Frequently Asked Questions About
Commercial General Liability Insurance
How much does small business insurance cost?
Costs can vary widely based on industry and are also determined by zip code and often payroll and/or gross sales. Request a free quote to get an exact number. (read more)
What kind of business insurance do I need?
Most business owners need General Liability Insurance at the very least. If you have any non-owner employees, you will need workers compensation insurance too.
What is a Certificate of Insurance?
A Certificate of Insurance is proof of coverage. It lists the type and amount of liability coverage you have and other policy information when a third party requests it. (read more)
Is business insurance tax deductible?
Yes. you can deduct the cost of commercial insurance premiums. The IRS considers insurance a cost of doing business as long it benefits the business & serves a business purpose.
Pennsylvania Tobacco Store Insurance
Pennsylvania Tobacco Store Insurance. Although fewer people are smoking today than in times past, tobacco stores are still a high-demand market. It is almost impossible to eliminate the tobacco culture. In fact, some retailers have started adding e-cigarettes to their line of products, due to increasing number of people who are switching from traditional tobacco smoking, to vaping. Other retailers deal in rare and expensive types of tobacco.
Tobacco shops sell all types of tobacco items, such as cigars, cigarettes, chewing tobacco, and other smoking devices and supplies, including pipes and pipe tobacco. Most also sell expensive curio and gift items for the smoker. Some sell novelties or snacks.
Whichever the case, if you are dealing with tobacco products, you are dealing with numerous types of exposures, which can only be covered through a Pennsylvania tobacco store insurance policy.
Pennsylvania tobacco store insurance protects your smoke shop from lawsuits with rates as low as $77/mo. Get a fast quote and your certificate of insurance now.
Potential Risks in a Tobacco Shop
Your tobacco or cigar shop is just like a small retail store. Despite the differences in the customer base, it is a place where people visit frequently and enjoy some social discourse over cigars. Every time clients spend a considerable amount of time in your business, your liability exposure increases, since they are likely to suffer property damage or get hurt while in your premises.
In addition, many tobacco stores contain flammables, such as butane lighter refills. Other tobacco stores allow customers to smoke in their premises. Therefore, the risk of fire damage in a tobacco store is much greater than other retail establishments. Furthermore, most tobacco products are known to pose various health risks on the users and your store could be sued for damages.
Due to the above reasons, most commercial insurance providers don't like insuring PA tobacco stores. When creating your Pennsylvania tobacco store insurance portfolio, you should work with a knowledgeable insurance broker, who will walk you through the whole process, so that you can understand the various coverage options.
Tobacco Store Property Coverage
If you allow smoking inside your tobacco store, then you face a huge risk of fire damage. Apart from that, your store is at a risk of property damage due to vandalism, storms and other hazards. If you lose your business or suffer property damage, you just need to rely on your Pennsylvania tobacco store insurance. Your business will be restored to normalcy. Here are some of the insurance coverages that tobacco storeowners or operators should consider:
Building Insurance: If you are the building owner which houses your shop, then you will be required to secure building insurance by your mortgage lender. This covers your building in the event of structural damage.
Contents Insurance: This covers the business property that is kept inside the tobacco store premises. It includes the shelving, your merchandise, decor, and cash registers, just to name a few. You therefore need to make sure that you have enough coverage for your business property.
Flood Insurance: Damages caused by flood are not covered by the PA commercial property insurance policy. You will need to secure this additional protection if you are in or near a flood zone. To do this, you just need to add a PA commercial flood insurance policy. This is usually done through the National Flood Insurance Program.
Tobacco Store Liability Insurance
A single liability lawsuit can lead to financial hardships, and even force you to file for bankruptcy. However, with liability insurance, your business is protected from such risks. It covers legal defense fees, court costs, as well as financial damages. There are numerous liability Pennsylvania tobacco store insurance coverages at your disposal, to add to your commercial insurance portfolio. Some of them include:
Premises Liability Insurance: This coverage protects your business from general lawsuits, for example when a customer is slips and falls and is injured or faces personal property damage in your premises, due to negligence on your part. Although it covers numerous types of lawsuits, it is not comprehensive. Therefore, you will need supplemental liability coverage.
Product Liability Insurance: If a customer is sickened or injured by any of your products, then you might need this coverage to protect your assets. For example, a customer can be burnt when an e-cigarette explodes. Although you are not the manufacturer - most likely the plaintiff attorney will name your store in the lawsuit that follows. It is therefore important to have product liability coverage to shield your business from defective product risks.
Pennsylvania Tobacco Shop's Risks & Exposures
Premises liability exposure comes from slips and falls due to public access to the premises. All stock should be on shelves that are easily accessible to customers. 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 business is open after dark, there should be adequate lighting and appropriate security for the area.
Products liability exposure is normally low unless there is direct importing of products. Unfavorable verdicts from tobacco litigation could increase the exposure for individual tobacco sellers.
Workers compensation exposures are due to lifting that can cause back injury, hernias, sprains, and strains, and from slips and falls. Employees should be provided with safety equipment, trained on proper handling techniques, and have conveying devices available to assist with heavy lifting. If smoking is permitted on premises, second hand smoke could result in lung and respiratory injuries to long term employees.
Property exposures are low because ignition sources are limited to electrical wiring and heating and cooling equipment. These should be well maintained and meet current codes for the occupancy. Should a fire occur, substantial fire and water damage may result due to the susceptibility of the stock. Theft is a concern due to the high value of the tobacco items. Appropriate theft controls such as alarms, lighting, and physical barriers to prevent access to the premises after hours should be in place.
Crime exposures are from employee dishonesty and loss of money and securities either from holdup or safe burglary. Background checks should be conducted on all employees handling money. There must be separation of duties between persons handling deposits and disbursements and handling bank reconciliations. 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 due to vendor's records. Backup copies of all records, including computer records, should be made and stored off premises.
Commercial auto exposure is generally limited to hired and non-ownered liability for employees running errands. If there are any owned vehicles, drivers should have a valid license and acceptable MVR. Any vehicles must have regular maintenance with records kept.
PA Tobacco Store Insurance
Every business has unique insurance needs. Therefore, you should choose a coverages that are right for your PA tobacco shop. Buying insurance for your tobacco store can be a complex process. Therefore, always work with professionals to ensure you get the most cost-effective Pennsylvania tobacco store insurance coverage.
Pennsylvania Economic Business Outlook & Commercial Insurance Requirements
While you might have a fantastic idea for a business, if you aren't setting up shop in the right PA location, there's a good chance that you won't see the success that you hope to achieve. With that said, it's important that you have an understanding of the economic status of the state that you are thinking about doing business in. It's also important for you to know what type of rules and regulations regarding insurance are in place in that state.
If you are thinking about doing business in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, keep on reading to find out some valuable information that you can use to make the best choices for your operation.
Pennsylvania's Economy Now And Into The Future
In terms of the economy, Pennsylvania's future looks pretty bright. It boasts the sixth largest economy in the United States. It is also home to some of the largest private and public organizations in the nation, as per sales.
The job market is expected to see steady growth in Pennsylvania during the 2019 calendar year. That rate is expected to be 1 percent, which is a marked increase from previous years. This is largely due to the high pool of educated laborers that reside in the state. Currently the unemployment rate is 4.9 percent, which is on-par with the rest of the nation. It is believed that the unemployment rate will continue to drop as more jobs are added.
For business owners, there are several industries that will afford success. The food products industry, particularly related to agriculture, contributes largely to the state's economy. This is expected to continue moving forward throughout the 2019 calendar year. Other industries that are forecasted to see growth include:
- Printing & Publishing
If you are thinking about doing business in PA, working in one of these industries will likely afford you success.
Insurance Requirements For Businesses In Pennsylvania
The Pennsylvania Insurance Department regulates insurance in PA. Business owners are legally required to carry workers compensation insurance. This type of coverage is a must for any business that employs any W2 part-time or full-time employees, and for employees that are either hourly or salaried. You must also carry PA commercial auto insurance if you plan on using a vehicle to conduct anything related to your business.
While commercial liability insurance is not required in Pennsylvania, it is still a wise idea to invest in. This type of coverage will protect you from the cost of any lawsuits that could potentially arise.
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
- Appliance & Electronics Store
- Art Gallery
- Auto Service Repair
- Auto Supply Parts Store
- Bicycle Shop
- Book Store
- Bridal Shop
- Candy Confectionery Store
- Car Wash
- Carpet Store
- Clothing Store
- Collectibles Memorabilia Store
- Convenience Store
- Cosmetics Store
- Dry Cleaning
- Equipment Rental
- Funeral Home
- Furniture Store
- Gas Station
- 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
- 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
- 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.
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