Whether you work out of your home or in an office, you want to make sure your business and property are protected. It is important to review your business insurance coverage on a yearly basis to ensure you're on top of changes within your insurance needs especially as your business changes and grows. If you are ever unsure of how a change in your business could affect your coverage, call your insurance agent to discuss affordable options.
Just Starting Out
It doesn't matter how long you've been in business, if you're in business, you're exposed. There are several risks, and if you don't have the right coverage, it could lead to damages. The good news is you might only need a few basic coverages to get you started.
General Liability Insurance
It's recommended that all small businesses have a general liability insurance policy. It's basic liability protection that guards your business against things like accidents, injuries, property damage and lawsuits.
Commercial Auto Insurance
If you or your employees use vehicles on behalf of the company, then you'll need commercial auto insurance. Most often, personal policies won't cover work related incidents.
As your business grows
Now that you have the basics covered, as your business grows, your policy must grow with it. Most business insurance needs quickly evolve beyond basic liability and commercial auto insurance. Sometimes specific roles within the business require a certain type of coverage, new employees need protection and many other risks that develop as the growth of your company continues. That's when you know it's time for a Business Owners Policy, or BOP.
Additional coverages in a BOP might include:
Property insurance protects your commercial buildings and most of your personal property. It's good to know that neither are covered by liability insurance. alone. Liability normally covers other people's assets, not your own.
Business Income Interruption
You can never plan for the unexpected. Having a Business Income Interruption policy includes coverage for property. It covers anything that would keep you from operating your business. Business income interruption coverage could help pay you for your lost income, employee salaries and other expenses.
If you offer services that include sharing professional advice for the betterment of a client's business, then you'll want to carry Professional Liability. This can be included to your BOP.
It's necessary in most businesses to offer Workers' Compensation to help pay for medical costs or lost wages for employees who may get injured or ill while working on the job. This is separate from your BOP.