Defensive Driving

Save $$ on your auto insurance and reduce up to 4 points off your license by taking the New York Safety Program’s Defensive Driving Course!

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

  • bigstock-Teenagers-at-a-fire-pit-eating-221147332-web

    Teen Parties: What Every Parent Needs to Know

    Parties can be a significant part of every teenager’s development. However, an enjoyable evening with friends and family doesn’t need to involve alcohol or drugs. Merriam Insurance hopes that these party guidelines will assist parents and teens in the planning of a drug-free, sober, and safe party. Guidelines for Parents of a Teen Attending a Party Know where your teen is going to be, and get the name, address and telephone number of the host. Ask your teen to notify you immediately if there is a change of plans. Contact the host’s parent or guardian and get the details on the party. Confirm that the party will be drug and alcohol free and that there will be responsible adult supervision. Leave your phone number in case of emergency or if the host’s parents desire assistance with the party. Reiterate that your teen is not to accept a ride from a driver who has been drinking or a casual friend. Make yourself or another adult available to pick your teen up it they ask you to. Encourage them to call you if problems arise. Tell your teen that it is best to call you if they have problems and that there will not be any punishment for requesting your help. Call the host’s parents the next day to thank them. This promotes desirable communication between parents and is an effective tool for keeping one another aware of neighborhood problems. Guidelines for Parents of Teens Hosting a Party Have a pre-party plan. […]

  • bigstock-Akureyrarkirkja--The-Church-O-51480814-web

    Protecting Your Pastors

    Unexpected incidents happen every day. What if your pastor is injured falling down stairs or lifting a box? What if he gets into a car accident while driving to visit a sick church member? What happens when your children’s pastor becomes seriously ill and cannot organize Sunday School or youth trips? Situations such as these not only create a drain on the ministry’s capacity to serve the church, but also impact your financial capacity. Should you keep paying the injured pastor while also potentially incurring additional expense to hire a person to do his work? How much of the pastor’s medical and rehabilitation expenses will the church need to cover? What if the pastor sustains a permanent injury, such as paralysis, and is never able to return to his position? In the State of New York, if a paid employee is injured while working, he or she would be covered by Workers’ Compensation. Workers’ Compensation would pay for medical expenses regardless of a person’s health insurance, rehabilitation or recovery expenses, and a portion of lost wages, though frequently not more than 65% of a person’s regular wages. If that same employee was injured off the job, NYS-mandated disability coverage would pay for up to 50% of an employee’s weekly wages, with a maximum of $170 per week for up to 26 weeks. Does your pastor have Workers’ Compensation (WC) and Disability (DBL) coverage? New York State allows pastors/clergy who only perform religious duties to be exempted from WC and DBL […]

  • 376-Broadway-74-web

    Four Generations Providing Expert Evaluation

    After the national tragedy in New York City on Sept. 11, 2001, the nation’s oldest mission lost its insurance coverage because of its high-risk location. If it couldn’t secure new coverage, hundreds of needy New Yorkers would be deprived of basic needs. Merriam Insurance filled that void and provided the shelter with comprehensive coverage thanks to its expertise in writing policies for churches, missions and shelters.
  • JensonMerriamSeniorPhoto-web

    Jenson Merriam Memorial Scholarship

    Designed by the Merriam Insurance Agency and funded in part through employee contributions, the Jenson Merriam Memorial Scholarship is named in memory of Jenson Merriam (November 5, 1993–December 23, 2011). Jenson, a former SCCC student, was a gifted writer, illustrator and filmmaker. His passion for helping others will live on through each student who receives this award. “I am a single father with bare minimum support for my 2-year-old daughter, and as such, the trials of being a single parent having to work full-time and maintain high academic performance at school can be a stressful task. Having this resource will help reduce financial stress and enable me to take extra courses. I thank you for believing in me and assisting me to become greater, giving me more resources to become an outstanding success. —Jenson E. Merriam Memorial Scholarship recipient “I had hoped one day to open my own restaurant. But as we all know, sometimes life doesn’t happen the way we plan it to. This school was my opening to a better opportunity at life. Sometimes, with the world against you, it only takes one person to believe in you. I have been so very fortunate to have been given this opportunity by you.” —Jenson E. Merriam Memorial Scholarship recipient “I was working dead end jobs for low wages barely making a living for myself and my three children. When I applied for this scholarship, I was sharing a book for one of my classes because I didn’t have enough money to purchase […]

  • Rotary, philanthropy, Haiti, Merriam Insurance, Brian Merriam, Chuck Steiner

    Brian Merriam Recipient of Rotary-Steiner Award

    The Merriam Insurance Agency is pleased to announce that our president, Brian H. Merriam, has been selected as the recipient of the Schenectady Rotary Club‘s inaugural Rotary-Steiner Award. Created with the aim to honor the memory of former Schenectady County Chamber of Commerce president and local Rotarian, Chuck Steiner, this award recognizes an individual or organization that demonstrates excellence in both business operations and philanthropy. The Rotary nomination committee considered a number of candidates and organizations to receive this prestigious award, but repeatedly returned to Brian and his staff at Merriam Insurance, for their long-time service and philanthropic commitment to the community, both locally and abroad. “Words truly can’t express the impact of the Haiti water project on the lives of the many Schenectady Rotarians who have accompanied Brian on his annual sojourn,” former Schenectady Rotary president Mark Sheehan said. “It has truly opened their eyes to the devastating poverty of an otherwise beautiful country and the wonderful people who live there.” A third-generation Schenectady Rotarian, Brian has served as chairman of the Haiti Water project and has been involved in many local initiatives. He was also instrumental in pioneering efforts to fund and install statues of Thomas Edison and Charles Steinmetz on Erie Boulevard, in Schenectady, New York. Another way the Merriam team contributes to the community, is through the Merriam Rises initiative. Members of the Merriam staff donate their time and money to various organizations throughout the country, selecting a new recipient each quarter. Recent projects have included a chili cook-off to raise money for the Cohoes Connect Center for Youth, an after school program, […]

  • bigstock-Akureyrarkirkja--The-Church-O-51480814-web

    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 […]