Commodity Broker Insurance California Policy Information
Commodity Broker Insurance California. As a commodity broker, you are tasked with purchasing and selling commodity contracts. Needless to say, your job is extremely important, as you're not only making vital decisions on the behalf of your clients, but you're also responsible for large sums of money.
While you may be great at what you do and you always go the extra mile to ensure that all of your t's are crossed and i's are dotted, there's always a chance that something could go wrong when you least expect it.
Commodity brokers are trained and licensed to purchase and sell commodities for their individual or corporate clients on a fee or a commission basis. Commodities are unprocessed materials, such as grain, livestock, or metals, that are traded on futures markets.
Commodities brokers match the products of the farmer or mine owner with the anticipated future needs of the marketplace. These contracts or "futures" are traded in the commodities market.
Commodity brokers are regulated under the jurisdiction of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and are required to be members of the National Futures Association (NFA). Commodity brokers have a high degree of fiduciary responsibility to their clients.
Whether you work for yourself or you trade on a firm's floor, you are exposed to numerous risks on a daily basis. Those risks range from general and professional liabilities to an array of crimes (such as fraud).
In order to protect yourself and your clients, making sure that you have the right type of commodity broker insurance California coverage in place is vital.
Why is it so important for CA commodity brokers to have insurance? What type of insurance do you need? Read on to find the answers to these questions and to ensure that you are properly protected.
Commodity broker insurance California protects your trading firm with rates as low as $47/mo. Get a fast quote and your certificate of insurance now.
Why Do Commodity Brokers Need Insurance?
Just like any other professional, CA commodity brokers face a number of risks. Some of those risks are common to all industries, while some are unique to your specific profession.
For instance, if you're an independent broker or you run a firm, you're responsible for anyone who visits the location where operate your business. If a third-party - a client or a postal employee delivering your mail, for example - slips and falls at your facility, sustains in injury, and files a lawsuit, you are responsible for any medical care that may be required, as well as the cost of litigation.
Similarly, if you make a mistake and a client sues you for suspected fraud, you are liable for any financial repercussions. In the event that something does go wrong, having the right type of insurance in place is the key to avoiding serious monetary losses.
If you aren't insured, you would be responsible for covering the expenses out of your own pocket, which could be financially devastating. If you're insured, however, your carrier would cover the related costs.
Additionally, in order to legally operate as a commodity broker, you are required to carry certain commodity broker insurance California coverage. If you aren't properly insured, you could face fines and penalties and even lose your license.
In other words, being insured will ensures that you are operations are compliant with Federal and CA state laws, and can help you avoid exorbitant expenses and even the possibility of losing your business.
What Type Of Insurance Coverage Do Commodity Brokers Need?
There are several factors that will impact the specific type of commodity broker insurance California that should be purchased; where you operate your business, whether or not you're an independent broker or you own and operate your own firm and employ other brokers, for example.
With that said, here's a look at some of the most common types of insurance coverage that commodity brokers should carry:
- General Liability - All CA commodity brokers should have general liability insurance. This type of coverage protects you from any third-party personal injury and property damage liability claims. For instance, if a client who is seeking advice is injured on the premises of your business and files a lawsuit against you, general liability insurance will cover the cost of any legal expenses and expenses that a court may find you liable for.
- Professional Liability - Also known as errors and omissions (E&O) insurance, professional liability protects you from any mistakes that may occur. For example, if you make an investment error that leads to financial losses, you'll have the coverage you need to protect you against any legal actions that a client may take.
- Commercial Property - To protect the space where you operate your business from physical damage, you'll need commercial property insurance. This policy protects the physical structure of your business, as well as the contents within it, from acts of nature, theft, and vandalism. If a fire were to break out, this coverage would help to pay for any necessary repairs or replacements.
These are just a few examples of the types of commodity broker insurance California coverage that CA commodity brokers should have in place.
California Commodity Broker's Risks & Exposures
Premises liability exposure is often minimal since most of the client contact is done electronically or by mail. If clients visit the premises, they must be confined to designated areas to prevent them from overhearing private conversations or gaining access to other clients' confidential information.
To prevent slips, trips, or falls, all areas accessible to customers should be well lighted with floor coverings in good condition. The number of exits must be sufficient, and be well marked, with backup lighting in case of power failure.
Parking lots and sidewalks need to be in good repair with snow and ice removed, and generally level and free of exposure to slips and falls. Off-premises exposures arise from sales visits, training sessions, and similar work at the customer's premises. There should be policies and training as to off-site conduct by employees.
Professional liability exposure is extensive due to the handling of futures contracts and the necessity for client confidentiality. Working with individual clients presents fewer professional exposures than working with corporate clients.
Commodities brokers are licensed and are expected to act responsibly for both the buyer and the seller. The exposure increases if the broker fails to conduct thorough background checks to verify employees' credentials, education, and licensing, ignores or has inadequate error checking procedures, or allows clerical workers to do tasks that only professionals should handle such as putting in orders or offering investment advice.
The handling and sharing of information not generally available to the public is a serious exposure, sometimes resulting in allegations of insider trading. Ongoing training must be required for all employees. Policy and procedure manuals should be updated regularly. Very serious losses may result from failure to document decisions and actions or to secure client approval.
All employees must be supervised and monitored, and must take at least one consecutive week of vacation a year.
Workers compensation exposures are generally limited to those of an office. Since work is done on computers, potential injuries include eyestrain, neck strain, carpal tunnel syndrome, and similar cumulative trauma injuries that can be addressed through ergonomically designed workstations.
Some commodity brokers travel extensively for sales presentations and similar activities. Workers can be injured by slips and falls at clients' premises or in automobile accidents.
Property exposures are generally limited to that of an office, although there may be some incidental storage or an area for meetings. Ignition sources include electrical wiring, heating and air conditioning equipment, wear, and overheating of equipment. Computers and other electronic equipment may be targets for theft.
Crime exposure is from employee dishonesty, which can be quite serious as commodity brokers frequently have access to their clients' personal and proprietary information, including investment accounts, and handle large values. Potential for theft, directly or by means of identity theft, is great.
Hazards increase without proper background checks, along with monitoring procedures and securing of all records to prevent unauthorized access. All job duties, such as ordering, billing and disbursing should be separate and reconciled on a regular basis.
Receipts should be issued for any cash payments received. Bank deposits should be made on a timely basis to limit the buildup of cash on premises. Audits should be performed at least annually. All transactions should be handled in accordance with CFTC guidelines.
Inland marine exposures consist of accounts receivable if the broker offers credit, computers, and valuable papers and records for customers' and vendors' information. Clients' records and approvals are typically originals that are difficult to re-create.
Power failure and power surges are potentially severe hazards. A morale hazard may be indicated if the insured does not keep valuable papers and disks in fireproof file cabinets to protect them from smoke, water, and fire. Duplicates should be kept off-site to allow for re-creation in the event of a loss.
Business auto exposure is generally limited to hired and non-owned. If vehicles are supplied to employees, there should be written procedures in place regarding personal use by employees and their family members. All drivers must have appropriate licenses and acceptable MVRs. Vehicles must be maintained, and records kept in a central location.
Commodity Broker Insurance California - The Bottom Line
To find out more about the specifics, including any other protections that you may need and the amount of commodity broker insurance California coverage you should carry, speak with a reputable insurance agent.
California Economic Data, Regulations & Limits On Commercial Insurance
If you are an entrepreneur and you considering having your operations located in California, it's essential that you have a full understanding about the economy of the state, as well as the regulations and limits that are in place for commercial insurance.
If you are considering opening up a business in the Golden State, you first want to make sure that it is a sound location for your operations. That means that you should understand some key information related to the state's economy, as well as the types of insurance coverages that businesses are legally required to carry.
Economic Trends For Businesses In California
In terms of job creation, the state of California exceeds rate of job growth in the United States; however, as the state's metropolitan areas are reaching employment capacity, job growth is starting to slow. In 2017, the rate of growth was 2.1 percent, which is the slowest rate of growth since 2011; but it is still expected to increase by 1.8 percent by the end of 2018, and 1.2 percent by the end of 2020.
In the month of April, the unemployment rate in California dropped to 4.2 percent, which is a record low. This unemployment rate is expected to remain consistent for the rest of the calendar year; however, it's forecasted that the rate will start to increase in 2020.
The strongest labor market in the state is in the Bay Area, where the unemployment rate was 3.4 percent in 2017. Southern California follows, with an unemployment rate of 4.5 percent in 2017. In the Central Coast region, the rate was 5.4 percent and in the Central Valley, it was 6.6 percent. While the unemployment rate is considered high in these areas, they have decreased dramatically over the last 12 month period.
The industries that are expected to see the most growth in CA include:
- Information Technology
CA Commercial Insurance Regulations And Limits
The California Department of Insurance regulates insurance in the Golden State. In the state of CA, commercial liability insurance is not required; however, since the state does not cap rewards for liability law suits, business owners are wise to invest in this type of coverage. The amount of coverage recommended varies depending on the size of the business and in the industry.
Workers' compensation insurance is the only type of coverage that business owners are required to have. This applies to any organization that employs a salaried or hourly staff, even if that staff only consists of one employee. Furthermore, if an employee is injured or becomes ill as a result of work, business owners must pay for CA workers' comp benefits.
Additional Resources For Professional Services Insurance
Get informed about small business professional services insurance, including Professional liability, aka errors and omissions (E&O insurance), that protects your business against claims that a professional service you provided caused your client financial loss.
- Answering Service
- Armored Car
- Attorney Lawyer
- Business Consulting
- Commodity Broker
- Corporate Wellness
- Court Reporter
- Debt Collection Agency
- Detective Agency
- Electrical Engineering
- Environmental Consultant
- Executive, Career & Life Coaching
- Executive Search Firm
- Expert Witness
- Financial Services
- Financial Planner
- HR Consultant
- Insurance Agents & Brokers Insurance
- Mediator - Arbitrator
- Medical Billing
- Music, Drama & Dance Therapy
- Office Machine Repair & Maintenance
- Piano Tuners
- Project Management
- Temporary Staffing
- Tax Preparer
Let's face reality. People today are claims conscious, resulting in a significant share of malpractice lawsuits against professionals.
Liability resulting from the rendering of or the failure to render professional services is excluded in most liability coverage forms. This means that a policy covering a account's or lawyers' office will cover liability arising out of the maintenance or use of the premises, but specifically exclude liability arising out of the rendering of a professional service or the omission of such a service.
In addition to the professions in which actual physical or mental injury may be caused to clients, certain other professions are exposed to claims for malpractice.
Claims may be brought against lawyers, accountants, architects, and similar professional persons for errors or omissions in their professional capacity. Errors & Omissions insurance pays damages that might be awarded to a plaintiff alleging professional negligence.
Professional liability policies are made available to such risks, and these policies provide essentially the same protection as is afforded under the physicians, surgeons or dentists professional liability policy.
Minimum recommended small business insurance coverage: Business Personal Property, Employee Dishonesty, Accounts Receivable, Computers, Valuable Papers and Records, General Liability, Employee Benefits Liability, Professional Liability, Umbrella Liability, Hired and Non-owned Auto Liability & Workers Compensation.
Other commercial insurance policies to consider: Building, Business Income with Extra Expense, Earthquake, Equipment Breakdown, Flood, Computer Fraud, Forgery, Money and Securities, Special Floater, Cyber Liability, Employment-related Practices Liability, Business Auto Liability and Physical Damage and Stop Gap Liability.
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