General Liability Insurance. At GeneralLiabilityInsure.com our goal is to get you the commercial general liability and business insurance you need as fast and easy as possible.
We specialize in quick general liability insurance quotes, and have many options placing your small business insurance coverage. We have a fast commercial general liability insurance quote process, making binding coverage simple.
General liability insurance protects your business from bodily injury and property damage lawsuits with rates starting at $27/mo. Get a fast commercial general liability insurance quote and your certificate of insurance today.
General Liability Insurance. You don't have any control over the ultimate cost of injuries to a person injured because of your operations, products, or services. The person injured may be a young child, a blue-collar worker, a surgeon, or a homeless person. The cost of the injuries may be comparatively minor or run into the millions of dollars, depending on the person and the extent of his or her injuries.
Do you have enough money or property you can sell to pay for such a loss? And, if you do, should you use it that way? Commercial general liability insurance (CGL) is designed to help you protect your business, assets and future income.
Your business can opt to purchase a general liability insurance policy on its own or as part of a business owner's policy (BOP) or commercial package policy (CPP), which are insurance policies that bundle both property and liability under a single umbrella.
However, if your business has a package or business owner's policy, it's still a good idea to review the coverage for liability that your policy affords, and if necessary, add an excess liability policy as a separate insurance product to make sure protection is in place.Below are come commonly asked questions about commercial general liability insurance:
This is usually the first question on a business owners mind. In general, the main factors are the business':
Please see, "How Much Does General Liability Insurance Cost?" for a deeper dive into how much a general liability policy costs.
If you're a business owner in or thinking of starting a small business, you're probably aware that you need small business general liability insurance, but maybe you're somewhat confused about what it is, what it covers, and how much you need to fully protect yourself and your business from potential liabilities.
What is general business liability insurance? What does it do? Why do you need it? How much should you buy? Read on to discover more about this essential insurance for your business and find out how to get the right level of coverage for your particular needs.
Commercial General Liability (CGL) insurance, protects your business against the economic loss and expense associated with claims filed against your business for bodily injury, property damage, injury to reputation caused by slander and libel, and also the harm caused by false or misleading advertising.
Bodily injury claims include claims for damage that results when someone falls while visiting your business. It can, depending on the language of the policy, also include coverage for claims of damage that occurs as a result of your business operations.
General liability insurance protects your business in several ways:
The bodily injury or property damage must be caused by an occurrence, which is defined as an accident, including continuous or repeated exposure to substantially the same harmful conditions, and it must occur in the covered territory. Each of these coverages is subject to certain policy exclusions, conditions, and definitions.
The general liability policy covers the cost of defending the insurance company or party against the charges that are named in the lawsuit. This can include attorney fees, costs for investigation, and other related legal expenses.
The costs to the defense can be a huge amount even when the defense is not responsible for the damages. The indemnity, or payment of damages, and the defense obligations are the two parts of a general liability policy.
A CGL policy is advantageous for two reasons. First, the insurer will defend you against any covered claim at no out-of-pocket cost to you. Second, if your business is found responsible, the insurer will pay at least part of, and maybe even all of, the damages owed. The amount the insurer will pay depends upon (1) the amount of damages, and (2) the type of damages sought.
When a valid claim is made, the insurer will pay up to the stated maximum. If the claim for damages is greater than the policy maximum, you as the policyholder are liable for the balance. Also, while most CGL insurance policies provide coverage for compensatory and non-compensatory damages, punitive damages are typically not covered.
Compensatory damages include expenses incurred by the claimant as a result of the injury, such as the cost of medical services and lost wages from missing work, as well as projected future losses and expenses.
Non-compensatory or general damages include non-monetary losses suffered by the injured party, such as "pain and suffering" or "mental anguish." Punitive damages are additional monies awarded as a penalty and sanction against the defendant as a form of punishment for its actions.
The limits of insurance are the most paid, regardless of the number of insureds, claims made, suits brought, or persons or organizations that make claims or bring suits. The amount of coverage that your business needs depends on your individual business model and the amount of risk associated with your business.
For instance, a consultant or a web designer may need less coverage than a roofer or a contractor. The location of your business also plays a key role in determining your coverage needs.
For example, if you live in a state that is plantiff friendly, and has a tendency to award large amounts of damages to personal injury claimants (California, New York etc.), then you may want to beef up your general liability policy.
Like a traditional insurance plan, a general liability policy pays for covered claims up to a specified limit. The most common general liability policy is a $1,000,000 / $2,000,000 policy. This means:
For instance, if your business is sued for injury due to a hazard on the worksite (people are hurt on your jobsite), a policy may cover the medical costs to the injured party along with a set amount for your legal fees. If your business has a liability policy with a $1,000,000 per claim limit, and you're sued for $700,000 with attorney fees amounting to around $100,000, then your policy is sufficient to cover your loss:
However, in the same scenario, if you're sued for $950,000, and you have attorney fees of $100,000, then you may need to come up with an additional $50,000 to cover the loss:
This is why it makes sense to purchase more liability insurance than you think you need; better to be safe than sorry when you're putting your personal assets and your business at risk. Excess insurance is always preferable to inadequate insurance.
Every general liability insurance coverage form or policy has certain exclusions and limitations. This is because only specific types of businesses need the coverage or the risk or exposure to loss is not considered insurable for some reason. Some bodily injury and property damage liability exclusions are:
Loss exposures is a term that refers to any property, circumstances, activity, and events that can cause an insured loss. This general liability exposure is usually broken down into four separate groups:
Do some industry research before buying your policy, and remember that some clients may require that you carry a particular amount of general liability insurance coverage before you can even work for them. Consult with your agent to find out how much is enough, and if you already have liability insurance, if it's enough to protect you.
While a general liability policy provides important coverages, it does not cover all types of risks associated with operating a business.
For example, it does not cover:
Other types of commercial insurance policies are available for purchase to cover other types of risks that small businesses may face. Some of the most common ones are listed below:
|Business Insurance Policy Type||What Is Covered?|
|Workers Compensation Insurance||What is covered under workers compensation insurance? This type of insurance protects a business and its owner(s) from claims by employees who suffer a work-related injury, illness or disease. Workers comp typically provides the injured employee with benefits to cover medical expenses, a portion of his/her lost wages, rehabilitation costs if applicable, and permanent partial or permanent total disability.|
|Product Liability Insurance||What is covered under product liability insurance? I pays an injured party's settlement or lawsuit claim arising from a defective product. These are usually caused by design defects, manufacturing defects, or a failure to provide adequate warning or instructions as to how to safely use the product.|
|Commercial Property Insurance||What is covered under business property insurance? General liability policies don't cover damages to your business property. That's what commercial property insurance is for. It protects all of the physical parts of your business: your building, your inventory, and your equipment, giving you the funds you need to replace them in the event of a disaster. If you work from home, you might consider a Home Based Business Insurance policy instead.|
|Business Owners Policy (BOP)||What is covered under a business owners policy (BOP)? This is a policy designed for small, low-risk businesses. It simplifies the basic insurance purchase process by combining general liability policies with business income and commercial property insurance.|
|Commercial Auto Insurance||What is covered under business auto insurance? This type of insurance covers automobiles being used for business purposes. This could include a fleet of business-only vehicles or a single company car. In some cases it might cover your car or your employee's car while they're being used for business. These policies have much higher limits, ensuring you can cover your costs if one of these vehicles gets into an accident.|
|Commercial Umbrella Policies||What is covered under commercial umbrella insurance? This type of policy is a sort of "gap" insurance. It covers your liability in the event that a court verdict or settlement exceeds your general liability policy limits.|
|Liquor Liability Insurance||What is covered under liquor liability insurance? It covers bodily injury or property damage caused by an intoxicated person who was served liquor by the policy holder.|
|Professional Liability (Errors & Omissions)||What is covered under professional liability insurance? This type of business insurance is also known as malpractice oe E&O. It covers the damages that can arise from major mistakes, especially in high-stakes professions where mistakes can be devastating.|
|Surety Bond||What is covered under surety bonds? Bonding is a contract where one party, the SURETY (who assures the obligee that the principal can perform the task), guarantees the performance of certain obligations of a second party, the PRINCIPAL (the contractor or business who will perform the contractual obligation), to a third party, the OBLIGEE (the project owner who is the recipient of an obligation).|