As a business owner, you’ve probably got very little time to worry about “what could happen”. You’re focused on the now, from revenue to inventory to staffing, the list goes on! You’ve got plenty of items on that list, and obtaining the proper insurance coverage might not be at the top of it.
The truth is, it’s risky to run a business without insurance. If you don’t have the right types of business insurance in place, you run the risk of bearing the financial hardships of an accident or unforeseen event.
We understand that every business is entirely unique, making it difficult to identify which types of coverage make the most sense for you. This often results in leaving insurance gaps on the back burner, which could end up being very costly as opposed to the relatively inexpensive premiums on many policies.
Overall, taking a few minutes to understand the options available to you and what best suits your business could potentially save you thousands of dollars.
1. General Liability Insurance
At a minimum, you’ll want a General Liability policy for your business. General liability insurance covers claims and lawsuits that result from things like injuries and accidents that happen at your business.
One of the most common types of liability claims is a slip and fall incident, which could easily stack up to thousands of dollars, depending on the extent of injuries. Liability insurance can cover a wide array of things, from slander and legal bills to false advertisement and medical bills.
2. Property Insurance
Your business is comprised of many moving parts and pieces, from the products on the floor to the lighting you installed to highlight them. Commercial property insurance can help protect your business in the event of damage caused by fire, inclement weather, vandalism and much more.
Although the definition of “property” varies from policy to policy, it usually covers buildings, equipment, products, money, records and any other physical thing owned or rented by your establishment. When deciding which types of insurance you need, this is one you should seriously consider.
Every property policy is unique, so be sure to obtain a list of what is and is not covered. If you’re a remote worker in a home office, you can usually modify your Homeowners policy to cover your business property.
3. Workers’ Compensation Insurance
Most business owners are familiar with Workers’ Compensation insurance because, in most states, it’s required by law. Workers’ compensation insurance protects you from claims that may arise from inside of your company due to negligence.
This coverage typically assists in replacing income and paying towards medical bills if an employee is injured on the job. On-the-job injuries can become rather involved and complicated, which is why Workers’ Compensation insurance is highly recommended. If you’d rather face this risk on your own, make sure you’re operating your business in a state where it is legal to do so.
4. Professional Liability Insurance
Let’s face it, no one is perfect, and mistakes happen. Professional liability insurance protects you from malpractice and negligence claims against you. Lawyers and doctors typically carry this type of insurance (some states require it by law for these professions), but it can be added to any business policy where you provide a professional service to a customer.
Accountants, therapists, and social workers are a few examples of other occupations that may carry professional liability insurance. If you provide a service in which an error on your end could result in personal injury to someone else, you should consider this coverage.
5. Employee Protection Liability Insurance (EPLI)
Small employers are sued every day by prospective, current and former employees—for discrimination, harassment, wrongful termination and more. These claims involve restaurants, retailers, medical offices, contractors and other businesses who thought they would never be sued by an employee. If a business is sued by an employee for discrimination or harassment, an EPLI policy will provide legal defense and financial protection. Employee Protection Liability insurance also offers third-party liability coverage, which offers similar protection if your establishment is sued by a third-party due to a negligent employee.
Each and every employee can be the source of a lawsuit by a customer or client who believes that their rights were violated. EPLI coverage is important for all businesses that interact with the public.