The Importance of having a Trusted Workers Compensation Advisor

Written By Charlotte Insurance on February 27, 2015. It has 0 comments.

$18,250 – $36,500 in fines, even if there are no workplace injuries – that’s what you could expect if your business is caught without workers’ compensation insurance coverage for a year.

The North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act requires most businesses with three or more employees to obtain workers’ compensation insurance with few exceptions. While your employees can opt out of coverage, you cannot. Not providing workers’ compensation can be a very expensive mistake.

Workers’ compensation insurance in North Carolina protects employees in case of injury while they’re employed by you. It also protects you as a business owner from lawsuits and expensive problems if your employee becomes ill or injured while on the job. Working with an independent insurance agent allows you to choose the coverage that is best suited for your business. Coverage can include medical expenses, loss of income, the cost of rehabilitation, death benefits, and more.

Of course, you’ve heard of this requirement before. Why should you be concerned about it now? Recently, we have seen a surge in workers’ compensation audits as well as random “inspections” of businesses to see if business owners have purchased the necessary coverage for their employees throughout the area.

Maybe you already have workers’ compensation coverage, and you’re not concerned. Ask yourself one question. Is your coverage good enough to survive an audit? When an auditor comes into your location and begins to look at your workers compensation coverage, they’ll look at your original or most recent premium and compare that to your employee and payroll information to determine if your premiums should go up.

Auditors check the classification codes, rates, and payrolls used to calculate the initial premiums to determine accuracy based on your current employees. They’ll also look at your company information on your website, through other online resources, and anything else to determine if the business information you present to the world is accurate based on your current practices and your original premium. They’ll also look for the certificate of insurance for any of your subcontractors or independent contractors that receive a 1099 each year to make sure those workers shouldn’t be covered by your workers’ compensation premiums.

Does it sound complicated and a little scary? It should. If any information is missing or if the auditor feels that your records don’t reflect the business you’re doing, they could raise your premiums, whether their findings are accurate or not. Without proper documentation, records, and information, you could pay more than you need to for your premiums.

Avoid some of that hassle and feel confident going into an audit by working with our independent insurance agents to purchase your workers’ compensation coverage. Our agents will walk you through all of the coverage options available and help you understand your obligations under the law. You can’t stop an audit or an inspection from happening, but you can breath easier if you know you have the right coverage for your business.

Charlotte Insurance understands workers’ compensation coverage. We have helped countless businesses purchase and maintain the coverage they need without paying any more than necessary. Contact us today so we can make sure you have the right coverage for your business.

Why Choose a North Carolina Independent Insurance Agent?

Written By Charlotte Insurance on February 24, 2015. It has 0 comments.

The gecko says you can save 15 percent in 15 minutes. The lady with the name tag says her company has the best prices – but they don’t have price tags. Another insurance company will zap you out of trouble with a jingle.

They’re all fun and make great commercials.

But do you really have time to check out three, four, or more insurance companies for your auto or home insurance needs? Each time, you have to submit your information, wait for a quote, and then compare.

Who has that kind of time?

Maybe you’re on the other side of the equation. You love the commercials, but you’re satisfied with your current policy – the same one you’ve had for eight years. You don’t really know what’s in it, and you don’t love that the rate has increased each year, but you haven’t had to think about it, do a big search, or waste a lot of time on it, either.


Regardless of which category you fall into, there are several reasons why you need to work with an independent insurance agent.

  • Save money. Depending on your policy and current discounts, you could save hundreds or thousands of dollars once your agent finds the best price for you.
  • More options and choices. Independent insurance agents aren’t limited to one single insurance provider. They’re able to use your information to get several quotes from within their network to find the best deal.
  • Discounts. When you stick with the same policy for years with no one checking on it for you, you’ll miss discounts. Don’t pay more than you have to. Your insurance agent will follow up with you on a regular basis to make sure your discounts are keeping up with your life changes.
  • One stop shop.When you work with an independent insurance agent, you can deal with all your insurance needs in one place. Combine home and auto insurance or add your business insurance into the mix. Whatever you need, you can do it all in one place with someone who knows you.
  • Guidance and information. Most people have no idea what kind of insurance policy they have. Unfortunately, they don’t find out until they need to make a claim. With an independent insurance agent, you’ll know exactly what you’re getting. Even better, you’ll have someone to call whenever you have questions or need help.

Don’t learn what’s in your insurance policy after you’ve been in an accident or your home floods.

Don’t leave money sitting on the table that could be sitting in your wallet.

Work with an independent insurance agent and get the best coverage at the best price – and best of all, know exactly what you’re paying for and how you’re covered.

Charlotte Insurance has been in business since 1992. We are proud to be the area’s largest local independent insurance company. When you’re ready to take a deeper look at your current policies and save money, give us a call. We’re here to help.

Employers Can Save Thousands with Private Health Care Exchanges

Written By Charlotte Insurance on February 18, 2015. It has 0 comments.

The Affordable Care Act, often known as “Obamacare,” is in full swing and millions of people are benefiting from the reform. Young people under 26 still have coverage thanks to their parent’s plans. Those with pre-existing conditions know they will always have coverage. Millions of previously uninsured Americans are able to afford health insurance with the help of competitive rates and subsidies from the federal government.

As an employer or business owner, you may be feeling left out and wondering where the benefit is for you. Consider a private health care exchange for your company and reap many benefits of participation.


Without going into every detail of a 1000-plus page document, the issue you need to understand is that this was not health care reform. Instead, it was health insurance reform. Health insurance and how people purchase it have been changed, but the ability to control costs has not. Controlling costs and changing health care would involve dealing with the costs of pharmaceuticals, tort reform, and hospital charges. The Affordable Care Act reformed insurance, and for employers, this is a good thing. From 1999 to 2012, an employer’s cost for individual coverage doubled and for family coverage, the cost tripled. Now, private health care exchanges can help you control and lower those costs.


A private health care exchange is similar to the public exchange that you find at It uses the technology and administrative work of a typical exchange to give applicants – in this case, your employees – access to different plans based on specific criteria. Private health care exchanges are used by employers to give employees flexibility, choice, and to take advantage of federal subsidies. Instead of working with you or your HR staff each year to choose a plan and update information, employees can work with our advisors to ensure that they have the coverage that they need.


Let’s look at the bottom line first. Employers who used private exchanges saved 40 to 80 percent from their employee insurance bill in 2014. Costs may be the number one reason, but exchanges save you time as well. You have less administrative work and less hassle of managing your insurance and the selection process. Once the criteria is set, your employees choose what plan works best for them. This allows you to improve your employee benefits without additional cost.

You’re able to set fixed costs for each employee, so you know exactly what you’re paying. Your employees choose from group benefits like dental or vision, as well as individual options like accident plans, co-pay versus deductible plans, and more. Real life examples from companies we’ve worked with include a nine employee home health care agency who saved 47 percent, a 22 employee exterminating company who saved 24 percent, and an auto body shop with dozens of employees that stood to save between 40 and 53 percent. The savings are real, as are the benefits to your employees.


Charlotte Insurance is prepared and available to help you get started with our own private exchange as soon as possible. All we need is a copy of your last insurance bill, a copy of your current plan design, and a census listing of all your eligible employees.

Charlotte Insurance has been in business since 1992, working hard to provide affordable, quality insurance for individuals and businesses. As the Affordable Care Act has unfolded, we’ve stayed on top of it every step of the way, determined to understand it and continue to offer the best options available for our customers and clients. When you’re ready to discuss a private health care exchange option for your business, contact us. We can help.