If you’re a small business owner, you have a lot of responsibilities. You need to make sure your employees are well-trained and paid, you need to be able to pay your bills on time, and you need to have enough money in the bank to survive a bad year.
You also have the responsibility to make sure your business is covered against poor decisions that could result in lawsuits, lost income, and other financial losses.
You can’t afford to take any chances with your business, so it’s important to have the right insurance coverage in place.
Contractor Liability Insurance
Contractor liability insurance provides protection against bodily injury and property damage claims related to your business. Most general liability policies will cover lawsuits from customers, employees, vendors, subcontractors, or anyone else who might be involved in your business.
Your general liability policy will cover three types of claims:
● Bodily injury: This type of claim covers bodily injury that results from an accident or injury sustained by a person at work or by someone who is visiting your business. Bodily injury claims include things like broken bones and lost wages. The law requires you to carry general liability insurance if you do business in certain states.
● Property damage: Property damage claims cover damage to physical property, such as your office, vehicles, and equipment. The law also requires you to carry property damage insurance if you do business in certain states.
● General liability umbrella: If you have multiple types of liability insurance, an umbrella policy is an extra layer of protection. It’s a separate policy that protects you against any claims that are not covered by your other policies.
Workers’ Compensation Insurance
Workers’ compensation insurance provides coverage for injuries or illnesses sustained by employees while on the job. Workers’ compensation insurance is required in most states if you have employees. It’s a good idea to purchase workers’ compensation insurance even if you don’t have employees. You never know when an employee might get hurt at work.
Workers’ compensation insurance will cover a wide range of claims, including:
● Death of a worker
● Fractures or disfigurement of a worker’s body
● Diseases that make it difficult for a worker to perform his or her job
Builders Risk Insurance
Builder’s risk insurance provides protection against lawsuits from customers and other individuals who are involved in the construction or renovation of your property. Most home and business owners will want this type of coverage.
Builders risk insurance will cover lawsuits resulting from the following:
● Construction defects (errors) in the construction of your property
● Failure of the construction contractor to fulfill his or her obligations under the contract (if you provide construction services)
Automobile Liability Insurance
Automobile liability insurance protects you in the event of an auto accident caused by your vehicle or another driver’s vehicle. It covers damage to your vehicle and also covers injuries to yourself and others as a result of the accident. Automobile liability insurance can also help protect your assets if someone sues you for damages caused by your vehicle.
Pollution insurance provides coverage for pollution-related claims against your business. Pollution claims can occur when someone is injured or suffers property damage due to pollution. Pollution insurance covers claims for environmental contamination, such as oil spills or asbestos removal. Your pollution insurance may also cover natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, floods or earthquakes that damage your property or injure people working on your property.
Roofers insurance will cover your property if it’s damaged by fire or other disasters caused by a roofer or other tradesperson on your job site. Roofers’ insurance will also help protect you if you are sued by a customer who was injured while on your property because of something that happened there. The policy will also cover any damages caused by water damage caused by leaks or damage to roofs caused by storms. Other types of roofing contractors may not be covered by this type of policy. Ask your agent about what types of roofing contractors are covered by this type of coverage.
Business Interruption Insurance
Business interruption insurance will cover the costs associated with canceling your business because of a disaster or other event that causes damage to your property or business operations. Business interruption insurance will help protect you if you are unable to sell inventory or provide services because of a disaster. Business interruption insurance will also help protect your assets if you must close down your business because of bankruptcy or other financial problems.
Business interruption insurance is required in many states if you have employees and/or own property there. It’s also a good idea to buy this type of insurance even if you don’t have employees or property there. You never know when an employee might get hurt at work or when you might need to shut down your business due to financial difficulties. This type of coverage is often included in a commercial umbrella policy that provides additional protection for your business in the event of multiple types of losses.
Every small business owner needs to take steps to protect their assets from lawsuits and other financial losses, including general liability and workers’ compensation insurance, as well as coverage for water damage and roofing issues. Your commercial umbrella policy may include these types of coverage as well as additional protection for loss due to burglary, vandalism, fire, theft, flooding, storms, and earthquakes, among others.