11222017Wed
Last updateWed, 15 Nov 2017 6am
“That guy who baby sits jewelry stores”

“That guy who baby sits jewelry stores”

Longtime jeweler fires up retired ambulance to off...

Reason to Hope: Jewelry industry steps up to help natural disaster victims

Reason to Hope: Jewelry industry steps up to help natural disaster victims

It’s so easy to get sucked into choosing a side. T...

GA jeweler makes ‘Black Panther’ ring for Marvel movies

GA jeweler makes ‘Black Panther’ ring for Marvel movies

Hans and Lynn Allwicher, co-owners of Jewelry Expr...

Other News

JLL predicts up to 6 percent growth in holiday season spending

JLL predicts up to 6 percent growth in holiday season spending

Survey reveals GenX to outspend Boomers this holiday season

(CHICAGO) - Now that the last trace of Halloween candy is gone, Americans plan to get started on holiday shopping. Nearly 30 percent of shoppers will start shopping prior to Thanksgiving, whil...

Readmore

Loading...

Industry Events

Gem and jewelry leaders gather for GIA’s Global Leadership Program at Harvard Business School

(CARLSBAD, Calif.) - Executives from across the global gem and jewelry industry recently convened in Cambridge, Mass., for the fourth annual GIA Global Leadership Program offered by the Harvard Business School (HBS). The 50 industry leaders - all CEOs...

Readmore

Loading...

On The Move

Women’s Jewelry Association launches Advocacy Task Force

Women’s Jewelry Association launches Advocacy Task Force

(POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y.) - The Women’s Jewelry Association (WJA) on November 2 launched its first ever “advocacy task force” to explore and ultimately create actionable tools, training, education, workplace coaching, and mentorship that can be utilized by...

Readmore

Loading...

What's New

Artisanal crafted “Drops of Love” a unique sales option for the Holiday Season

Artisanal crafted “Drops of Love” a unique sales option for the Holiday Season

Colorful, hand blown glass pendants sparkle with .25 points of diamonds inside a striking tear drop shape

Fresh off the success of his solar-eclipse commemorative “Corona” pendant, Clarksville, Tennessee-based Elliott Herzlich has added another extrao...

Readmore

Loading...

Featured Articles

Overnight explains how to say, “Yes!” to every sale

Overnight explains how to say, “Yes!” to every sale

Releases 2 new catalogs  

Being a jewelry retailer has never been more challenging. New economic realities, new competitors, and new pressure on margins have completely changed your business. That’s why Overnight has completely transformed its business...

Readmore

Loading...

Latest News

JLL predicts up to 6 percent growth in holiday season spending

6 DAYS AGO
JLL predicts up to 6 percent growth in holiday season spending

Survey reveals GenX to outspend Boomers this holiday season

(CHICAGO) - Now that the last trace of Halloween candy is gone, Americans plan to get started on holiday shopping. Nearly 30 percent of shoppers will start shopping prior to Thanksgiving, while just over 30 percent of shoppers will start stoc...

Readmore

NY Post reports new “Bling Ring” targeting celebrities

6 DAYS AGO
NY Post reports new “Bling Ring” targeting celebrities

It started in January, when burglars boosted hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of jewelry and cash from “Dog Whisperer” Cesar Millan. Then, retired Laker and former Knicks coach Derek Fisher’s Tarzana, Calif., home was hit, with thieves taking $300,000 in jewelry, including five NBA Championsh...

Readmore

Gem and jewelry leaders gather for GIA’s Global Leadership Program at Harvard Business School

19 DAYS AGO

(CARLSBAD, Calif.) - Executives from across the global gem and jewelry industry recently convened in Cambridge, Mass., for the fourth annual GIA Global Leadership Program offered by the Harvard Business School (HBS). The 50 industry leaders - all CEOs or senior executives - examined the theme “Transf...

Readmore

Initiatives in Art & Culture announces 19th Annual Fashion + Design Conference: “White: Palette, Prism, Possibility”

1 MONTHS AGO
Initiatives in Art & Culture announces 19th Annual Fashion + Design Conference: “White: Palette, Prism, Possibility”

Conference to be held November 10 & 11, 2017 at CUNY Graduate Center, New York City

Initiatives in Art & Culture (IAC), an organization committed to educating diverse audiences in the fine, decorative, and visual arts, has announced their 19th Annual Fashion + Design Conference will be held N...

Readmore

Women’s Jewelry Association launches Advocacy Task Force

13 DAYS AGO
Women’s Jewelry Association launches Advocacy Task Force

(POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y.) - The Women’s Jewelry Association (WJA) on November 2 launched its first ever “advocacy task force” to explore and ultimately create actionable tools, training, education, workplace coaching, and mentorship that can be utilized by WJA members to advance women’s roles in the jewel...

Readmore

Dona Dirlam retires as Director of the Richard T. Liddicoat Gemological Library and Information Center

19 DAYS AGO
Dona Dirlam retires as Director of the Richard T. Liddicoat Gemological Library and Information Center

Robert Weldon named library director

(CARLSBAD, Calif.) - Dona Dirlam, director of GIA’s library and information center, has retired after 38 years of service to GIA’s (Gemological Institute of America) mission of ensuring the public trust in gems and jewelry. She was largely responsible for establish...

Readmore

Artisanal crafted “Drops of Love” a unique sales option for the Holiday Season

6 DAYS AGO
Artisanal crafted “Drops of Love” a unique sales option for the Holiday Season

Colorful, hand blown glass pendants sparkle with .25 points of diamonds inside a striking tear drop shape

Fresh off the success of his solar-eclipse commemorative “Corona” pendant, Clarksville, Tennessee-based Elliott Herzlich has added another extraordinary piece to his “Elliott’s Exclusive” collect...

Readmore

UPS Capital’s Parcel Pro launches jewelers block coverage

6 DAYS AGO
UPS Capital’s Parcel Pro launches jewelers block coverage

(ATLANTA) - Parcel Pro, a UPS Capital Company, announced the launch of jewelers block coverage on November 7, a special insurance program to help protect the property of jewelers against the most common types of losses. The comprehensive and customizable insurance policy provides coverage for the jew...

Readmore

Furry friends on the job: Charley - Jewelers unBLOCKed™

6 DAYS AGO
Furry friends on the job: Charley - Jewelers unBLOCKed™

Meet Charley. She is a 3 year old, English Crème Golden Retriever and loves to visit Jewelers unBLOCKed™ HQ in New Jersey. Charley normally works in the California office but visited this summer to meet the East Coast team. She is a certified service dog, a rescue herself and loves anything sparkly ...

Readmore

Furry friends on the job: Daisy and Trigger

13 DAYS AGO
Furry friends on the job: Daisy and Trigger

Say hello to Daisy (front) and Trigger.  The precious pair of Shelties go to work most every day with their human DeAnne Green at Main Street Jewelers in Plattsmouth, Nebraska.  Daisy and Trigger excel at their job as official greeters. Not a customer walks in without these two saying hello and many...

Readmore

The Marketing Minute: Trend Spotting

1 MONTHS AGO

Marketing specialist George Prout produces a weekly marketing advice video for retail jewelers, The Monday Morning Marketing Minute. He’s generously agreed to let us share them with our eWeekly readers.

 

Click here  to see more of George Prout’s The Marketing Minute

 

 

 

 

 

 

Readmore

The Marketing Minute: Pricing Strategy

1 MONTHS AGO

Marketing specialist George Prout produces a weekly marketing advice video for retail jewelers, The Monday Morning Marketing Minute. He’s generously agreed to let us share them with our eWeekly readers.

 

Click here  to see more of George Prout’s The Marketing Minute

 

 

 

 

 

Readmore

EPLI - the insurance you don’t need?

Employment Practices Liability Insurance

corporations get sued for their employment practices.

• Fact: More than 50% of EPL charges are filed against small businesses.

I don’t need it because most claims can be settled out of court.

• Fact: True, most claims never get to trial but the typical claim will cost $65,000 to investigate, defend, and settle; many cost much more.

We treat our employees like gold (or diamonds) and we bend over backwards to always be fair.

• Fact: Claims can come from the least expected; not just employees, but also previous employees, and even potential employees – people who apply and, for whatever reason, don’t get hired.

Don’t the laws only apply to companies that have more than a certain number of employees?

• Fact: There are “size of company” applications to certain federal and state laws (defined by number of employees), but the civil actions have no such restrictions.

EPL claims only happen in cities - like New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles.

Milwaukee: Three female employees of a jewelry store sued the store for permitting a sexually hostile work environment that included inappropriate banter, touching by manager, and retaliation.

Settlement: $155,000

Michigan: A female employee and coworker alleged sexual harassment and abuse while working at a retail store; she was fired by the owner.

Demand: $100,000

Jury award: $347,250

Anchorage: A pregnant employee claimed she was denied a promotion due to her pregnancy.

Settlement: $55,000

Rhode Island: A jewelry manufacturer closed two plants. A particular employee who had received good performance reviews and who had been promoted during her tenure with the company during her employment was dismissed. She did not have seniority. She claimed wrongful termination based on age discrimination.

Demand: $17,500

Jury award: $70,000

Washington: A female store associate of a retail jewelry store claimed that the manager used foul and offensive language about female employees and customers.

Jury award: $138,600

Solano, CA: A woman claimed that she had been laid off from her job with a retail store because she had begun wearing a traditional Muslim headscarf.

Pending

Greenbelt, MD: Four employees sued the store for discriminating in hiring, pay, promotions, and conditions of employment against a particular race of employees and applicants.

Pending

What are listed above are charges of sexual harassment, sexual discrimination, wrongful discharge, hostile work environment, religious discrimination, and racial discrimination. These are all matters of public record in cities and towns across the United States.

None of the cases listed would be covered under a jeweler’s Business Liability insurance. The language in General Liability that excludes coverage from claims that fall under the broad umbrella of “employment practices” is clear and unequivocal.

And “claims” may be brought against a company by current employees, former employees, leased workers, temporary or seasonal workers, applicants seeking employment, or non-owner officers.

EPL Basics

It is illegal for an employer to discriminate on the basis of age, color, pregnancy, race, religion, sex or gender, national origin, or physical or mental disability. Note also that the term “disability” has been very broadly interpreted in the courts.

In the federal law, Title VII, the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act), and the ADEA (Age Discrimination in Employment Act, 1967), the following employment activities are monitored and regulated:

 

  • Hiring and firing;
  • Compensation, assignment, classification of employees;
  • Transfer, promotion, layoff, or recall;
  • Job advertisements, recruiting, or testing;
  • Use of company facilities;
  • Training and apprenticeship programs;
  • Fringe Benefits;
  • Pay, retirement plans, and disability leave.

 

One problem faced by employers today is that management does not always know about underlying problems. For example a “hostile work environment” may exist in the perception of an employee or employees which management may not deem to be inappropriate – or may not even be aware of.

One important question management must be asking itself today is, are there avenues that are both friendly and unthreatening which permit an employee to confidentially discuss hostile work situations? Another question is, are there procedures and standards in place which can address the issue?

Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment has been defined as any unwelcome advance or request for sexual favors. It can include quid pro quo, (literally this for that, i.e., “if you will do something for me, I will do something for you”), and may be closely related to or may accompany hostile environment situations.

Sexual harassment is not limited to the work site – it may just as easily occur elsewhere, with or without the employer’s sponsorship of an off site event.

Damages may include civil assault and battery, intentional inflictions of emotional stress, and invasion of privacy.

Are there trends?

From 1994 through the year 2000, employers prevailed in 50% to 69% of cases overall (Jury Verdict Institute) – of cases that actually went to trial. However the majority of cases do not go to trial at all and result in settlement between plaintiff and defendant, at an average cost to defend of $150,000.

And each year sees a higher number of claims filed than the year previous.

Experts predict that the economy may become another factor which increases the number of claims in the future, as employers may be forced to consolidate resources and be forced to release employees; and as replacement jobs become more difficult to find.

Insurance

As previously stated, this type of exposure is a wide gap in coverage for most jewelry business employers, due to clear exclusions in the general liability policy.

Special coverage is becoming available both through agents’ excess and surplus markets (the “wholesale” part of the jewelry industry) and through some standard carriers.

The type of coverage is “Employment Practices Liability Insurance,” or more simply, “EPLI.”

Unlike standard general liability insurance products, most EPLI is written on a “claims made” basis; whereas general liability is considered “occurrence” based.

Here’s the difference.

In general liability insurance, it is when an insured event occurred that determines coverage; and a policy covers those events which occur while the policy is in force.

For example: a person falls in your store during a time that your coverage is with company A, but suit is not brought until later, when coverage has been replaced by company B. It is company A which must respond to the claim, even though it is no longer your insurer.

In most EPLI, the time that the claim is made is what determines coverage. In the above example, if it were an employment practices situation rather than a slip-and-fall, insurance company B would have to address the claim – even though the insured event (e.g., sexual harassment) occurred before it was your insurer.

Some cautions, as result of this distinction:

1. If buying EPLI to replace a previous carrier’s coverage, be certain that the new insuror is aware of the previous coverage and agrees to accept any claims which might now arise from previous events. This is referred to as going back to the retro date, i.e., the date at which EPLI was originally purchased.

A new carrier should assume coverage for “past sins” reported in the new policy period.

2. If canceling EPLI altogether, it is wise to purchase extended coverage for any unknown claims which may have occurred while coverage was in force, but which may appear after cancellation of coverage. In insurance vernacular, this is sometimes referred to as buying a tail, which may extend for a year or more after cancellation. There is a cost for the extended coverage, but much less than the in-force policy.

Now a history test: When was the Civil Rights Act originally written?

 

  • 1866
  • 1952
  • 1964
  • 1993

 

The answer is 1866 – at the conclusion of the Civil War! It prohibited discrimination based on race and national origin.

The Civil Rights Act of 1866 remained unchanged for 98 years, at which time the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was passed, extending protections to sex, religion, and pregnancy.

Following that: the Age Discrimination Act of 1967 (amended in 1978 and 1986) was passed; and then the Family Medical Leave Act of 1993.

The Americans with Disabilities Act is more recent legislation and contains five parts or “titles” - a very important one to the retail industry being Title III which pertains to full and equal enjoyment of goods and services, facilities or privileges of private entities serving the public.

Title III is the reason that entrances, rest rooms, and other facilities sometimes must be redesigned to make them more “user friendly.”

For more information about the Americans with Disabilities Act, contact the U. S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, (800) 514-0301 (voice) or (800) 513-0380 (TTY).

So do you need EPLI?

If you do not have the coverage, now is the time to ask your insurance professional about it. You may be pleasantly surprised at the cost, relative the potential loss. The premium is based on the number of employees that you have (and hence your risk of having a claim).

Remember the cautions about replacing or canceling EPLI coverage.

To assume that you are not at risk and do not need the coverage because you “treat your employees well and they all love you” may be naïve – and not the best strategy. While employers often are vindicated, it is the cost of defense that is the important issue – and EPLI is designed to cover that cost, as well as the damages should you lose.

Bob Carroll of Robert G. Carroll and Associates is a Certified Insurance Counselor, and has been a specialist in insurance for the jewelry industry for over 25 years - an independent agent representing Jewelers Mutual and other quality carriers in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Mississippi, and Tennessee. He may be contacted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Columnist