Insurance: essential to every small business

$traight Talk — By on November 1, 2012 at 8:00 am

As a small business owner, it’s easy to put insurance policies on the back burner. Insurance is something many people take for granted when they are working for someone else. However, securing insurance policies should be an investment small business owners make− and not just health insurance.

Deanna Barzak

Disability and life insurance are critical for business owners, particularly those who support a spouse or family through their business. Additionally, there are supplemental programs and services that can help bridge the gap between what traditional insurance covers and what your financial needs are.

A business owner might consider a telemedicine program to keep out-of-pocket expenses low and time off at a minimum. For example, Telhio Credit Union offers members convenient 24/7 access to a network of U.S.-based, licensed physicians via email, telephone or video conference through their DocLogic Telemedicine Service for a small fee that is lower than most co-pays made by debit or credit card.

Through a service called BizPlanNow, you can also qualify to have your health insurance premiums, out-of-pocket co-pays and expenses deducted from your taxes. This program is for small business owners who are married and/or employ their spouse or dependents.

Because health care costs can accumulate quickly, even after insurance covers some of the expenses, it’s also a good idea to start a Health Savings Account. Telhio also offers HSAs to help offset most, if not all, out-of-pocket expenses. These accounts are exclusively for the purpose of paying or reimbursing qualified medical expenses for you, your spouse and your dependents.

Additionally, if you are the breadwinner for your family, you might consider AFLAC, which offers supplemental coverage to pay for things like rent, mortgages, groceries and other non-medical expenses in the event of injury or illness. Many times, organizations (such as Telhio Credit Union) work with AFLAC to offer discounted programs and rates.

What would happen to your business and employees if something devastating happened to you? Key Person Insurance is a plan that offers financial support to keep your business running in the event the “key person” –you– passes away or becomes unable to fulfill your leadership duties.

Lastly, and importantly, you should consider liability insurance, even if your business isn’t located in an office space or retail store with customers coming in and going out on a daily basis. Mistakes happen, and if you or your employees are liable for mistakes, it could cost you more money than you have. If a project goes wrong, you and your employees need to be covered.

It’s important to cover all bases when insuring your business. Look to a local insurance or financial institution to get started today.

For more information about Telhio financial services, visit Telhio.org or call 614-221-3233.

Telhio Credit Union is open to everyone who lives, works, worships or attends school within Franklin County and surrounding communities. Founded in 1934, originally as the credit union for the Columbus Telephone Co., Telhio is a not-for-profit financial cooperative where its members are also its owners. Driven by its philosophy that members come first, Telhio is committed to the highest standards of responsibility and conduct.

Telhio offers a variety of innovative programs, services and products to support its members’ financial needs. Telhio offers seven branching offices throughout central Ohio and nearly 4,000 shared branching locations nationwide. Additionally, Telhio participates in the highest level of combined federal and private share savings insurance available, insuring deposit accounts up to $500,000.*

* Federally insured by NCUA. Additional coverage up to $250,000 provided by Excess Share Insurance Corporation, a licensed insurance company.

Author Bio: Deanna Barzak:
Deanna L. Barzak is the Business Services Relationship Manager for Telhio Credit Union. She is responsible for serving Telhios business members. Deanna previously served as a business banking specialist at a major local banking institution. Prior to that she held various member and business service roles at Navy Federal Credit Union and the Congressional Federal Credit Union in Virginia. Deanna has a bachelor's degree from Radford University. She currently resides in Columbus, and is a volunteer with Rebuild Together and the Columbus Young Professionals Club.

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