Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Our Team

Our most recent team photo!

Back row (left to right): Steve Devlin, Logan Kirk, Jeff Kirk, Mike Dostal, Dave Dostal, Denise Livingston

Front row (left to right): Carissa Chester, Megan Rowlinson, Heather Evans, Diana Adelman

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Our newest team member, Logan Kirk

Logan joined the agency in 2016. He grew up in Shelby where he graduated from Shelby High School in 2010. He went on to receive a Bachelor of Science in Entrepreneurship from the Farmer School of Business at Miami University.

After graduating Miami in 2014, Logan completed a 2-year fellowship with the Ohio Mutual Insurance Group in Bucyrus. This provided him extensive exposure to underwriting in personal, farm and business lines as well as claims and loss control practices. At the agency he specializes in new business production for personal, business and farm insurance lines. Logan holds the Associate in General Insurance (AINS) designation and is currently pursuing his CPCU designation.

Logan is involved in various groups in the communities he works and lives including Crawford County Young Professionals, Columbus Young Professionals, Short North Running Club and St. Christopher Catholic Church of Grandview. In addition to community involvement he operates a side auto detailing business, a venture he started at age 14.

Logan resides in the Grandview neighborhood of Columbus. He enjoys running, travel, cars and spending time with friends and family.

Contact Logan at:

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Do you know the facts?

10 Reasons Not to Buy Disability Income Insurance

You may have your reasons for not buying individual disability income insurance (DI).  But do you know the facts?

10.  Social Security will take care of me.
          Fact: For those who do qualify, the current average monthly benefit is only $1,191. (1)

9.    It won't happen to me-- I expect to stay healthy.
          Fact: One in four of today's 20-year-olds will become disabled before reaching age 67. (2)

8.   It costs too much.
          Fact: The average annual cost is typically only 1 to 3 percent of what you earn.

7.   My Financial needs change so fast.  What policy could keep up?
          Fact: A DI policy from Principal Life Insurance Company is flexible.  You can change it as                   needed.

6.    I want a policy that keeps pace with my income-- without medical underwriting.
          Fact: Principal Life offers riders that allow you to increase your coverage without providing                   evidence of medical insurability.

5.   I have coverage through my employer.
          Fact: Group disability insurance typically covers 60 percent of gross income, and benefits
                   are usually taxable.  Can you afford more than a 40 percent pay cut?

4.   I would have to be totally disabled to receive benefits.
          Fact: There are ways to protect your income in the event of a partial disability.

3.   My family and friends will help me.
          Fact: Are your loved ones in a position to support you?  Do you want them to?

2.   I can always buy coverage later.
          Fact: People usually don't get healthier as they grow older, and coverage will cost more.

1.   I can rely on my savings.
          Fact: Even if you save 10 percent of your salary, one year of disability could easily wipe
                   out many years of savings.

Please contact us today to discuss the importance of disability income insurance, and how we can help create a customized plan to fit your needs and budget.

(1) Social Security Administration, January 2013.
(2) Social Security Administration, Fact Sheet February 2013.

Principal Financial Group
Principal Life Insurance Company, Des Moines, Iowa 50392
Disability income insurance has limitations and exclusions.
For costs and complete details of coverage, contact your
Principal Life financial representative.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Umbrella insurance: a business necessity

By: Mike Mirizzi
The Cincinnati Insurance Companies

There is a misconception that only large companies or corporations need umbrella insurance, that the coverage is expensive and may be unnecessary.  On the contrary, an umbrella policy is a vital piece of coverage that can protect you and your business from losses that exceed your primary policy limits.

The truth is you don't have to have a million dollars to be sued for a million dollars.  It can happen quickly, and your livelihood could be greatly affected.

Costs for an automobile accident with property damage or serious injuries to multiple people could easily exceed a standard insurance policy limit, leaving you or your business to pay out of pocket if you are found to be legally liable.  Injuries due to work you performed or because of a product you distributed or manufactured also could result in lawsuits that could put your business in jeopardy and potentially your personal assets as well.

An umbrella policy provides limits in excess of your primary liability policies and adds that extra layer of protection and peace of mind.  The value in this "extra" layer of protection does not stop there.  Not all umbrella policies are the same.  Ask your independent insurance agent to place your insurance with a company whose policy provides:

  • No self-insured retention (similar to a deductible).  Some insurance companies may require you to retain liability and pay the first $10,000, $15,000 or sometimes $25,000 for specific claims covered by the umbrella that were not covered by the primary liability policies.  Ask your agent for a policy that eliminates this requirement.

  • Unlimited defense payments.  Some umbrella policies offer you true unlimited defense payments when your primary liability policy limits have been exhausted.

  • Coverage for items not covered in your underlying policy.  Some umbrellas will provide "first dollar drop down" coverages for specific situations, meaning that if your underlying primary policies do not cover a loss, your umbrella might. 

Look for an insurer that can provide an umbrella policy with your commercial insurance package.  Having all your insurance with one company, in one package, is easier to manage.

Additionally, an umbrella policy may help your company have a competitive advantage when bidding on a contract as you will already have the required "extra" insurance in place.

Managing these liability exposures makes financial sense, no matter how big or small your business.

Not all umbrella policies are the same.  Please contact us today to explore coverages and options available to you.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

The i's on Insurance: Life Insurance

Life insurance is a vital part of your family’s financial stability and well-being. But if you’re like most people, you probably have questions about what types and amounts of life insurance are best for your needs. Spend a few moments to see why planning for your family’s future isn’t just about money; it’s about life.

Be sure to tune in to the other videos in "The I's on Insurance" series for helpful knowledge for drivers, homeowners/renters, and small business owners.

See Insurance Through the I's: Subscribe to our YouTube channel: iiivideo for more videos about how to be safe, secure and covered for the unexpected. You can also follow us on Twitter @iiiorg to stay plugged in to the latest information and news about your home, auto and business insurance.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

The bottom line on homeowners insurance and rates

 Do you know why insurance premiums are rising? Insurance companies use past events to predict future risk, and risk is shared. What that means is whether disaster strikes in Ohio or another state, insurers use pooled premiums to pay claims that help customers recover. In essence, the catastrophic damage caused by more frequent severe weather in recent years has caught up with us.

 What you can do

Understanding what coverage you have and why will help you control costs. The right coverage will mean the difference between devastation and recovery. Call us for clarity and ask how these tips might apply to you.

Ways to help control your rates

·         You could opt for higher deductibles, but do so only if you can easily pay that amount if you need to file a claim.
·         Consider the impact of replacement cost insurance versus actual cash value. Replacement insurance, while more expensive, covers the full cost of replacement. Actual cash value coverage (standard on most policies) pays the depreciated cost of the insured items.
·         Carefully decide whether to submit a claim. If you will only get a couple hundred back after the deductible is met, you may want to pay out of pocket. Filing a claim may affect your premium.
·         Regularly review your policy with us to ensure you get the discounts you are entitled to and that you have the right endorsements.
·         Understand that your credit score, claims history, and age/condition of your home will impact your rates.


How to reduce the potential for a homeowners claim

·             Perform regular maintenance to your home and make improvements
·             Use working smoke detectors
·             Clean your gutters and trim tree limbs away from your home
·             When going out of town, turn off your water line
·             Inspect your sump pump, and clear debris near external drains
·             Replace the hoses on your washing machines every five years

What’s not covered by homeowners’ insurance?

Policies differ, but typical exclusions include damage from:
·         Earthquakes
·         Flooding or water damage caused by sewer backup or basement leak
·         Power failure originating off your premises
·         Collapse

With homeowners rates rising, it’s important to have a policy that fits your needs. Call us to ask questions, make adjustments and gain peace of mind.

This information brought to you by Dostal & Kirk, Inc., a proud member of Professional Independent Agents Association of Ohio, Inc.


Thursday, April 16, 2015

What to know before you shop for a car

What “options” are you legally required to buy?
Confused about what is and isn’t required when buying or leasing a vehicle? Ohio law requires drivers to meet financial responsibility requirements, which can be done by purchasing liability insurance. In addition, when leasing or financing a vehicle, those contracts require you to have physical damage insurance coverage.   

Beyond that, here are answers to common questions asked about dealer options.* 

Is my “new” car automatically covered by my current auto insurance policy?
Usually yes, but the length of time coverage is provided on a newly acquired auto (typically 4 to 14 days**) varies based on the types of coverage and whether the vehicle is a replacement or additional vehicle. To be safe, call us about your policy.  

A newly acquired auto will receive the broadest coverage provided for vehicles already on the policy. However, if your current policy does not have Collision or Other Than Collision coverage, the automatic extension of these coverages to the new auto is usually limited to 4 days.** Though not legally required, you may want to take your insurance policy or ID card with you.

What about loan/lease GAP insurance?
In an accident, your auto policy pays you the current market value of the car, but you could still owe much more to the finance company. That gap, or amount you still owe, is covered by loan lease Guaranteed Auto Protection (GAP) insurance. Though not legally required, some new car leases have GAP coverage built into the contract. Ask the dealer if you have the option of deleting the coverage from the lease and purchasing it as an endorsement to your existing auto insurance. Doing so could save you a few dollars to a couple hundred dollars. We can get you estimates now.
Is an extended warranty mandatory?
No, and you don’t have to buy an extended warranty before you leave the dealer. A warranty may not be necessary for you, so call us. But if you are intent on getting a warranty, know that purchasing from the dealer is not your only option.  
What about credit life and disability?
Credit life and disability policies sold by auto dealers are not required. They protect the lender if you cannot make monthly payments due to death or disability. You are insuring the unpaid balance of the loan. If that’s all you need, the dealer’s policy will suffice. However, it may be wiser to use that money to increase coverage on your own life or disability policy instead of tying it to the lease or purchase of a vehicle.
Our advice
Before you car shop, call us. We’ll help you get prepared and informed so you don’t end up paying extra for something you neither want nor need.  
*    Many of these same principles apply for purchasing a boat, RV, travel trailer or motorcycle.
** Information from Insurance Services Office, Personal Auto Policy, 2005 edition.
This information brought to you by Dostal & Kirk, Inc., a proud member of Professional Independent Agents Association of Ohio, Inc.