Category: Insurance Tips

Open Enrollment, Mattoon Illinois

What is the difference between an HMO and a PPO health plan?

With the market place now being in full swing of things, when you are shopping for health insurance you are going to see the main two types of a policies: HMO and PPO. What is the difference between the two? We will answer that below!

A health maintenance organization (HMO) and a preferred provider organization (PPO) have a good amount of differences such as what doctors a patient can see, how much care costs and how important medical records are kept.


  • Choice of Health Care Provider

The PPO policy offers you more of a choice and flexibility, but with that comes a higher premium. With a PPO, you are able to see any doctor you wish or visit hospital you choose, within a preferred network of providers. Also with a PPO you do not have to designate a primary doctor and usually see a specialist without referral.

With a HMO policy, it requires you to only see doctors and hospitals on their list of providers. Which means you will need to choose a primary care doctor who will direct care and refer you to approved specialists if one is needed. This option does offer fewer choices and may make switching doctors or getting a second opion a little harder. Most the time, the HMO wil not cover medical expenses that are incurred by seeing someone who is not contracted with the HMO, but usually will have defined coverage for Emergency situations when a patient is outside the normal coverage area.


  • Cost Difference

PPO does usually pay a percentage of a person’s medical expenses, with the patient paying the remainder of the balance. HMO’s generally have a set cost for each service, so you can plan accordingly.


  • Medical Records

PPO’s usually do not store medical records in one location because you have the option choose what provider you wish to go to. Wish in return can cause a good amount time hunting down all your records.

HMO’s now with you choosing a primary care provider, medical records are kept together within the organization. Also when you are referred to a differ provider/ specialist; any medical records are usually automatically forwarded on your behalf.

Contact us today and we will help you for FREE with your marketplace health insurance plan!

Renters Insurance, MAttoon IL

Renter’s Insurance Does More Than Protect Your “Stuff”

I have heard more than I want to count, “I don’t have much, or what I do have is not worth much”.

That’s what most clients think renters insurance does: protect what you have and nothing more – but it does way more than that.

Here are three financial protections that a renter’s policy offers:

1. What happens if you were forced out of the place that you call home? You would need to find a place to stay, right? Well renters insurance helps with that.  It’s called Loss of Use, and this helps pay for temporary housing (most policies either go by a dollar amount or time frame).

2. If someone is hurt at your place, they could sue you. Who pays for that? Or if you have a dog, and they happen to bite someone, who pays for that? Lawsuits are a real thing and it seems like they happen more and more in today’s world. Personal liability comes with renters insurance and that can help you protect yourself from the unknown. (I recommend going with 300K, or more).

3. Let’s say you’re out mowing and shoot a rock out and hit the neighbors truck window, or your at a friend’s house and knock their TV off the wall, or even if you’re on the golf course and hit a errant shot that damages someone’s house. Did you know that those items could be helped paid for by renters insurance? Yep, under damage to others property (this is up to specific dollar amount).

So, not only does renters insurance protect the items that you own but from other everyday risks that could hurt you financially.

Want a free quote for your renter’s insurance? Fill out the form below!

Mattoon Illinois Insurance Agency. Car Accident Tips

Next Insurance Steps After Being in a Car Accident

As if being in a car accident wasn’t scary enough, we know that dealing with your car insurance can seem overwhelming. The truth is you get car insurance to protect yourself but many of us don’t really know what the next step would be once you find yourself in a car accident. Therefore, today we are sharing in a few simple tips on the insurance steps you should take if you unfortunately find yourself in a car accident.

  1. Call your agent. Even though the situation is overwhelming, be sure to call your insurance agent and tell them all the details of the accident. They will be able to give you the best advice regarding your accident and remind you of the next step when it comes to filing your claim, which would be to contact your carrier.
  2. File your claim. Once you call your carrier, they will ask you basic questions regarding the accident.
  3. Claims Adjuster. Towards the end of your call, your insurance carrier will assign a claims adjuster who will be in charge of your claim from there forward. Their  job is to verify all the information and asses the damage of all vehicles involved. Even while the adjusters work, medical treatment and vehicle repairs typically start immediately.
  4. Reimbursement. After the insurance company assess fault, they will negotiate to determine which one will reimburse the other for claims paid. Fault assessment is not a cut-and-dry process since there are no laws to help govern assessment of fault. Typically,the standard is that the party who is responsible for over 50% fault will have their insurance company pay for everything. In some cases, the insurance companies will determine that their client was 60% at fault and will only cover 60% of the claim. 


Tips for Making Sure Your Teen Drives Safely

Do you have a new driver in the family? It marks a time of new independence and new worries for parents.

There is reason for concern: Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for 15-19 year old in the United States. Parents need to take the time to talk with their kids about the dangers of driving.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • #1 lead by example. Follow the rules of the road. Always wear a seat belt. Don’t speed. Don’t talk on a cell phone.
  • Set clear rules, boundaries, and expectations. For example; absolutely no alcohol, never speed, cell phone turned off while driving.
  • Recognize their need to become independent and be confident in their driving abilities.
  • Communication is key!


Road Trip Safety Tips

Planning on taking your family on a vacation this fall? It’s easy to get wrapped up in all the plans and excitement, but be sure to keep these safety tips in mind when traveling!

  • Check the forecast daily and request weather alerts along the planned route.
  • Check tire pressure before the trip (and regularly during) and inflate tires to the recommended level.
  • Replace windshield wipers.
  • Don’t overload the vehicle.
  • Schedule stops throughout the day and be sure to book hotel rooms in advance.
  • Follow other vehicles safely by observing the 3/6/9 rule. In normal conditions, account for a minimum 3 seconds between the time the car in front of you passes a fixed object and the time you pass it. Allow a minimum of 6 seconds in heavy traffic or inclement weather, and allow a minimum of 9 seconds in severe weather.
  • Keep windows clean and watch for chips or cracks from debris. Avoid washing a window with a crack and keep from hitting potholes and slamming doors, which can worsen a damaged window.


Steps to Preventing Wind Damage to Your Home

Storm season is upon us and that means high winds. You can’t make your home high wind-proof, but you can take steps that improve the odds to surviving the high winds without having to file a claim.

  • Start at the top – Your roof. Fix any areas that need repaired. If you are planning to replace your roof, select materials that are designed to withstand high wind speeds.
  • If you are planning to replace your windows, select impact-resistant window systems. These have a much better chance of surviving a major windstorm.
  • Anchor door frames securely to wall framing. Make certain your doors have at least three hinges and a deadbolt security lock with the bolt being at least one inch long.

Following these steps will help your home survive a heavy wind storm. However, if you do incur a claim, make sure you contact your claims service number as soon as possible after the storm.


What Is Uninsured Motorist Coverage & Why Do You Need It?

Uninsured motorist coverage protects you should you be hit by a driver who does not carry insurance. In many states, uninsured motorist coverage is not required. In Illinois it is automatically written in to policies, even ones that are liability only.  They are written in at the legal minimum requirement, so make sure to check your limits.

Think about this – You get in a car accident and the person who hit you does not have auto insurance. You now have medical bills caused by someone else who has no insurance to pay for them. What do you do? Well if you have uninsured motorist coverage, your insurance will kick in and take care of it. It will cover you and your passenger’s medical expenses, pain and suffering and even lost wages if necessary.

Uninsured motorist coverage is a very good thing to have included in your insurance policy. Statistic show that 1 driver out of every 7 in the United States are currently uninsured.


Do You Really Need To Purchase Rental Car Insurance?

Renting a car? We’ll give you the inside scoop that will be able to save you money on your next car rental. 

Due to the high risk that driving a car that isn’t yours might bring, some of us may automatically sign up for the car insurance that the car rental company will offer. Some car rental companies may try to convince you to buy their insurance to avoid the liability claims if something were to happen while you are driving the rental car. But, what if we told you that you don’t need their insurance? 

The truth is that if you have auto liability insurance, that coverage extends to any vehicle that you drive – including rental cars. If someone who already has auto insurance purchases insurance from a rental company, they are double covering themselves unnecessarily. The fact of the matter is, if you have auto liability insurance, always say “no” to the insurance offered to you at a rental car dealership.



Why Do You Need Life Insurance?

If something happened to you tomorrow, would your spouse and/or children be taken care of? Would they be left drowning in debt? Would they be able to pay for your funeral expenses? This isn’t a subject anyone wants to discuss, but the truth is it happens and you should be prepared.

Most people don’t think about Life Insurance, because you don’t think about the idea that you could get in a car accident and leave your loved ones in a financial hardship.

Here are a few tips on life insurance. The purpose of life insurance is to provide financial support for your dependents; dependents could mean your spouse, your children or someone you do or feel the need to financially support once you are no longer here to do so.

People often wonder how much your life insurance policy needs to be. That varies for people, some want to make sure their loved ones can pay off vehicles and houses, others just want to make sure their expenses are covered. If you have children, you need to think about how long they need to be supported before they become financially independent. The amount that an individual’s life insurance policy needs to be varies depending on each person’s situation.


Reasons to Get a Quote Once a Year

Here at ISS Insurance Group, we suggest that you evaluate your insurance policies every year.

1. Compare your rates – for free!

The number one reason that you should compare rates is that you are not charged, it doesn’t hurt your credit, and you under no obligation to purchase the issued quotes.   We happily will research your insurance needs and we will make sure that this process entails very little of your time. Once we have a limited amount of information, one of our independent agents can provide you with several different policy options. The benefit from having an independent agent run your quote would simply be the varying insurance companies. For example, one company might give a larger discount for your occupation and another would put more emphasis on your credit score. Our independent agents are knowledgeable of the many differing factors that will contribute to offering each individual the most efficient policy.

2. Stay up to date.

Another reason to receive routine quotes is that the insurance business is very competitive and is reinventing itself all the time. Insurance companies are continually introducing new plans or discount options that could save you money. Having your insurance evaluated can not only save you hundreds of dollars a year, but it also makes sure that you are completely covered. There are certain variables that dictate the amount of coverage you need. The changes in your own life affect you insurance needs. They could be changes in income, address, or to your home or vehicle. In any instance, our independent agents are knowledgeable regarding these new changes and can determine the adequacy of your coverage. The only way to make sure that you are getting the best possible insurance policy is to be given regular quotes.

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