Identity Theft Around the Holidays

Around the holidays we do a lot of shopping whether it be online or in store. We are putting our identity out there when we swipe our credit cards or type them in to a payment box and it gives hackers the chance to steal your identity. We’ve all heard the horror stories about how difficult it is recovering from having your name, Social Security number or credit card numbers stolen. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to help minimize the risk of identity theft.


Check your home mailbox daily, and drop your outgoing mail into a secure postal mailbox only. Also, pay attention to your billing cycles; identity thieves may change your billing address, so a late bill may indicate a problem.

Personal Items

Carry only what you need and keep a list of those items on paper. In the event identity theft, you’ll know who should be notified and the phone numbers to call to cancel the accounts. If your wallet is lost or stolen, follow these tips:

  • Call your credit card company immediately and have that particular card canceled.
  • File a police report in the jurisdiction in which your property was stolen. This will help provide proof of immediate action to your credit card providers.
  • Call the three national credit reporting organizations as well as the Social Security Administration so that a fraud alert can be placed on your name and Social Security number. By doing so, any company that checks your credit will know to contact you by phone before approving any credit transactions. Try calling the following numbers:
    • Equifax—888-766-0008
    • Experian—888-397-3742
    • TransUnion—800-680-7289
    • Social Security Administration—800-772-1213

Personal Information

Give out information on a “need to know” basis only. Omit your Social Security number and driver’s license number on your bank checks. If required to use your Social Security number as an account number, request an alternate identifier. Finally, invest in a shredder for destroying documents that contain personal information.

Computer and Credit History

Since we do a lot of shopping online it is important to update your virus protection software or use a firewall program. Before you dispose of your old computer, delete personal information by using a “wipe” utility program to “clean” all the information off your hard drive. Lastly, it can take months to learn that someone has applied for credit in your name. To stay up-to-date on your credit history, review your credit record at least once a year.

Confronting Stress

Hospital work often requires coping with some of the most stressful situations found in any workplace. On a daily basis, you must deal with life-threatening illnesses and injuries, tight schedules, paperwork, intricate equipment, demanding patients and death. Taking steps to relieve job-related stress is important to protect your mental and physical health as well as to ensure success on the job.

Know When You’re Stressed

Look out for early symptoms of stress and take steps to relieve them quickly. If you let them go unchecked, these symptoms can develop into more serious health complications such as heart problems, depression and anxiety. Be wary of the following stress symptoms:

  • Insomnia
  • Short temper
  • Headaches
  • Upset stomach
  • Sore back
  • Job dissatisfaction
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Increased errors

Combating Stress on the Job

Staying stress-free may not be easy, but it isn’t overly difficult, either.

  • Prioritize. When you begin your shift, decide which are your most important tasks, and begin with those. Concentrate on other tasks only when you have finished.
  • Make sure you are clear about the definition of your role and responsibilities. Ask your supervisor if you have any doubt.
  • Stay organized.
  • If you are troubled by your exposure to death and chronic disease, seek counseling. Talking about it with a nonjudgmental person can be very relieving.

Combating Stress off the Job

A successful health care employee is able to balance his or her work with a personal life.

  • Make time for friends and family, as spending time with those you love will help you unwind.
  • Live a healthy lifestyle. Exercise, eat well and sleep at least eight hours a night.
  • Spend time on outside hobbies, interests or passions. This will help you detach from the work environment and reduce your stress.


Reassess your working environment. If the stressors of your current position are too much for you, consider transferring to another department of the facility. Talk to your supervisor to discuss ways  can help you combat stressors in your specific situation.

All About Automobile Policy Coverage

If you are trying to make sense of your automobile insurance options and the limits that you need, we can help. We’ve covered the basics to help you read and understand your coverage options and policy language.

All About Automobile Policy Coverage

An automobile insurance policy is designed to provide you with a level of protection against property, liability and medical costs if you are involved in an accident:

  • Property coverage pays for damage to or theft of your car.
  • Liability coverage pays for your legal responsibility to others for bodily injury or property damage. Most states require car owners to purchase a minimum of bodily injury and property damage liability insurance.
  • Medical coverage pays for the cost of treating injuries, rehabilitation and sometimes lost wages and funeral expenses.

Comprehensive and Collision Coverage

Collision: Covers damage to your car when your car hits, or is hit by, another vehicle or other object. This coverage is not required by a state, but if you have a loan or a lease, then the lien holder will require it.

Comprehensive: Covers your vehicle, and sometimes other vehicles you may be driving, for losses resulting from incidents other than collision. This coverage is not required by a state, but a lender may insist that you carry it until your loan is paid off.

Types of Liability Coverage

Bodily injury liability (BI): This covers injuries that you, the designated driver or policyholder cause to someone else. It does NOT cover the cost of damage to your vehicle, or to you or other people on your policy. It is mandatory in most states.

Property damage liability (PD): Covers you or someone driving the car with your permission if the car damages someone else’s property. It also provides you with legal defense if another party files a lawsuit against you.

Medical payments (MP) or personal injury protection (PIP): This no-fault coverage provides medical expenses to you and your passengers injured in an accident.

Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage (UM or UIM):  This coverage will reimburse you if you are hit by an uninsured or hit-and-run driver, or when an at-fault driver has insufficient insurance to pay for your total loss.

Health Insurance for College Students

As a college student, you have a variety of plan options, and it is in your best interest to examine the benefits and drawbacks of each one:

Learn about the importance of health insurance and about your options as a college student

  • Parents’ Health Insurance Plan: Individuals up to age 26 who are not eligible for group coverage outside their parents’ plan are entitled to coverage on their parents’ plan. This can be a convenient option because all billing and claims are handled by your parents. However, if you attend school in a different state, your coverage levels may drop, and it may be more expensive than other coverage options.
  • School-sponsored Health Insurance Plan: Many schools offer insurance plans for full-time students. They tend to be relatively affordable and convenient, as medical services are often available on campus. However, the plan may not cover services you receive off campus and may have limits in the coverage. This plan also will drop your coverage if you graduate or drop below full-time student status.
  • Student Health Insurance Plan: Full-time students ages 17-29 at a state-accredited college are eligible. One major advantage is that coverage travels with you if you go to school in a different state. But, it may be more expensive than individual health coverage, may not be available in your state and you may be declined based on your medical history.
  • Individual Health Insurance Plan: Most states offer several affordable options with a range of benefit options, and the biggest advantage is that you can keep this coverage after you graduate or drop credit hours. One downfall is that medical claims may not be paid at the highest level when at home if your family lives in another state, and you could be declined coverage based on your medical history.

How to Make the Best Decision for You

In order to choose the plan that is best suited to you and your situation, consider the following criteria:

  1. Health Benefits: Make sure you know what benefits each plan you’re considering offers. Buy only what is important to you, but don’t skimp on benefits that you truly need.
  2. Costs: Consider which plans match your budget in terms of premium, deductible, copayments and coinsurance.
  3. Physician Network: If you have a preferred doctor, make sure to check which plans include him or her in their physician network.
  4. Brand: Are there brand-name carriers that you prefer or would like to avoid

We’re Here to Help

We make sure that you are informed about all your coverage options so you can make the best choice for your health and budget.Consult with Peoples First Insurance Services, LLC today!

Peoples First Insurance Services, LLC


2020 Open Enrollment Period and What You Need To Know

It’s surprising to find out a lot of people don’t realize that individuals not offered health insurance from their employers (or their family member’s employer) have a fixed period of time to buy health insurance or to make changes to their existing policy for the upcoming calendar year. If you miss the window, you won’t be able to pick up coverage that covers pre-existing conditions, for example, until this same time next year, effective January 2021.  So, what are you waiting for?

Open enrollment for on-marketplace plans begins on November 1, 2019, although there are some people who can purchase insurance starting October 1st .  We all know health insurance is important.  If you find yourself uninsured because your employer does not offer health insurance and frankly, you just can’t afford the age-based premium, we can assure you finding yourself on the losing end of an unexpected $89,000 hospital bill is no fun.    

Did you know that an estimated two million Floridians eligible for the federal advance premium tax credit   designed to offset the cost of health insurance are not taking advantage of the program?  Unfortunately, many people believe that they earn too much or are not eligible because they’ve been offered COBRA, but that is often not really the case. While each situation is unique, the basics are these: the tax credit is offered to individuals who:

  1. Are not offered health insurance from an employer and
  2. Earn enough to file a tax return but have household incomes that are less than 40% of the federal poverty limit.*

Self-employed individuals like small business owners, realtors, and independent sub-contractors in the construction industry as well as seasonal or part-time employees not offered benefits by an employer often assume they make either too much or not enough money to qualify for the credit.  It has been my experience that these same people incorrectly calculate their income.  Additionally, these same people also incorrectly assume this is somehow affiliated with Medicaid or some sort of handout, so they refuse to have a discussion with a trained and well-informed health insurance agent, much to their own detriment.

If you’re uninsured and you haven’t recently checked your options, if you’re navigating the purchasing of health insurance on your own without an agent thereby possibly leaving money on the table, reach out to Peoples First Insurance for more information.  While we are pretty sure dealing with health insurance isn’t anyone’s favorite thing, we can assure you that you’ll be grateful for it if you find yourself needing it.

*This is an oversimplification and does not cover every possible scenario.  All individuals are encouraged to discuss their unique situation with a trained agent and eligibility is ultimately determined by the federal government upon submission of a completed health insurance application.

Life Insurance Awareness Month

The Importance of Life Insurance Awareness Month

Life Insurance is one of the best ways to protect your loved ones especially if they depend on you financially. Every September we celebrate Life Insurance Awareness Month to educate and inform others of its importance. It’s not an easy topic to discuss but it may be one of the most important decisions you could make for your future and your family.

A study done in 2019 by Insurance Barometer (Life Happens/LIMRA) said only 57 percent of Americans have life insurance. The question then comes up why do only a little over half of Americans have life insurance? There is no solid answer to this question, but we can clarify on many misconceptions about life insurance.

The cost of life insurance varies depending on your age and health so it’s important to seek out the best products from reputable carriers that fit your needs. Many Americans think life insurance is too expensive which leads them to not even get a quote. Another misconception to life insurance is that people are simply misinformed and don’t realize the purpose of it and all the good it can do for you and your loved ones. Life insurance can pay certain bills, cover funeral cost, serve as an inheritance for a family member, and much more.

Life Insurance doesn’t have to be a hassle to purchase and our friendly staff can guide you along the way. If you are interested in purchasing or learning more about life insurance call us or use our online quote center and we will do our best to serve you.

Preparing for a Hurricane

The Benefits of Flood Insurance

The Benefits of Flood Insurance

What Protection Does it Offer?

A standard homeowners policy does not cover damages from flooding. A separate flood policy is needed to cover losses to your property caused by flooding, which provides coverage for things such as:

  • Structural damage
  • Furnace, water heater and central air-conditioning
  • Flood debris clean up
  • Electrical and plumbing systems

Cost of Coverage

As a homeowner, you can insure your home for up to $250,000 and its contents up to $100,000. For this $250,000/$100,000 building and contents coverage, yearly premiums average $405 in low- to moderate-risk areas. If your home is located in a high-risk area, talk to the professionals at Peoples First Insurance Services, LLC to determine your premium.

While it is up to the property owner to decide if they want to cover the building, if you are a renter, you can cover your belongings up to $100,000.

Stay Protected

Flood insurance means you’ll be reimbursed for all of your covered losses. As long as your community participates in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), you’re eligible to purchase flood insurance.

In general, a policy does not take effect until 30 days after you purchase flood insurance. However, if your lender requires flood insurance in connection with the making, increasing, extending or renewing of your loan, there is no waiting period.

For more information on flood insurance, including premium costs, levels of coverage and the flood risk for your area, visit or contact Peoples First Insurance Services, LLC.

Water Losses and Flood Damage

For your losses to be covered under a flood insurance policy, the following definition of a flood applies:

“A general and temporary condition of partial or complete inundation of two or more acres of normally dry land area or of two or more properties (at least one of which is your property) from: overflow of inland or tidal waters; and unusual and rapid accumulation.”

Federal Disaster Assistance

Federal disaster assistance is only available if the president formally declares a disaster. Even if you do get disaster assistance, it’s often a loan you have to repay with interest.

Helpful tips for keeping you hydrated in the heat

Helpful tips for keeping you hydrated in the heat

In the simplest terms, dehydration occurs when you lose more water than you take in. Staying hydrated is important to keep all your body functions running smoothly. Whenever you are outdoors or in warm environments, you’ll want to take extra precautions as summer heats up.

Water Loss

Woman drinking water







On average, adults lose almost 10 cups of water a day simply by sweating, breathing and going to the bathroom. Along with water, you also lose electrolytes, which are vital because they help maintain the balance of fluids in the body. When you become dehydrated, your body cannot function, possibly resulting in heat stroke or even death.


How do you know if you’re dehydrated? You’ll begin to experience one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Excessive thirst
  • Sleepiness or tiredness
  • Dry mouth
  • Muscle weakness
  • Headache
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness

If you start to notice these warning signs, do not ignore them! Immediately take a break and give yourself time to recover.

Preventing Dehydration

The best defense against dehydration is prevention. That sounds easy enough—consume lots of fluids and foods high in water such as fruits and vegetables—but determining how much fluid can be complicated.

Unfortunately, determining appropriate water intake isn’t an exact science, especially because so much depends on age, physical condition, activity level, location and body chemistry. The best overall approach is to make a conscious effort to stay hydrated, and continue drinking even if you don’t feel thirsty. In hot weather, skip coffee or soda, and make water your beverage of choice.

Pace Yourself

During periods of heavy exertion, take frequent water breaks. Adjust your intake to match your activity level and working conditions to stay healthy and alert.

Fireworks Safety Tips

Firework Safety