Archive for December, 2013

The New Year

Posted on: December 30th, 2013 by Herlihy Insurance Group No Comments

The Herlihy Insurance Group wishes you and your family a very Happy and Healthy New Year.

We would like to thank all of our clients and company partners for a successful 2013 and look forward to working with all of you in 2014.

And we have one more thought for you to close out the year and this one is courtesy of Jay Herlihy.

As you slide done the banister of life this New Year, may all the splinters be pointing downward.

Happy New Year!

Referral Rewards Winners

Posted on: December 27th, 2013 by Herlihy Insurance Group No Comments

Our Referral Rewards program continues to roll along, thank you to everyone who is participating. Monthly, Quarterly & Year End winners, one referral and you are entered in all three drawings. Call us, or email your referrals to referrals@herlihygroup.com.

Our most recent winners include:
$50 Gift Card / Monthly

  • George Goulas (Oxford)
  • Kathleen Duffy (Canton)
  • Rebecca Dellomo (Worcester)

Not too late to participate, one referral gets you entered in three end of the year drawings. Contact us today, referrals@herlihygroup.com

Merry Christmas to All!

Posted on: December 23rd, 2013 by Herlihy Insurance Group No Comments

We at the Herlihy Insurance Group wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

May the Peace, Hope and Joy of this holiday season be with you and your loved one through out the rest of this year and 2014!

Get Selfish with Disability Insurance

Posted on: December 20th, 2013 by Herlihy Insurance Group No Comments

While most people do a good job insuring their homes, cars and personal property (often because insurance is required by the bank/lender), the same cannot be said for disability insurance. In fact many people neglect to even consider disability insurance. When we ask the question “Do you have disability insurance?”, we get one of two responses. The first response is a blank look and the person will ask to repeat the question as if they didn’t hear what we’re asking, the second response is “Yes I have disability, Of course”, when we ask what the monthly benefit is, again back to the blank look. With most people we work with disability insurance is misunderstood and severely lacking. The greatest asset you have is your ability to earn an income. Without the ability to earn an income you are dependent on someone else to take care of you, your family and any financial obligations you have. Let’s face it, if you don’t buy life insurance and you leave your family to fend for themselves, at a minimum you are not around to share in the difficult decisions. If you don’t have disability insurance and are disabled, you’re still here every day to participate in difficult decisions on how your family will go forward with the loss of income. For selfish reasons alone, and a family’s own well being, disability insurance should be part of everyone’s family plan.

Mis-Information and Other Concerns

Disability insurance through your employer may not be what you think it is. Many employers have dropped offering long-term disability, less than 40% of employers will offer. If disability insurance is provided as an employee benefit, the amount paid will be taxed and you will receive far less than the monthly benefit. Know your benefits through work. Social Security is not the sole disability benefit you should rely upon. Social Security declines more than 50% of applications submitted. If you are eligible, you will have at least a six month waiting period and average social security benefit is around $1,100 per month. Not a lot. Injuries at work may fall under Workers Compensation coverage through your employer. Workers Compensation benefits are determined by the state you live in and benefits are capped based on individual state laws. The benefits paid are often not adequate to replace the lost income. Get Selfish and get the disability insurance that’s right for you. For more information and answers to your individual questions, contact us today.

Life Insurance, It’s Not for You!

Posted on: December 16th, 2013 by Herlihy Insurance Group No Comments

It was just about ten years ago the invitation came to our office from an insurance company we work with, a fundraiser for “Joe” a valued employee who had passed away suddenly at the age of forty-five. The invitation detailed the family left behind; wife of 20 years, three children between the ages of six and sixteen, and reflected on a man who loved sailing and golf trips with his friends. What floored me came next, the details on the outstanding job “Joe” had done at the company as Senior Vice-President in their Life Department. For whatever reason, “Joe” went to work every day in the life insurance business, but did not recognize or value the importance life insurance could play in the security of his own family.

It’s difficult to talk with anyone today that isn’t so busy they have time for little else. In our hectic lives, we often overlook or ignore some pretty basic but very important questions we should be asking and answering; What happens to my family if I or my spouse pass away? Who am I leaving behind?

Where will the money come from to take care of my family? “Joe” elected to not plan ahead and left his family in a very difficult situation, with many questions unanswered and a future of great uncertainty. Before your next sailing trip or golf outing ask and answer the following;

  • What Life Insurance Do I Have? When does my policy expire?
  • How Much Life Insurance Do I Need?
    Many advisors will recommend an amount at least 10 times your annual salary. The amount of insurance you elect is unique to you and will depend on your family, financial obligations and your wishes for what you would like to happen.
  • Is My Life Insurance Through My Employer? What Amount?
    Life insurance through an employer can be a great benefit but should be viewed as secondary. Drawbacks to employer provided life insurance can include;

    1. If you change jobs voluntarily or not voluntarily, you may lose your life insurance.
    2. An employer may decide to drop the benefit leaving you back at ground zero.

We recommend a review of your life insurance needs at least every five years. For questions and additional information, contact Mark Herlihy at mherlihy@herlihygroup.com or direct dial 508-471-9660.

Four Estate Planning Documents and Our Client Stories

Posted on: December 13th, 2013 by Herlihy Insurance Group No Comments

When you have been in business as long as we have, people share all types of life stories with us. We have been witnesses to great personal and business successes and witnesses to unfortunate personal challenges and business meltdowns. One of the benefits of working in our agency is that you are able to learn some valuable life lessons through the experiences of others. We have seen first and second hand, what “works” and what “doesn’t work”. In many situations the factors that influence a success, challenge or failure are unforeseen. We have learned that you can not control the “unforeseen” but you can prepare for the unexpected by having a number of documents in order.

1. Your Will

If you do not have one, just get it done. If you did your will more than five years ago, pull it back out and review it.

Our Client Story: No Will – Dad passes away at age of 25 with two young children and the through the probate court with no will, the mom owns 50% and the kids each own 25% of the Dad’s estate.

2. Durable Power Of Attorney

If you are unable to represent yourself in financial or legal matters, this document allows you to name the individual who will act on your behalf.

Our Client Story: No durable power of Attorney and car accident. Our client’s wife has no access to investment accounts when funds are needed for medical expenses.

3. Health Care Proxy/ Living Will

This document lets your loved ones know now, who will be responsible for your health care decisions when you are unable to do so and outlines your wishes regarding life sustaining medical treatments if you are terminally ill.

Our Client Story: Family members vehemently disagree on treatment options and what the ill person “would have wanted”.

4. Revocable and Irrevocable Trusts

Depending on the value of your assets you may want to consider a trust. One important Massachusetts fact to consider is that any estate valued over $1,000,000 will be subject to estate taxes. Consider the value of your home, your life insurance, your 401k and any other assets when you consider your estate value.

Our Client Story: Family home has to sell at fraction of value to pay estate tax bill. Now technically none of this is “insurance” related. We hope that our reminders about these important documents and our client stories will ensure that you consider getting your documents in order.

Not Nice Driving

Posted on: December 9th, 2013 by Personal Insurance No Comments

Looks like our real winter driving season has started. The sixty car pile up on Route 290 last weekend and the four car pile up I witnessed this morning on my way to work reminded me about what an inconvenience it would be if I was in either of those events.

Not having my car for a week while it was repaired would be a major inconvenience and expensive! I would definitely have to rent a car to get to places and from past experiences it takes time for the auto repair places to fix things.

The last time I needed an auto body repair, I learned that they can not do body work in a day! Parts have to be found. Paint needs to dry. Other cars may be in line before me! All of these real life factors mean that I may not have my car for a while.

Now on my policy I do not have rental coverage. I decided that if I get in an accident, I know that I will have to pay for the rental myself. Even if the accident is not my fault, I may end of paying for this rental. I also know that the cost of an average rental is about $28 per day.

The question for you today is what have you done about rental? Basically there are two options. You either add and pay for the rental coverage option or you decline this option.

The most important thing is that you know which option you have chosen!

So as the Not Nice Driving Season has started, check out your rental coverage option.

If you think you would need to rent a car in the event of an accident and you want your policy to pay for this, please add the coverage to your car insurance! (Approx. cost $50)

Safe Driving!

Snow Removal & Your Liability

Posted on: December 6th, 2013 by Commercial Insurance No Comments

Although the white stuff hasn’t arrived in bunches to date, it won’t be long until our New England winter shows its true colors. If you are a contractor who plows or a property owner who hires contractors for snow removal, you have liability issues. If someone gets injured from a slip or fall during the winter, chances are good they’ll be looking for compensation. Whether you or your contractor plowed properly doesn’t really matter.

Actual Claim

One of our contractor clients recently received suit papers from one of their customers. Two years ago a delivery driver slipped on a patch of snow in his customer’s parking lot. The delivery driver sued the owner of the store. Since our contractor had signed a contract with the store owner, our contractor was responsible for defending and paying any damages.

WHAT TO DO?

Property Owners

Make sure the contractor doing the snow removal or sanding has Automobile, Liability and Workers Compensation insurance. The liability policy MUST include coverage for snow removal and snow removal should be stated on any certificate of insurance. MANY companies exclude this from contractor’s liability policies. The automobile and liability policies should name you (building owner) as Additional Insured. A contract with a hold harmless agreement and/or indemnity wording is also recommended.

Contractors

Your auto policy only provides coverage while you are at the job site plowing. After you leave, your liability policy would have to respond. Make sure your liability policy INCLUDES snow removal. Many insurance companies exclude snow removal coverage but may be willing to add it for an additional charge. In some cases, a separate policy may be necessary. Don’t assume you have coverage just because you have a liability policy.

You have Questions? Call Us, We have the Answers.

Long Term Care Insurance – Get Educated

Posted on: December 2nd, 2013 by Herlihy Insurance Group No Comments

Get Educated

Within the past year, I have witnessed the financial and emotional stress of a family, and an extended family, helping a relative when he became severely sick. Although a Long Term Care Insurance Policy can’t solve every problem, a properly setup LTC Policy can solve this unexpected expense. Furthermore, a LTC Policy can protect your financial plan for both you and your spouse. Here are five common questions regarding Long Term Care Insurance:

  1. Will my Health Insurance pay for these services?

    Heath Insurance pays for your doctor and hospital bills when you get sick or injured. When you have a chronic illness, disability or a cognitive impairment, Long Term Care Insurance can provide you money if you need assistance with Bathing, Dressing, Toileting, Continence, Transferring or Feeding yourself. If you don’t have a LTC Policy, you will have to use your own money to pay for these services.

  2. Does Long Term Care Insurance only pay for services in Nursing Home?

    NO, this is a big misunderstanding about LTC insurance. LTC insurance can pay for a home health aid or a visiting nurse to help you within your home as well as to pay for a nursing home. Current statistics show that 40% of all long term care insurance policy benefits are used for home care.

  3. Are all Long Term Care Policies the same?

    There is NOT one standard LTC insurance policy adopted by all insurance companies. In evaluating a LTC insurance policy, a person should review the Daily Benefit, the Maximum Policy Benefit, the Elimination Period, the Inflation Protection Rider, Waiver of Premium, the Annual Premium and the qualifications for you to start receiving the benefits. These are just a few key items to review when comparing one policy against another policy.

  4. Should I wait to buy an LTC Policy until I am older?

    The best time to apply for a LTC policy is when you are healthy. To qualify for a LTC policy, you need to submit an application and go through the underwriting process. Once the insurance company has reviewed your application and your medical history, the insurance company will decide whether to offer you a LTC Policy or not. Since the LTC’s policy language has changed over the past several years, now is the best time to purchase a policy that will be most beneficial to you.

  5. What is the cost of a Long Term Care Insurance Policy?

    Unfortunately I can’t provide an exact cost because there are many factors that generate a policy’s annual premium. Similar to Life Insurance, the younger you purchase a LTC Policy the less expensive it will be for you. A few drawbacks in waiting to purchase a LTC Policy are a decline in your health, your inability to qualify for a LTC policy and a more expensive policy. We recommend everyone talk with an LTC specialist for the exact cost and the best LTC policy for you. Once you have all of your specific information, you can make an educated decision that is best for you.

The objective of this article is to encourage everyone to become fully educated about Long Term Care Insurance and the Herlihy Insurance Group is here to help you. If you are interested in attending an upcoming seminar or would like additional information, please contact Mark Herlihy, CIC at (508) 471-9660 or Email: Mherlihy@HerlihyGroup.com.