Saturday, 31 October 2015

How to Deal With Your Small Calgary Business Being Sued

As a small business owner in Calgary, if there is one word that you absolutely don't want to associate, it's probably "lawsuit". We think that most people can understand why. It's not uncommon to see small business crumble up as a result of a lawsuit. But here's the thing: What doesn't kill you really does make you stronger. If you have been sued, here is how to deal with it:

  1. Don't panic! We can't stress this enough. Panicking, regardless of the situation, is never a good thing and only ever leads you to make brash decisions that you may end up regretting later. If you have just learned that a client or customer has sued you, keep calm.
  2. Don't say anything that you could land you in even deeper trouble. In fact, it is advisable to completely abstain yourself from talking with the person who has sued you. If you must, speak with their lawyer, and always remember to record phone calls.
  3. Call your lawyer or your insurance company a.s.a.p. Like... right now. Do it! Make sure to be as detailed as possible with them. The less things you leave out, the smoother things are bound to go... which brings us to our last point...
  4. Dig up the records. Depending on the nature of the lawsuit, records may well end up saving your company. Whether those records take the form of emails or video footage, make sure to find them and to hand them to your insurance company and/or lawyer.
Also remember to eat and sleep well. This might be a stressful time in your life but that doesn't meant that you should neglect your body because of that.

Good luck!

Monday, 26 October 2015

What Does "Full Car Insurance Coverage" Mean In Calgary?

In the world of car insurance coverage it isn't uncommon to hear people (especially insurance companies) talk about "full car insurance coverage". But what exactly does "full car insurance coverage" mean? And when does coverage become... "full"? Today, Sharp Insurance will be answering this commonly asked question, so keep reading if you've always wondered about this!

Quite simply, Calgary insurance companies like to use the term "full coverage" when a policy is comprised of both liability coverage and coverage for damage done to your car. These are the two most common types of insurance coverage found in Alberta, and the ones that you absolutely need to purchase before hitting the road.

Respectively, those two policies cover damage that has been done to people and their property as a result of an accident, and damage that has been done to your car. Most of the time, it doesn't matter whether you are not at fault or not, but this is something that you still have to double check with your insurance company. 

But here's the thing: "Full" coverage is never complete. It can never cover everything unless you purchase additional coverage to make sure that it does. Of course though, we don't recommend that you do unless you know for a fact that you will need additional coverage. You can determine this with the help of your insurance broker.

Until then, chances are that being covered under these two Calgary car insurance policies is more than enough for you. After all, it is still known as "full coverage" for a reason! 

Good luck and remember to drive safely!

Thursday, 22 October 2015

Who Is Covered Under Your Edmonton Homeowners Insurance Policy?

If you are covered under an Edmonton homeowners insurance policy, then you might be wondering how far your coverage extends... and who exactly it covers. By "who" we mean other people living within your household, including members of your extended family.

As an example, would the possessions of mother-in-law who is currently living under your roof be covered under your Edmonton homeowners insurance policy? Most of the time, yes they are. But here's the thing: You can't rely on our words only. We highly recommend that you contact your insurance company if you have any doubt regarding this topic.

Another common question that seems to plague several Albertans is this one: What happens to the possessions of my child when she or he away at college? Once again, this might not be true for every single policy in Edmonton, but most of the time you can expect his or her possessions to be covered under your home insurance coverage.

A good news, no?

Remember, however, that some insurance policy don't cover personal possessions to begin with. This is why we always remind people to read over the policy that they are planning on purchasing carefully before signing anything. Avoiding bad surprises down the road can easily be done this way... and really, a few minutes of your time is nothing compared to some of the damage that these bad surprises could cause on your finances.

Bankruptcy, anyone?

We don't think so. ;)

Monday, 19 October 2015

The Eye-Opening Truth about Driver Fatigue

Whether you are driving to work in the morning, or planning a road-tripping adventure, driver fatigue could creep up on you, and the results can be catastrophic. Driver fatigue is believed to cause approximately 26% of all collision accidents resulting in bodily injury or death. Driving while drowsy can greatly impair your reaction time, your ability to process information, and your steering control. In many cases it’s just as bad or worse than driving intoxicated depending on the level of individual sleep depravity.

According to a 2011 poll of Canadian drivers, 14.3% of respondents admitted they often drive while tired or fatigued (Traffic Injury Research Foundation). In fact, once you do begin to feel drowsy while driving, it is actually quite difficult to predict when you might fall asleep. It’s important to be cognizant of the warning signs before it’s too late.

Signs you are drowsy while driving:

  • Difficulty focusing, frequent blinking or heavy eyelids
  • Repeated yawning and running eyes
  • Daydreaming, wandering or disconnect thoughts
  • Trouble remembering past few kilometers driven, missing exists and road signs
  • Trouble keeping head up
  • Drifting into a different lane

Before you drive anywhere, it’s important to plan ahead and get at least 7-8 hours of sleep. Try to drive when you’re most alert. If you are feeling drowsy, here are some proven ways to help you stay focused:

  • Nap before you go on a road trip
  • Pull over when you feel drowsy and nap for 15-20 minutes
  • If you are on a long drive, take breaks to nap every 2 hours for 15-20 minutes (not on the shoulder of a highway)
  • Alternate driving time with another driver every 2 hours while the other naps
  • If possible, avoid driving during the times you would normally be sleeping

What Does not help:

  • Opening a window
  • Drinking caffeine
  • Stopping to exercise
  • Eating
  • Turning up music

Driving while fatigued is not only dangerous, it is reckless. It is just as serious as driving while under the influence of alcohol. So, before you sit behind the wheel, ask yourself: am I feeling tired?

Red Deer Car Insurance Coverage: 3 Common Questions Answered

In Red Deer, Alberta and the rest of Canada, driving a car without being covered under a car insurance policy is illegal. But for first-time drivers, the world of insurance coverage is as big as it is foreign. If you are considering purchasing Red Deer car coverage in the near future, then here are 3 common questions answered:

  1. How much is Red Deer car coverage? Unfortunately, there is no "one-size-fits-all" answer to this question because it depends on many, many things. Here are just a few examples of what can affect how much you end up paying each month:
    • The brand of your car;
    • How old your car is;
    • Whether it is used or new;
    • Your experience as a driver;
    • Where you live;
    • Etc.
  2. Is car coverage mandatory? As we mentioned earlier, in Canada you are not allowed to drive a car without owning some sort of insurance coverage. Keep in mind that this also applies to motorcycles and most other motor vehicles.
  3. Where can I request a free Red Deer quote online? Insurance quotes exist for a reason: To help you make a decision. As a result, we highly recommend that you use them wisely. The good news for you is that many companies in Red Deer would be more than happy to provide you with a free insurance quote -- including Sharp Insurance. For more information on what our free quote entails, please visit 
Good luck and remember to always drive safely!

Thursday, 15 October 2015

How to Choose the Right Deductible For Your Edmonton Home Insurance Coverage

When it comes to Edmonton home insurance coverage, there seems to be some misconceptions about deductibles, and how high (or low) those deductibles have to be.

Here's the thing: A deductible doesn't have to be a certain amount of money. Nobody is forcing you to pay a certain amount of money. But let's be honest -- being stuck with a really high deductible can be troublesome in the event of you having to file a claim... just like being stuck with a really low deductible can be as expensive (if not more expensive) in the long run.

Wait. What?

You read that right. Being stuck with a really deductible can be bad too. If you are new to the world of Edmonton insurance coverage, you may not be aware of this, but the lower your deductible is, the higher your monthly premiums are. And vice versa.

With that being said, it would make sense for you to choose a deductible that you can afford and which doesn't end up raising your monthly premiums dramatically. Unfortunately, this is something that you will have to figure out by yourself or with the help of your insurance broker.

Whichever way you decide to go, however, remember that lowering monthly premiums CAN be done, and that having some money aside to cover your deductible is always a good idea.

Good luck!

Monday, 12 October 2015

What Is Product Liability Insurance Coverage?

If you own a company that manufactures, wholesales, distributes and retails a product (or several of them), then you might want to think twice about your current insurance coverage if the latter doesn't include a product liability insurance policy.

But what exactly is this policy? And how would your company benefit from purchasing it?

As the name entails, a product liability insurance policy protects you from financial losses associated with a defect product. In the event of said product causing bodily or property harm, you won't have to worry about subsequent lawsuits.

Well, okay maybe you will have to worry about that... but you can rest assured that the costs related to defending yourself in court will be taken care of by your insurance company. In other words, you won't have to worry about finding a lawyer or paying for the damages if you end up losing the case.

This is the main reason why you need to be covered under this policy. And really, do you need another one? It doesn't matter how small your company is. If your company deals with products in any way, then being covered under a product liability insurance coverage is an absolute must. It can well end up saving you from bankruptcy down the road.

Keep in mind, however, that the kind of products that you associate yourself with play a HUGE role in how much insurance coverage your company will need. As an example, a company that deals in clothing will be far less likely to be sued than a company that deals in... let's say... home appliances. With that in mind, does the company that deals in clothing need to be covered under this policy? Of course it does -- just not as much.

For more information on this policy or to request your free insurance quote, feel free to give Sharp Insurance a call or drop us a line.

Friday, 9 October 2015

Fort McMurray New Drivers: 3 Things to Know About Insurance Coverage

Under Canadian (and Albertan laws) new drivers, regardless of how old they are, are obligated to purchase a car insurance policy before hitting the road. Generally speaking, a liability insurance policy is enough to get you out of trouble. But if you are a new driver, chances are that you don't even know the difference between the different types of insurance polices available to you.

This is why Sharp Insurance has compiled a short list of 3 things to know about car insurance coverage in Fort McMurray. So without further ado, here they are:
  1. New drivers are treated the same, regardless of how old they are. When people think of "new drivers" they usually picture teenagers. While it's true that the vast majority of new drivers in Alberta are in fact teenagers, a good portion of them are also made up of adults. 
  2. New drivers pay higher premiums than "regular" drivers. Yep... that's the question you've been dreading all along! In a way, new drivers are treated the same as high-risk drivers in Fort McMurray. Because they lack experience and are seen as more prone to causing bodily and/or property damage, they are expected to pay higher monthly premiums. If you are a new driver, however, don't sweat it too much. Lowering your premiums can be done via a number of ways... and if you manage to keep a clean driving record for a while they'll go down on their own anyway!
  3. New driver insurance policies differ greatly in Canada. Does that surprise you? If it does then you would most likely benefit from requesting a free new driver insurance quote from Sharp Insurance. Unlike what some people think, insurance policies differ from one another... and so do insurance companies. How much you want to pay each month plays a HUGE role in the type of insurance coverage you'll end up with, so be sure to make a budget before making any decision.

Monday, 5 October 2015

Can I Get a Ticket For Not Wearing a Seat Belt In Alberta?

Dangerous driving habits in Alberta can be costly. But how costly can they really be? Let's take a look.

First and foremost, can you get a ticket for not wearing a seat belt in Alberta?

The answer is yes... and you might be surprised at how much it costs not to wear one in Canada. Here's the thing: Just like speeding, tailgating and running red lights, not wearing your seat belt is considered a dangerous driving habit. As a result, it would make sense that you can be ticketed over it.

In general, expect to pay a $115 ticket if you are caught not wearing your seat belt in the province. Yes, you read that right -- $115! Is it really worth paying that much for a simple mistake or act of laziness or negligence? You be the judge.

Also keep in mind that the more tickets you receive and the more infractions you are caught doing, the more likely it becomes for you to be labelled as a high risk driver in Edmonton. As a result of that, you will have to pay higher monthly premiums on your car insurance coverage. So before driving the road, think twice about the habits that can land you in trouble.

If you're tired, call a taxi. If you're late, don't speed up. And of course, don't forget to buckle in your seat belt. It might just save you $115 in the short run and even more down the road!

Thursday, 1 October 2015

Where to Request a Free Home Insurance Quote in Red Deer

In Canada, you are not legally required to purchase home insurance coverage. But as we've said before, just because you don't have to doesn't mean that you shouldn't. If you are planning on buying or building a home in Red Deer (or even if you already own one), then we highly recommend that you also purchase a Red Deer home insurance policy. 

Life is simply too unpredictable for you to not be covered under a home insurance policy. If you don't believe us, then simply ask the hundreds of Canadians who have had to go bankrupt this year as a result of a disaster striking their home.

What did all of these people have in common?

They were not properly insured. If as simple as that. 

Don't be among them. Purchasing a home insurance policy is the surest way to receive peace of mind. Further to that, don't hesitate to purchase additional coverage if needed. Unlike what some people think, home insurance policies don't cover everything. Flood insurance coverage might come in especially handy in Red Deer in Alberta this year.

Now to go back to the original question... where can you request a free home insurance quote in Red Deer? You will find that many companies like to offer free insurance quotes to prospective clients, so don't hesitate to ask away. Sharp Insurance is always good place for you to start from, but remember to give several companies a try. This is the best way to find the best Red Deer home insurance policy at a price that you are comfortable with.

Good luck!