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What is business liability insurance and how do companies purchase it?

Monday, July 27, 2020

A man delivers packages to a business.

Regardless of your business’ size, there’s always the possibility that personal injuries, property damage or other accidents could happen. Anyone who comes into your business or works for you has the ability to file a lawsuit, which could cripple a small business.

In the event of something happening, the resulting fees for legal payments can be made easier with some form of liability insurance. Every commercial business is unique and has different needs, but there are some things you might ask your agent before getting started in the process.

General liability insurance for small businesses

Business liability insurance, also called general liability insurance, offers coverage for any unforeseen circumstance that might happen either on your property or related to your business. It goes into effect when a non-employee sues your business for any harm that might’ve been unintentionally caused.

This type of insurance is essential for your small business’ financial protection and to protect your reputation. There are a lot of different unforeseen circumstances that business liability insurance can cover. These include:

  • Bodily harm – This includes any injury that might happen on your business’ premises or due to work done by your company to a third party. It could result in a legal suit against your business, but liability insurance will cover legal fees and other costs including medical expenses, lost wages, and any court-awarded compensation or out-of-court settlements.
  • Property damage – Any damage that is a result of your business’ work or services is covered. This includes real estate, equipment, and supplies. Your policy will cover any sort of costs related to the repair of the damage as well as time lost of the property’s use.
  • Personal and advertising injury – If your business were ever to release anything that causes non-physical damage to a third party — such as through advertising tactics — legal fees and any compensation for the damaged party is covered with general liability insurance. It’s important to note, though, that liability insurance will not cover anything that was done to intentionally hurt the third party.

Most policies will cover each of these occurrences in some way, although adjustments should be made based on your business’ needs. General liability insurance protects your business’ finances and reputation in case any of these situations are taken to court.

group of people at a business meeting

Other types of business liability insurance

There are several other essential types of insurance that your business should look into and consider. What you should purchase depends on your business’ needs, and you should consult an insurance agent about the necessary options.

  • Professional liability insurance – In the event that your client is not happy with the job they paid for, or the advice given to them and they chose to sue you because of it, legal fees and damages to the client are covered.
  • Workers’ compensation insurance – This type of insurance is required in most states. It pays for employee medical costs and lost wages in the event that they are injured at work. Although it can feel a little overwhelming, learning how to navigate the sometimes confusing world of worker’s comp is essential.
  • Employment practices liabilities insurance – This is the next step past workers’ compensation insurance. If your employee feels that the workers’ compensation that they received is not enough, they could choose to sue your business. This type of insurance covers those fees.
  • Cyber liability insurance – In the ever-changing world of the internet, it is essential to protect your business from the chance of a cyber attack. This insurance comes into effect in the event that your business experiences a breach in cybersecurity that causes any losses to your clients or business.

Efficiently purchase business liability insurance

All aspects of business liability insurance can be bundled together to create the best plan for your business. If you are trying to figure out what you need and how they can work together, you should speak with one of our Independent Insurance Associates agents today.