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It's Not Too Late to Evaluate Your Winter Plow Contracts

snowplow2.jpgIt took a few extra weeks, but it's that time of year again. The snow is flying and that means your parking lot needs plowing. 

So did you just sign on the dotted line when your contractor presented the fee proposal this year? Or, did you check to make sure your contract included a few sentences about liablity or injury? 

If you simply signed off without further review, you are most certainly not alone; snowplow contracts usually lack specifics. And we know that your first concern is usually the cost of services, not who will be on the hook should an accident or injury occur. 

But it is most important to determine who is responsible in the event of an accident or some other incident involving the plow. Whose insurance will respond if one of your employees is injured in your parking lot? Whose insurance will respond if one of the contractor's employees is injured in your parking lot or while plowing your parking lot? 

Basic Plowing Contract Framework

We work with our in-house compliance attorney to set the contract framework for our clients. It is always in your best interest to have your attorney review the final contract, since he or she will be most familiar with your operation and/or facility. 

What should your plowing contract include? 

  • Waiver of Subrogation
  • Additional Insured Status
  • Primary and Non-contributory
  • Number of Day Notice of Cancellation
  • Minimum Insurance Carrier Rating
  • Indemnification Clause

Instead of using the contractor's fee proposal as your contract, add it to your contract as an exhibit. In addition, make sure that the certificate of insurance from the contractor includes the following types of coverage:

  • Workers' compensation
  • General liablity
  • Auto liability

Filing and Organizing Contracts and Certificates

After you've crossed the t's and dotted the i's on all of your contracts, you must ensure that your contracts and certificates on file remain up-to-date. We suggest keeping your certificates in date order in a paper or electronic file. As you pull each certificate to check the effective date, request a renewal certificate and/or contract, then re-file the new certificate and contract in the back of the folder to rotate forward for the following year. Whether your files are paper or electronic, set up a reoccuring monthly reminder to continue updating certificates and contracts as their effective date comes up. 

This is a quick and easy way to always ensure that you have the most current certificates and contracts on file for all of your contractors. 

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