Don't forget our new physical address is 9195 W. 44th Avenue in Wheat Ridge. We are on the corner of 44th and Garrison Street. Our phone number and P.O. Box haven’t changed. Please stop by and visit if you are in the neighborhood.
Extremely Important Aetna Individual Health Plan Update
On Friday, January 28, 2011, Aetna announced that that will no longer sell individual health plans in Colorado effective February 1, 2011. In addition, existing policyholders will be non-renewed effective 7/31/2012. This announcement does not affect the AARP policyholders in Colorado. It appears that Aetna is the first insurance company casualty resulting from fallout of both the mandatory maternity/gender neutral rating requirement in Colorado combined with provisions from the Federal health reform passed into law last year.
Even though July 31, 2012 appears to be a long way off, please contact us regarding the best way to transition to another insurance company as soon as possible.
Important Delta Dental Update
If you have an individual Delta Dental insurance plan, you will be getting a new enrollment form on your renewal. Delta Dental recently migrated all of their plan holders onto a new computer platform and will need the information on this form completed and remitted for the policy to remain active. If you do not send in the form, your policy will expire, and if you decide later to re-enroll, you may be required to satisfy all of the policy waiting periods before benefits are paid. This does not apply to those covered under group Delta Dental plans.
Arvada News Wire
Check out this new local, online news source at arvadanewswire.com from my long time friend and business associate John Thuer. It is a great resource not only in Arvada but for the entire west side of Denver.
Mandated Maternity Coverage on Individual Health Policies in Colorado
Effective January 1, 2011 all new individual health policies must include coverage for normal maternity, whether you want it or not. This mandate was legislated during the 2010 session in Colorado. In addition, rates for health insurance will no longer vary based on gender. This change will affect all existing policies in Colorado upon renewal, not just new policies. For those of you that see significant rate increases, please contact us as soon as possible and we will shop the market to make sure you have the best value on your insurance.
Your Medicare Taxes Won't Cover What You'll Cost
The first boomers turn 65 this year and can start enrolling in Medicare this month, setting a ball in motion that will probably put further strain on an already overburdened system. Click here to read more.
New Medicare Annual Disenrollment Period - ADP - and Other Changes
The health reform act in 2010 did bring a benefit to seniors on prescription drug plans as the coverage gap will gradually disappear throughout this decade. However, the Open Enrollment Period (OEP), which ran from January 1 through March 31, was eliminated and replaced with the Annual Disenrollment Period, which runs from January 1 through February 14. The ADP allows seniors to disenroll from a Medicare Advantage plan back to original Medicare, whereas the discontinued OEP allowed seniors to make one last "like" change before their lock-in period. Another change will be the Annual Election Period (AEP) for 2012 which will start on October 15, 2011 and end December 7, 2011, replacing the old November 15 through December 31 period.
Five Things You Don't Know About Car Insurance
By Chad Fisher
Many car insurance policies offer coverage that you may not know about. There are also things that are not covered by standard insurance policies. It is important that you understand what your rights are before you are involved in an accident and need to file a claim. The following five facts are not widely known by most individuals who purchase auto insurance.
1. Your Car is Covered, but Your Belongings Are Not
Did you know that all the personal possessions you carry in your vehicle are not covered under your car insurance policy? That's right, even the most comprehensive car insurance policy will not reimburse you for items that are stolen or damaged while in your car. You will be compensated for any damage that is done to your vehicle, but your possessions are not considered part of the vehicle's value. The best idea is to refrain from carrying extremely valuable items with you when you are driving.
However, if you are like most people in today's age, your cell phone, laptop, and GPS unit are considered essentials. The trauma of losing these items is bad enough. In today's economy, chances are the average person does not have the money on hand to run out and purchase new ones. Therefore, it is important to make sure you have your items insured. In order to insure the items you carry with you, it is necessary to purchase a rider on your home insurance policy. Always keep receipts and make sure you have photos or video of your items to prove their condition before they were damaged or stolen.
2. You May be Eligible for a Diminished Value Claim
When you purchase a vehicle today, it has become standard to receive a car history report. That's great for the buyer, but not so great for the seller if your vehicle was in an accident and you never received compensation for the diminished value of your vehicle. When you go to trade your vehicle in you will not receive as much for it. Even if your car was repaired by a good quality auto body shop, the resale value will be reduced simply because it was in a collision. Most buyers will not purchase a vehicle that has been in an accident unless they receive a discounted price. Your insurance company must reimburse you for your damages. They will not automatically send you a check for your diminished value. You must file this claim in addition to your regular claim and prove your vehicle has received a loss in value due to the accident.
This is a lot easier to do on a newer car but not impossible to do on an older car. Diminished value claims are generally offered to the person who received damage from the insurance company of the person who is found at fault in the accident. Insurance companies rarely offer diminished value payments when they are reimbursing the primary driver insured on the policy.
3. Coverage for Your Pet's Injuries
Everyone understands that their car insurance covers medical bills for the driver and passengers involved in a car accident. If you are driving with a pet in the car, you should check with your insurance company about whether or not your pet's injuries are covered, too. Some insurance companies will pay up to $1,000 for veterinarian bills for you injured pet or the pet of a family member that lives with you. The coverage is not available in all states or through all insurance companies so make sure to perform a thorough auto insurance comparison up front if you have family pets. If you travel with your pets often, it is a good idea to find out if your policy will provide reimbursement for an animal's injuries.
4. Save Money by Paying a Lump Sum
Most insurance companies offer discounts to customers who are willing to pay for their policies in one or two lump sums over a year. Spreading your payments out month to month may seem less expensive than spending hundreds of dollars once a year, but the policy price is generally higher when it is spread out over twelve months. Even paying for your policy every six months is less expensive than paying for it every single month. Talk to your agent about the fees that are attached with a monthly payment so that you will be aware of the savings involved in paying annually or semi-annually.
5. Taxes and Fees Covered by Your Car Insurance
The tax and registration fees on your vehicle may be covered by your insurance company if your vehicle is declared a total loss. In some states, the car insurance company must pay for the taxes and fees up front and in other states, the insurance company provides reimbursement after the settlement. Some states only require the insurance company to reimburse you for the tax and registration if a new vehicle is purchased within a specific amount of time after an accident. If you are being reimbursed by the other party's insurance company, they might not be required to pay you for the cost of tax and registration.
The bottom line is that you should read your car insurance policy thoroughly so that you are aware of the things that are covered and the things that are not. Many minor details can make a huge difference when you need to file a claim after a collision. For example, if you loan your car to a friend and he or she is involved in an accident, your car insurance will pay for the damages regardless of your friend's insurance situation. Little things like that can increase your insurance costs, which means you should be aware of them when you purchase a new policy.
Are You Buying or Renting Your Life Insurance?
You buy a house instead of renting, you buy a car instead of leasing, so why are you renting your life insurance instead of owning it? Especially if you are age 50+ and it is for final expense purposes. Term life insurance, like renting, starts out cheaper than owning but gets very expensive over time. With people living into their upper 80's and 90's, many are finding out that lesson the hard way, if they can keep it at all.
When most people retire, their goal is to have the house and car paid off and to reduce their monthly living expenses since their retirement income is usually less than what they earned prior to retirement. Why not have your life insurance paid up as well instead of chasing ever increasing premiums?
For more information on how you can pay off and own your life insurance policy. Click here to request an appointment, or give us a call at 303-423-0162 ext 100.
Employment Liability Practice Insurance (EPLI)
A very important, but often overlooked form of business liability coverage is Employment Liability Practice Insurance (EPLI). This is an option that businesses can add onto their business owner’s policy (BOP) that protects the business in the event they are sued for employment related practices such as wrongful terminations, age discrimination, sexual harassment, etc. Legal bills from these types of lawsuits can add up quickly and, if awarded, damages can be steep. This is not a standard coverage on most policies but must be added as an endorsement. If you would like to review your business owners policy or discuss EPLI further, please give us a call as 303-423-0162 ext 110.
Timeline of Health Insurance Reforms that Will Impact Private Health Insurance
Coverage under H.R. 3590, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and the Health Care and Education Affordability Reconciliation Act of 2010 January 13, 2011 ...
Click here to read more about what the new health reform means to you
On a final note, we once again want to thank you for your continued business, especially in these challenging economic times. It is our distinct honor and pleasure to service your insurance needs. We also appreciate your many referrals.
Colorado Agency License #45298 - Securities offered through Foresters Equity Services, Inc.,
Member FINRA and SIPC