Monday, June 30, 2014

Senior Drivers Open to Discussion About Limiting Driving

There are currently more than 23 million licensed drivers aged 70 and older and as baby boomers soon begin turning 70, the number of seniors on the road will rise steadily over the next two decades.

The majority of senior drivers are behind the wheel regularly, even with reported limited physical abilities, according to a new survey by Liberty Mutual Insurance, and though many seniors drive safely well into their later years, many will also eventually face the difficult decision to stop driving.

While 84 percent of senior drivers are open to conversations about limiting or stopping their driving, according to the Liberty Mutual survey, only 6 percent have spoken with someone about their driving abilities.



Friday, June 27, 2014

Tech Insurance Terms to Know

Specialized technology insurance is an important part of your company’s risk management strategy to account for the unique exposures of your business.  Technology companies own valuable intangible assets, such as sensitive data, software and intellectual property, which a general liability policy doesn’t account for. General liability provides protection in the event of bodily injury or property damage. Technology insurance coverage is designed to protect against the significant risk of economic loss related to intellectual property, network liability and network and cyber property security.

A comprehensive risk management plan needs to guard against the unique exposures that technology operations present. Specialized technology insurance is relatively new and the terminology is still evolving as more claims are handled and new exposures are discovered. As a result, the terminology can be confusing and hard to understand. The following terms are some of the most common you will need to know to best understand your technology insurance protections:

• Cyber liability – A cyber liability policy is a coverage that protects against damage from cyber-attacks, data breaches and other basic risks that result from using electronic communications and data storage. They often cover the cost of recreating damaged or lost data or systems, but do not include the costs that stem from the loss or damage, including legal expenses and data notification costs. Sometimes the term cyber liability is used broadly to describe technology related risks and technology specific insurance in general.

• Data breach notification laws – These state laws dictate the requirements for notification if an organization were to suffer a data breach that compromised personal data, such as social security numbers and financial and health information. Each state law varies on the time period that individuals need to be notified of the breach and what situations are exempt from the requirement.

• Cyber property – The intangible property your company owns. This can include websites, data and networks. These intangible assets can all be damaged. To protect your cyber property you may need to broaden the property enhancements on your existing policy. Also, check if you have any coverage that would protect if your company or an employee caused damage to another organization’s cyber property.

• Technology E&O – Technology errors & omissions (E&O) coverage protects against claims by a client that they suffered a loss due to mistakes by your company. These mistakes must be due to error or oversight in a product such as a software program or web service.

• Media and intellectual property liability – All content on the Internet is considered to be published, meaning it is subject to copyrights and infringement. Negative content about a person or company can be considered libelous. Take caution when publishing or posting anything to websites, forums or social networking sites.

The exposures and threats of technology business operations will continue to grow as the technology industry does. Senn Dunn can help you keep your business protected against these specialized risks.

12 Tips to Survive Another "Nuclear" Summer

After a harsh winter in many parts of the country, construction companies and their workers are now facing the opposite extreme. Already, many states are experiencing what safety consultant John Meola, CSP, ARM, calls “flat-iron” level heat. Here are his tips for keeping your cool this summer:

  1. Water, water, everywhere. Plan to make water easy to reach and keep it at a cool, drinkable temperature. Provide electrolyte replacement beverages. Avoid soda pop and energy drinks.
  2. Stay in good physical shape. Extra saddlebags mean more work and more sweat. Hit the gym or walk the oval a few times after dusk to work it off. Cut down on tobacco.

Read more tips here!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Were most Obamacare enrollees uninsured?

While producers celebrated their hard work as news of the sheer volume of Obamacare enrollees filtered in, many were curious to know more pressing questions: Were these new enrollees healthy? Had they paid their first month’s premium? And, perhaps most importantly in measuring the success of the new law, had they previous been insured or were they new to the system?

Kaiser Family Foundation attempted to answer the question with a new survey, released Thursday.

The results?

According to Kaiser’s research, four in 10 people enrolling in health plans through the exchanges already had insurance. However, a full six in 10 were previously uninsured, and most had been so for the past two years or more.


Read more!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

9 Common Questions for Hurricane Season

I recently attended a fundraiser cocktail party for my youngest child’s school. Ordinarily in these situations, once I reveal that I work in insurance, the conversation immediately shifts to sports or the cheese plate. That evening, however, thanks to media coverage of the predictions for the Atlantic hurricane season--and the fact that our non-coastal Connecticut town was hit hard during the last few seasons--I was more popular than the bartender.

My new friends shared memories: surviving with children for eight days without power, fighting with insurance companies, and the plights of hard-hit neighbors. I was peppered with questions like the ones that follow, and my answers lead many to ask me for the name of a broker who could help them upgrade their insurance.


Read the questions now!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

How Health Care Reform is Challenging Medical Malpractice

Though the impact of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on medical malpractice insurance remains a bit of a puzzle, three insurance experts pieced together likely effects at an insurance conference for actuaries in late May.

Forecasting a coherent future from sparse data can be difficult, but it’s a skill casualty actuaries have gained through years of experience. There aren’t a lot of data yet – and the facts that do exist are subject to more political spin than usual. Still, two casualty actuaries and a veteran medical malpractice underwriter were able to use demographic and health industry trends to predict how the medical malpractice world could change over the next decade.


Read the full article now!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

10 Best and Worst States for Teen Drivers

Passing a driver's test has moved from exciting stage of growth to death sentence for thousands of teens each year. Motor vehicle crashes still account as the leading cause of death for teenagers between the ages of 16 and 19, and that age group is three times more likely than drivers aged 20 and older to be in a fatal crash.

Those aged 15 to 24 represent only 14% of the population, but they account for 30% of total costs of motor vehicle injuries, according data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Using data sourced from the U.S. Census Bureau, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Federal Highway Administration, and other soruces, WalletHub weighed 16 key metrics to identify the best and worst states for teen drivers.



Thursday, June 12, 2014

This week in Severe Weather: It's Hail Season!

According to Matthew Nielsen, a director and meteorologist at RMS, hail is no longer an "attritional peril," and insurers would be wise to make sure they're covered in case of widespread, individual events, like those we saw across the Midwest this week.

"Widespread hail events in the U.S. are not uncommon and can cause considerable damage to cars, homes, and buildings," he said this week, "while single hail events can produce very large losses. With 60% of average annual storm losses in the U.S. coming from hail, insurers should consider looking at reinsurance for these events.”



Firing Up Your Grill This Summer? These 8 tips can help you avoid unhealthy carcinogens.

Most people know that grilling is healthier than frying. But did you know that grilling does not eliminate all health risks?

Two carcinogens, known as Heterocyclic amines (HCAs) and Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) can form in and on your food as you grill.

Heterocyclic amines (HCAs) form in protein-rich foods cooked at very high temperatures. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) form as a result of fat dripping off, creating smoke that circulates around the food. This smoke deposits the PAHs onto your food. These compounds are dangerous because studies suggest that they can damage DNA and spark the development of cancerous tumors.

Although these carcinogens are dangerous, that doesn’t mean we should put away our grills just yet- especially with the 4th of July right around the corner!

Here are 8 tips you can use to make sure your grilling efforts remain healthy:

o   HCA’s begin to form at 325 degrees Fahrenheit, so cook your meat at a lower temperature.

o   The shorter the cooking time at high heat, the healthier.

o   Select leaner cuts of meat to decrease the amount of fat that drips off.

o   Scrape off any charred parts of your food.

o   Clean your grill every time before use, to decrease any charred remnants from transferring onto your meal.

o   By covering the grill plates with perforated foil, you could decrease the amount of smoke that reaches your food while still allowing the fat to drip.

o   Avoid piercing the meat, as this allows more fat to drip and smoke to billow.

o   Marinate your meat at least 30 minutes before grilling, as this seems to limit the carcinogen formation by up to 90%. Some spices even offer protection from these formations, such as rosemary, thyme, sage, garlic and red pepper. However, marinades with a lot of sugar can reverse this effect and tend to increase formations.

Go fire up that grill and enjoy a healthy summer!


Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Updated Individual Health Insurance Q&A

Our Q&A document for individual health insurance has recently been updated, with adjustments to the following questions:

Do I have to buy health insurance?
How will I receive my subsidy?
When can I enroll?
When will my health insurance coverage begin?

Please review the updated Q&A document here.

Does Automobile Insurance Follow the Car or the Driver?

There are a few questions in life that are more confusing than their answers. The blanket query into whether or not insurance follows the car or the driver in a particular jurisdiction is such a question – one we see regularly. It isn’t a dumb question. It is more like a MENSA brain teaser than a legitimate insurance question, and it is usually the wrong question to ask.

The answer to whether insurance follows the car or driver depends on many variables, most notably the kind of insurance coverage being referred to. There are coverages that follow the car and coverages that follow the driver. In general, auto insurance follows the car instead of the driver, but the specifics of a claim can differ since insurance laws and coverage vary depending on the policy, coverage and state being dealt with.


Read More!

Monday, June 9, 2014

Week in Review-June 9th 2014
Last week was an exciting week of the team here at Senn Dunn.  We announced on Monday our new partnership as we became a Marsh & Mclennan Agency.  We are very excited about joining our new partners and the positive impact these new resources will have on the many businesses we are fortunate to call our clients.  Links to the press releases and local business journal reporting can be found below:
In other news, the ISM Manufacturing Index for May was revised 2 different times leading the ISM to release a statement including manual data checks in the future.  It is important to note the Economist Stephen Stanley's perspective in the article that these errors should not "de-legitimize" this important index, link to full article below:
Manufacturing Headlines of Note
Manufacturing Day 2014
This important day to raise awareness about manufacturing in America will be celebrated around the on October 3rd, 2014 at locations throughout the country.  From the official website: "America is experiencing a manufacturing revolution. Be a part of what's happening in your community."  More quotes like this, event details for every state, and specific information for NC Events can be found at the website links provided below: 
eTC -
A long time professional colleague and friend in textile manufacturing has recently started an online publication covering the textile industry.  I encourage you to check out his publication as a possible resource to you and your business.  The link below will take you to the home page where you can subscribe if you find it to be valuable. 
From eTC: TechTextil North America Reports
From eTC: The Coming Back Kids: Blog with a number of positive
World Economic News
As the global market continues to impact businesses, it is important to understand those dynamics.  Euler Hermes provides global economic outlooks including a weekly export risk outlook along with additional reporting.  For World Cup fans, last week's world economic outlook included a World Cup theme, link below:
Learning Opportunities
We are excited to announce our latest seminar schedule with topics associated with Human Resources, Claims Management, Cost of Accidents and more...details can be found by visiting our seminar schedule on our website, link below:


Thursday, June 5, 2014

The Biggest Myth about Cyber Insurance

The recent hacking of online merchandiser eBay, which put its 145 million “active buyers” at risk of data breach, has once again ignited the insurance community’s discussion of cyber liability insurance.

But beyond the obvious “headline as sales push” application, experts say the eBay hack has also taught agents and brokers important lessons on what they don’t know about cyber insurance—and what they ought to be passing along to clients.



Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Younger Auto Insurance Shoppers Less Likely than Boomers to Shop on Price

While shopping for auto insurance, price is, of course, can be a deciding factor for consumers. However, a recent study by J.D. Power reveals that younger generations—Gen X and Gen Y—are less likely to select the lowest-priced brand than Baby Boomers.

Younger auto insurance shoppers are more likely to select their car insurance brand based on website information and navigation, according to the J.D. Power 2014 Insurance Website Evaluation Study. While price is a factor for 35% of Gen X and Gen Y shoppers, and is a major concern for 47% of Boomers, Gen Y shoppers are more concerned with understanding information regarding different brands and policies.

Providing an appropriate amount of information impacts the decision of 29% of Gen Y shoppers and 36% are influenced by whether or not information was conveyed in a clear and intelligible way.



Monday, June 2, 2014

Questions & Answers about Senn Dunn Insurance joining Marsh & McLennan LLC Company


When did the acquisition take effect?

Friday, May 30, 2014.  
Why did we decide to sell?

This is a great opportunity for Senn Dunn’s clients and associates. Deciding to sell the agency was by no means an easy decision, but it will enable us to grow and continue to serve clients for the long term. Joining Marsh & McLennan Agency LLC (MMA) provided Senn Dunn a unique opportunity to retain our operating model, leadership and culture, while gaining access to resources from one of the world’s leading insurance brokers. Our relationship with MMA will benefit our associates and our clients. 

Was Health Care Reform a factor of the sale?

All of the insurance markets are in the midst of the most significant change seen in the past 50 years. The business of offering insurance and employee benefits will be more competitive and dynamic going forward. Given the changing health insurance landscape, joining MMA will allow Senn Dunn to optimize our ability to invest in new solutions, resources and capabilities for employers and individuals regardless of what the future may hold.

Why did MMA select Senn Dunn?

MMA was seeking a prominent middle-market, southeastern agency to join their Mid-Atlantic region. MMA was drawn to Senn Dunn’s strong regional presence, proven leadership, entrepreneurial culture and dominance in both the property casualty and employee benefits business.


Who is MMA?

Marsh & McLennan Agency (MMA) LLC was created in 2008 as a separate operating subsidiary of Marsh & McLennan Companies (MMC), Inc., one of the world’s leading global insurance brokers and risk management advisors. MMA primarily serves the property & casualty and employee benefits needs of the middle market with separate leadership from Marsh.

MMA is headquartered in White Plains, New York and currently employs less than 20 employees. The New York office does not service any clients and primarily serves as the corporate headquarters for all of its agency companies. MMA intends to have a small corporate staff to ensure the majority of decisions are made by the regional management teams.

How does MMA envision growing in the next few years?

MMA has been very public about its goal to build one of our industry’s preeminent national organizations. It currently ranks as the 12th largest employee benefits and property casualty agency in the United States with annual revenue of $600 million. Their unique acquisition growth model ensures little to no disruption of operations at the regional level, ensuring the integrity and culture of each agency remains intact, while at the same time building a comprehensive and diverse national network of brokerages.

What role will Senn Dunn play in the growth plan?

Senn Dunn will take a leadership role in the Carolinas as part of the Mid Atlantic (VA, DC, MD, NC, SC, GA, AL, TN, KY, WV and PA) region for MMA, continuing to grow in our existing markets.  

How will we access the services of Marsh?

Even though we will be operating under a separate structure and management from Marsh, we will have access to their capabilities for the benefit of our clients. We are working through these details now, and will share the process of accessing Marsh’s resource as they are finalized; these resources may include practice group expertise, business analytics, risk consulting with MMA Environmental, claims support, and international support. We also have the ability to access the capabilities of Mercer, a global leader in talent, health, retirement and investments.


What happens to the Associates in each of the locations?

No positions were lost due to this acquisition. Our associates, locations (Greensboro, High Point, Raleigh, Wilmington and Charlotte) and operating platform are what drew MMA to Senn Dunn and we plan to continue working with clients in the same way we always have worked with our clients. This is about growth, not consolidation and cost reduction.


When were clients informed?

Clients were informed on the same day as our public announcement on June 2, 2014 through a letter and press release.

When were  vendors informed?

Vendors were informed on the same day as our announcement by a letter.

Will there be any changes in client relationships as a result of the acquisition?

We expect no changes to our current operating structure. There will be very few changes to our day-to-day job and our interactions with clients.


Will our logo and name change?

Because MMA respects the brand equity we have built into our name and brand, we will initially make only slight modifications to our current logo and name to reflect our new relationship with

MMA. Our new name is Senn Dunn Insurance, A Marsh & McLennan Agency LLC Company. We can still be referred to as “Senn Dunn.”


What corporate culture changes can I expect?

We do not foresee any changes in corporate culture. Our leadership, vision, values and commitment to serving clients, associates and our communities remain the same. We look forward to celebrating as a family, rewarding hard work and being active members in our communities.


Additional questions can be directed to Heather Dutch @ or 336-346-1385.