Insurance Blog

3 Risks of not Carrying Auto Insurance

Do you have a vehicle? Great! But do you have valid auto insurance coverage? Owning a car used to be considered a luxury, but nowadays, it’s associated with comfort and convenience. And as more cars fill our roads, we need to be sure that we don’t forget one thing: Auto insurance. While everything is competing for your dollar, car insurance shouldn’t be one of those expenses you shove down your priority list. Why? Failing to buy car insurance from an insurance agent like Harris Insurance of Jasper, AL, will lead to the following consequences.

Heavy fines and penalties

Alabama State requires every motorist to have car insurance as long as they are driving on public roads. Below are the likely consequences of driving without valid auto insurance.

  • Fines of between $500 and $1,000
  • License suspension 
  • Jail time of between three and six months
  • Vehicle impoundment

The severity of your fines and penalties depends on your driving record. Given the severe penalties you face, why would you risk driving without auto insurance, yet you can purchase coverage from us? 

Pay losses to other people

The beauty of car insurance is that it has liability coverage that covers property damage, bodily injuries, and even legal suits for accidents you cause. Unfortunately, without car insurance, you will have to pay third-party costs out-of-pocket for accidents you are deemed liable for. 

Uncovered losses for own damage

When involved in an accident, property damage and injuries don’t occur to other people only. Your vehicle can suffer damage, and you and your passengers can sustain injuries. Without car insurance, you will have to incur medical expenses and vehicle repair costs from your pocket. Worse yet, in case of a severe accident, your car may suffer a total loss. If you need another car, you will have to finance it out-of-pocket.

Buy car insurance today!

If you have been driving without car insurance, don’t let another day pass. Please contact Harris Insurance, serving Jasper, AL for an affordable quote.

Commercial Insurance: What Basic Coverages Do You Need?

If you operate a business in Jasper, AL, you obviously understand all the risks and uncertainties you face every day. To be on the safer side, it is always necessary to make sure that you have a commercial insurance policy that helps you to cover possible damages. Harris Insurance has highlighted some of the basic coverage that you should expect from a commercial insurance policy. 

Business Income Coverage

Commercial insurance can be one of the best ways to recover lost income that usually occurs when natural disasters have disrupted your business operations. For example, if a natural calamity like a flood or earthquake has a significant impact on your business, it is the commercial insurance policy that will reimburse all the income you will lose for the length of the time the company will not be operating.

Business Property Coverage

For every business to operate effectively, there are very many valuable assets and properties that are involved. Buildings, land, machinery, and other tools are valuable assets that help the company continue operating. With commercial insurance, all these essential assets for business operations will be protected against possible theft, fire, vandalism, and natural calamities.

Employee Health Coverage

There is always a chance that workers will get injured or sick when working in a commercial facility. It is the business’s responsibility to cater to medical expenses for all the injuries that employees might get at the company. Commercial health insurance will help in covering additional health issues such as disability compensation and income replacement.

Do You Need Commercial Insurance?

Harris Insurance knows that many companies in Jasper, AL that operate without a commercial insurance policy. This is a dangerous issue as it can easily affect the operations of the company. However, having a good commercial policy helps in addressing some problems addressed above. Contact us today for more information about commercial insurance.

Do you have enough home liability insurance to cover your risks

Home insurance is not just one type of coverage; it has multiple protections it offers. None of it is required except by a lender. No state requires you to carry home insurance. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t carry it if you don’t have a home loan. Risks to your home and assets are abundant, and making sure you are prepared for anything that might happen is essential. Having a home insurance policy that offers adequate protection is vital to your peace of mind. At Harris Insurance in Jasper, AL, we have served hundreds of customers since 1980.

When accessing your need for liability insurance, several things need to be considered, including your net worth. The more you are worth, the more attractive you are to someone who might want to sue you. If you have a sizable net worth, your liability coverage should reflect it, and you should probably consider an umbrella policy as well. 

Pets are common additions to families, and they are a liability. Make sure your agent knows the number and breed of dogs you have. Some breeds of dogs are considered such high-risk, insurance carriers won’t cover them. 

Having a backyard pool can provide your family with a great entertaining space, but it does add to your liability risks. Be sure to follow all the local safety ordinances and have appropriate fencing installed. Someone injured in your pool does not have to be a guest. 

Trampolines are very popular with children, and they offer a very high injury risk. Making sure they have safety nets can reduce the risk. 

Contact Harris Insurance in Jasper, AL when you are looking for a home insurance policy. As an independent agency, we offer multiple carriers that allow us to shop for the best prices. 

A Guide To Help Alabama Residents Find The Right Auto Insurance Policy

Harris Insurance serves the Jasper, AL community, as well as the surrounding areas. For over 30 years, we have helped our clients find policies that suit their individual situations. We have positive relationships with multiple carriers in the area.

Auto Insurance Options

As a local Jasper, AL driver, you face multiple risks while you are on the road. Accidents can happen at any time. Auto insurance helps you prepare in the event of a disaster. Primarily, the coverage protects you if you are involved in a collision. Auto insurance helps alleviate some of the stress in the aftermath of a collision because your damages are covered. You are also covered if your vehicle is stolen or vandalized.

Comprehensive Coverage

Comprehensive coverage protects you if your vehicle is damaged due to a fire or inclement weather. This is especially important because the weather in Alabama can be severe at times. You are also covered if your vehicle suffers damage due to a flying object.

Liability Coverage

Liability coverage is one of the most important parts of the policy. You are covered if you are held responsible for the damages that occur as a result of being in an accident. The policy also protects you if a passenger in your vehicle suffers an injury.

Extra Coverage

You can amend your auto insurance policy to cover you in multiple ways. If you add any custom accessories to your vehicle, you will have to amend your policy to cover you if they are stolen or damaged. You can also add emergency coverage to protect you if you suffer a flat tire or a dead battery. You will receive urgent roadside assistance. If your vehicle suffers serious damages, you can add rental coverage so that you can receive a temporary ride while your vehicle is being repaired.

Harris Insurance Will Help You Protect What Matters Most

Visit our website today to learn more information about auto insurance.

Required Commercial Insurance in Alabama

Small businesses in Alabama should have several different commercial insurance types, but only two are required for most businesses. With workers’ compensation and commercial auto insurance policies in place, most small businesses have the coverage legally required to do business in Alabama. If you need coverage for your business, call us at Harris Insurance in Jasper, AL.

Workers’ Compensation Insurance

Some of the smallest businesses don’t have to have this coverage, but any business with at least five employees must keep this insurance. The five employees may be part-time or full-time, and they include members of an LLC or officers of a corporation. This insurance coverage pays the medical bills of workers who become injured or get sick while at work. This coverage keeps your business able to pay those bills so that you won’t have to pay out of pocket from company funds.

Commercial Auto Coverage

Any vehicle owned by a business in Alabama has to have a commercial auto insurance policy on it. There is the minimum required coverage amounts for any property damage done by the accident and the amount it will pay for bodily injury for one person and bodily injury for two or more people. This coverage is the only type that will pay for these expenses, as personal auto insurance will not pay out for accidents that happen on the job. This is also a good reason to get a policy called hired and non-owned for any vehicle you use for business but is not owned by the business. 

Get Your Business Covered

If your company doesn’t have the proper insurance in place, or you want to add optional coverage types, contact us at Harris Insurance in Jasper, AL to talk to an agent about your needed coverage. 

What is an Escrow Account and What Impact Does it Have for Home Insurance?

If you plan to buy a home or recently have, the term escrow account should be ingrained in your brain. In its simplest form, an escrow is a legal agreement where a third party takes custody of a large sum of money or property until a predetermined condition has been met, which could be purchasing a new home. For real estate, escrow accounts have two main purposes:

  1. Home Buying: Protects both the buyer and the seller by holding a deposit in a separate account in good faith.
  2. Taxes & Insurance: May be required by a mortgage lender whereby a portion of your monthly payment for your home is set aside in a separate account out of which your homeowner’s insurance and property taxes are paid.

When you buy a home, your purchase agreement will likely include language around a good faith deposit, otherwise known as earnest money, which protects both the buyer and seller. For instance, if the deal falls through because of the buyer, the seller usually gets to keep the earnest money. In addition to earnest money, your mortgage lender may also establish an escrow account used to pay for homeowner insurance and property taxes. Given that your tax bill and homeowners insurance can either increase or decrease from one year to the next, this amount can change over the lifetime of your loan. 

At Harris Insurance in Jasper, AL, our talented and knowledgeable team of insurance professionals will walk you through every step of the process to find the right homeowner’s insurance policy and answer your questions on escrow accounts. Give us a call today to learn more. 

What type of auto insurance do I need to have in Alabama

Like almost every other state in the union, Alabama has mandated auto insurance requirements. Given the necessity of having available transportation to so many aspects of life, ensuring you have auto insurance that you can trust at a price you can afford is necessary. In Jasper, AL, Harris Insurance is a trusted independent insurance agency with 50 years of quality service experience. We treat every customer with respect, and we listen to your needs, both insurance and financial, and find the carrier that will meet those needs.

In the state of Alabama, all drivers must carry liability insurance. The amount required is 25/50/25. This is $25,000 for injury or death to the other party in the accident, with a total for each accident of $50,000. This insurance pays medical bills, lost wages, and in the event of a suit against you for suffering and pain up to the amount on the policy. The property coverage must be $25,000.

If you choose not to carry liability insurance, the consequences can be quite serious. The first offense may result in a $500 fine, and the second offense rises to $1000 and a six-month suspension of your license. Your auto registration will also be suspended, and a $200 reinstatement fee collect for the first offense and $400 for subsequent offenses. 

It is estimated 22% of Alabama drivers are uninsured, making it the 6th worst state in the country. Having uninsured or underinsured motorist insurance is not required, but it makes perfect sense to protect yourself against these drivers. 

If you need auto insurance today or are considering changing agencies or carriers, Harris Insurance in Jasper, AL is the place to go. We are here for you today and tomorrow. Give us a call or come to our office and let us give you a free quote.

Three misconceptions about commercial insurance you should know about

Business owners need to be well informed when they make decisions regarding commercial insurance coverage. Luckily, we offer commercial insurance coverage at Harris Insurance.

Unfortunately, there are some widespread misconceptions out there regarding commercial coverage. As a business owner, you need to be aware of these misconceptions. The following are three misconceptions about commercial insurance you should know about.

I don’t need errors and omissions coverage unless I’m working as a doctor or lawyer.

Errors and omissions coverage is a good thing to have if you’re involved with any business that involves giving advice. You could potentially be sued if a client is paying for your advice regarding their health or finances.

Errors and omissions coverage can provide you with valuable protection against expensive lawsuits. 

My homeowner’s insurance coverage will cover me for claims against a home-based business.

Some homeowners who run a home-based business make the incorrect assumption that their home insurance will cover their business activities. This is not typically the case. Homeowners insurance won’t provide coverage for a lawsuit or any liability issue against a home-based business. 

My commercial property insurance will cover flood damage.

If you own a home, you may already be aware of the fact that a standard home insurance policy will not protect against flood damage. Commercial property insurance coverage works the same way.

If your commercial facility is located in an area with flood risk, you should invest in a flood damage policy. Your commercial property insurance will not pay for damage to your commercial property caused by flooding. 

Contact us to learn more about commercial insurance in Jasper, AL. We’re here to answer your questions and provide you with assistance at Harris Insurance.

Three mistakes to avoid when you purchase home insurance in Alabama

Investing in quality home insurance is essential for homeowners in Jasper, AL. At Harris Insurance, we’re here to help you meet your home insurance needs in Alabama. 

Unfortunately, Alabama homeowners frequently make home insurance policy mistakes that hurt them financially down the road. The following are three mistakes to avoid when you purchase home insurance in Alabama. 

Failing to invest in flood insurance coverage

Flood insurance is vital for homeowners in any part of Alabama. Alabama homes can be especially susceptible to flood damage. This is especially true for those living in coastal areas or along the shores of any of the state’s many rivers and lakes. 

As a homeowner, you should know that a home insurance policy doesn’t typically include flood coverage. You need to purchase add-on flood insurance coverage for your home insurance policy. 

Purchasing an inadequate amount of coverage

Make sure you have enough coverage to compensate you for the costs of damage to your home. Ideally, you want to have a policy with coverage maximums large enough to compensate you for the full value of your property in the event of catastrophic damage. 

Choosing a deductible amount that’s too high

Because home damage is especially common in Alabama, it’s crucial to anticipate claims on your home insurance policy. This means opting for a lower deductible amount.

If your deductible amount is too high, claims on your policy could create financial hardship for you. It might be better to pay a few dollars more in premiums every month so that the deductible you need to pay in the event of home damage isn’t too much for your budget. 

Find the right home insurance policy to protect your home in Jasper, AL. Get started with our help at Harris Insurance. Contact us with your questions and inquiries. 

What Vehicles Have the Highest Insurance Premiums

When it comes to insuring your vehicle, it shouldn’t be too surprising that the most expensive cars to maintain are all high-performance sports cars. Not only are these cars far more costly than your everyday sedan or SUV, but also the high quality of parts and the need for mechanics who can work on them, make these vehicles costlier to repair. Keep reading to learn about the three of the most expensive vehicles to insure. 

BMW I8

Topping the list is BMW’s revolutionary I8 featuring head-turning styling and a state of the art powertrain that delivers heart-stopping performance in an environmentally friendly package. With a price tag starting at nearly $150,000, the I8 is likely unattainable for the vast majority of the population, but if you have a chance to get behind the wheel, you won’t be disappointed in the performance. 

Maserati Quattroporte

Typically known for producing two-door coupes, the Quattroporte is Maserati’s answer to four-door luxury sedans. Handmade in Italy, the Quattroporte may not be the most expensive car on this list with a price tag starting just south of $100,000. Still, given the high cost required to replace parts directly from the factory, it’s not surprising how expensive this vehicle is to insure. 

Nissan GTR

With 565 horsepower under the hood, the GTR delivers incredible performance that is on par with a Ferrari or Lamborghini at a fraction of the cost. Featuring a tenacious V6 nad one of the best all-wheel-drive systems available, the GTR offers an impressive package of speed, handling, and fun.

When it comes to shopping for auto insurance in Jasper, AL, the team at Harris Insurance is ready to assist. Our team of friendly insurance professionals will work to find you the best policy possible that meets all your needs. Give us a call today to make an appointment to learn about all of the insurance offerings we have available. 

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