Antique Dealers Insurance Montana Policy Information
Antique Dealers Insurance Montana. Dealing antiques is an interesting and exciting endeavor. It can also be financially reward. You have the opportunity to see and handle rare items and interact with unique people, and if you run your business properly, it can be quite lucrative, too.
Antique dealers buy and sell a wide variety of used goods, particularly furniture, gifts, glassware, household goods, toys, and historic, nostalgic or collectible items. Some may sell vintage clothing, musical instruments, or architectural items. The dealer may specialize in a particular type of item or particular era and may offer appraisal services.
The dealer purchases items from auctions, estate sales, flea markets, garage sales, or directly from clients. Some items may be sold on a consignment basis. Cleaning, reconditioning and repair services may be offered.
The store may provide pickup and delivery of goods. If the dealer owns the shop, booth space may be rented to other dealers of antiques.
In the excitement of setting up your business, it's vital that you don't forget to make sure that all of your T's are crossed and I's are dotted, and that means properly protecting your establishment.
Antique dealers insurance Montana is the best way to protect your business, as well as yourself, the clients you serve, your employees, and anyone else who interact with your business.
What type of coverage will you need? How much will it cost you? Below, you'll find out more about MT antique dealers insurance so that you can make sure your investment is properly protected.
Antique dealers insurance Montana protects your shop from lawsuits with rates as low as $27/mo. Get a fast quote and your certificate of insurance now.
Why Do Antique Dealers Need Insurance?
As an MT antique dealer, you face several risks. Some of those risks are similar to the risks that business owners in any other industry face; your property could be damaged in a fire, a vendor could slip and fall on your property and file a lawsuit against you, or a member of your team could suffer an injury while working.
Some of the risks that you face as an antique dealer are unique to your particular business, however; for instance, you are dealing with delicate and rare items and you are selling unique items that may to your clients. If a client claims that an antique you claimed was authentic actually isn't or claims that you cheated them out of money for something that they sold you, they may file a lawsuit against you.
In any of these situations, you could be looking at serious financial losses. The cost of repairing damaged property, medical bills that you may be required to pay, and legal fees can be exorbitant.
Having the right type of antique dealers insurance Montana coverage in place protects you from having to pay such expenses out of your own pocket, as your carrier will cover the expenses for you.
In addition to protecting you from serious financial losses, certain types of commercial insurance are compulsory. If you aren't insured, you could be hit high with major fines or your business could even end up getting shut down.
What Type of Insurance Do Antique Dealers Need?
The specific type of antique dealers insurance Montana coverage you'll need depends on several factors. The type of antiques you deal with, whether you buy or sell items, where your business is located, the size of your operation, and whether or not you drive for work-related purposes are just a few of the factors that will determine the specific type of coverage you'll need.
With that said, however, there are some key types of coverage that all antiques dealers should carry. Examples include:
- Commercial Liability: This coverage protects you from third-party liability claims, including property damage and personal injury. For example, if a client trips over a wire on the floor of your facility, suffers an injury, and files a lawsuit against you, this insurance will cover your legal expenses, as well as any compensation a court finds you liable for.
- Commercial Property: This coverage protects the structure of your business, as well as the items that are inside of it. It also covers some of the exterior elements, such as sidewalks and signage. If a fire breaks out in your property and damages the structure as well as some of your equipment, commercial property insurance will help to pay for the necessary repairs.
- Commercial Auto: If you drive to different locations for work-related purposes - you travel to antique roadshows or to the homes of your clients, for example - you'll need to have commercial auto insurance. If you're involved in an accident, your personal auto insurance won't cover it, as it occurred while you were working; therefore, you'll need commercial auto in order to pay for any damages that may occur.
In regard to the cost of antique dealers insurance Montana, it also depends on many of the same factors that will determine what type of coverage you need - the size of your business, where it's located, whether or not you employ a staff, for example - as well as what specific type of coverage you have.
MT Antique Dealers Risks & Exposures
Premises liability exposure is high due to the number of visitors to the store. To prevent slips and falls, there should be good lighting and adequate aisle space. All goods should be kept on easily reached shelves so customers do not pull items down on themselves. The stock dropped on floors by customers must be retrieved promptly.
Floor coverings should be in good condition, no frayed or worn spots on carpet and no cracks or holes in flooring. Steps and uneven floor surfaces should be prominently marked. Sufficient exits must be provided and be well marked, with backup lighting systems in case of power failure. Parking lots and sidewalks need to be in good repair with snow and ice removed, and generally level and free of exposure to slips and falls.
If the premises are open after dark, there should be adequate lighting and appropriate security for the area. There should be a disaster plan in place for unexpected emergencies.
If booth space is rented or vendors provide services, the store should require certificates of insurance verifying appropriate limits of liability.
Personal injury exposures include allegations of discrimination, invasion of privacy in dressing rooms, and from apprehending and detaining shoplifters, which may result in claims of assault and battery, false arrest or detention, unauthorized or intrusive searches, or wrongful ejection from the premises. Shoplifting procedures must be fully understood and utilized by all employees.
Products liability exposure is limited as antiques are old and generally sold on an "as is, all sales final" basis.
The dealer should be sure there are no jagged edges on glassware or furniture, and attach labels warning of possible lead exposure to architectural items (particularly salvaged pieces such as painted doors or window frames), cloisonne jewelry, ceramics, pewter or silver-plated items, and painted toys.
Old baby cribs or bassinets that do not meet current standards pose dangers to infants or toddlers. The exposure will increase if there is reconditioning or repair. Foreign-made items should come from a domestic-based wholesaler.
Any direct importer should be considered as a product manufacturer. Reproductions must be labeled as such.
Professional liability exposure comes from providing appraisal services. The appraiser must be certified. All appraisals should be in writing with verification of how the age of the item, its condition, and its value was determined.
Workers compensation exposure is moderate due to employees standing for long hours, the use of computers, and stocking which requires lifting and placing items on floors or shelves for display. Continual standing can result in musculoskeletal disorders of the back, legs, or feet. Trips, slips, and falls are common. When work is done on computers, employees are exposed to eyestrain, neck strain, and repetitive motion injuries including carpal tunnel syndrome.
Lifting can cause back injury, hernias, sprains, and strains. Employees should be provided with safety equipment, trained on proper handling techniques, and have conveying devices available to assist with heavy lifting. Equipment used in repair operations should be appropriately maintained to prevent injury. Respiratory ailments may occur from working with paints, lacquers, and solvents.
Employees picking up items or delivering items to customers will encounter road exposures. Cleaning workers can develop respiratory ailments or contact dermatitis from working with chemicals. In any retail business, hold-ups may occur. Employees should be trained to respond in a prescribed manner.
Property exposures can be high due to the age, combustibility, and value of stock along with numerous ignition sources including electrical wiring and heating and air conditioning systems. Antique stores are frequently located in older buildings. All wiring should be well maintained and meet current codes for the occupancy. Malfunctioning wiring on used electrical equipment may short or spark when tested by customers.
Should a fire occur, the stock and its packaging materials provide a combustible fire load that is highly susceptible to water and smoke damage. Flammables such as lacquers or solvents used for cleaning, reconditioning or repair must be stored away from the inventory. Processing should be done in a separate building reduce the potential for fire.
If there is a snack bar or restaurant, all grills and deep fat fryers must have automatic fire extinguishing protection, hoods, and filters. There should be fuel shut-offs and adequate hand-held fire extinguishers. The kitchen must be kept clean and grease free to prevent the spread of fire.
Theft may be a concern if any of the stock has high value. Small items should be displayed in locked cabinets, with keys inaccessible to customers. Extremely high-valued items should be kept in a safe and shown only to qualified buyers. Appropriate security measures should be in place including physical barriers to prevent entrance to the premises after hours and an alarm system that reports directly to a central station or the police department.
Valuation can be a problem due to the age and rarity of items held as inventory. The dealer should keep accurate records of the description and cost of each item purchased for resale to verify the actual cash value of missing, damaged, or destroyed items after a loss. Business interruption exposures are moderate.
While backup facilities are readily available, replacement stock will be difficult to obtain quickly.
Crime exposures are from employee dishonesty and theft of money and securities from holdup or safe burglary. Background checks should be conducted on all employees handling money.
There must be a separation of duties between persons handling deposits and disbursements and reconciling bank statements. Money should be regularly collected from cash drawers and moved away from the collection area, preferably to a safe on premises. Bank drops should be made throughout the day to prevent a buildup of cash on the premises.
Inland marine exposures are from accounts receivable if the store offers credit, computers to transact sales and monitor inventory, and valuable papers and records for vendors' and customers' records. Backup copies of all records, including computer files, should be made and stored off premises.
If the store consigns items belonging to others, bailees customers coverage should be considered. Fine arts dealers form should be considered if the store stocks particularly valuable items. Goods in transit and off premises coverage will be needed if the store takes items to trade shows or loans items to other organizations for displays.
Commercial auto exposure is moderate because dealers purchase items off-site and transport them to the store. They often provide delivery services to customers when large items are purchased. All drivers must have a valid license and acceptable MVR. Vehicles should have regular maintenance with records kept.
Antique Dealers Insurance - The Bottom Line
For more information on antique dealers insurance Montana, speak with a reputable broker who specializes in commercial insurance and understands the unique risks of the antique business.
Montana Economic Data, Regulations And Limits On Commercial Insurance
Thinking about starting a new business? Already own a successful business and want to expand your operations? Whatever the case may be, if you want to experience as much success as possible, you are going to want to ensure you choose the best possible location for your specific industry.
No matter how outstanding your goods and services may be, if the area where your business is located doesn't offer a healthy climate that will support your company, chances are you'll struggle to succeed.
If you are thinking about opening up a business in Montana, being familiar with the state's economic trends can help you determine if it's a good location for you. It's also wise to know what type of insurance you'll need to invest in so that you can plan ahead.
With that said, below, we provide an overview of the economic trends in the state of Montana, as well as the commercial insurance requirements for business owners in the Treasure State.
Economic Trends For Business Owners In Montana
As of December, 2019, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the unemployment rate in the state of Montana was 3.4%; that's 0.1% lower than the national average, which was 3.5% at the same time. This rate remained steady throughout the entire 2019 fiscal year, and it is expected to either continue remaining steady or improve in coming years, according to economists.
Unemployment rate is a vital statistic for business owners, as it indicates the job market of a location, which is a strong determining factor in the success of businesses in the region.
There are several areas throughout the state of Montana that are seeing economic booms and where businesses are flourishing. Among those locations include the following cities and the areas that surround them:
- Great Falls
Several industries are seeing substantial growth in MT; however, there are particular sectors that are really thriving in Montana. Among those sectors include:
- Advanced manufacturing
- Hospitality and tourism
- Information technology
- Oil and gas production
- Retail development
If you are considering opening a business in any of the above-mentioned areas, your chances of success in Montana are favorable.
Commercial Insurance Requirements In Montana
The Office of the Montana State Auditor, Commissioner of Securities and Insurance regulates insurance in MT. Montana mandates very few forms of insurance coverage by law. They enforce worker's compensation.
Montana requires you to have worker's compensation insurance if you hire even one employee on a regular basis. This includes part-time employees, family members, minors, and immigrant employees. It is not required for independent contractors or domestic employees, though you should check to make sure any contractors you have are true contractors, and not employees.
Montana also requires all business-owned vehicles to be covered by commercial auto insurance. Other types of business insurance that business owners should carry depend on the specific industry.
Additional Resources For Retail Insurance
Read valuable small business retail insurance policy information. In a retail business, you need to have the right type of commercial insurance coverage so that your store, employees, and inventory are protected.
- Adult Novelty
- Antique Dealers
- Appliance & Electronics Store
- Art Gallery
- Bicycle Shop
- Book Store
- Bridal Shop
- Candy Confectionery Store
- Carpet Store
- Clothing Store
- Collectibles Memorabilia Store
- Convenience Store
- Cosmetics Store
- Dry Cleaning
- Equipment Rental
- Funeral Home
- Furniture Store
- Gift Store
- Hardware Store
- Home Improvement Store
- Hotel Motel
- Ice Cream Shop
- Jewelry Store
- Lingerie Store
- Luggage Store
- Music Store
- Office Supply Store
- Paint & Wallpaper Store
- Pawn Shop
- Pet Store
- Pharmacy Liability
- Plumbing Supplies Fixtures Store
- Scrap Metal Dealers
- Sewing Store
- Shoe Store
- Sporting Goods Store
- Stationary Store
- Thrift Store
- Ticket Agency
- Tobacco Store
- Toy Store
- Travel Agency
- Tuxedo And Formal Wear Rental Store
- Vending Machine Operators
- Wig Store
Retail stores are susceptible to premises liability claims because of customer traffic, but large department and specialty stores are more susceptible than most.
All retail stores have significant property exposures. The on-hand stock represents a considerable investment, but the amount on hand fluctuates seasonally. For this reason, physical damage insurance on this property must be arranged carefully. When the insured occupies a non-owned building, insurance coverage must be arranged for the insured's interest in extensive improvements and betterments made to the premises.
Crime insurance, in the form of employee theft and money and securities coverage, is also very important.
The businessowners policy was designed with retail exposures and operations in mind. For this reason alone, it should always be the first type of package coverage to consider. However, for those risks not eligible for the business owners policy program, the commercial package policy (CPP) is a practical and convenient way to combine a number of coverages into one policy.
Retail businesses generate income through interaction with customers. This interaction is also how a customer can sustain an injury and then sue the retailer for damages. Hazards, exposures and operations both on premises and off are important and must be covered, but liability the retailer may incur because of the merchandise sold must also be considered and insurance protection arranged.
Inventory or stock is the major property exposure for most retail operations. Because stock values tend to fluctuate or have significant peaks at certain times of the year, value reporting or peak season valuation options should be considered. Business income coverage, including business income from dependent properties coverage, may mean the difference between a retail operation staying in business or being forced into bankruptcy following a loss.
When the insured occupies a non-owned building, insurance coverage must be arranged for the insured’s interest in extensive improvements and betterments made to the premises.
Most retail businesses offer endless opportunities for a variety of criminal activities. For this reason, the coverages needed must be carefully evaluated. Holdup and robbery losses may be the most obvious concerns but employee theft, fraud and counterfeit money losses are also serious issues that cannot be dismissed.
Retail businesses are gaining greater exposure to international issues because of the growth in sales via the internet. As these sales increase, the added exposures faced by these retailers must be evaluated. While their operating horizons are expanding so are their potential loss exposures.
Minimum recommended small business insurance coverage: Business Personal Property, Business Income and Extra Expense, Equipment Breakdown, Employee Dishonesty, Money and Securities, Accounts Receivable, Computers, Valuable Papers and Records, General Liability, Employee Benefits, Umbrella, Hired and Non-owned Auto & Workers Compensation.
Other commercial insurance policies to consider: Building, Earthquake, Flood, Leasehold Interest, Real Property Legal Liability, Computer Fraud, Forgery, Bailees Customers, Goods in Transit, Jewelers Block, Cyber Liability, Employment-related Practices, Business Auto Liability and Physical Damage and Stop Gap Liability.
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Also find Montana insurance agents & brokers and learn about Montana small business insurance requirements for general liability, business property, commercial auto & workers compensation including MT business insurance costs. Call us (406) 637-8400.