Greetings from your agents at Chesterfield Insurers! We all hope you had a wonderful Holiday Season! Time spent with family at this time of year is important and we want you to make the most of it.

We all reach the new year with great expectations for new projects, activities, weight loss and other things as we resolve to “do better” in the new year. Some years we can accomplish some things we resolve to change. Other times we set our goals too high and really have no expectation of ever reaching our goals. If you are reading this newsletter, rest assured the author has done the same thing! But I want you to know that if you spend a part of your time “giving back” to your community by volunteering, you are already doing more than 90% of others are doing! Thank you for doing that!

One thing you can resolve to do is set aside a little more time for your volunteering efforts. I know…time is more valuable today than yesterday, but those you help cannot do without it. You probably cannot spend more time running the calls, but you can spend more time training to provide better service to those you serve. We want to make it easier for you to do that.

Because you have insurance through us (the ESIP program), you can take over 300 online course offerings that help you provide better and safer (fewer claims) service to your citizens. Our online offerings run the gamut of service-related offerings. From fire to EMS, from safety to driving, there is something for everyone. If you are an EMT, you can even get CE hours for most of it.

Beyond that, you can resolve to do more in person training to help those you serve. We offer free training in person for EVOC, Trailering, Basic and Advanced UTV operations, Farm Medic and others. Reach out and we can have Rick Talley give you a call to set up an in-person class. All we need is a commitment for 15 to 20 folks to attend.

Being knowledgeable and being safe does several things. It enables you to provide better services. It enables you to come home to your family after making that run. And it keeps your equipment in service and your premiums down. Let us help you do that. Resolve to put in a little more time and it will pay off for your citizens, your agency and most of all, you. Thank you for all you do!

Rest assured; we are all here to help you carry out your mission to your community. And we always want you to be able to do that with the assurance you have the most comprehensive coverage for your agency and members. We also want to make sure that coverage has the most minimal impact on your budget.

Thans for all you do. Stays safe!

Greetings from your agents at Chesterfield Insurers! We hope you are all doing well and getting ready for time with family and friends as we enjoy the Holiday Season!

We wanted to let you know about some benefits we have for your members that many do not think about. We all know how dangerous fire and rescue services are, whether you serve as a career or a volunteer. We all know how the materials we deal with are causing more and more health problems down the road after years of service for fire and rescue personnel. We have some solutions that come at a low cost for your members to protect them from medical problems that occur down the road.

There are several different products out there that have a low per member cost for an annual benefit. We wanted to briefly describe them to you here. If you have questions or an interest, reach out to your agent for more details.

Group Life Insurance: Just like what you get at work, this is a life insurance product that costs about $131 per member per year. There is no age limit and no medicals. It pays $10,000 for a natural death, $20,000 for an accidental death and $30,000 for a line of duty death.

Critical Illness/Cancer Coverage: This is also a group benefit. The agency pays a set price per member per year for a stated amount of coverage. There are no medicals involved. If the member suffers a heart attack, stroke, organ failure or is diagnosed with cancer, the policy pays the chosen coverage amount. For example, for a $10,000 benefit, the cost is $140 per member.

Group Accident: Covers deductibles, co-pays and out of pocket costs for an accidental injury. The cost is $117 per member per year.

Short Term Disability: Covers a chosen benefit for 3 months when out of work. For example, for a $500/week benefit with a 14-day elimination period, it costs $90 per member per year.

We know it is hard to retain members. These are a few low-cost benefits you can provide your members to help keep them after you train them. These benefits also help with those issues that come up down the road. We would love to give you more information. Reach out for more information! We wish you all a safe and enjoyable Holiday Season!

Greetings from your agents at Chesterfield Insurers! We all hope you are having a safe and enjoyable summer. Time spent with family at this time of year is important and we want you to make the most of it.

I wanted to take a moment to talk about losses and the impact they have on insurance premiums. When you purchase an insurance policy it is rated based on the nature of your business, how busy you are and the likelihood of losses. Policy holders that have no losses generally see increases only based on changes to the policy. A simple loss or two that are not large generally do not have an impact on your future premiums.

It is usually only when the carrier sees a problem with claims being filed frequently or if you have multiple large claims do you see negative impacts on your premiums. True, insurance is there to cover the “what ifs,” but when underwriters generate premiums, they are done based on the market norms. So, the goal is always to be within what is normal for your particular risk.

What can you do to avoid these negative impacts? The best way to avoid issues is through loss control efforts within your organization. Make sure your SOPs are up to date and on point. Make sure your drivers are qualified to operate your apparatus. Assure that all members are aware of the policies in place and always follow them. When I served on the local school board years ago, an attorney always told us “1. Have a policy; 2. Know your policy & 3. Follow your policy.” This does not mean you can always avoid negative situations, but it puts you in the best position to avoid those situations.

The ESIP.Com web site has many suggestions on helping with loss control. You will also find a library of sample polices to help with most situations. If you do not see a sample policy that addresses your concern, let us know and we will help you draft one. The online learning library is also an invaluable resource for addressing situations that may help avoid claims. You can also use the classes for remediation if someone is responsible for a claim you encounter.

Rest assured; we are all here to help you carry out your mission to your community. And we always want you to be able to do that with the assurance you have the most comprehensive coverage for your agency and members. We also want to make sure that coverage has the most minimal impact on your budget.

Thans for all you do. Stays safe!

Greetings from your agents at Chesterfield Insurers! Summer has arrived! We all hope you are enjoying your time with family and maybe a little time off from work duties!

I know you have all witnessed the unprecedented increase in the cost of acquiring vehicles since COVID. I have been volunteering since 1981 and I have never seen increases so dramatic and so fast in all my years of serving. The “metal shortages” witnessed back at the turn of the century brought some increases, but nothing as drastic as what we have seen in the last year and a half.

Unfortunately, industry experts do not see any retreat in pricing in the future. In fact, with new emissions standards coming in just a few years prices will only continue to rise. The situation is also affecting the used apparatus market, driving those prices up as well.

This brings up the reason for this column. How long has it been since you have looked at the value you have your vehicles insured for. As you know your policy has an “agreed value” coverage for your emergency vehicles. This means you can insure a twenty-year-old truck that may have a cash value of $25,000 for the full cost of replacement. This means you have enough in the event of a total loss to buy something of higher value than what the cash value of your truck is.

I would speculate that based on current cost new, you may have values too low to even approach replacing a truck with something new. In fact, because the cost of used vehicles has also skyrocketed, you may not even have enough to purchase a good used replacement. I would encourage you to reach out to your agent. Have them provide a list of your current values. Then, review them and make any necessary changes. Remember, you can insure to replace with something new, you can insure for a value to purchase something used or you can just insure for cash value. The choice is yours.

I know the price of keeping up means higher premiums. However, you do not want to be caught short if you have a total loss. Paying slightly more for premiums may be easier than going to your operating budget should you have a total loss. We are here to help. Reach out for more information! Have a safe Summer

Greetings from your agents at Chesterfield Insurers! We hope you are all doing well and getting ready for summertime fun!

We wanted to let you know about some benefits we have for your members that will help with retention. As volunteer agencies, your members join without expecting a paycheck. That is a given. But there are some things you can do for the benefit of your members and their families as a “thank you” for what they do that may make a difference about a member leaving or staying.

There are several different products out there that have a low per member cost for an annual benefit. We wanted to briefly describe them to you here. If you have questions or an interest, reach out to your agent for more details.

Group Life Insurance: Just like what you get at work, this is a life insurance product that costs about $131 per member per year. There is no age limit and no medicals. It pays $10,000 for a natural death, $20,000 for an accidental death and $30,000 for a line of duty death.

Critical Illness/Cancer Coverage: This is also a group benefit. The agency pays a set price per member per year for a stated amount of coverage. There are no medicals involved. If the member suffers a heart attack, stroke, organ failure or is diagnosed with cancer, the policy pays the chosen coverage amount. For example, for a $10,000 benefit, the cost is $140 per member.

Group Accident: Covers deductibles, co-pays and out of pocket costs for an accidental injury. The cost is $117 per member per year.

Short Term Disability: Covers a chosen benefit for 3 months when out of work. For example, for a $500/week benefit with a 14-day elimination period, it costs $90 per member per year.

We know it is hard to retain members. These are a few low-cost benefits you can provide your members to help keep them after you train them. Reach out for more information! Have a safe Summer!

Your Property and Casualty Insurance is just a small part of what you get for your dollar here at Chesterfield. Along with the personal service you get from your agent, our underwriting team and our claims staff, we offer in-person training for your membership as well as your surrounding departments.

As an insured with an ESIP plan, you have the opportunity to receive instruction for many different topics relative to your mission. We provide training for EVOC (office of EMS and Fire Programs approved), UTV/ATV Basic Ops, UTV/ATV Advanced Ops, Trailering and Farm Extrication. All classes are free for member agencies. Member agencies must sponsor the class. Other agencies can participate in a class that is sponsored by a member agency.

Rick Talley, retired Chesterfield County Deputy Fire Chief, is our instructor. He is available throughout the year to provide this training for you. He recently completed the first Farm Extrication training for agencies in Washington County. Please look at our Facebook page and see pictures from the completed training.

We are here for you. We want you to be the best at what you do for your citizens every day! Please let us know if there are other offerings you would like to see Rick deliver in the State.

As your insurance representatives and as local volunteers, we are always in search of the latest benefits for you to provide your membership. We know, that as volunteers, it is hard to find things to do the members as a “thank you” for serving the community. We are excited to announce that we have teamed with a national life insurance carrier to provide group benefits for your members.

With an exclusive arrangement for our Virginia customers, we can now offer guaranteed issue coverage on a group rated policy basis. As you know, Cancer is a big issue in the fire service. We now have a Critical Illness/Cancer policy that pays a lump sum benefit upon diagnosis. It will actually pay on multiple diagnosis. The benefits range from $5,000 to $20,000 per diagnosis.

We also now have a short-term disability product to help if a non-volunteer accident or sickness prevents you from working. It pays, depending on the benefit selected $500 or $1000 a week for up to three months if you are out of work.

IF this sounds like something that will help your members and will help your agency with recruitment or retention, please give us a call. Better yet, if you are in Virginia Beach for the Fire Chief’s conference, stop by and see us!

As always, we are constantly working t make sure our family has the coverages they need. Should you have any questions, please reach out to your agent or any of us to help!

Thank you for serving your communities and allowing us to serve you!

In Virginia, volunteer fire and rescue agencies are not required to have Workman Compensation Coverage.   Due to expense and lost income replacement that in most cases does not meet the need of the injured member, most agencies opt for Accident and Medical plans that meet the needs of the injured member in a more realistic fashion.  

A new area of coverage that has emerged over the years is coverage for PTSD or Critical Incident coverage.     In the past, ways to handle these incidents have been limited.   With the uptick in request for assistance carriers are starting to look for ways to assist with these incidents.   Starting with our January Hartford renewals, we are pleased to announce there are coverage options that will be automatically added to your policy. 

Now, you will have the following coverages added to your policy.  For a PTSD benefit, the member will  have coverage for up to 10 sessions to treat PTSD per the policy terms.   For Critical Incident Counseling, the member will have up to 10 sessions for treatment per the policy terms.  Additionally, the policy provides for a triticale incident team to address the department per the policy terms.  

This is great news considering the increase in calls for assistance with this type of service.   It is important to note that with the addition of these enhancements, you will also now have a new policy number.  

As always, we are constantly working t make sure our family has the coverages they need.  Should you have any questions, please reach out to your agent or any of us to help! 

Thank you for serving your communities and allowing us to serve you!