The market value of my home has dropped. Is it possible that I’m overinsured?
A homeowners policy doesn’t insure the market value of your home. A homeowners policy insures the reconstruction cost or building cost of your home based on square footage and quality of construction.

My mortgage is much more than the insured value of my house. Is it possible that I’m underinsured?
Your mortgage is based on the market value of your entire property, which is what a willing buyer would pay a willing seller. This includes all the land, detached structures and intangibles such as neighborhood, curb appeal, taxes, view out the front window,etc… A homeowners policy insures the reconstruction cost or building cost of the main structure based on square footage and quality of construction. There is a separate sub limit for detached structures.

Does my policy include coverage for my vehicle stored in the garage?
No.  A homeowners policy excludes all vehicles (including motorhomes and motorcycles) subject to DMV registration for both property and liability coverage. You would need to purchase an automobile policy to cover your vehicle.

My vehicle just slid off the road on ice. The officer said that’s an “act of god”. This would be considered a no-fault claim wouldn’t it?
No. Only medical claims are paid without regard to fault under the PIP (or no-fault) coverage. Fault has to be determined on all other aspects of the claim. The wording “act of god” doesn’t exist in the policy. This would be considered an at-fault accident based on the reasoning  that the driver was going too fast for conditions. No one else caused the accident.

My neighbor wants to borrow my car. Am I covered?
Yes. Anyone driving your car with your permission is a covered operator. The policy will respond and defend both you as owner of the car and your neighbor as the operator of the car.

My basement has 3 inches of water in it. Am I covered?
Maybe. Under a homeowners policy it depends on how the water got there. If it’s from a broken pipe, a hole in the roof or overflow from an appliance, yes. If it’s from a back up of a sewer or drain there would be limited coverage if your policy were endorsed for it. If it’s from a rising water table seeping through the wall or surface water (i.e. flood), no and the policy cannot be endorsed to cover this. Water seeping through the wall is considered a preventable maintenance issue. Flood can only be covered under a separate flood policy underwritten by the National Flood Insurance Plan (NFIP), which we offer.

I’m going to rent a car. Do I need to buy the liability and collision damage waiver the rental car co is offering?
No if you have a NY State private passenger automobile policy in force. All NYS private passenger automobile policies covering 5 or fewer vehicles by law includes coverage for rental cars for rentals of 30 days or less.  Your liability limits follow you in the rental car. Physical damage coverage automatically applies to the rental car. Be sure to carry an ID card from one of your owned cars with you. This represents your coverage. If there is an accident this is what is presented to the authorities and who you would call to report the claim for insurance purpose.

I am an employer who has a mix of both full and part time employees.  I know my full time employees need to be covered by workers compensation, but do my part time employees need this coverage as well?
All of your workers need to be covered under workers compensation, as long as they are a paid employee.

What is the difference between an HMO & an EPO? 

The 2 main differences are that the HMO provider networks have a definable service region where the EPO  provider networks are national. This allows for a greater “freedom of choice” than an HMO and also solves some problems for full-time college students who are outside the HMO service area. An EPO also requires no referral to provider specialists.

How can I lower my cost?
Being an independent broker allows us to evaluate your personal needs and by having the availability of all carriers in NY we can design a plan to suit those needs. Just a few simple questions from us may be the solution to a reduced cost.


Didn’t find what you were looking for?  Visit these sites for more information.

Highway Safety
Kelly Blue Book
Insurance Information Institute
A.M. Best Company Ratings
Independent Agents Association
NY Department of Motor Vehicles
NY State Dept of Financial Services
Business Insurance Magazine
FEMA Flood Insurance
NY Safety Program
HSA Insider
Healthy NY
The Business Council of New York State

Request a Quote

Best way to contact you?

Type of Insurance Needed:

You will be contacted within 1 business day.

Privacy Policy

At William A. Smith & Son, Inc. our goal is to professionally and respectfully serve the personal and business insurance needs of our insureds and claimants. Information which you provide or we collect about you when you apply for insurance or when you file a claim helps us to achieve that goal. You provide us with most of the information about you that we use in evaluating your application and servicing your insurance policy or your claim. This enables us to provide coverage to you at the best price or to service your claim promptly and fairly.

We know that the trust of our insureds and claimants is our most important asset. This includes the trust that we will keep the information about you secure and treat it only as permitted by law. This disclosure and notice tells you about the privacy policy we have adopted and the practices we use in handling this information.

1. Information We Collect:
We collect nonpublic personal information about you from the following sources:

  • Information we receive from you on applications or other forms;
  • Information about your transactions with us, our affiliates or others;
  • Information we receive from a consumer reporting agency; and
  • Information we receive from a department of motor vehicles and from a Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange


Unless it is specifically stated otherwise in an amended Privacy Policy Notice, no additional information will be collected from you.

2. Information we may disclose to third parties:
We do not disclose any nonpublic personal information about our customers or former customers to anyone, except as permitted by law.

3. Our practices regarding information confidentiality and security:
We restrict access to nonpublic personal information about you to those employees who need to know that information in order to provide products and services to you. We maintain physical, electronic and procedural safeguards that comply with federal regulations to guard your nonpublic personal information.

4. Reservation of the right to disclose information in unforeseen circumstances:

In connection with potential sale or transfer of its interests William A. Smith & Son, Inc. and its affiliates reserve the right to sell or transfer your information (including, but not limited to, your name, address, age, sex, zip code, state and country of residency and other information that you provide through other communications) to a third party entity that 1) concentrates its business in a similar practice or service; 2) agrees to be William A. Smith & Son, Inc.’s successor in interest with regard to the maintenance and protection of the information collected; and 3) agrees to the obligations of this privacy statement.


Compensation Disclosure

Dear Clients and Prospects:

The State of New York and many other states require that Insurance Producers and Agencies disclose how they are compensated by Insurance Companies. William A. Smith & Son, Inc. and its affiliates and subsidiaries receive various forms of compensation or commission from the insurance companies we place insurance policies with. Below is an outline of this compensation. More detailed information is available if you require it, pursuant to the Insurance Department Regulations.

This information is provided pursuant to New York State Insurance Department Regulation 194 (11NYCRR30.3).

  1. Compensation.  Based on the sale of the insurance selected by you (“the purchaser”), the total compensation expected to be received by Smith William A & Son Inc. , Orange Benefits Partners or William A. Smith & Son Insurance Agency, LLC (“the producer”), including by any parent, subsidiary or affiliate of the producer,  is as follows:Known Compensation.  The producer (including any parent, subsidiary or affiliate of the producer) expects to receive a  percent of the one-year premium you pay on this policy.

    Estimated unknown additional compensation.  Based on some sales of insurance, the producer (including any parent, subsidiary or affiliate of the producer) may be eligible to receive additional compensation depending on a number of factors including premium and policy volume, losses and profitability.  If an estimate appears below, the sale of the insurance selected by the purchaser may help the producer (including any parent, subsidiary or affiliate of the producer) qualify to receive additional compensation, the exact amount of which is unknown at this time.      Unknown compensation is estimated to be 0% to 3%.

  2. Producer prohibited from rebating compensation.  There are a number of sections of the Insurance Law that pertain to rebating and inducements and each has specific applicability to different kinds of insurance.  Collectively those provisions prohibit an authorized insurer, licensed insurance producer, or any person acting on behalf of any such insurer or insurance producer from directly or indirectly paying or offering to pay an insured any rebate from the insurance premium specified in the insurance policy or contract, or giving or offering to give any valuable consideration or inducement, not specified in the insurance policy or contract.
  3. Material Ownership.  The insurer issuing the insurance contract to the purchaser (including any parent, subsidiary or affiliate of the insurer) has material ownership interest in the producer (including any parent, subsidiary or affiliate of the producer), as follows:  None

Not all quotes are created equal! Give us a call after you’ve received yours. We would love the opportunity to go over it with you and be sure you are getting the best coverage at the best price.