Earthquake Insurance

Earthquake is a devastating natural event that when left uninsured can quickly lead to business or personal bankruptcy.

Loss or damage from earthquakes is excluded on standard business and residential property insurance policies. In the event of a serious earthquake loss, uninsured companies may lack the funds to service debt, pay taxes, rebuild their building, replace damaged personal property including stock and inventory, continue operations elsewhere during the repairs and often most importantly, continue to keep key personnel on the payroll.

earthquake garage

Uninsured Homeowners may also lack the funds to rebuild, service debt and move the family into other housing during the repairs.

Business Earthquake Insurance can be purchased as an endorsement to an existing policy but more often is purchased as a separate policy. The premium is based on location (not surprisingly policyholders in the Western United States often pay premiums ten times as high as those in the Eastern United States), age of the buildings and types of structure with wood frame buildings being less expensive to insure for earthquake than brick and stone.  Deductibles on Earthquake Insurance Policies can range from 5% to 25%.

Homeowners can insure their residences through the California Earthquake Authority (CEA). Coverage is provided for loss to the structure and personal property plus coverage for the expenses of living elsewhere during the repairs (Additional Living Expense).

Other Business Policies That Cover Earthquake Losses

Other insurance policies may cover earthquake losses without additional endorsement:

  • Commercial Auto – Most standard commercial auto policies cover loss or damage from earthquakes if “comprehensive” coverage is included on policy. This can include damage from falling debris, fire, or other events.
  • Workers’ Compensation – Injury to employees at work by earthquake effects is a covered loss under workers’ compensation insurance.
  • Personal Auto Insurance – As with Commercial Auto coverage is provided if “comprehensive” coverage is included on policy.

The Dougherty Company would welcome the opportunity to provide you with an Earthquake Insurance proposal. Please contact Shirleen Reed,, (562) 424-1621.

(Sources for the article included the California Earthquake Authority)  

CyberSecurity is a Must

When it comes to a data breach or privacy loss, it’s not a matter of IF it will happen – it’s WHEN.

When a hacker seized control of Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center’s computer system earlier this year, preventing doctors from accessing patient records, it served as a jarring wake-up call to leaders in all fields.  If it could happen to a hospital, it could happen to anyone.  The simple fact is, insurance for data security breaches and privacy losses may not be optional anymore.

Photo: David P Whelan

How prepared is your organization for a cyber-attack, stolen confidential information, business interruption, cyber extortion threat, or complete failure of computer systems?  It is estimated the average cost of each comprised record is close to $200 including notification, public relations, credit monitoring and forensics. Surviving such a breach requires taking action now, to prevent devastating consequences later.

The Dougherty Company represents major insurance companies including Chubb and Travelers who specialize in handling cyber risks and offer a full suite of integrated insurance solutions to help minimize gaps in coverage

CyberSecurity coverage is a MUST.  Risk mitigation through insurance coverage and loss prevention is more than just a smart investment – it’s business critical.  For more information please contact us at

Non-Profit D&O

Don’t serve on any non-profit Board unless it has Directors & Officers Liability Insurance (D&O). Like Corporate Boards non-profit Boards can be sued, most often by current and former employees alleging wrongful termination, sexual harassment, and violations of American with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Other actions against a non-profit Board can come from vendors, recipients of the non-profit’s services, fellow Board members, and from the State Attorney General alleging wrongdoing. Boards have also been sued by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service and the U.S. Department of Labor alleging violations of state and federal laws.

If an action is brought against a non-profit Board, who will defend and indemnify them? With no D&O Insurance, the non-profit will have to pay for the cost of defense and pay the entire amount of the judgment often resulting in dire financial consequences.

The Dougherty Company placesDirectors & Officers Liability Insurance for many non-profits in Southern California and would welcome the opportunity to provide you with a proposal. Please contact us at

Flood Insurance

Most property insurance policies exclude loss or damage from flood, tidal water and mudflow.

Some of the worst floods in coastal areas are caused by big storm surges combined with high rainfall resulting in the sea spilling over onto land while inland rivers and urban drainage systems overflow into the streets and possibly into adjacent homes.  Historically some of the most significant damage to homes comes from the water backing up from sewers and storm drains due to rain, tidal surges, etc.

In hillside areas, loss damage due to mudflow is a serious issue.  Loss or damage due to mudflow is also excluded under most property policies.

If you feel you have an exposure we would strongly suggest that you consider a Flood Insurance Policy for your home or business. For residential properties, the maximum limits available under the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) are Dwelling – $250,000, Contents – $100,000. For Commercial Properties, Building – $500,000, Contents – $500,000.

The NFIP rules require a 30 day waiting period before the policy goes into effect.

If you are interested please contact Shirleen Reed for a proposal at, (562) 424-1421.