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Welcome to Merriam Insurance

The Merriam Insurance Agency is an award-winning full-service insurance agency providing commercial, personal, and health insurance, as well as employee benefits. By working with clients nationally, we see the national trends and help you prepare for potential threats. Through our systematic approach to evaluating your risk management and insurance, we ensure that we cover all the bases and properly underwrite your risk. We show you the “must-haves” and present any options that make sense to consider. Additionally, our network of providers is so extensive that we can get risk personnel on the ground quickly . . . all to make sure that you are back up and running in the event of a loss. Contact us today for a free, no obligation quote.

Recent Articles

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    Is Your Church Vulnerable to the Internet?

    Almost all churches are involved in some way with use of the internet. You probably communicate with committee members via email or perhaps pay some bills online. Many churches also have a website or Facebook page as a way to connect with their congregations and the community. Or perhaps you offer online giving, or stream live services. The internet is a wonderful tool, but like most tools, it can be misused. Sadly, it is a tool that criminals turn to with increasing frequency to attack your organization’s information, reputation, and finances. Here are a few scenarios where we believe churches are at risk. Website compromise – hackers or viruses are able to take over and lock your website, making it impossible to visit.  Or it can infect those who visit it, causing disruption to private computers. Fortunately, this is often noticed quickly, but the damage to the church’s information and reputation can still be significant. Spy on internal information – a personal or church computer can become infected, usually without a user knowing he or she visited a site, or social media page, that automatically downloaded malware to the computer. This malware runs as an almost invisible computer program and collects information from your computer, email, and any websites you visit. Many of these attacks go unnoticed for months, which can compromise passwords, banking information, and personal information. Theft of Banking Information – through a number of different hacking techniques, internet thieves can steal your banking information and transfer money […]

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    Joyfully Serving our Clients, Coast to Coast

    The Merriam Insurance Agency is headquartered in the beautiful and historic city of Schenectady, New York. While our main office is located in upstate New York, we are honored to provide complete, accurate and timely service to all of our clients across the United States. Each of our customers have a dedicated Account Representative assigned to service their insurance needs, but in a pinch, any member of our Service Team can assist anyone at any time. Our Service Team, under the management of Jennifer Holt, has grown to include a multitude of talent, with educated, cross-trained individuals who possess over 60 years of combined experience. With a variety of contact means available, our Service Team is creative in responding to clients who are located in any time zone. We are accessible by phone, email, social media and even have a chat feature available on our website. You can expect all phone calls, voice mail, and emails to be returned within 24 hours. Please visit our website to find your Account Representative’s contact information. Upon reaching out, you will find them ready and willing to joyfully fulfill all client needs, coast to coast.

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    An Unexpected Journey of Growth

    My name is Jennifer Holt. I began my journey with the Merriam Insurance Agency in 2009 as a Professional Liability Account Manager. During my years of service at Merriam, I have worn several hats. My responsibilities have ranged from customer service to department management and development and marketing of an exclusive Lloyds product. In the fall of 2017, I was honored to accept my current position as Service Team Manager. In this role, I oversee the entire service staff of the agency, including personal lines, commercial lines, health benefits and specialty business. With this restructuring, we have added amazing new talent to our service staff. I am blessed to be surrounded by a team of professional, customer oriented individuals every day and am confident that the service being delivered will meet and exceed all of our clients’ expectations for the future. Our clients are the most important asset we have. We are determined to make sure they know how valued they are by striving to build long lasting relationships and deliver unprecedented, top notch service. Looking back to my first day at Merriam, never did I expect to be in the position I am in today. I have been consistently challenged throughout my various roles and excited when opportunities arose to contribute more. With a strong customer service background, I have always been eager to share different concepts and ideas with our team and am now looking forward to leading everyone on the future path towards growth and greatness.

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    Employment Practices Liability Insurance

    If you think an allegation of sexual harassment, retaliation, or discrimination will never be made against your organization—think again. Employment-related claims impact organizations of every size, in every industry and can disrupt businesses, hurt employee morale, damage reputations and cost businesses financially. Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI) may be the answer. For an additional level of protection, many companies choose to purchase EPLI. This coverage is designed to provide employer protection from employee claims of discrimination, wrongful termination, harassment and emotional distress, and includes coverage for defense costs and damages. More importantly, we encourage you to take preventative measures, so that your organization is less likely to experience this sort of behavior. Train staff to appropriately prevent, identify and respond to workplace discrimination Establish an effective internal complaints procedure Appoint trained harassment contact officers Treat all complaints seriously and investigate them and act promptly Monitor the workplace environment and culture Provide all employees with information and awareness training Merriam Insurance recommends that you take the necessary steps to reduce your liability and protect your organization from the costly consequences of ignoring this important workplace issue. Contact us to discuss your options.

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    New York State Paid Family Leave

    As of January 1, 2018, New York State’s Paid Family Leave (PFL) began to provide paid time off so an employee can: bond with a newly born, adopted, or fostered child; care for a family member with a serious health condition; or assist loved ones when a family member is deployed abroad on active military duty. The immediate benefits notwithstanding, PFL allows you to continue your health insurance while on leave and guarantees that you return to the same or a comparable job after your leave ends. Who is Eligible? If you work a regular work schedule of 20 or more hours per week, you are eligible after 26 consecutive weeks of employment. If you work a regular work schedule of less than 20 hours per week, you are eligible after working 175 days, which do not need to be consecutive. You are also eligible regardless of your citizenship and/or immigration status. What is the Benefit? For 2018, PFL will pay 50% of your average weekly wage, not to exceed 50% of the New York State average weekly wage, for a maximum of 8 weeks. However, the benefit is set to increase each year for the following three years, through 2021, and will be capped at 67% of your average weekly wage for a maximum of 12 weeks. Payroll Deduction The 2018 payroll contribution is 0.126% of all weekly wage, capped at 0.126% of the current State Average Weekly Wage (SAWW). The SAWW is $1,305.92. Contributions will continue until the […]

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    Tips for Safe Outdoor Adventures

    When winter turns to spring, and spring turns to summer, it’s time to hang up the skis and dust off the hiking boots. This summer millions of Americans will head outside to camp, kayak, hike, and bike. To ensure that you maximize your valuable leisure time, here are 5 tips to recreate safely for the whole season. Plan Ahead and Prepare. Knowing where you’re going to hike, paddle, or bike is just the beginning. There are many other factors to consider. How are the bugs during the day you’ll be outside? Are there any trails that are closed? What animals might you encounter, and what precautions can you take to safely enjoy their presence? These, and other questions, can usually be answered by the local land management agency (The National Park Service, local rangers, etc.) or by a reputable outfitter. Buy or Rent the Proper Equipment. Every outdoor activity requires proper gear. Basics such as a map, water bottle, and appropriate clothing are essential. Other activity-specific gear (such as a headlamp for longer day hikes) is often required as well. Visit your local outdoor supply store to get advice about what to purchase, or contact a reputable outfitter near your trip location to rent the necessary items. Check the Weather. This may seem simple, but weather patterns often change quickly. Knowing what to expect will help ensure you and your family remain dry, warm, and comfortable. Be sure to check more than just the percentage chance of rain the day […]