Abatelli Group, Inc.

21
Jan

4 Ways to Protect Your Business from Cybercrime

With more and more people working from home, the risk of cyberattacks for a business owner or an employer has increased significantly. Understanding how hackers can break into your network is essential, and preparation is key to prevent cyberattacks from being successful. Establishing sufficient cybersecurity measures is crucial if you plan on keeping your internet environment protected and intact.

1. Properly Train Your Employees

Provide your employees the proper training they will need to identify potential cyber threats and take the necessary steps to prevent data corruption and loss. Administering proper training to employees will allow them to stay current with the latest threats and tactics being used by hackers. Make sure to give them the tools they need to shut down a threat and prevent damage from occurring. Each employee must have the necessary training to succeed when it comes to protecting their work environment.

2. Two-Factor Identification

Two-factor identification is a great tool for employees that can be used to protect themselves and their work environment. With this type of access, a person would need to provide two different kinds of information to gain entry into their online accounts. This may be a combination of a PIN and security question or a PIN and fingerprint. As long as two components are used, it makes it much more difficult for hackers and internet intruders to gain access to your private files and network.

3. Use Up-to-Date Technology

Providing your employees with the most up-to-date technology is the best way to keep your company protected from a cyberattack. Through the use of firewalls, enhanced cloud security measures, two-factor identification, and other useful tools, you can protect your business and personal files from cyberattacks and hackers who are trying to gain access to your confidential files. If you need assistance with adding more sophisticated cybersecurity equipment, hire an IT professional who can evaluate your needs and provide you with the type of system that will work best for you.

4. Implement a Cybersecurity Environment

All employees must understand the importance of their role in maintaining a safe and productive internet environment. Every person is a vital member of the team when it comes to monitoring and identifying potential threats. With the proper training, equipment, and the right security protocols, each employee will be able to take the steps that are necessary to maintain a secure network.

Cybersecurity is an essential part of any business, especially with many people working virtually. Identifying cybercrime and stopping hackers before they can breach your system is of the utmost importance. Talk to the team members at Abatelli Group, Inc. to find out how we can help protect your business from potential cyber-attacks. With reliable commercial insurance, we can help your business’s future. Contact us today to get started.

 

7
Jan

How Do I Obtain Workers’ Compensation for My Business?

Workers’ compensation insurance is a necessary business expense. Not only is it mandatory in many states, once it is in place, it will also protect your business from financial loss if an accident does occur. In addition to providing employees with workers’ compensation insurance, it’s up to you to make sure they have a work environment that is safe and free from hazards. Taking the necessary precautions is the best way to ensure your workers remain safe on the job.

Is Workers’ Compensation Insurance Mandatory?

Most states require that businesses carry workers’ compensation insurance for their employees. There is an exemption that would exclude businesses from purchasing workers’ compensation insurance, but they would still need to self-insure their employees through a different type of policy. In most cases, it is better to purchase the workers’ compensation policy simply because it is specifically designed to cover work-related injuries that may impact your employees’ future.

Where Do I Get Workers’ Compensation Insurance?

Most insurance companies and brokers offer workers’ compensation insurance. These policies can be found online through larger companies, or you can choose to buy from a local agent who is familiar with your area and can be hands-on in determining the type and amount of insurance for your business. You may be able to get the workers’ compensation coverage you need from a state-funded program. Because the insurance is mandatory, many states offer assistance in helping companies make sure they remain in compliance.

How Much Workers’ Compensation Insurance Does My Business Need?

While some states don’t require workers’ compensation for companies that have fewer than five employees, it’s still a good idea to provide some type of insurance coverage. The amount of workers’ compensation you need will depend on how many employees you have and the type of work they do. The nature of your business will determine how much your premiums will cost you each month. In most cases, the more employees you have, the more cost-effective your policies will be. Understanding how the cost is determined will give you an idea of how much you will have to pay for each employee.

Finding the Right Insurance Agent

The key to buying the right workers’ compensation policy is to find the right insurance agent or broker. The appropriate agent will listen to your concerns and answer any questions you may have. They will be able to guide you through the process, so you can understand your premium costs and how the claims process works once an injury has occurred. Your insurance agent will be the person you go to when you need proper compliance with state guidelines involving workers’ compensation coverage.

As a business owner, it’s up to you to be compliant with state guidelines. Securing the right workers’ compensation doesn’t have to be difficult. The right agents are here to help you. For the right workers’ compensation insurance policy, contact our expert team at Abatelli Group, Inc. today. We serve Whitestone, Flushing, Bayside, Little Neck, and surrounding cities of New York with reliable coverage. We are ready to assist you with all of your insurance needs.

23
Dec

Home Winterization Tips to Help Protect Your Home This Winter

With the change in seasons and the onset of cold, chilly days, you know it is time to prepare your home for winter. Having a home winterization plan in place is extremely important. Your home is one of your most valuable assets, so you must protect it.

To assist you in preparing for the change in seasons, here are some home winterization tips.

1. Create a Home Winterization Checklist

One of the first things you should do to prepare for the upcoming changes is to create a winter checklist. Make sure that you have all of the necessary equipment in case of an emergency. Keep at least two snow shovels in store. If you aren’t a fan of shovels, purchase a snowblower. Make sure to possess a case of salt to treat the snow and reduce the risk of a potential slip and fall accident on your property. Store up extra water and canned food in case a blizzard leaves you unable to travel.

Check your gutters. If you checked your gutter during the fall, it’s important to check them again before winter sets in. Clean all of the excess debris and leaves out of your gutters. This will prevent potential drainage issues during the winter. Check your roof shingles to see if they are damaged, and clean your chimney before heavy snowfall occurs. If necessary, add some sealer to your deck, which will make it more likely to withstand the harsh winter conditions.

 2. Examine Any HVAC Issues

Check all of the doors and windows inside your home for potential air leaks. Add caulk or weatherstripping to areas where warm air can leak out. You can increase your home’s energy output by installing double-paned windows. Tune-up your heating system and make sure to get the filter replaced by an experienced HVAC contractor who will check your furnace for any issue. This way, you will not only protect your home but also ensure cheaper energy bills.

3. Check Hidden Areas

Don’t forget to check the walls, attic, and basement to see if they are properly insulated. Disconnect all of your outside faucets and shut off the water, sealing off any possible outlet of warm air. Check all of the electrical outlets and plates for cold air and add more insulation if needed.

4. Check for Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide is regarded by many as a silent killer. The poison is invisible, tasteless, and odorless but has deadly consequences. Carbon monoxide can leak out into your home from any equipment that uses gas or oil. As you start running your heating system regularly, consider having an air quality test to see if there are any potential carbon monoxide leaks.

5. Check Your Generator

In the event of a power outage during the winter, consider adding a backup generator so that you and your loved ones can stay warm despite the blackout. To ensure that your generator is functioning properly, check the oil and change the fuel. If you have a fireplace, check the same for any gaps or exposed walls.

6. Unplug Appliances

If you aren’t using an appliance, be sure to unplug it to save some money on your energy bill. Consider using LED bulbs throughout your home as they make efficient power savers.

How are you protecting your home from winter damage this season? Let us know! Want another great way to protect your home? Secure reliable homeowners insurance that protects you through disasters. Call one of our trusted advisors at Abatelli Group, Inc. We are ready to get you the protection and peace of mind you need.

 

15
Dec

5 Ways to Ensure a Stress-Free Holiday During COVID-19

The holiday season is known for being one of the happiest times of the year. You have the opportunity to relax and spend time with your loved ones. However, for many people, the holiday season can be stressful. Planning a schedule, trying to stick to a budget, and ensuring that everything remains stable can leave you overwhelmed. With the current pandemic situation, the stress levels are bound to escalate, as one is faced with several uncertainties both on the economic and social fronts.

Luckily, there a few things that you can do to manage stress around the holidays. Here are a few ways that you can ensure proper holiday stress management.

1. Keep Track of the Dates

As you start planning your holiday activities, make sure that you mark your calendar. Labeling the important dates will help you plan your celebrations and stay organized. It also allows you to set aside enough time to take care of everything when it’s most convenient. Trying to perform a lot of activities at the last-minute leads to poor holiday stress management.

2. Create a List of Your Major Priorities

Make a list of all the tasks you plan to accomplish throughout the holiday season, as having an organized list will help you manage stress around the holidays. It also enables you to prioritize those activities that are relatively more important while the other less significant ones can wait until later. This way, you can keep your schedule from being overloaded while accomplishing a lot, even within a limited time frame.

3. Focus on the Positives

For many people, the holiday season is a time to be thankful for the good things in their lives. Focusing on the positives will help you maintain the right attitude throughout the festivities. If you are planning to spend time with your loved ones during the holiday season, make sure that you keep a positive attitude at all times. You may disagree with some of your family but instead of holding grudges, learn to let go of the offenses. Though this has been a trying year for everyone because of the pandemic, you can always find something to be thankful for.

4. Take Care of Yourself

The holiday season is often a time to relax and reflect. Amidst all the festive celebrations, you may find it difficult to maintain some of your regular habits. While it is fine to indulge in some treats, try to stick to your health routine as far as possible. Continue working out and eating healthy. If you find yourself being overwhelmed, make adjustments to your schedule as necessary. Eating healthy meals and getting adequate rest, especially during COVID-19, is a great way to keep the stress in check.

5. Give from Your Abundance

Another way to stay in the holiday spirit is to give back. Putting a smile on someone’s face will help you feel better as well. It’s important to keep things in perspective. There is always someone who is dealing with more serious and painful times than you are. Think of the people who have lost a loved one during this difficult pandemic. If you know someone who is feeling low, give them a call or send them the much-needed word of encouragement.
While the holiday season can be overwhelming, you can help make things go smoothly and reduce your stress levels by following the above-mentioned stress management tips. If you’re looking for personal or commercial insurance during this time, call one of our trusted advisors at Abatelli Group, Inc. We are ready to get you the protection and peace of mind you need.

19
Nov

Defensive Driving Tips to Keep You Safe on the Road

One of the largest problems with driving is that we are unable to predict the actions of others sharing the roads. No matter how good of a driver you are, there’s no guarantee that you won’t be involved in an accident at some point. Because of this, it’s essential to drive defensively. Driving defensively can help you identify threats on the road in order to respond in a way that ensures your safety. 

What is defensive driving?

Defensive driving is a way of driving that makes use of various techniques and tactics to help you stay safe and keep away from problems caused by other road users. Safety is the key element in defensive driving, as you are likely to react to hazards that can protect you from accidents and injuries. By adopting a few simple defensive driving habits, you can enjoy safer drives. 

Defensive driving techniques

  • Avoid distractions

Driving whilst distracted is a leading cause of car accidents across the U.S. Your attention needs to be on the road at all times when behind the wheel. Losing focus on what’s happening around you increases your chances of being involved in a car accident. Before driving away, put your phone out of reach, set the radio on a station and leave it, finish any food or drink, and ensure passengers are entertained. All of these actions can help prevent distractions – and, therefore, keep you safer.

  • Keep a safe distance from other motorists

Ensure there is adequate space between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you. Ideally, this should be three seconds in normal driving conditions. When it’s raining, the road is wet or covered with leaves, there is fog, or the driving conditions are poor, it is advisable to leave extra space so that you have plenty of time to stop if needed. 

  • Check your blink spot

Even if you have a vehicle with the latest tech that lets you know someone is in your blind spot, it’s good practice to check for yourself before merging and moving. Sometimes, technology fails to recognize a pedestrian or motorcyclist. It takes a fraction of a second to check, and it could be the difference between a safe journey and a disastrous one.

  • If in doubt, yield

Some impatient drivers may not be as willing to wait for other road users. Even if you have the right of way or another vehicle is intent on driving off first even though you were the first one to approach the stop sign, do not get angry or move into their space. If you are in doubt of which vehicle’s turn it is, yield until safe to move.

  • Anticipate dangers

Be aware of everything that is happening in front of you. Are you near a car weaving through lanes at a high speed? Is the driver in front of you on their phone? Is the car behind you too close? Becoming more aware can help you to spot hazards and respond to them before the worst happens.

These defensive driving tips can help you to keep safe on the road. For all of your auto insurance needs, visit Abatelli Group, Inc. We are ready to help you find reliable insurance today.

5
Nov

7 Ways to Keep Your Home Warm Without Big Energy Bills This Winter

It’s that time of year again – we’re all getting ready for the cooler months ahead. This year, you may find yourself working or studying from home more often, which begs the question – how can I heat my home without the enormous energy bill? Fortunately, you’ve come to the right place. Here are just a few ways to keep your home warm without the sky-high bill. 

Keep blankets nearby

If you spend a lot of time in one or two rooms, consider having a supply of blankets in each space. Blankets can instantly transform a room from cold to cozy. When you feel warmer with a blanket, you’re less tempted to turn on the heating and burn through energy. 

Insulate hot water pipes

When the hot water pipes are left exposed in cold, drafty areas, it uses more energy to heat up the water. To prevent higher bills – and prevent the chance of frozen pipes – wrap insulation around the pipes. 

Dress in layers

In winter, thermals are your best friend. Dress for the cooler weather – even if you’re just going to be around the house. Layer up with multiple long-sleeve t-shirts and sweaters. This will help you feel warmer when working around the house so that you don’t turn to the thermostat.

Let the sunlight in

It’s important to use as much natural – and free – heat as possible. Open up the curtains to let the sunshine in and benefit from that free heat source. For windows that don’t receive any sunlight, consider keeping the curtains closed during the day so that as little heat is lost as possible. 

Seal up windows and doors

Walk around your home to spot any holes or gaps that could be letting in cold air through doors and windows. Now is the time to seal up cracks to prevent heat loss. If the caulking around windows and doors is old and cracking, remove it and reapply. This will help to keep the warm air in and the cold air out. 

Stock up on rugs

Although exposed wood floors make quite the impact, they can be cold to touch. Throughout the cooler months, consider buying some big rugs to lay down to drastically reduce heat loss through the floor. Not only does this help your energy bills, but it makes everything feel cozier inside the house, too.

Utilize home cooking

Perhaps you find yourself cooking more often these days. If that’s the case, choose to use your oven more. Roast veggies and then blend them to create delicious soups and stews. Not only will you warm up with a hot meal, but the oven will help to heat your home. Although you should never use the oven as a form of heating, you can benefit from a warmer kitchen when you’re cooking. 

These are just a few ways to help keep your home warm without the large energy bills. Secure reliable homeowners insurance that protects you through disasters. Call one of our trusted advisors at Abatelli Group, Inc. We are ready to get you the protection and peace of mind you need.

22
Oct

Useful and Actionable Ways to Cope with Loneliness

This year, most of us have experienced loneliness to some degree. While we have never been more connected digitally, the recent COVID-19 outbreak forced families to separate and communities to isolate. Although we could chat to people miles and countries away, we were unable to meet those we love face-to-face. Some of the effects of this are still trickling into our everyday lives. Living in this new normal has made many of us feel lonelier than ever before. Such prolonged feelings of isolation can come with serious health problems, both mental and physical. Feelings of isolation are often associated with depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts. It turns out that connectedness is vital for our health and life.

 Acknowledge it

Telling other people you’re lonely can seem scary and shameful. However, expressing your emotions – even if it is loneliness – is the beginning of releasing it. The stigma of being lonely is one where we think of these people are being losers or a loner. However, that is not the case. Denying our loneliness only perpetuates it. Before we are able to recover, we have to be honest with ourselves.

Take stock in the connections you already have

You don’t have to go out and make one hundred friends to resolve your feelings of loneliness. Many of us get tunnel vision where we think that a certain community or a certain number of people in our circle will help us feel more involved. When you think this way, it sets you up for failure as it presents a goal that you are always unsatisfied with. Don’t overlook the connections and friends you already have. Even if you can count them on only one hand, it is essential to see the value in those connections.

Remember that you are not alone in your loneliness

Believe it or not, but feeling lonely is actually a shared experience. People all over the world – especially since COVID-19 – are feeling lonely at times. It’s even possible to feel lonely while surrounded by people. There can be solace in knowing that you are not along in your feelings.

Find support online

Because loneliness is a somewhat widespread issue, there are many people online who are looking for people to connect with. Although you have to be careful who you meet over the internet, you can find real support, connection, and lasting friendships from likeminded people online.

Reach out to a professional

If you are feeling overwhelmed by feelings of loneliness and nothing seems to help, consider reaching out to a professional. Sometimes we need help to escape the dark thoughts keeping us in isolation. Find a licensed therapist in your area to find reliable outside help that can assist you in dealing with these feelings of loneliness.

How are you handling loneliness in a healthy way? Let us know! If you’re looking for personal or commercial insurance during this time, call one of our trusted advisors at Abatelli Group, Inc. We are ready to get you the protection and peace of mind you need.

8
Oct

How Business Insurance Can Save Your Company

Every business owner knows that they need commercial insurance. It helps protect their investment, livelihood, and hard work – but how? As a business owner, you should know how valuable coverage can save your company. Here are just a few ways.

1.Employees

If one of your employees is injured in the course of their work, your workers’ compensation insurance will step in to help. This coverage will help to pay for their medical fees, rehabilitation costs, and lost wages while they are out of work. Keep in mind that every business is at risk of employee injury, from trips and falls to musculoskeletal disorders, and more. Even if you only have one employee, you still need to take out this coverage.

2.Credibility

If you are competing for business with other similar companies, you can increase your credibility by maintaining the right levels of insurance. Many companies do not have the correct insurance policies in place to protect themselves, their employees, or customers. It is becoming more and more popular for large brands to only work with businesses that take actionable steps in protecting themselves and others in the form of insurance.

3.Liability

A common and vital coverage for every business is general liability insurance. Even if you think your business has a low risk of being involved in a liability claim, it is always better to have the coverage in case the unexpected does occur. If a guest falls on your property and injures themselves, or your employee accidentally damages someone’s property while on the job, your business could be held liable for all associated expenses. General liability insurance helps to cover these costs as well as legal defense fees if the person decides to sue. Since these issues can often extend to hundreds of thousands of dollars, your business is protected from these costs with general liability coverage.

4.Property

Whether you rent a small office or own a large warehouse, you need to protect the property your business uses. From the structure to the furniture, electronics, and inventory, your business needs all of these components to run smoothly. Property insurance helps to protect these from damage such as fire, theft, vandalism, and natural disasters. For example, if a fire tears through the building and destroys your inventory and part of the property structure, you can rely on this coverage to help repair and replace so that your business gets back on its feet as soon as possible.

Securing the right business insurance doesn’t have to be difficult. The right agents are here to help you. For the right workers’ compensation insurance policy, contact our expert team at Abatelli Group, Inc. today. We serve Whitestone, Flushing, Bayside, Little Neck, and surrounding cities of New York with reliable coverage. We are ready to assist you with all of your insurance needs.

17
Sep

Homeowner Tips to Reduce Fall and Winter Property Damage

Winter is coming and with it comes cooler temperatures and the potential for storms to wreak havoc. If you haven’t properly prepared your property for these cooler months, then now is the time to do so. Leaving your home unprepared could result in property damage and digging into your pockets to get back on your feet. Take a look at these tips on how to prepare your property and prevent damage during fall and winter.

Inspect the windows

If there are leaks in the windows, then you can expect a chillier home this winter. There are many seal repair kits available at local hardware stores that will stop breezes flowing through your windows. Do the same for doors – check if there are leaks and seal them up. If a window is improperly sized, cracked, or broken, it may need to be replaced. Doing this helps to keep the cool air out in winter and the warm air inside.

Test the smoke alarm

Every six months, replace batteries in all the detectors in your home. Test them to ensure they are in good working order. Remember that you should have an alarm on every level of the house. If you do not have a fire escape route planned out, now is the time to draft one up.

Tend to interior pipes

With fall comes cooler temperatures. One of the main vulnerabilities in cold weather is pipes. However, winterizing pipes is one of the easiest, most valuable ways to protect your property over winter. Fit insulation around pipes to prevent them from freezing. Give priority to the pipes that are closest to the outdoors and are exposed, such as those in the garage and underneath the sink. Now is the time to turn off the water to any area that won’t be used, and to check pipes for cracks that could grow into a significant leak.

Trim the trees and clean the gutters

Trees, believe it or not, can cause a great deal of damage come winter. Wind from winter storms and the weight of snow and ice combined with cold temperatures causing branches to break can crash into your home. To avoid this, trim dead and dying branches around your property. If you have tree limbs hanging over your home, now is the time to remove them before they crash down. It’s also important to keep water away from your home. Ensure the gutters are clear of debris and that downspouts are directed away from the home’s foundation.

Review the roof

A roof inspection may not be on the top of everyone’s fall maintenance checklist, but it should be. Your roof is the first line of defense against harsh winter weather, and you want to be sure it is up for the task. Take a look to see that the roof has no broken tiles or cracks. Any missing shingles should be replaced immediately, as the last thing you want in winter is rain coming in through the roof. Checking the roof also gets more dangerous the wetter and colder it gets, so it’s best to check it now before the weather turns.

Check your insurance policy

No one wants their home to be damaged by cold weather or to submit an insurance claim in winter, for that matter. But just in case you do face this situation, you will want to know exactly what your policy covers. Give your insurer a call to go over the specifics of your policy and make sure you ask about common winter damage. This could unearth some key coverage that you are missing but you thought you had. Fill in the gaps with riders or extra insurance to ensure you are covered.

How are you protecting your home from fall and winter damage this season? Let us know! Want another great way to protect your home? Secure reliable homeowners insurance that protects you through disasters. Call one of our trusted advisors at Abatelli Group, Inc. We are ready to get you the protection and peace of mind you need.

3
Sep

Do I Need Workers’ Compensation If I’m Self-Employed?

Workers’ compensation is often a daunting and downright confusing coverage for business owners. As a professional, you may already have enough to think about beyond this coverage and what it does. The question arises, what about those business owners who go it alone? Do the self-employed need workers’ compensation insurance? The answer is never a simple yes or no, so here is what you need to know.

Check local laws

Whether a self-employed person needs workers’ compensation will depend on your local and state laws. In New York, workers’ compensation insurance optional for most self-employed workers. If you are self-employed or a sole proprietor of a business in New York, you do not need workers’ compensation insurance if you do not have any employees. However, sole proprietors could still benefit from a workers’ comp policy through lost wages coverage after an on-the-job injury. Self-employed persons can choose to carry workers’ compensation coverage, providing additional insurance in case of a workplace injury or disability.

Coverage for sole proprietors

If you are a roofer or self-employed individual in other highly hazardous fields, you may need to obtain a workers’ compensation policy for your own injuries. What’s more, If you work as a general contractor or a subcontractor, you may have to buy workers’ comp insurance if the contract you signed requires it.

Securing coverage

If you qualify for workers’ compensation insurance as a self-employed individual, you will need to use a licensed insurer who has the proper authorization to develop workers’ compensation policies. It’s recommended that you research coverage and different insurance companies before making a decision. Many insurers will not sell workers’ compensation to a self-employed individual as they do not view it as a worthwhile investment. That is why it is so important to work with a trusted professional who has your best interest in mind.

Keep in mind that even if you do not qualify for workers’ compensation insurance, you may still require some forms of insurance as a self-employed person.

Benefits of workers’ compensation

Although it’s tempting to think of workers’ compensation as a hassle and a drain on your business budget, the insurance will act as a safety net if you do suffer an injury on the job. If you suffer a catastrophic injury in a fall or experience an illness as a result of the work you do, your insurance policy will provide the extended disability coverage you need to get back on your feet. The financial support gives you peace of mind that you’re covered if a serious injury happens on the job.

Securing the right workers’ compensation doesn’t have to be difficult. The right agents are here to help you. For the right workers’ compensation insurance policy, contact our expert team at Abatelli Group, Inc. today. We serve Whitestone, Flushing, Bayside, Little Neck, and surrounding cities of New York with reliable coverage. We are ready to assist you with all of your insurance needs.

COVID-19 Update

Our office remains open and our staff is working remotely to continue to service our clients. You can reach us at (718) 352-6000 Letter to Policyholders