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Construction Bonds 101

Krissy Campbell

By Kristina Campbell

A construction bond, also known as a surety bond, protects a project owner if a contractor fails to complete a job, doesn’t pay for permits or fails to meet other financial obligations such as paying for supplies or subcontractors.

Surety bonds are important, and quite common, in the construction industry. They typically come in three types:

  • A Bid Bond is issued to the project owner to provide a guarantee that the winning bidder will honor the contract under the terms at which they bid.
  • A Performance Bond guarantees that the contractor will perform the services as described in the contract. A bid bond is replaced by a performance bond when a bid is accepted and the contractor proceeds to work on the project.
  • A Payment Bond guarantees that a construction company will pay its laborers (employees and subcontractors) and suppliers throughout the construction project.

A surety bond is a contract between three parties:

  1. The Principal is the party purchasing the bond and undertaking an obligation to perform the job as promised.
  2. The Obligee is the party requiring and receiving the protection of the bond.
  3. The Surety is the insurance company or surety company that guarantees the obligation will be performed.

How do you know if you need a construction bond? The project owner will decide.

Kristina Campbell has been working with contractors across Maine for their insurance and bonding needs for more than 15 years.

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Allen Insurance and Financial Earns Diamond Achiever Award in Maine

Allen Insurance and Financial has been named Maine’s 2020 Diamond Achiever by Patriot Insurance Company. The annual award is presented to the highest performing agency based on set criteria including length of appointment, profitability, growth, and policy retention. Each year, the top Patriot Insurance Company agencies receive the “Diamond Achiever” award in recognition of their outstanding accomplishment.

Patriot Insurance Company President and CEO, Lincoln Merrill Jr. explains, “We are proud to present Allen Insurance and Financial with our Diamond Achiever award. Through their hard work and commitment to providing superior services, support and products, it is well deserved.”

This recognition exemplifies their commitment to providing quality, professional insurance products and services to our mutual clients.

The results achieved by the team at Allen Insurance and Financial helped the agency become one of the most successful among Patriot Insurance Company’s more than 115 independent agencies.

“The team at Allen Insurance and Financial is dedicated to providing the protection our clients need accompanied by the highest level of service. We are all very proud to be recognized by our colleagues at Patriot Insurance. Strong partnerships like ours benefit everyone in the industry − carriers, agents and clients, ” said Michael Dufour, executive vice president of Allen Insurance and Financial.

Allen Insurance and Financial has been licensed with Patriot Insurance Company since 1993 is recognized as one of the carrier’s Preferred independent insurance agency partners.

About Patriot Insurance

Patriot Insurance has been providing peace of mind for families and businesses in New England for over 50 years. Headquartered in Yarmouth, Maine, we are a regional carrier offering business, home, auto, life, and surety products backed by local, autonomous claims, loss control, and underwriting teams.

We work exclusively with independent agents who can give our customers the personal guidance and service they deserve. Since 2007, we have partnered with Frankenmuth Insurance, a longstanding company founded in Michigan in 1868. Patriot Insurance is financially sound, with an A.M. Best rating of “A” (Excellent).

Patriot Diamond Achiever Award
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How to Handle a Surprise Medical Bill

If you’ve ever received a surprise medical bill, you’re not alone. According to a survey conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago, over half of American adults have been surprised by a bill that they had assumed would be covered by their medical insurance. Moreover, only 1 in 5 of these surprise bills were the result of a patient actively seeking out-of-network care.  This handout  will explain balance billing, how to handle a surprise medical bull and offer tips on ow to avoid receiving one in the future.

How to Handle a Surprise Medical Bill PDF cover image
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Meesha Luce Earns CPIA Designation

Meesha Luce, ACSR

Meesha Luce, ACSR, a member of the personal insurance team at Allen Insurance and Financial, has earned the Certified Professional Insurance agent designation from the American Insurance Marketing and Sales Society.

The CPIA designation emphasizes critical skills in insurance underwriting, coverages marketing and client services.

Meesha is a member of the MIAA Young Agent Committee, and was named Maine’s Young Agent of the Year in 2017. She joined Allen Insurance and Financial in 2006.

She also holds an Accredited Customer Service representative (ACSR) designation. A graduate of Medomak Valley High School, Luce lives in Hope.

“All of us here at Allen are incredibly proud of Meesha’s professionalism and commitment to both customers and community,” said Scott Carlson, personal insurance division manager at Allen Insurance and Financial. “Meesha is a real embodiment of our company’s values.”

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Medicare Enewsletter – April 2021

Traveling? Please Check Your Coverage First

For those of you itching to travel, if you are leaving Maine for any length of time it is important to understand how your benefits travel with you both within the U.S. and outside of the country. For example:

▪ Coverage during domestic travel may depend on whether you have an Advantage plan or basic Medicare, and whether you are seeking emergency or routine care.
▪ Medicare generally does not cover any medical costs outside of the U.S. and its territories.
▪ Some Medigap plans − which can only be paired with basic Medicare − offer limited coverage for travel beyond U.S. borders.

Many Advantage plans are required to cover your emergency care anywhere in the U.S. and in an emergency many will go above and beyond what Medicare covers to provide coverage outside the U.S.

If you plan to travel outside the U.S., it’s wise to consider a stand-alone travel medical plan which can cover illnesses, emergencies and medical evacuation. We offer this coverage year-round. We are happy to discuss your options with you.

Dental Coverage Available Year-Round

Oral health directly affects overall health and quality of life. Unfortunately, this is often a gap in coverage, especially when it comes to original Medicare. The good news is you can purchase a stand-alone dental plan any time of year.

We have 5+ plans from Delta Dental, ranging in price from $30 to $90 per month. Some of the plan highlights include:

• Competitively priced plans with a variety of coverage options
• One-time (lifetime) deductible
• High annual maximums up to $2,000 per person
• Access to the nation’s largest dental PPO Network
• A vision discount program is included (Sears Optical, Lens Crafters, Pearle Vision, Target Optical, etc.)

If you’d like to explore your options, please reach out to us. We’d be happy to explain the coverage options available and help determine which plan best aligns with your needs.

Midcoast Senior Expo

We’re excited to announce that we will have a table at the Midcoast Successful Aging Expo, scheduled for June 15 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Rockland Elk’s Club. This is our first in-person event in more than a year and we’re looking forward to connecting with our clients and community. This event is free and open to the public.

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Learning About Special Terms and Conditions on a Marine Insurance Policy

Chris Richmond, Allen Insurance and Financial

Chris Richmond

By Chris Richmond
Originally Submitted to WorkBoat Magazine

Your commercial vessel’s insurance policy actually consists of two separate policies: Your hull policy and your protection and indemnity policy. While the actual hull and P&I policies typically consist of accepted insurance forms, insurance underwriters always add additional terms and conditions. These are worth noting because they can significantly affect your policy.

Look at the final pages of your policy to see these special terms and conditions. While these vary by insurance company, here are a few to keep an eye out for:

  • Commercial vessel use warranty: This stipulates that there is only coverage for what has been declared on the policy for the vessel’s commercial usage. If you are operating as a passenger vessel but decide to do some commercial fishing , be sure to notify your agent as your commercial use warranty needs to be amended.
  • Lay up warranty: If you do not operate your vessel year-round, you can get a break on the premium by adding a lay up warranty. But if you operate your vessel during this period no coverage will apply should you need it. Lay up warranty differs slightly from company to company but basically your boat needs to be in a state of decommission and not used for any purpose during the lay up period.
  • Diving warranty: Do your operations sometimes involve commercial diving? This is excluded from your policy. Typically all overboard activities are excluded but some can be bought back (such as swimming or snorkeling). Diving requires a special policy.
  • Gear and cargo exclusion: Some insurance companies will exclude fishing gear that is not permanently installed on your vessel (and your catch also will be excluded from coverage). Other cargo you are transporting may also not be covered. Cargo can often be added back on but if you are storing the cargo on shore before getting underway you will need additional coverage for that.
  • Crew warranty: If you have crew covered on your policy, there will be a number stating how many crew members the policy is providing coverage for. Should you have more crew on board and you have not reported the increase to your insurance company, then the policy may only respond proportionally to the number of crew your policy states by the number of crew you have on board at the time of the claim.

Just as commercial vessels vary, a commercial hull and P&I policy is not a one-size-fits-all. Have a conversation with your agent about your operations and vessel usage to ensure that your insurance will be there when you need it.

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Who Needs Builder’s Risk Coverage?

From Karen Reed:

Karen Reed

Builder’s risk coverage is essential in helping to protect construction projects, but can be complex and often misunderstood. The bottom line is the materials, supplies and equipment on a building site need protection from theft, fire and other risks.

Who Needs Builder’s Risk Coverage?
Any person or company with a financial interest in the construction project needs builder’s risk insurance. Some common people you may want to include on your policy as insureds include the:

• Property owner
• General contractor
• Subcontractors
• Lender
• Architects

The coverage amount needed is determined by the contract price between the Property Owner and the Contractor. It should be determined prior to the start of construction or renovation as to whom will be responsible for providing this very important insurance coverage.

A builder’s risk policy as part of a thorough risk management plan can boosts a company’s reputation, while protecting your business and providing peace of mind for the contractor and his or her client.

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How to Read Your Medical Bill

Benefit plans are sometimes confusing and medical bills are becoming increasingly complex and difficult to read. This Know Your Benefits article outlines ways to save money by reviewing your medical bills with a careful eye. Read it now.