Business Liability Insurance Policy Information
Business Liability Insurance. The Small Business Administration identifies three types of business liability insurance for the average small business. These include general business liability insurance, product liability insurance and professional liability insurance. Each of these have their own purpose and, depending on your business type, may or may not be of benefit to you. Of greatest benefit to almost all businesses is a general business liability insurance policy. This policy acts as the first line of defense against many liability claims against your business.
General business liability insurance comes into play if a claim is made against your business by a third party. This could be for an incident such as property damage or bodily injury as a result of an action of an employee or contractor. The general business liability insurance usually covers legal fees in defense of the company and has a maximum settlement or court award value that the insurance will cover. Though not required by law, most businesses choose to protect themselves from financial loss and maintain a general business liability insurance policy. A typical policy may include bodily injury and property damage, personal injury liability and legal defense and judgement.
Business liablity insurance protects your company from lawsuits with rates as low as $27/mo. Get a fast quote and your certificate of insurance now.
Below are some answers to commonly asked business liability insurance questions:
- How Much Does Employment Practices Liability Insurance Insurance Cost?
- Why Do You Need Business Liability Insurance?
- What Is Bodily Injury and Property Damage Coverage?
- What Is Libel, Slander and Copyright Infringement Coverage?
- What Is Legal Defense and Judgements Coverage?
How Much Does Business Liability Insurance Cost?
The average price of a standard $1,000,000/$2,000,000 Business Liability Insurance policy for small businesses ranges from $27 to $59 per month based on location, industry, payroll, sales and experience.
Why Do You Need Business Liability Insurance?
The business liability insurance can help protect businesses by covering legal claims. Policies can be tailored to meet the specific needs of the business by adjusting coverage amounts, deductibles and varying the dollar limits of the coverage. By adjusting deductibles and coverage amounts you will find a policy to meet your needs while staying within your budget.
Each claim can result in a devastating financial cost to a small business. Customer slip and fall claims have the highest rate of occurrence in business liability. Some estimates have the average payout for these types of claims at well over $30,000. These happen more often than you can imagine. The injured party generally has to show that the business was negligent, but sometimes that is not the case. An employee mops the floor and forgets to put the "wet floor" sign up and a customer slips and gets injured. Another example is a customer tripping over a sidewalk crack outside the business.
One such slip and fall accident in resulted in a $250,000 pre-trial settlement to the claimant for an injury in small grocery store. The individual walked down the aisle of the store and slipped on some spilled liquid laundry detergent. This resulted in a significant injury to the claimant, requiring medical attention and loss of work.
Ranked next is a customer injury and damage claim which often costs the business in excess of $40,000. Very similar to slip and fall, the customer has been injured through an act either through an action or through negligence. Recently in, a female was awarded $300,000 after she was injured during a robbery. It was determined that the business was negligent in the provision of security in a high crime area and that they were liable for the customer's injuries.
Reputational harm claims are also among the most frequent business liability insurance claims in with an average settlement of $50,000. In this internet age, reputational harm cases are on the rise. The unauthorized use of a picture that can negatively impact a person or business reputation is an example of this. A negative, hostile online reaction by an employee to a review or blog could be another example. In cases where a lawsuit is filed, the average can run up to $100,000 with legal fees and court costs. In, jury awards can be even higher due to the legal atmosphere. Though most defamation cases have historically centered on the media, claims against employers have been made with significant awards made to former employees. Former employees proving that employers make false statements that negatively impact their earning potential are among these cases.
What Is Bodily Injury and Property Damage Coverage?
The bodily injury and property damage liability portion of the general business liability insurance policy generally covers physical injury to a person other than an employee at your place of business.
It also covers physical injury caused by you or your employee in the course of business on another person's property. Medical payments for such injury are often part of the settlement. Also the coverage includes damage caused by you or an employee to another person or entity's property.
What Is Libel, Slander and Copyright Infringement Coverage?
The general business liability insurance policy also includes coverage for libel, slander and copyright infringement by employees acting on behalf of the business. It also covers the invasion of property or privacy and wrongful eviction and losses caused by your advertising. These instances involve damage that is alleged to be caused by you or an employee against an individual or another.
What Is Legal Defense and Judgements Coverage?
Lastly, the typical business liability insurance coverage provides protection for legal defense and judgement which generally includes costs of defense against lawsuits and judgement limited to coverage liabilities. This part of the policy can be invaluable when settling lawsuits. Legal representation to handle the matter provides a sense of security in dealing with these matters.
Types Of Small Business Insurance - Requirements & Regulations
Perhaps you have the next great idea for a product or service that you know will appeal to your local area. If you've got a business, you've got risks. Unexpected events and lawsuits can wipe out a business quickly, wasting all the time and money you've invested.
Operating a business is challenging enough without having to worry about suffering a significant financial loss due to unforeseen and unplanned circumstances. Small business insurance can protect your company from some of the more common losses experienced by business owners, such as property damage, business interruption, theft, liability, and employee injury.
Purchasing the appropriate commercial insurance coverage can make the difference between going out of business after a loss or recovering with minimal business interruption and financial impairment to your company's operations.
Insurance is so important to proper business function that both federal governments and state governments require companies to carry certain types. Thus, being properly insured also helps you protect your company by protecting it from government fines and penalties.
Small Business Insurance Information
In the business world, there are many risks faced by company's every day. The best way that business owners can protect themselves from these perils is by carrying the right insurance coverage.
The The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) is the U.S. standard-setting and regulatory support organization. Through the NAIC, state insurance regulators establish standards and best practices, conduct peer review, and coordinate their regulatory oversight.
Commercial insurance is particularly important for small business owners, as they stand to lose a lot more. Should a situation arise - a lawsuit, property damage, theft, etc. - small business owners could end up facing serious financial turmoil.
According to the SBA, having the right insurance plan in place can help you avoid major pitfalls. Your business insurance should offer coverage for all of your assets. It should also include liability and casual coverage.
Types Of Small Business Insurance
Choosing the right type of coverage is absolutely vital. You've got plenty of options. Some you'll need. Some you won't. You should know what's available. Once you look over your options you'll need to conduct a thorough risk assessment. As you evaluate each type of insurance, ask yourself:
- What type of business am I running?
- What are common risks associated with this industry?
- Does this type of insurance cover a situation that could feasibly arise during the normal course of doing business?
- Does my state require me to carry this type of insurance?
- Does my lender or do any of my investors require me to carry this type of policy?
A licensed insurance agent or broker in your state can help you determine what kinds of coverages are prudent for your business types. If you find one licensed to sell multiple policies from multiple companies (independent agents) that person can often help you get the best insurance rates, too. Following is some information on some of the most common small business insurance policies:
|Business Insurance Policy Type||What Is Covered?|
|General Liability Insurance||What is covered under commercial general liability insurance? It steps in to pay claims when you lose a lawsuit with an injured customer, employee, or vendor. The injury could be physical, or it could be a financial loss based on advertising practices.|
|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).|
Who Needs General Liability Insurance? - Virtually every business. A single lawsuit or settlement could bankrupt your business five times over. You might also need this policy to win business. Many companies and government agencies won't do business with your company until you can produce proof that you've obtained one of these policies.
Business Insurance Required by Law
If you have any employees most states will require you to carry worker's compensation and unemployment insurance. Some states require you to insure yourself even if you are the only employee working in the business.
Your insurance agent can help you check applicable state laws so you can bring your business into compliance.
Other Types Of Small Business Insurance
There are dozens of other, more specialized forms of small business insurance capable of covering specific problems and risks. These forms of insurance include:
- Business Interruption Insurance
- Commercial Flood Insurance
- Contractor's Insurance
- Cyber Liability
- Data Breach
- Directors and Officers
- Employment Practices Liability
- Environmental or Pollution Liability
- Management Liability
- Sexual Misconduct Liability
Whether you need any or all of these policies will depend on the results of your risk assessment. For example, you probably don't need an environmental or pollution policy if you're running an IT company out of a leased office, but you would need data breach and cyber liability policies to fully protect your business.
Additional Resources For Small Business Insurance
Protect your company and employees with the right commercial insurance policies. Read informative articles on small business insurance coverages - and how they can help shield your company from legal liabilities.
- Small Business
- Business General Liability
- Business Liability
- Business Owners Policy (BOP)
- Certificate of Insurance
- Commercial Auto
- Commercial Umbrella
- Comprehensive General Liability
- Directors and Officers Liability
- Cyber Liability
- Employers Liability
- Employment Practices Liability
- General Liability
- Home Based Business
- Independent Contractor
- Liability Insurance Certificate
- Liability Insurance
- Professional Liability
- Workers Compensation Insurance
Your small business faces many potential disasters including: fire, floods, theft, equipment breakdown, lawsuits from clients or customers and current & former employees. Any many other risks you haven't even thought about.
A small business commercial insurance program should provide protection for both larger and smaller disasters. The obvious things like fire, flood and theft most business owners think about... but what if a hacker infects your computers with a virus - and files containing private customer information like credit card and Social Security numbers are stolen?
Who is going to pay to fix your customers credit rating etc...? Will your insurance pay for the cost? You need to know that.
Your commercial insurance program should cover events that can close down your company, or cause it to lose revenue. Anything less than that is not enough coverage. Commmercial insurance doesn't cover everything, and all policies have exclusions and limits.
You need a written plan that allows you to get your operations back up and running as quick as possible.
Choosing the Best Policy for Small Business Needs
Insurance rates can be highly competitive and vary by area, coverage type, deductibles, limits and other variables. This is true for general business liability insurance. In addition to providing you the best coverage, a commercial insurance professional work with you to understand your business needs and develop a plan to manage your unique risks.