Brokers can profit by providing your customers with the information they need about Paid Family Leave.
Last year, New York State announced new Paid Family Leave regulations to be phased in over four years starting in January 2018.
The regulations would give New York families the best coverage in any state, surpassing even California, which currently has the most generous PFL laws in the country.
To recap what Paid Family Leave provides to employees (from our April blog post, which you can read here):
PFL mandates up to 12 weeks of job-protected, paid leave for all New York employees, regardless of the size of the company, for any of the following reasons:
Draft of PFL Regulations Released
Yesterday, the State of New York governor’s office published an important press release outlining developments in the PFL law, as well as a draft of parts of the new PFL regulations. The regulations are now in an important, 45-day pubic commenting period, so changes can still be made. One of our top carriers, Shelterpoint, compiled the regulations in an easy to read format.
Local Change Sets an Example for the Nation
Described as the “nation’s strongest and most comprehensive Paid Family Leave policy,” the policy seeks to support our state’s working families. While past presidential administrations, both Republican and Democrat, have touted support for women and families, the fact is, the U.S. has failed when it comes to putting the legislation in place to support parents and other caregivers.
New York’s PFL policy, like those of California, Rhode Island, and New Jersey, creates a benchmark for other states to follow in providing families with the financial support they need when caring for children and the elderly, and to assist military families in their times of need.
What PFL Means to New York Insurance Brokers
PFL is mandated insurance coverage, just like NYS DBL. Employers will be turning to their DBL insurance providers for the information they need. Obviously, writing PFL policies represents another stream of revenue for brokers—and because it’s mandatory, it’s an easy sell. Your customers know and trust you. They will come to you with questions. It’s important to be prepared with the right answers.
That’s where The DBL Center comes in. We are your back-office for insurance sales and service, including DBL, ancillary benefits, and now, PFL coverage.
What We Know Right Now About PFL in New York
We know that the new insurance will be employee-funded and community rated, but we don’t yet know the rates. It will be up to carriers to set commissions, which will be dependent on the state-mandated rates in order to keep this employee-funded coverage affordable.
As always, the best way to make money on these policies is to bundle them with other coverage to maximize commissions. Rely on The DBL Center as your back office staff to do the legwork, so you can optimize your time and maximize your profits.
We urge our brokers to read through the regulations, think about them carefully, and propose suggested changes in writing, which will serve to benefit insurance brokers and their customers.
Most importantly, keep an eye on this site to read the latest news and developments about PFL in New York. The times they are a’changing, as they say.
by Dawn Allcot
Even with Trump’s proposed tax code changes, term life and Group Life / AD&D still a safe bet.
Are you a property & casualty, disability, or health insurance broker looking for new revenue streams? Life insurance might just represent another avenue to increase your book of business.
According to the Insurance Barometer Study, conducted jointly by not-for-profit research industry trade association LIMRA and the non-profit educational organization Life Happens, today’s consumers not only are receptive to life insurance purchases, but are also vocal advocates for it.
According to the study:
Surprisingly, the younger generation seems to show a maturity beyond its years, with 77 percent of millennials saying they recommend owning life insurance.
Life Insurance Purchases in the Trump Era
Although the study concluded in mid-2016, the new political climate and proposed tax changes should not affect the decision to buy life insurance. As life insurance broker Chris Acker states on LinkedIn:
“Regardless of tax reform possibilities, if you need life insurance, then BUY life insurance. Don’t put off protecting the very family that means the world to you just because a tax change ‘might’ happen.”
It’s hard to argue with that logic, and, as a broker, if you spot this gap in your customers’ coverage, it’s your responsibility to point it out and provide them with options.
But how could new tax code affect life insurance purchases? For the vast majority of term-life and Group Life / AD&D policy holders, the answer is: It won’t.
We’re not tax advisors, and you should speak to your accountant or a tax attorney if you’re considering investing in permanent (i.e. “whole” or “cash value”) life insurance. If Trump’s tax code passes, it could eliminate the tax-free build-up that is a major incentive to invest in whole life.
If you own a cash value policy, you can borrow money up to the amount you’ve paid into the policy without any tax penalties. In 2017 and beyond, if Trump’s proposed policy passes, that money would be taxed.
But if you’re purchasing a term life policy, universal policy, or investing in Group Life / AD&D with your employer, you don’t see those tax benefits anyway. Nothing changes.
And, keep in mind, if you’re already a whole life insurance holder prior to 2017, the new tax law wouldn’t apply.
Brokers: Make Life Insurance Part of Your Consultative Selling Approach
It’s not difficult to understand when it’s laid out in a few concise paragraphs, as above. Life insurance remains a good investment and a necessity to protect your family and provide income for them if you pass away.
But there is a lot of fear surrounding the current administration, and some of that fear could lead to hesitation to purchase life insurance. Customer education will be the key. Term life insurance and Group Life / AD&D policies won’t change.
Business owners and consumers, alike, can trust the brokers who provide their other benefits, including disability coverage, dental, and vision insurance, to shop for the best deals on Group Life and individual life insurance coverage.
For customers who are considering whole life insurance, term life can be a good “placeholder” policy until tax law changes get sorted out.
Corporate and individual customers need brokers they can trust in these confusing times. If you step up with the information they need, policies from top-rated carriers, and the white-glove service The DBL Center can help you provide in a white label capacity, you’ll always be top of mind.
You’re the one your customers turn to when they need guidance and when they’re ready to make a purchase. We can help.
The DBL Center… more than just disability insurance.
A recent article in The Digital Insurer pointed to chatbots—sophisticated artificial intelligence programs that can answer questions and provide customer service for companies in much the way human representatives can—as replacing insurance underwriters in the foreseeable future. We beg to differ.
The jury’s still out on chatbots and widespread acceptance of this technology, especially when it comes to B2B insurance sales. Insurance brokers work in a high-touch industry, where consultative selling is a key, and relationships build business. A consumer looking for the lowest price on car insurance may accept a chatbot to provide a quote. But a business is not going to trust a computer program—even a sophisticated one—to write a mandatory disability insurance policy for 100 employees in their company.
The high level of personalized, white glove service The DBL Center provides is one reason we have more than 4,000 insurance brokers across 15 states, who rely on us to supply mandatory disability insurance (TDB in NJ and DBL in NY), as well as ancillary benefits, group life AD&D, and a growing list of additional insurance and investment services, to their business customers.
But as much as we are, and will remain, a service-oriented business, we do consider ourselves pretty high tech, too, here at The DBL Center.
Get Easy Online Quotes
While much of the industry was still relying on cold calls for insurance sales and faxing documents to bind quotes, we began providing the ability to bind a quote for NY DBL coverage for fewer than 50 lives online with a few clicks. The automated system operates through our portal, permitting agencies to quickly and easily compare prices and coverage with top-rated insurance carriers in our industry. Agents can bind the quote with just a few clicks, without ever speaking to a representative. Of course, we are available if you do have any questions, need guidance through the process, want to upgrade to an enriched DBL plan, or add ancillary benefits. But our entire system is designed to make the process quick and easy for the insurance brokers who do business with us.
Insurance Brokers Can Manage Accounts Easily Online
Our proprietary insurance broker’s portal, available to insurance agents who write their business through The DBL Center, gives our customers access to a host of information. Brokers can:
– Track their book of business
– Track commissions and export the data
– Issue their own Certificates of Insurance (DB-820) in real-time
These capabilities put our brokers in better control of their businesses, and frees up our staff to focus on areas where the human touch is needed to provide the next level of customer service.
Your Wholesale Agency Goes Mobile
The next phase of our development involves a mobile app that provides our brokers with expanded capabilities to manage their book of business from anywhere they might be. Brokers no longer have to wait to return to the office to issue DB-820s, get quotes, or write new business.
With the rise in telecommuting and flexible hours, brokers who write their business through DBL Center can now enjoy the freedom of working from virtually anywhere, achieving new levels of productivity and, in turn, serving their customers better.
High-Tech and Still High-Touch
While the app puts advanced capabilities at our brokers’ fingertips, it will also help The DBL Center team take our service to the next level. By automating several behind-the-scenes processes, we’ll be able to free up our staff to provide better, faster service when our brokers and their customers need the high-touch experience that is expected in this industry.
Best of all, our brokers don’t have to be exceptionally tech-savvy. That’s our job. We’ve worked with top developers to make the app as easy to navigate and as intuitive as possible.
As the world undergoes a digital transformation, the insurance industry can’t afford to be left behind. We provide the tools to help our insurance brokers make the transition in order to increase productivity and earn more.
Learn how you can expand your book of business with The DBL Center by your side.
If you’re running a business or have a full-time career, are raising a family, and managing to juggle the other responsibilities of adulthood, you already know the holidays are stressful. But did you know the months following the holidays are more dangerous than other times of the year?
A study done by The Hartford, one of The DBL Center Ltd.’s top insurance carriers, showed that short-term disability claims went up in January and February. Are you ready?
Why Do Disability Claims Go Up in the Winter?
January and February are challenging months for many people. The rise in prevalence of colds and the flu can lead to increased respiratory illnesses, including pneumonia, which sometimes requires hospitalization and a short-term leave from work. The Hartford study shows that 66 percent of all winter disability claims were illness-related, which also can include depression. Additionally, 22 percent of claims were for pregnancy/childbirth, and 11 percent were due to accidents.
Slips and falls on ice, car accidents, accidents and injuries related to snow shoveling, as well as winter sports injuries all contribute to increased disability claims in the winter. Depression and stress-related illnesses also tend to rise in the northeast during the long, cold winter days. Although the study was completed in 2009, these facts haven’t changed. But there are ways you can make a difference in your workplace.
Focus on Employee Health and Wellness
Encourage employees to take a sick day—and visit a doctor—when they are sick, to help prevent the common cold from turning into pneumonia and to keep them from spreading germs around the office. Frequent hand-washing is shown to be the best way to prevent the spread of germs. Make sure the restrooms and kitchen are stocked with hand soap.
Consider implementing stress-reduction programs such as office massage or lunch-break yoga classes. If you don’t have an employee gym facility on-site, consider adding gym membership reimbursement to your perks and benefits package. Studies show regular exercise may help the body fight off colds.
Be Prepared with a Plan
When employees go out on short-term disability, their team members must pick up the slack. Cross-training employees on mission critical tasks, so that someone can fill in when there’s an unexpected illness, or even a planned maternity leave, can help keep office stress levels down and maintain employee morale.
Make sure employees understand the expectations and reward them in tangible ways and with praise when they step up to help out their co-workers.
Offer Enhanced DBL to Help Avoid Long-Term Claims
If an employee’s short-term disability coverage can’t help them get through the rough patch, they might be tempted to consider other alternatives, such as applying for long-term disability (Social Security Disability Insurance). They might use their short-term leave to find another job with a better benefits package.
The Benefits of Enriched DBL and TDB Disability Coverage
New York-based businesses can provide an enriched DBL package, which increases benefits beyond the New York State minimum of $170/week. Businesses in New Jersey can offer long-term disability coverage to dovetail state-mandated temporary disability benefits (TDB), and may also save money by bundling TDB coverage with other ancillary benefits such as dental, life insurance or add a group short-term disability policy over and above the state-mandated benefit.
Beat the Winter Blues with Better Disability Coverage
Business owners and HR directors should consider beating the winter blues with enriched DBL or privatized TDB. You can switch your disability insurance providers on the first day of each quarter: January 1, April 1, July 1, and October 1.
If you’re an insurance broker, this is the perfect time to write new business by letting companies in New York and New Jersey know about the advantages of privatized disability coverage with personalized service and benefits beyond the New York State minimum, so they can be prepared for the possibility of increased disability claims in the first months of the new year.
Let The DBL Center Ltd. help you get through the winter with the disability coverage you need.
In the months leading up to the election, there’s been a lot of talk about Americans having the opportunity to earn a living wage. While some states have minimum wage laws in line with their costs of living, the Federal minimum wage as of 2016 is only $7.25 as of July 2016. Most of us reading this might remember earning that much during high school or college—it’s certainly not enough to raise a family or buy a home. New York State workers—and their employers—face another wage challenge: Mandatory NYS DBL payments cap out at 50 percent of an employee’s paycheck, up to $170 per week. This is not a living wage. And the financial burden is even greater if the employee is facing medical bills and co-pays or the birth of a newborn and the added expenses that come with a child.
But there is a solution.
It’s important for New York State business owners, CFOs, and HR directors to understand why they should offer enriched DBL coverage in New York to provide employees on temporary disability with a living wage. If you’re a broker, please share this information with your customers to start earning commission on these enriched mandatory benefits today.
1. Enriched DBL coverage can encourage employee retention.
An injured or ill employee on temporary disability shouldn’t have to worry about how they will pay their bills. If your organization isn’t taking care of them, they might use their time off to polish up their resume and look elsewhere.
2. A robust benefits package helps attract top talent—even across state borders.
Today’s employees, particularly millennials, want to have it all in a job: Salary, flexible hours or work locations, and a robust, customizable benefits package. Providing enriched DBL—even if the majority of your employees don’t use it—lets you beef up your benefits package.
Additionally, New York-based businesses in Manhattan or on the New York / New Jersey border should consider that they are competing with New Jersey-based businesses—which already have a generous mandatory disability benefits package—for top talent. A NYS DBL package that rivals New Jersey’s Temporary Disability Benefits might help you attract the best employees from over the bridges.
3. As far as benefits go, enriched DBL provides employers and HR directors with a lot of “bang for their buck.”
With minimal employer contributions, which can be shared with employees at a rate of one-half of one percent of the employee’s wages up to 60 cents per week on pre-tax dollars, employers can offer generous NYS DBL coverage of up to $850 per week. Few benefits cost so little yet provide so much value.
4. With New York introducing Paid Family Leave in 2018, enhancing DBL benefits to keep pace will improve employee morale and loyalty.
In states that offer Paid Family Leave, this benefit for new parents and anyone caring for an ill or injured loved one has been shown to improve employee morale and loyalty. More importantly, co-workers don’t mind helping out to cover for employees taking Paid Family Leave.
Offering enriched NYS DBL benefits for employees who are ill or injured can help ensure co-workers won’t resent those who are out on PFL, because they know they have the same protection should they ever be unable to work.
Additionally, New Jersey employers found that the state’s generous paid leave package helps reduce stress amongst employees who took leave, as well as their co-workers, which can impact the company’s bottom line, according to the National Partnership for Women and Families.
5. Top executives benefit, too.
When you enrich your DBL benefits package in New York, your disability benefits package will increase, too, up to the maximum of $850/week or $1020/week with in-hospital coverage. You can also add an Accidental Death & Dismemberment (AD&D) rider to the policy, with a tiered plan that will provide your C-suite with the most coverage available.
Find out more about Enriched DBL in New York State in this post, or bind your NYS DBL quote for a company with fewer than 50 lives here.
If you’re an insurance broker or a business owner in New Jersey or across the New York Tri-State area, this month brought some breaking news you should be aware of. And no, it’s not about the election…. In fact, it relates to mandatory TDB insurance, a product with potential to earn insurance brokers more money.
What You Should Know About NJ TDB Insurance
The State of New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development has increased the cap for mandatory Temporary Disability Benefits (New Jersey TDB) and Paid Family Leave up to $633 per week, a modest increase of $29 per week. The Taxable Wage Cap increases to $33,500. And the employee contribution portion of the premium increases by 20 percent. These changes are slated to go into effect January 1, 2017.
The increase also affects New York, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut businesses with employees who reside in New Jersey—as well as businesses across the country that may hire telecommuters. These companies are required to pay NJ TDB insurance premiums for their employees based in New Jersey.
What This Means to Employers and their Employees
The TDB Insurance increase sounds like a good thing: It means a few extra dollars for workers who are out due to an illness or injury that is not work-related or for someone who has just given birth. But the benefit increase also brings a premium increase of 20 percent, to be covered by employees.
TDB is a shared-cost benefit, where the employee pays a portion of the premium and the employee covers the balance with pre-tax dollars. Benefit premiums often become a part of salary negotiations for highly valued employees. Lower premiums may also aid in recruiting top talent in highly competitive fields. With many businesses and their employees still reeling from health insurance premium increases as a result of the Affordable Care Act, employees may not be happy to hear about a NJ TDB premium increase—especially for a mandatory benefit they might never use.
What This Means for Insurance Brokers
Insurance brokers in New Jersey (and beyond) do have choices when it comes to who writes your customers’ TDB insurance policies. By helping your corporate customers buy TDB insurance in the private market, you can save them thousands of dollars per year—hundreds of dollars in savings per employee—depending on the size of the business.
How You Can Earn 10 Percent Commission Selling TDB
If you are already writing your customers’ P&C insurance policies, health insurance, ancillary benefits, or life insurance, you can shift their State Fund TDB coverage to a private carrier, earn a flat 10 percent commission, and provide your corporate customers substantial savings when they bundle insurance.
You’ve already established the relationship, so you don’t have to invest time and money prospecting for new customers. With a few simple phone calls, you can save your customers money and provide them enhanced value—and earn 10 percent commission.
Selling NJ TDB insurance requires a level of specialized knowledge—and that’s where The DBL Center comes in. Give us a call and supply one of our agents with the group’s Fed ID # and main address location, so we can determine where the account is currently placed. Whether it’s with the State Fund or a private insurer, one of our agents will tell you exactly what to say to sell privatized TDB insurance and save your customers money on their premiums, while receiving the exact same benefits if they need it.
Business Owners Have Choices
The State Fund automatically writes TDB insurance coverage for all business owners. But most business owners, CEOs, CFOs, and HR directors don’t realize they have a choice and can purchase their TDB insurance privately to enjoy lower premiums and a higher level of customer service with a broker they already know and trust.
It’s up to you, the broker—with the constant support of The DBL Center’s expert staff—to share this information and show your customers the savings.
Sell NJ TDB Insurance, Earn Commission: It’s that Easy
Adding private TDB insurance coverage to your offerings is easy with The DBL Center by your side. We even have a website set up to assist. Visit www.eztdb.com for more information on how you can expand your book of business with TDB insurance. Simply print and fill out this form to start providing your customers with lower premiums on TDB insurance and the level of white glove service they deserve.
by Michael Cohen
If you’re a health insurance, disability insurance, or P&C broker you understand the pain of dwindling profit margins, increased premiums, and reduced choices for your customers. Good brokers look for ways to save their loyal customers money and deliver greater value.More brokers, today, are discovering they can save their customers money on disability insurance and ancillary benefits if they bundle insurance benefits together and purchasing from one wholesaler.
The Time-Tested Concept of Bundling Services
The idea of “bundling” services to save money isn’t new. About a decade ago, before streaming video services broadened our television horizons beyond cable, consumers bundled their home phone, cable, and Internet service together for substantial savings. People still do it today—although there are even more technology options available.
In the insurance industry, P&C brokers are very familiar with a number of ways to bundle insurance coverage. Individual and business customers alike may bundle property and auto insurance under one carrier for significant savings.
Why not take that one step further and bundle insurance products like your corporate customers’ ancillary benefits under one carrier, too?
Whether you’re a broker currently selling P&C products, health insurance, or disability coverage, you can bundle insurance together through The DBL Center Ltd. and pass the savings on to your customers. They might be encouraged to purchase additional ancillary benefits or products like enriched DBL with the savings. You’ll build loyalty and develop even better relationships with your corporate customers as you take a consultative selling approach to your business.
What Can You Bundle?
Traditionally, many companies bundled health-related insurance products like vision and dental coverage through their health insurance provider. But the Affordable Care Act has led to increased premiums and decreased coverage.
Smart brokers—including P&C and best-in-class health insurance brokers—can fill those gaps when they bundle insurance like dental and vision coverage, previously purchased through health insurance companies. It makes just as much sense, today, to bundle ancillary benefits with mandatory disability coverage—a product your customers in New York, New Jersey, and Hawaii need to buy anyway.
The DBL Center also provides long-term disability, Group Life / AD&D, enhanced disability, and other benefits in bundled packages for cost savings and easier management of policies. We can even help you provide customers with 401K employee retirement benefits. For smaller businesses and individuals, we offer disability income replacement (DI) coverage and individual life insurance, giving our brokers endless options to cater to any size customer.
Let The DBL Center Do the Work
By working through The DBL Center Ltd., you always have one point-of-contact for all your insurance sales, commission checks, and customer service, saving you time. And you’ll save your customers even more money by letting us help you bundle insurance benefits under one carrier.
We will shop around to find your customers the best rates, including the lowest premiums and highest quality coverage, in a bundled benefits package. We do it all, acting as your white-glove back office service staff to write the policies and service your customers in a white-label capacity, freeing you up to sell more insurance, recruit new customers, expand your book of business, and cash commission checks made out directly to you.
Bundling benefits makes sense for brokers and their customers. So does working with an insurance wholesaler to capitalize on a number of different ways to bundle insurance. Why not call The DBL Center and get started today?
Do you spend the time to shop each carrier for every client, in order to secure the lowest premiums and best coverage plans for your customers? Or maybe you work with a select group of high-rated carriers and rely on those insurance providers for the bulk of your business in order to streamline your operations and processes. Have you considered the benefits of working with an insurance wholesaler to gain better access to carriers and provide a higher level of service to your customers? In short, an insurance wholesaler can save you time and help you earn more money.
If you’re a P&C broker, working with an insurance wholesaler can help you expand your book of business and increase your commissions while spending less time on every sale. Let’s look at some of the benefits of partnering with an insurance wholesaler to write new business and service and expand existing accounts.
1. An insurance wholesaler provides greater access to a broader choice of carriers.
Now in its 40th year in business, the DBL Center Ltd. works with the top-rated, well-known, highly respected carriers of mandatory disability coverage, group life / AD&D coverage, and ancillary benefits. Each of our carriers has a minimum A- rating (some with A++ ratings) from Standard & Poors, and provides us with the most competitive rates based on our contracts and block of premium that we manage through them, which we in turn offer the brokerage community.
2. Insurance wholesalers have a better, broad knowledge base of the market.
Our account representatives are experts in consultative selling, with a deep understanding of the Statutory and Employee Benefits space, in order to provide your customers and their employees with the best benefits packages and most affordable premiums. We spend time and money on employee training and education, so our account representatives are always up-to-date on the latest trends and industry technology, making it easier for brokers to provide a higher level of service to their customers.
3. An insurance wholesaler does all the legwork—the hard work—so you, as a broker, can focus on attracting new customers and expanding your book of business quickly and easily.
Imagine having a partner you can trust to provide your customers with the best policies and lowest premiums available on everything from state-mandated disability coverage to ancillary benefits such as Life, Long & Short Term Disability, vision and dental coverage. That’s what the DBL Center Ltd. provides. We write every policy through our white-glove, white-label service, so it’s your name and agency number that appears on every form.
We provide the highest level of round-the-clock service to the insured, so you don’t have to spend time on servicing accounts. Send us the necessary information to provide you with a fair quote for your customer, we will bind and write the policy, and you cash the commission check. It really is that easy.
4. We recognize additional opportunities for increased revenue for our brokers.
As the Affordable Care Act reduced health benefits for a number of companies and employees nationwide, Life and Health brokers are in a unique opportunity to bridge that gap with voluntary ancillary benefit policies for workers. P&C brokers are sitting on additional revenue streams, simply by offering these niche products to their commercial clients with the help of an insurance wholesaler to guide them through the process.
The DBL Center Ltd. has been in the business of ancillary benefits, as an offshoot of our disability insurance products, for decades. We are happy to help P&C brokers increase their commissions through the sale of voluntary or employer paid ancillary benefits.
5. We offer training and value-added services to our brokers.
The DBL Center is here to help our brokers every step of the way, because your success is our success. To that end, we provide training resources, mentoring, and information on industry trends, including the articles we post here on this blog every week.
We also provide value-added services, from lining up entertainment for your holiday party to acting as a concierge service if you want to show a top client a once-in-a-lifetime night on the town. Now, thanks to a partnership with Steiner Sports, the number one source for sports memorabilia, with exclusive contracts with many top professional athletes, the DBL Center Ltd. can book celebrity appearances, comedy acts, and other entertainment for corporate events and outings.
Interested in increasing your commission and enhancing the service you provide to customers? Contact The DBL Center today.
Smart business owners and HR professionals look for ways to reduce health care and other insurance premiums. And the best brokers want to assist in these efforts, too. After all, reduced premiums and better coverage creates happier, repeat customers. If you’re an insurance broker and aren’t providing your customers with the lowest rates possible on mandatory disability coverage and ancillary benefits, including dental, vision, and life insurance—they will shop their policies elsewhere to find a lower rate and/or better coverage.
One way to keep insurance rates low for everyone is to reduce the number of claims. Which brings us to a point you may not have considered: Did you know that happier employees are also healthier employees?
We’re going to take this one step further, so stay with us here. Daily laughter has been shown to boost immunity, help prevent diseases, and even reduce chronic pain.
Let’s look at three ways daily laughter can help create healthier employees (who, as a result, might make fewer disability claims due to chronic pain or disease).
Did you know:
1. Laughter helps the body fight disease—naturally.
Laughter reduces stress, and studies show that people who are stressed can’t fight illness as well. It also boosts immunity and disease-fighting antibodies.
2. Laughter can help relieve pain.
Laughter releases endorphins—the body’s natural pain relievers. We’re not saying you should ignore chronic pain, as it could be indicative of a larger problem, but if you feel a stress headache coming on, a belly laugh could be just what the doctor ordered.
3. Laughter protects the heart.
Laughter increases blood flow almost as well as cardio exercise, helping to keep the heart strong against heart attacks and other cardiovascular diseases.
These claims may seem far-fetched, but they have been studied for years and are backed by science. (Anyone remember Patch Adams?) Plus, everyone likes to laugh. There really isn’t a downside to bringing more fun into your workplace.
The DBL Center Ltd. has a new program in place that helps to make it possible. Through a partnership with Steiner Sports, we can book top sports stars, performers, and comedians to perform at your next corporate outing, holiday party, or charity event.
DBL Center partner Michael Cohen has a strong history in the comedy world as a former stand-up comedian and a continuing member of the Friar’s Club. Although he’s made insurance his life calling, he continues to seek ways to merge the two worlds.
Our arrangement with Steiner Sports is yet another element in the white-glove, first-class service The DBL Center provides to its customers. Our brokers can lighten up their own workplaces with laughter, or provide top comedy acts for their customers’ events through The DBL Center as a value-added service.
So why not bring a little laughter into your workplace? We’re not saying it will eliminate the need for high-quality long-term disability and ancillary employee benefit plans — these insurance benefits will always be important. But it might boost productivity, reduce sick time, and maybe even cut back on pricey insurance claims that cost everyone money.
Will you join us in our mission to get New York, New Jersey, Hawaii and the rest of the United States laughing a little more?
No matter how diligent an employer is about workplace safety, accidents happen. Workplace accidents—and employees who lose time due to workers’ compensation claims—can damage company morale and cost employers additional time and money.
However, a recent report shows that 47 percent of large companies who offer disability insurance (DI) show a decrease in workers’ comp claims. In addition, 43 percent of small businesses and 33 percent of mid-sized companies reported a drop in claims. The reduction in claims was substantial for all companies: 15 percent of all employers reported declines of 50 percent or more, and 15 percent reported declines of 25 to 49 percent.
Disability insurance, including mandatory or enhanced DBL coverage in New York, TDB in New Jersey and TDI in Hawaii, as well as private Short Term Disability and Long-Term Disability, typically pays faster than workers’ comp cases, and it’s easier for employees to file a claim. It’s no wonder employees would rather be paid through insurance coverage, especially when the broker can walk them through the claims process and provide white-glove service every step of the way!
In addition, employees could wait months for a workers’ compensation claim to begin paying. Most people cannot live without a paycheck—especially as medical bills begin to add up. After a one-week waiting period in New York, employees can begin collecting DBL benefits for up to 26 consecutive weeks.
It’s faster and easier for employees to file disability insurance claims than workers’ compensation claims. And it’s also faster and easier for employers, with less paperwork to fill out. Additionally, many workers’ compensation cases end up in court to prove the extent of the injuries. Disability insurance claims do not require the business to retain legal counsel to defend itself in a workers’ comp case, saving employers both time and money.
While it should be obvious that workers’ comp only applies to on-the-job injuries, the reduction in claims when other options, such as state-mandated disability coverage, short-term disability, or long-term disability insurance—is offered might make HR directors and other business leaders wonder about the incidence of workers’ compensation fraud. Fraudulent claims hurt everyone, costing employers in real dollars, wasted time, and damaged employee morale.
It’s important to reiterate that workers’ comp should only cover on-the-job accidents or injuries. But off-the-job injuries are far more likely to occur, with 729 people injured every 10 minutes, according to the National Safety Council. Businesses collectively lose more than $15 million from these injuries.
While a good disability benefits package won’t eliminate these costs, it can improve employee retention following an accident, and alleviate some of the financial burden on an injured or ill employee—perhaps resulting in a faster recovery and return to work.
If you own a business in the state of New York, New Jersey or Hawaii, you already provide your employees with mandatory disability coverage (DBL, TDB, and TDI, respectively.) An enhanced benefits package may help reduce workers’ comp claims further by enabling better claim service and greater benefits. Businesses in other states should also consider offering STD or LTD coverage to their employees to reduce workers’ comp claims and save money.
The DBL Center Ltd. can help.