Category Archives: Artist Insurance

Are Your Art and Collectibles Covered for Disaster?

Fires, floods, tornadoes, super-storms, and even man-made disasters like construction accidents can cause havoc to your home, gallery, or studio. Many are prepared with emergency plans and supplies but unprepared when it comes to keeping an up to date inventory on precious belongings, art, and collectibles in the case of a claim.

Trying to create an inventory after the fact can be just as stressful as enduring the event itself. Before starting an inventory, contact your insurance agent to ask what kind of documentation is required if you ever need to file a claim. It can be as simple as creating a spreadsheet and supplement it with photos and receipts, the more info the better. Keep a copy off-site or in your email and not near the location where the art is housed, this can be a lifesaver and prevent delays in getting the replacement value.

The most valuable tool in ensuring everything goes smoothly is having a knowledgeable fine-art and collectibles insurance broker to guide you in the process of managing your risk. Insuring art requires an experienced broker that knows how to navigate the often-confusing details of high-value insurance. At ArtInsuranceNow.com / Bernard Fleischer & Sons Inc. we know art, and what it takes to insure it properly so you don’t have to. We are your resource and can answer any questions you may have regarding the protection of your art, tools, studio space, or gallery.

Even if you never need to file a claim, an inventory pays off. A complete inventory can help you purchase the right amount of insurance and should the unforeseen happen, you can focus on rebuilding rather than scrambling for the details on what you may have lost.

Visit us at ArtInsuranceNow.com to live chat with a professional or call us at 800-921-1008 to speak to a friendly voice that can guide you through the process of risk management.

 

Brazen thief snatches 19th century painting, and calmly walks out.

 

A man who stole a painting off the wall of Moscow’s Tretyakov Gallery over the weekend has been arrested. The suspect took a Crimean landscape by Russian artist Arkhip Kuindzhi and carried it through a room filled with visitors on Sunday evening while posing as a gallery worker, the footage aired on Russian state television showed.

This is the second incident to hit the Russian capital’s gallery in less than a year. The first was vandalism against a painting of Ivan the Terrible, which was severely damaged when slashed by a visitor. Each year, art thefts account for around four to six billion dollars of losses worldwide. Due to the magnitude of the problem, the International Criminal Police Organization, commonly known as Interpol, continually collects data about the many art thefts and recoveries. With 192 member countries, the international police organization catalogs around 50,000 stolen works of art.

While the Arkhip Kuindzhi artwork has been recovered, sadly many stolen pieces are not, and vandalized artwork often times is declared a total loss. This may be heartbreaking to the owner but the financial hit is also devastating. The good news is you can acquire the proper art coverage to recoup your investment in the eventArt of a loss. We at Bernard Fleischer & Sons Inc. / ArtInsuranceNow.com are true art lovers and we put the Artist, Collector, and/or Owner first when designing a custom policy.

Not every art owner is the same, there are different circumstances, building structures, security systems etc. We ask the right questions and evaluate them to get you the best policy at the best premium. Our online applications are tailored to your requirements and created for your convenience. For example, artists can apply for and bind a policy to cover their studio, art, art in transit, tools, and materials all while having their morning coffee at home.

Learn how you can protect your art while on public display, at home, in studio, or in transit. Visit ArtInsuranceNow.com to live chat with an agent or call us at 800.921.1008

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5 Star Service for Art Insurance with ArtInsuranceNow.com

Are you an artist, art dealer, collector, exhibitor, or gallerist that requires asset protection? ArtInsuranceNow.com / Bernard Fleischer & Sons Inc. has provided insurance services for the art community for 70 years. We love educating our customers and giving them the right tools to create or maintain a successful art business or collection.

Many artists surveyed do not have the proper insurance or coverage for their situation, the numbers are quite alarming. Our goal is to educate and provide resources that the art community requires to mitigate the unique risks they face.

As the global art market expands, risk also increases. Artists, auction houses, and art dealers often display art at multiple locations to discover a larger number of buyers, including a growing number of art fairs around the world like Art Basel.

The high volume of art exchanging hands increases the risk of improper handling, accidental damage during transit, and theft. Therefore, this increases the number of fine art insurance claims. If your art studio or location is not properly covered, you could be headed for a loss.

We at ArtInsuranceNow.com / Bernard Fleischer & Sons Inc. take pride in our stellar customer service. (Don’t take our word for it, check our 5-star ratings on Google HERE) We will walk you through the process step by step and get you insured fast, and with great rates via our user-friendly online applications. We are uniquely qualified to handle all art related risk management solutions due to our extensive experience in the field, and to put it simply, we just love art!

Call us at 800-921-1008, apply online at ArtInsuranceNow.com and live chat with us, or visit our offices at 29 Broadway, Suite 1511 New York, NY 10006

Houston Art Studio Destroyed in Fire.

Smash Design, the Popular Houston Art Studio behind some of the city’s most recognizable art pieces has been destroyed by fire. The devastating blaze is suspected to have been ignited by a recently added LED light panel, destroying everything of value including several hundred thousand dollars’ worth of pneumatic tools and supplies. Also destroyed in the blaze were some commissioned works already sold to other businesses.

The family-owned art studio has conceived and built sculptures for popular brand displays for

James Harden and Adidas, as well as sets for comedian Gabriel Iglesias. Their impressive sculptures also adorn places like the Toro entrance at the Houston Texan’s fan shop.

Smash Design Portfolio
a selection from the Smash Design Portfolio

Artist Steven Ramirez, the creative force behind the shop has said that due to his type of business, the art shop was never covered by insurance. This is a great loss for an artist whose heart and soul goes into the work they develop which is why the first thing we do at Bernard Fleischer & Sons Inc. (ArtInsuranceNow.com) is to educate artists on the pitfalls of insurance and how to avoid them. In this case, it appears that the issue was not the type of business that caused the coverage exclusion, it was the type of insurance policy. Our standalone artist’s policy covers the studio, tools, and of course the art whether in the studio, during transit, and art exhibitions.

Many artists surveyed do not have the proper insurance or coverage for their situation, the numbers are quite alarming. The goal is to educate and provide the resources that working artists require to mitigate the unique risks their businesses face.

Call us at 800.921.1008 to receive a competitive quote for comprehensive coverage that includes transit, multiple locations and more.  You can also visit us at www.ArtInsuranceNow.com to learn more and live chat with an agent or apply for your free quote below.

 

Art in Transit: Why we insure.

The reasons for art being shipped varies greatly, a collector may move or place artwork in storage while their home is being renovated, they often sell artwork at popular art fairs and even lend pieces to museums.

A dealer or gallerist may sell artwork to a collector from out of town or even another country, the working artist sends their commissioned works to buyers, galleries, etc. Auction houses frequently send and receive works of art. There are many different reasons for art transit, including shipping art out of harms way in cases of hurricanes and wildfires.

Other than hauling that hidden ‘masterpiece’ in the attic down to the Antiques Roadshow, artwork should be handled with care, shipped by professionals, and most importantly insured.

Transit insurance is extremely important to the safety of your investment. If you have the opportunity to talk with anybody in the insurance world for fine art, most of the losses by frequency — something like 70% — are caused by damage while it’s being handled through transit. Even so, not all insurance policies cover works of art.

Standard homeowners insurance likely won’t extend to cover your art collection, which is why most artists, collectors, dealers, and auction houses purchase a stand-alone policy that often includes protection for new works while they are being shipped to your home or business but it’s important to speak to knowledgeable art insurance professionals like Bernard Fleischer & Sons Inc. (ArtInsuranceNow.com) and understand what’s covered and what is not.

It is important to know that most transporters limit their liability and folks are often quite surprised at how low their liability is. So, make sure your insurance policy covers the work of art as it’s being shipped.

Whether buying or selling at art fairs be sure that your work or investment has the maximum coverage with minimal headaches by using the Trusted One Stop Art Insurance for the Art Community since 1949, Bernard Fleischer & Sons Inc. Visit artinsurancenow.com or call 800-921-1008 we can help you with all of your Art Insurance requirements.

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Fair Market And Insurance Value For Works Of Art

Fine-Art Insurance valuations aren’t so complicated, as some may think. Here is the breakdown. The IRS defines fair market value as the price that property would sell for on the open market, as agreed upon between a willing buyer and a willing seller, with neither being required to act and both having a reasonable knowledge of the relevant facts.

Usually, this means the auction market (buyer’s premium included), because auction is the predominant market of open exchange. If the property in question sells predominantly or exclusively at retail (i.e. in a gallery), however, retail is the market used by the appraiser. All IRS appraisals are fair market value appraisals.

Insurance appraisals have a different criterion for valuation. Here the assumption is that the insured item needs to be replaced in a timely manner. Waiting for a similar item to come up for auction could be unreasonable and impractical. So instead of a valuation based on the auction market, retail replacement is the most appropriate valuation.

This is the price that one would expect to pay for the same or similar item in a retail setting at the present time. Oftentimes the insurance value is even a bit higher than retail to accommodate for shipping and other costs related to the purchase.

Also, check out our informative article on Schedule VS. Blanket Coverage for an in-depth look at how policies are written in terms of valuation.

As a knowledgeable Art Insurance broker, I can guide you through the process of navigating the often confusing insurance industry and properly protecting your Art. Give us a call at 800.921.1008 or Live Chat with us at www.ArtInsuranceNow.com you can even get a free quote by following the link below.

 

The Art Police

Detective Don Hrycyk , LAPD Art Theft Detail, shows a fake Jim Dine painting, left, and a fake Renoir painting “La Loge (also called Au Theatre)

If you believe Hollywood’s version, the average art thief has many gadgets, scales walls, and dances through laser beam alarm triggers to steal Rembrandts and Renoirs. But when Detective Don Hrycyk of the LAPD Art Theft Detail solves an art crime, the guilty party is usually a trusted friend or business associate of the victim, not Tom Cruise in a catsuit.

The problem isn’t always smart criminals, Many leave themselves vulnerable to opportunists, with state of the art alarm systems that are never turned on, treasures locked away in safes with the combination left in an unlocked drawer nearby. Detective Hrycyk has seen it all.

The Art Theft Detail was formed by the LAPD in 1983 in response to a rash of unsolved High-value art thefts. It was a smart decision as they have recovered $122,999,616 in artwork since 1993. It is the only law enforcement unit in the country dedicated to fighting art crimes full-time.

They investigate by publicizing thefts and staying in constant contact with local galleries, museums, auction houses, and collectors. They tackle everything from phony estate sales stocked with fake antiques to consignment fraud, home burglaries, art-related insurance scams, and occasionally dramatic heists.

Picasso’s 1937 drawing “Faune”, for example, was recovered back in 2001 after a man tried to sell his $100,000 “ugly painting” to Christie’s in Beverly Hills. An alert appraiser checked the LAPD website, saw the stolen work and called the police. Turns out the thief was a chauffeur who had broken into the house of his movie-producer boss.

Sometimes it isn’t a very happy ending though, sculptor Kewal Soni had a break in and lost a $10,000 sculpture that he worked on for a year. The burglar then took it to a metal recycling plant and sold it as scrap for a measly $9.10. Although later the thief was caught and convicted.

The importance of insuring your art cannot be overstated. Art is a passion for most and when you love something it’s natural to want to protect it. Allow us to help by providing easy to understand comprehensive insurance coverage for your artwork.

Already covered? Let us examine your current Artist’s, Collector’s, Dealer’s, Conservator’s, Gallery’s, or Museum’s policy. Maybe you’re overpaying, under protected or have the wrong coverages.

Our policies have diverse coverages to meet the specific requirements of the Art Community. We help clients select adequate coverage and to help mitigate potential exposures, we provide recommended loss control procedures.

 

 

 

 

 

Artwork in Transit; Managing the Risks

The top risks art collectors might face surprisingly doesn’t include theft. In fact, its art that’s on the move that poses the biggest risk. A large proportion of art claims are derived from transit losses. Private collectors enjoy lending, particularly as exhibitions in major institutions can increase value, that’s all very well until something goes wrong.

The movement of art is massive, now art is transported coast to coast, internationally or just to your winter home or local Gallery. When handling artwork, packing for transportation is a top concern for insurance carriers.

Many policies list as a condition, professional packing, meaning it must be packed as someone in the industry would pack it, safe, secure and protective from breaking if possible.

If you use a transportation service, either a fine art mover, a local mover, or common carrier, you must verify if they have or offer Insurance, what are their limits, conditions and the cost of the coverage. Insurance carriers differ and may have restrictions or limitations while your valuables are on the road, on a ship, or in air transit. The most common, efficient and safe way of moving art over long distances, domestically or internationally is by air transport, but it is very common to move the work yourself, so make sure your policy covers self-conveyance.

Some art transporting choices such as those offered by, United Parcel Service (UPS), DHL, Federal Express (FedEx), and other private art handling companies or commercial air freight carriers have limitations on coverages, territory, and deductibles. Keep in mind that while these are services used for fragile and non-fragile fine art, things happen within their control and outside of their control. Looking to your own insurance policy for protection is the right way to limit your financial losses and the quickest way to have the claim settled.

Artists, art dealers, and institutions use these Art transport services regularly, but Insurance, in particular, is the gray area in which most misunderstandings occur. Pay close attention to the bill of lading and understanding the fine print. The standard form limits the exposure of a claim on the art to weight, not value.

Our policies are written either as a schedule or market value less a percentage. Either way, your art will be protected while in transport. Caution, it’s important when securing transit art insurance to add extra days of transport for the unknown delays. Also note the declared value placed in customs forms or the bill of Lading is usually not used when settling a claim but look for wording which would specify to the contrary.

According to FedEx, “shipments (packages or freight) containing all or part of the following items are limited to a maximum declared value of $500: Artwork, including any work created or developed by the application of skill, taste or creative talent for sale, display or collection.

This includes, but is not limited to, items (and their parts) such as paintings, drawings, vases, tapestries, limited-edition prints, fine art, statuary, sculpture, collectors’ items, customized or personalized musical instruments, Film, photographic images, including photographic negatives, photographic chromes and photographic slides.

Any commodity that by its inherent nature is particularly susceptible to damage, or the market value of which is particularly variable or difficult to ascertain.”

According to UPS, articles of “unusual value” are prohibited from being offered for shipment. This definition explicitly includes “works of art.” As the November New York-based auctions ended and Art Basel Miami Beach began, for collectors buying and selling art no doubt demanded lots of their attention, they also should be thinking about keeping their art safe and properly insured as it moves between locations.

With the expansion of the global art market, risks increase. To discover a larger number of buyers, auction houses and art dealers often display art at multiple locations, including a growing number of art fairs around the world like Art Basel. The high volume of art exchanging hands increases the risk of improper handling and accidental damage and therefore increases the number of fine art insurance claims.

You should know where your art will be stored while in the possession of art dealers or auction houses. This is critical. For example, many consigned works were stored in art gallery basements in Chelsea during Hurricane Sandy, leaving many damaged. Art galleries may also store artwork at an off-site storage facility. Being notified before your piece is moved from one location to another is also a precaution and obtaining confirmation on how it will be packed and transported will help to ensure a smooth consignment process.

Don’t presume that the auction house, gallery owner, art dealer, or shipping company with possession of your artwork has insurance for its loss, theft or damage. It’s very important to have your own fine art policy. Collectors should always consult with an insurance agent. The agent can tailor a policy to a specific collector and discover any special provisions in the collector’s fine art policy.
No matter what risks they face, creating an insurance policy for an art collector requires one-on-one consultation since every art collection is unique, no two collectors are alike and no two collections are alike.

Collectors and their advisers would be wise to work with knowledgeable insurance brokers like Bernard Fleischer & Sons Inc.  that can guide you in obtaining the right fine art insurance for your unique requirements. For more info visit www.artinsurancenow.com and live chat with us or call us at 800.921.1008

Caution! Art Claims are Taxable, Read on.

Losing treasured items is traumatic enough, imagine being taxed for replacing them.

In an insightful article by leading tax professional Julian Block, the perils of being taxed on an Insurance claim for art that has appreciated are explained.

Using the received replacement value to purchase works of other types may not qualify you for the IRS’ “complete non-recognition of gain under the involuntary conversion rules”. This means you can be taxed.

Read the incisive article below and visit ArtInsuranceNow.com for comprehensive Fine Art coverages.

*The law authorizes an important tax break for a property owner who collects insurance (or other compensation) for property lost due to fire, theft or condemnation by a governmental authority. Ordinarily, you’re liable for an immediate tax on any excess over the cost basis of your property.

But a special rule permits taxes to be deferred if the proceeds are reinvested in similar property within the deadlines imposed by the IRS for replacement. For the “involuntary conversion” rules to apply, Code Section 1033 mandates that the replacement property has to be “similar or related in service or use” to the property replaced.

Understandably, words like “similar” lend themselves to different interpretations. Also understandable is that the IRS sometimes takes a hard-nosed approach.

Consider, for example, Letter Ruling 8127089. It held that oil paintings aren’t “similar” to lithographs so as to be eligible for involuntary conversion deferral.

The ruling dealt with a request for advice from someone I’ll call Irene Holmes. A fire in her home destroyed an art collection that included about 3,000 lithographs and a small number (about 1 percent of the entire collection) of oil paintings, pencil drawings, and wood carvings. A prudent Irene had insured the collection for its full current value. As current value exceeds her cost basis, a portion of the insurance proceeds represents gain.

Irene explained that she intends to use the proceeds from the insurance to purchase the replacement property. The replacements will consist of a mix of media — approximately 63 percent lithographs and 37 percent art works in other artistic media, such as oil paintings, watercolors, sculptures or other graphic forms of art — rather than reflect the composition of the lost artwork.

With that set of facts, the IRS “will not consider as property similar or related in service or use, art work in one medium, destroyed in whole or in part, replaced with art work in another medium. Therefore, in order to qualify for complete non-recognition of gain under the involuntary conversion rules,” the IRS spelled out what Irene has to do.

She “must purchase the same percentage of lithographs as were destroyed in whole or in part and the same percentage of art works in other artistic media as were destroyed in whole or in part.”

What happens if Irene decides to reinvest as proposed (63 percent in lithographs and 37 percent in other media? She’s going to be liable for taxes on the 37 percent of the proceeds that she reinvests in “other artistic media.”

Additional articles. A reminder for accountants who would welcome advice on how to alert clients to tactics that trim taxes for this year and even give a head start for next year: Delve into the archive of my articles (more than 225 and counting).

*Reprinted with permission from a Feb 20th, 2018 article by Julian Block.

About Julian Block

Attorney and author Julian Block is frequently quoted in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Post. He has been cited as “a leading tax professional” (New York Times), an “accomplished writer on taxes” (Wall Street Journal), and “an authority on tax planning” (Financial Planning magazine). More information about his books can be found at julianblocktaxexpert.com.

Risk exposures such as natural disasters and unexpected events like fire, flood, earthquakes, and storms, can cause extreme damage. Protect your art investments by obtaining an art insurance policy by Art Insurance Now / Bernard Fleischer & Sons Inc.

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Visit www.ArtInsuranceNow.com to learn more, apply here or feel free to contact William Fleischer, CIC at 1.800.921.1008

Fire & Water, Devastates Artist’s Studio.

Commissioned Princeton University Artist’s studio destroyed by firemen’s overspray. Did her Artist studio policy cover her? No! and this is why.

She never bought one. If she did, all of her artwork in racks, stands, files, and on walls, is covered.  Her materials and tools are covered.  Even the reference library is covered.

I feel for artists that see financial hardship when there is a loss similar to this.

For $1,000 per year, your art is covered up to $100,000, not just in the studio but also in transit, at exhibitions and in storage, everywhere worldwide.

Follow our link at the bottom of this article and purchase an Artist studio policy today.

Art studios give artists the space they need to create as well as a way to store their completed works of art and sell art from the studio. Due to the nature of the work in an art studio, art studio insurance is essential. Risk exposures such as natural disasters and unexpected events like fire, flood, earthquakes, and storms, can cause extreme damage to the building and contents. Protect these risks by obtaining an artist insurance policy offered by Art Insurance Now / Bernard Fleischer & Sons Inc.

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