How to Pick Your Insurance Agent

The most important part of the insurance transaction is the insurance buyer's relationship with the insurance agent. Learn about the process of picking an exceptional insurance agent here. … [Read more...]

Captive Insurance For Banks – Teleseminar

Yesterday's teleseminar with Josh Miller of Key State was quite popular.  The idea of community banks using captive insurance is still pretty new. In five years, the vast majority of "strong" community banks between $500m and $6b will be using captive insurance as a tool.  Those who wait will be losing about $300,000 a year in income … [Read more...]

The Dangers of a Wedding Ring

This is not an anti-marriage screed. Six months ago I started training at a CrossFit gym (known as a box). I quickly learned that wearing a metal wedding ring was dangerous. I started to notice people wearing silicone rings. It just dawned on me that people who work around machinery face similar dangers. is one supplier of such rings. … [Read more...]

Captive Insurance For Banks

About three months ago, a banker told me he had set up a captive subsidiary. At first I thought it odd - I had a bias against captives for my clients; I thought they were just too small. I'm learning more about these mini-captives - their uses and advantages. I'm still not ready to say all my clients should enter into such an arrangement. I am … [Read more...]

Civil Money Penalty Insurance

Since the FDIC came out with their October 2013 letter clarifying/trashing the use of insurance to protect bank directors and officers from civil money penalties there has been a great deal of heat generated by discussion.  Not much light - lots of heat. About two years ago I saw the whole thing coming and started telling my bank clients to … [Read more...]

New Insurance Syndrome Identified – Instant Cure Available

It has taken me thirty-five years, but I have figured out the major cause of most problems with business insurance programs. Acute Insurance Agent Complacency Syndrome affects millions of businesses around the US. Also known as AIACS, the disease symptoms start three years after an insurance agent begins insuring a business. Particularly … [Read more...]

Something Stinky About No Vacations

Do you have an employee who refuses to take a vacation? Is he/she a valued employee - in a position of trust? Does he/she have access to your bank accounts? Insist he/she goes on vacation. Two weeks minimum. If he/she fights you and says his/her work is his/her life and he/she takes no vacation out of dedication and loyalty, force … [Read more...]

Bank ESOP Plans – Pro Liability Coverage – Fiduciary Coverage

Every so often I come across a bank with an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP). My approach is to treat the ESOP as a separate legal entity. In many cases directors and officers insurance and fiduciary liability coverage will include an ESOP as insured within the definition of a "plan" and or as a "subsidiary." Often you have to make sure … [Read more...]

How Much Insurance Should A Condo Unit Owner Buy?

Client Question: Scott, is there any rule of thumb to estimate the amount of insurance to obtain to cover the interior of a condo unit? Possibly a square footage amount??? My Answer... Not really. Depends on how elaborate the condo is and where it is. I'm working on a condo in NY that is a parking garage - we can't come up with anything … [Read more...]

Civil Money Penalties Update

So, in October the FDIC brought the hammer down on Civil Money Penalties coverage for banks. No, No, and double No. An FDIC bank cannot have civil money penalties attached to their insurance. I'd had conversations a few years prior with FDIC and legal people telling me that the issue was going to be addressed. I started conversations with … [Read more...]