insurance standpoint will definitely want to take the time to visit the Phil Klein Insurance Group website as soon as possible. 

Michigan’s Overhauled No-Fault Insurance Laws Take Effect July 1, 2020

On May 30, 2019, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed into law a bill that will bring sweeping changes to the state’s no-fault auto insurance laws. The primary goal of the new legislation is to reduce auto insurance premiums, as Michigan has some of the highest auto insurance rates in the nation.

Though the new legislation provides numerous changes to the auto insurance industry in Michigan, the following are the key takeaways:

•Drivers will no longer be required to purchase unlimited no-fault personal injury protection (PIP) benefits, which guarantee lifetime medical benefits for catastrophic crash injuries. After July 1, 2020, and through July 1, 2028, drivers may select their own no-fault PIP coverage. Under the new law, drivers may choose between $50,000 coverage (if enrolled in Medicaid or Medicare), $250,000 coverage, $500,000 coverage or unlimited PIP coverage.

•Once the new legislation takes effect, drivers could enjoy an auto insurance premium cost reduction depending on which PIP coverage they select. Note that all savings are limited only to the no-fault portion of a driver’s auto insurance bill (typically around 40% of the total premium), not the entire bill. Furthermore, the legislation does not address what the insurance providers may charge on other portions of insurance bills.

•A no-fault fee schedule was established to regulate the rates charged by medical care providers (e.g., doctors and hospitals) regarding medical care associated with auto accidents. Note that the fee schedule will not apply for the entirety of the first year the law is in effect.

•Drivers who choose any PIP coverage lower than unlimited will pay reduced fees to the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association (MCCA), an entity that bears responsibility to pay catastrophic injury benefits.

•Insurance providers will be prohibited from considering “non-driving factors” when determining insurance rates. Those factors typically include sex, marital status, educational level and occupation. However, providers can still set rates based on “territories” of the state. For example, providers could set higher rates for those who live in a region in which there are heightened instances of accidents or car thefts.

We will continue to provide information as it becomes available.

Please contact us at (248) 682-7445 or info@philkleininsurance.com for more information.

Michigan Auto Insurance Reform (PIP) Part 1

You’ve probably heard that the Michigan legislature recently passed significant changes to our no-fault auto insurance laws. You may have questions as to what the changes mean for you and your family’s insurance plan.  We have answers and will continue to publish updates over time.

Most of the changes do not take effect until July of 2020 but the first change is effective now.  The reforms revolve around the Personal Injury Protection (PIP) portion of the no-fault policy.  In Michigan, PIP basically means medical payments required as a result of car accidents.  The coverage is expansive though and can cover things such as renovations to a primary residence to make them accessible to the disabled, physical therapy, transportation to medical appointments, etc.

The first amendment clarifies the definition of the insured for PIP coverage to:
•the named insured(s)
•the named insured(s) spouse
•resident relatives (must be both a blood/legal relative and a permanent resident at the primary address)

Common situations that this will directly impact would be a boyfriend/girlfriend, fiance, children that no longer reside in the household of the insured parents, etc.  Those individuals, if uninsured, would be limited to $250,000 medical coverage through an entity called the Michigan Assigned Claims Plan.  Regular coverage has no dollar limit.

If you think you might be affected by these changes (whether you are insured by PKIG or not) please give us a call and we’ll walk you through what you need to know.  If you have any other questions, please call for clarification.  Stay tuned to this space and our social media for further updates and crucial information.

(248) 682-7445

info@philkleininsurance.com