As a business owner, you’re constantly evaluating risks and opportunities. One crucial aspect of risk management is having the right insurance coverage in place. With so many types of coverages, it can be challenging to discern your business insurance needs. What are your specific vulnerabilities? What does the law require? Which business insurance types will provide an appropriate shield to help you weather the storms of economic uncertainty if (and more likely when) the unexpected occurs?
In this article, we aim to simplify the process by breaking down the requirements for insuring a business, your options, and the best course of action for obtaining a policy and any additional coverages that will protect your business and assets from a number of risky scenarios.
What is Business Insurance? Am I Required by Law to Obtain it?
Many commercial insurance products are designed to protect your business from financial loss. From accidents, injuries, and lawsuits to natural disasters, business owners must be prepared to handle a number of unexpected events that could sideline their operations.
The federal government requires every business with employees to have insurance for unemployment and disability. Certain additional insurance may be required by law, but it depends on the state in which you operate. California, for example, only requires two types of insurance: workers’ compensation insurance and commercial auto insurance. However, these policies are only required under specific circumstances and may not apply to every business.
Laws requiring insurance vary by state, so visit your state’s website to learn the rules that apply to your business. Beware: if you operate a business without insurance in a state that requires it, you’ll undoubtedly face fines and penalties. You’ll also have to pay out-of-pocket for any expenses related to an accident or event that impacts your business. Even if your state doesn’t require business insurance coverage, it’s still a good idea to have a policy in place.
How Do I Obtain a Business Insurance Policy?
Obtaining a policy starts with your agent or broker and a trusted carrier. ICW Group is a national, top-tier, multi-line insurer. Combined with an A.M. Best “A” rating, award-winning services, and a premier network of independent agents and brokers, ICW Group has been helping policyholders protect their most valued assets for over 50 years.
ICW Group offers specialized in-house risk prevention expertise, proactive claims management, and highly flexible payment options. With competitive rates and the ability to tailor unique coverage to meet the changing needs of every business, they are a safe bet when it comes to protecting your most valued assets.
Contact your insurance agent today and let them know you would like a business insurance quote from ICW Group. Don’t have an agent? Click here to find a local agent that would be happy to work with your business.
What are the Different Types of Insurance for Businesses?
General Liability Insurance, sometimes referred to as business liability insurance, protects owners from third-party liability claims. General liability coverage includes bodily injury, damage to property, or personal injury claims made by people outside of your business. If a customer injures themselves while on the premises, or if you or an employee damage someone else’s property by accident, a general liability insurance policy will cover legal defense costs related to the claim. Those costs can include everything from hiring a lawyer to court-ordered judgments and settlements. A general liability policy also protects against personal and advertising injuries, including slander, libel, and copyright infringement, as well as product liability. Product liability covers losses associated with lawsuits related to defective products or labeling errors.
Commercial Property Insurance pays to repair or replace stolen, lost, or damaged property associated with your business. It covers your physical building as well as other assets that are essential to your operation. The purpose of this type of policy is to protect your company against the risk of owning or renting commercial property. It not only protects your building but also covers its contents, which can include everything from furniture and fixtures to supplies, personal property, and even inventory.
Workers’ Compensation Insurance provides benefits to your employees if they are harmed during the course of doing their job. It will cover the costs of related expenses like medical bills and legal fees or rehabilitation services if an employee has experienced an occupational injury or developed a disease due to their work. Your policy may even supplement lost wages if the employee needs to take time away from work to recuperate. The calculation of benefits often considers future lost wages for permanent disabilities. The purpose of this type of policy is to help employees receive benefits without regard to fault, and in turn, protect business owners from lawsuits related to their employee’s injury.
Catastrophe Insurance provides protection from natural and human-made disasters. It typically covers the repair or replacement of damaged or destroyed buildings, equipment, and other business property. Unlike standard business insurance policies that cover common risks such as property damage, liability claims, and theft, catastrophe insurance focuses on providing financial support when the scale of damage and loss is beyond what conventional policies can handle. It acts as a safety net, helping businesses recover and rebuild after large-scale disasters. Special catastrophe insurance is available for specific natural disasters, such as flood insurance, storm insurance for hurricanes and tornadoes, earthquake insurance, and volcano insurance. Considering the increasingly frequent occurrence of natural disasters over the last several decades, seeking additional protection to shield your business from catastrophe is a smart move.
What Will My Policy Cost?
The cost of your business insurance policy will vary based on your location, the unique coverage needs of your business, and the industry you work in. ICW Group works with many industries, including Agribusiness, Contractors, Habitational, Hospitality, Manufacturing, Professional Services, Real Estate, Restaurant, Retail, and Wholesale, to name a few.
The first step in securing the best business insurance for your company is selecting a trusted partner. With ICW Group, you can rest easy knowing that their entire team are backed by decades of experience in providing a premier insurance experience.