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4800 S Cedar St
Lansing, MI 48910

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Insurance Blog

I just paid off my car. Should I drop full coverage auto insurance?

Auto insurance is a requirement in every state. All drivers are required to carry auto liability insurance coverage. However, there are situations where drivers are required to carry more than auto liability insurance. Our team at Great Lakes State Agency is committed to helping Lansing, MI drivers understand auto insurance and get the coverage they need. 

What is full coverage auto insurance?

Full coverage auto insurance includes both collision and comprehensive insurance in addition to the state minimum required auto liability coverage. Auto liability covers damage and injuries to others when you’re found at fault for an accident. However, auto liability insurance will not cover your injuries or any damage to your car. Both collision and comprehensive auto insurance cover damage sustained by your car, your injuries, non-moving accidents or damages, and theft and vandalism. All of these components comprise full auto insurance coverage. If you have a car loan, it’s likely that your lender requires you to carry full coverage auto insurance. Even if you decide not to carry full coverage auto insurance, auto liability insurance is still required in the state of Michigan. 

I just paid off my car. Should I drop full coverage auto insurance?

It depends. If you paid off your late-model car, it is probably wise to continue to invest in full coverage insurance. It’s likely that any damage your car might sustain in a wreck wouldn’t exceed the value of the car. This means that your insurance would likely pay for the repair or replacement of your car. Conversely, if your car is substantially older or old, the value has diminished substantially. As a result, your insurance premiums should guide whether you continue to invest in full coverage insurance. If your premiums exceed the value of your car, it’s likely your car will be totaled, deemed a total loss if you were in a significant accident. This means that your insurance company would be unwilling to pay for the repair or replacement of your car. Investing in full coverage insurance in this scenario wouldn’t be wise.

If you have questions about full coverage auto insurance, call us at Great Lakes State Agency in Lansing, MI. We’d be happy to help you explore your options. 

Retail Risk Management: The Role of Commercial Insurance for Store Owners

Retail business owners in the Lansing, MI area face various challenges as they strive to provide products and services to their customers while keeping their operations running smoothly. These challenges include competition, changing consumer trends, economic uncertainties, and unforeseen events that disrupt daily activities. Commercial insurance is vital in providing store owners with restoration assurance to manage these risks and ensure business continuity.

Key Components of Commercial Insurance for Store Owners

  • Property Coverage: Retail businesses rely heavily on their physical space, inventory, and equipment. Commercial insurance includes property coverage to protect against losses due to fire, theft, vandalism, and natural disasters. This ensures that a retail store can recover from physical damage quickly.
  • Liability Protection: Store owners interact with customers, employees, suppliers, and other third parties regularly. Liability insurance covers potential claims related to accidents, property damage, or injuries on the store’s premises. This protects retail business owners from costly legal actions and settlements.
  • Business Interruption Coverage: Fires or other events that temporarily force a store to close have a significant financial impact. Business interruption coverage compensates store owners for lost income and additional expenses during downtime, allowing the business to remain financially stable.
  • Product Liability Coverage: Retail stores are responsible for the products they sell. Product liability insurance protects against legal claims from defective products, design flaws, or inadequate warnings. It safeguards store owners from the financial burden of legal issues. 

Customized Policies for Store Owners

Commercial insurance policies can be tailored to retail businesses’ risks. Store owners can effectively select the appropriate coverage levels and endorsements to address their vulnerabilities.

Great Lakes State Agency Can Help You

At Great Lakes State Agency, we can help answer questions concerning commercial insurance. We serve the Lansing, MI area. Contact us today. 

Does home insurance cover dog bites?

Dogs are man’s best friends, but not necessarily the best friend of every person they meet! A home insurance policy is designed to offer homeowners legal and financial protection in the event of a number of incidents, including injuries to another that happen on your property. But what if it’s your property (which pets are according to Lansing, MI and greater Michigan law) causing the damage? Our team at Great Lakes State Agency is here to answer this commonly asked question about home insurance!

Does Home Insurance Cover Dog Bites?

Home insurance policies are generally designed to offer financial and legal protection in the event someone is injured by your dog. A home insurance policy will generally step in to provide medical reimbursements and offer legal aid should that person try and sue you for damages due to their injuries or any injuries sustained by their pet.

However, there are some cases in which a home insurance policy won’t cover dog bite injuries. Let’s take a look at those exceptions:

  • Dog bites the owner or household members. Unfortunately, if your own dog bites you or a household member, your home insurance policy will not take up the claim. You can pursue medical reimbursements through your own health care insurance. 
  • Dog bite from an excluded breed. Many insurance companies are adding certain breeds and crossbreeds to a list of dogs they will not insure because of their heightened risk of causing serious injury. Common examples include pit bulls, bully breed mixes, and rottweilers. 
  • Dog bite from a known aggressive dog. Your home insurance company may pay out for the first bite by your dog, but take care as once a history is known, future situations are unlikely to be covered.

 Learn More With Great Lakes State Agency

For more information about Lansing, MI home insurance policies and what they cover, give our team a call. 

Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage: Why It’s Essential

In the fast-paced world of today, owning a vehicle is a necessity for many. But along with the convenience comes responsibility, especially when it comes to insurance. Unforeseen accidents can happen, and that’s where uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage steps in as a crucial shield.

Protecting Yourself and Your Wallet

Accidents can strike at any moment, and not every driver on the road is adequately insured. Uninsured motorist coverage ensures that if you’re hit by a driver without insurance, your medical bills and property damage can still be covered. Similarly, underinsured motorist coverage kicks in when the at-fault driver’s insurance falls short of covering your expenses. Let Great Lakes State Agency, serving the greater Lansing, MI area, tell you why it’s essential.

The Hidden Dangers

Many assume that all drivers are insured, but the reality is different. According to recent data, a significant number of drivers either carry insufficient insurance or none at all. Without uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, you could find yourself in a tough spot, footing the bill for someone else’s mistake.

Peace of Mind on the Road

Imagine driving with the reassurance that you’re protected from the unexpected. Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage not only shields you financially but also provides peace of mind. Knowing that you won’t be left hanging in a difficult situation can alleviate stress.

Consult With Us

Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage might not be a legal requirement, but it’s a safety net that every responsible driver should consider. It safeguards your finances, shields you from potential pitfalls, and offers the peace of mind you deserve. If you’re ready to learn more about obtaining an auto insurance policy with this type of coverage in Lansing, MI, reach out to Great Lakes State Agency today.

Commercial Vehicle Insurance Is An Important Part of Your Business’s Financial Protection

If your business utilizes vehicles for delivery or other purposes, you may be at risk for expensive losses from damage to a person or property. Commercial vehicle insurance is designed to cover these risks, so you can keep your company on steady financial footing.  At Great Lakes State Agency in Lansing, MI, we provide commercial vehicle policies to help protect Michigan businesses against expensive losses.

Business Vehicle Accidents Are Common

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration notes that vehicle accidents are among the leading causes of injuries on the job. In addition, millions of dollars in damage result from vehicles engaged in work-related tasks occur each year. Without commercial vehicle coverage, businesses would be liable to cover the costs of damage to persons and property caused by their vehicles.

What You Should Know About Commercial Vehicle Insurance

Commercial vehicle coverage protects your business against expensive costs for medical care and liability settlements if an employee driving one of your vehicles injures someone. It provides protection from lawsuits that could devastate your company financially. It also covers damage to property that might result from a vehicle accident.

Commercial vehicle policies also include uninsured motorist coverage and comprehensive coverage against theft, flooding, fire, and other perils.

Choose Great Lakes State Agency for Commercial Vehicle Insurance

Our agents can help you find the coverage that’s right for your unique business needs. We offer a variety of policies for homes, businesses, autos, motorcycles, boats, and RVs. Contact Great Lakes State Agency in Lansing, MI for a no-obligation quote on commercial vehicle insurance that can help your business maintain financial stability. 

Four special features your home insurance policy should include

It’s important that you’re aware of all the home insurance features that are available. If you have questions about home insurance features that are available in the Lansing, MI metroplex, we can answer them at Great Lakes State Agency.

The following are four special features your home insurance policy should include:

Additional living expense coverage

Home insurance policies can offer additional living expense coverage that pays for a hotel or another temporary rental if the insured property becomes uninhabitable due to damage. 

This type of coverage minimizes the stress and expense of experiencing a severe accident in your home that makes it so that you’re temporarily unable to live there. 

Coverage for additional structures

If you have outbuildings on your property, you should look into coverage for additional structures. This will cover damage to detached garages, barns, sheds, and more. 

Personal property coverage

Home insurance doesn’t just protect your home’s structure. It also protects the personal belongings that you keep in your home. However, home insurance only insures personal property up to a certain amount.

It’s always a good idea to evaluate your personal belongings and make sure that your home insurance offers enough personal property coverage to insure the full value of your belongings. 

Added liability coverage

When you buy home insurance, you’ll have the option of choosing from among a variety of liability coverage options.

You should probably invest in added liability coverage and not just purchase the lowest amount of liability coverage. Lawsuits can get expensive, so it can really pay off to invest in additional liability coverage that will protect your assets. 

We Are Here To Help

We will help you find the right home insurance policy for your needs. Homeowners in Lansing, MI can get in touch with us at Great Lakes State Agency to get a policy quote today!

Auto Insurance Coverage and Rental Cars

When it comes to rental cars and auto insurance, there’s more to the story than meets the eye. Understanding the intricacies of coverage is essential to ensure you’re fully protected on the road. At Great Lakes State Agency, serving the Lansing, MI metroplex, we offer valuable information to help you make informed decisions about auto insurance and rental cars.

Rental Car Coverage: What’s Included?

Before renting a car, knowing what your existing auto insurance policy covers is crucial. Many policies provide coverage for rental vehicles, including liability, comprehensive, and collision coverage. However, it’s always best to review your policy or speak with our insurance agent to determine the extent of your coverage.

Additional Coverage Options

While your existing auto insurance may cover rental cars, you might want to consider additional coverage options for added peace of mind. Rental car agencies typically offer supplementary protection such as Loss Damage Waiver (LDW), Supplemental Liability Protection (SLP), and Personal Accident Insurance (PAI). These extra coverages can help fill gaps in your current policy and safeguard against potential financial losses.

Credit Card Benefits

Many credit card companies provide rental car insurance benefits as part of their cardholder agreements. The benefits may include collision and theft protection. Check with your credit card issuer to understand the specific coverage offered and any applicable limitations or exclusions.

Understanding the Fine Print

Read and understand the rental agreement carefully to avoid unexpected expenses and complications. In addition, keep an eye out for terms and conditions related to insurance coverage, such as deductibles, limitations, and exclusions. This knowledge will help you decide better about your insurance needs when renting a car.

Take Charge of Your Auto Insurance Needs

Don’t let confusion or uncertainty about rental car coverage slow you down. Instead, equip yourself with the knowledge you need to make informed decisions and enjoy peace of mind on the road. Reach out to us today at Great Lakes State Agency in Lansing, MI to discuss your auto insurance and rental car needs, and let’s work together to find the perfect solution for you.

How much commercial insurance do I need?

As a business owner in Lansing, MI, it’s essential to have general liability insurance as it safeguards you from claims arising from bodily injury or property damage on your premises. Great Lakes State Agency is here to assist you in determining the necessary coverage amount and additional coverage opportunities, called endorsements, to enhance your business protection.

80/20 Rule for Commercial Insurance

The 80/20 rule is a salient reference for business insurance coverage. This means you need the right coverage for 80% of the risks you’re exposed to, but you don’t necessarily need full coverage for every risk. For instance, if you run a restaurant, you likely need coverage for slips, trips, and falls, but you may not need coverage for equipment breakdowns. This rule can determine your business’s right general liability coverage.

Understanding your coverage needs requires identifying the risk associated with your business. Consider the size of your business, the number of employees, and the overall amount of foot traffic to determine the level of risk. This risk evaluation lets you determine which coverage to include in your insurance package.

Endorsements for Added Protection

You can add endorsements to your general policy to protect specific risks relevant to your business, such as fire damage, liquor liability, employment practices, cyber-attacks, or identity theft.

Great Lakes State Agency can help you define the right amount of coverage for your commercial needs in the Lansing, MI area. By analyzing your business, they can suggest the right types of coverage and any endorsements that could benefit you. Customizing your insurance coverage ensures that you’re fully protected, giving you peace of mind knowing that your business is secure.

Three Things You Might Not Know About Home Insurance

The more you understand about home insurance, the better equipped you will be to deal with it. Great Lakes State Agency in Lansing, MI is here to help. 

Here are three facts about the subject that you may not be aware of:

Your Insurer Needs to Have a Good Reason to Drop Your Coverage. 

We hear about insurers abruptly terminating coverage, but the truth is that they are required by law to provide a reason. An insurer who is careless about dropping a customer may face heavy fines and lawsuits as a result of their efforts.

You Can Reopen Old Claims

You may be able to reopen a claim even after you’ve been reimbursed in some cases. Often, you won’t know the full extent of the damage until repairs begin, in which case you may be able to get supplemental payment from your insurer.

Your Insurer May Limit Your Deductible

Different insurers have different limits. Typically, most insurers will not allow you to set your deductible higher than $1,200. Lower premiums result from higher deductibles and vice versa. But, of course, there has to be a limit somewhere — both for the sake of your insurer and for your own. You don’t want to file a claim only to discover that your deductible is several times the amount of your damages.

You don’t have to be an expert, but it’s always a good idea to do some research before spending money on something. This is especially true for home insurance.

Reach Out To Us

To learn more about home insurance or to get a free quote, contact Great Lakes State Agency today. Our agents are proudly serving the Lansing, MI region and can help answer any and all of your insurance-related questions. Call us today to find a policy that best fits your needs!

Safety Tips for New Drivers (and Why You Need Auto Insurance)

For many teenagers, driving is a right of passage and an expression of freedom. The same is true for folks who start driving later in life. A vehicle offers mobility and can open up many avenues. That said, it’s important to exercise safe driving habits and also to carry car insurance. If you’d like to discuss auto insurance, get in touch with Great Lakes State Agency, serving Lansing, MI.

Safety Driving Tips Everyone Should Know

The most obvious driving safety tip is to follow the laws. This includes posted speed limits, traffic lights, passing rules, and more. By following the law, new drivers can avoid mishaps. If a driver breaks the law and is ticketed, it might cause many problems, including rising auto insurance premiums.

Wearing a seat belt may seem overly cautious to some. However, seat belts have saved hundreds of thousands of lives so far. If you do get into a car accident, you’ll be thankful that you were wearing a seat belt.

It’s smart to practice driving in different road conditions, such as during rainstorms or on snowy streets. When you’re learning, you’ll want to take it slow so that you can get used to how the vehicle handles in such conditions.

Further, drivers should be defensive, meaning they should watch out for other drivers and risk factors. They should also maintain a considerable amount of distance between their vehicle and the car in front of them.

Auto Insurance Increases Safety Too

Car insurance provides protection. If you get in a car accident, your insurance plan may cover some of the costs, such as medical and repair costs. The insurance company might also cover legal costs if someone tries to sue a driver. That said, make sure you examine each individual plan to see what is covered. Contact Great Lakes State Agency, serving Lansing, MI, to discuss auto insurance options.

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