Cyber Risks and Insurance for a New Age

“Dear _____ Guest, As you have likely heard by now, ______ experienced unauthorized access to payment card data from U.S. _______ stores. We take this crime seriously. It was a crime against _______, our team members and most importantly you—our valued guest. We understand that a situation like this creates stress and anxiety about the safety of your payment card data at _______. Our brand has been built on a…

Safety committees

A safe workplace is good for employees and the general public as well. Creating a safe workplace environment requires buy-in from the top level of management and participation all the way down to front-line workers, but achieving universal participation can be a challenge. As noted by WorkSafeMT, research shows that employees are more likely to support and use programs in which they have had input and the safety committee is…

Company cars and personal liability

I drive a company car. How am I covered by insurance? Many businesses offer company cars to salespeople, key employees and management. Not only are these cars used during normal business hours, but they are often taken home and accessible outside of work. Corporate fleets – including company cars – are oftentimes insured on what is known as a Business Auto Policy. The Business Auto Policy is a commercial insurance…

Retail data breaches and protecting personal data

As reported by USA Today, Sears Holdings announced that it detected a data breach at its Kmart stores. As a result of malware that infected the Kmart payment data systems, information on customers’ credit and debit cards may have been hacked. The Kmart breach is yet another major retailer to make the news for massive data breaches, following those of Target, whose 2013 breach potentially affected 40 million cardholders, and…

2015 OSHA reporting and recordkeeping changes

The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (also referred to as the OSH Act) was signed into law to help reduce workplace injuries and illnesses. The OSH Act established that employers have the responsibility to provide a safe workplace, and also created the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). OSHA, a division of the United States Department of Labor, has the power to set and enforce workplace protective safety…

Hand the keys to a safe driver

Businesses are expected to put safe drivers behind the wheel. Most business owners are aware of this expectation and strive to meet it. This article provides tips and best practices for fleet safety, which always starts with the driver. Have a formalized hiring process Best practices for fleet safety start with doing the homework up front. Institute a formal, written hiring process in order to screen out unsafe drivers before…

Illinois Employee Classification Act – Part II

2014 Changes to the Illinois Employee Classification Act The Illinois Employee Classification Act (ECA) went into effect on January 1st, 2008. As noted in my earlier post, the ECA was enacted to punish construction companies (including construction-related trucking companies) who improperly classify employees as “independent contractors” in order to avoid payroll taxes, unemployment insurance contributions, employee benefits and other related costs of having employees. Essentially, the ECA creates a legal…

Illinois Employee Classification Act – Part I

Background on the Illinois Employee Classification Act The Illinois Employee Classification Act (ECA) went into effect on January 1st, 2008. This legislation is aimed at the construction industry, but also affects construction-related trucking. The ECA addresses situations where a construction company improperly classifies a person as an “independent contractor” or a “subcontractor” instead of classifying them as an employee in order to avoid paying payroll taxes, unemployment insurance contributions, workers…

Employee theft won’t happen to us

Many have heard stories or have had first-hand experiences with theft in the workplace. At times, the stories can be spectacular, such as the case of Rita Crundwell, the former Comptroller for the City of Dixon, IL, who stole $53 million from the City over the course of 20 years. However, many of these incidents never make the headlines, and many organizations believe that it will never happen to them.…

Firefighters, second jobs and workers compensation

Workers’ compensation provides benefits to employees who are injured on the job, including coverage for lost wages if the injury causes the employee to miss work. In some industries, such as the fire service, employees commonly have more than one job. Volunteer firefighters may have jobs outside of the Fire Department, and full-time firefighters may also be employed elsewhere. Many firefighters and paramedics work at more than one Fire Department.…