Recent studies have shown that at least 40% of all small businesses will file a commercial insurance claim in the next 10 years. It is important to remember that the more small claims you make, the higher your insurance costs become. As a business owner, you probably think that you have everything under control, and it could never happen to you. Having the right business insurance tailored to your specific needs is more important than ever. In these stressful economic times, pausing your business to collect on an insurance claim can do real financial damage to a small company. Here’s a review of the top five commercial claims and how to prevent them:
1-Theft and Burglary
You think no one will ever break in and steal from you, but believe it or not, the most common theft is employment theft. Understanding the nuances of keeping an eye on your employees to prevent theft while showing trust in your team is paramount. Taking steps to state your rules and expectations is as easy as having an employee handbook. Video surveillance is a deterrent for both inside and outside theft. Make sure you complete background checks on new hires and be aware of your security perimeter, using alarms and fencing if needed.
Most of us think we have created a workspace that is protected from fire. Having proper smoke alarms and fire extinguishers is excellent, but what happens if there is a lightning storm and your wiring catches on fire? The first step is to be confident you have the best possible policy in place to help you recover. The reality is that loss from fire is one of the most challenging situations for a business to survive. The time needed between making business insurance claims and the completed repair allowing you to re-open may wipe out under-insured businesses.
3- Flood and Water Damage
Water damage is no fun. Broken pipes and roof leaks are one kind of claim, while natural disasters like flooding and storm damage are another. Your agent at Independent Insurance Associates will be happy to clarify the appropriate protection to cover all aspects of water damage and the claims that could occur. Time is of the essence when filing a claim, as water damage often results in mold and mildew issues. The last thing you want is health problems on top of business interruptions.
4- Customer Injury
Having a customer injured at your place of business is incredibly stressful. We all have a healthy respect for the harm a personal injury lawsuit can create. However, it’s not enough to remove trip hazards and clutter; you need to do a serious assessment of your workspace and surrounding area with safety in mind. Beyond slips and falls, there can be hazards like a shelf falling on a patron. Customers are your biggest asset and your most significant liability when it comes to running your business.
5- Reputation Harm
The cornerstone of business has always been honesty and integrity. The better your reputation, the more your business should grow. However, times have changed, and things like a data breach or a frivolous lawsuit against your company can create public distrust in your ability to provide your product or service. As a result, you will need professional and general liability and specific riders to cover your unique needs. Competition is fierce in the business world. Having the right insurance is one way to survive, no matter the problems that occur.
Running a company comes with a multitude of risks. Surviving on thin margins in a fast-paced economy does not leave room for financial mistakes. Being underinsured is a swift path to disaster. At Independent Insurance Associates, we are invested in your business success. We welcome the opportunity to guide you in creating the best policy possible to protect your specific commercial insurance needs.
When it comes time to learn how to file a business insurance claim, one of our independent insurance agents will walk you through the process and help you get back to normal as soon as possible. Feel free to contact us to review or discuss your business insurance needs. Let us handle covering the risks so you can handle running your business.