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Business Insurance FAQs

What is general liability?

General Liability Insurance (GL) policies protect against negligence claims from clients, employees, vendors, contractors or others. GL policies cover general liability, bodily injury, property damage, personal injury, advertising injury, liquor liability, and contractual liability, loss of services, public liability, products-completed operations and employers.

GL policies include coverage for the cost to defend and associated expenses, costs for judgments or settlements from a covered claim and associated medical costs for claimants. GL policies usually start with split limits as low as $1,000,000 single occurrence and $2,000,000 aggregate for any covered loss.

GL coverage can be part of a Business Owner Policy (BOP) or purchased as part of a Commercial Package Policy or as stand-alone coverage depending on the situation and business need.

What is property insurance?

Business property insurance policies help protect your businesses from a variety of perils that can damage the building, signage, equipment and inventory. Policies normally provide coverage for things such as fire, explosion, theft, vandalism, damage from storms (windstorm or hail) or water damage from a burst pipe.

Additional coverage may be available for things such as valuable records and papers, electronics, glass breakage and business interruption to cover lost income while your business is closed.

What is commercial auto?

Business auto or commercial auto insurance policies help protect your businesses and your employees. Many different businesses have a need for business auto insurance. Examples are: contractors, tow truck companies, couriers, services, dry cleaners, retail delivery, carpet cleaning, appliance and electronic repair companies, pizza delivery, trucks and dump trucks.

Business auto insurance provides protection for liability, uninsured and underinsured motorists, medical payments, comprehensive and collision. Coverage can be extended on some policies for employees using their personal cars for business.

There are several occupations such as a home based business, real estate or insurance and financial services that may not require a commercial auto policy. Often these types of businesses can instead have a “business use” rating on their personal auto insurance policy.

What is workers comp?

Workers’ Compensation Insurance (Work Comp) is a policy that provides coverage for employees of a business in the event that they are injured at work or have a work related illness. Work Comp coverage includes income benefits to pay employees lost wages, medical benefits, burial benefits and death benefits.

Work Comp insurance is available in all 50 states and is regulated by each state. There are four Monopolistic states where the state sets rates and operates a state administered workers’ compensation fund: Ohio, North Dakota, Washington and Wyoming. The State of Texas does not require private employers in to carry Work Comp coverage.

Work Comp coverage premiums are based upon several factors including: type of business, occupation, loss history and deductible. Premiums are charged as a rate per $100 of payroll.

What is a business owners policy?

A Business Owners Policy (BOP) is a business insurance policy that provides a package of basic coverage for most small to medium sized businesses. A BOP offers coverage that is normally less expensive than if it were purchased separately. BOP policy coverage includes property coverage for your building, liability coverage, contents coverage for inventory, equipment and fixtures and business interruption to replace lost income for up to a year in the event of a covered loss.

Many other coverage options are available such as crime, glass breakage, outdoor signage, valuable papers and records and electronic data recreation may be available depending on the particular company.

Some examples of businesses that purchase BOP policies include: retail stores, service related businesses, professional offices, dry cleaners, wholesale suppliers, motel and hotel, deli’s and coffee shops.

What is professional liability?

Professional liability insurance or professional indemnity insurance policies help protect businesses or organizations from possible negligence claims or lawsuits for services they provide. Claims are usually for negligence, good faith, errors, omissions, misrepresentation or incorrect advice.

Typical professions that obtain this type of coverage are general contractors, construction trades, doctors, financial professionals such as insurance agents and CPA’s, consultants, software developers, architects, engineers, brokers and lawyers. Charitable and non-profit organizations also often purchase professional liability policies.

Common names for this type of insurance are: professional liability, errors and omissions (E&O), directors and officers Liability (D&O) and employment practices liability.

What are commercial bonds?

Commercial Bonds are generally thought of in terms of Surety Bonds. Surety insurance is a contract between at least three parties: the Surety provides the hiring party (obligee), a guarantee that the contractor or person hired (principal) will perform or they will be returned their funds.

There are two main groups of bonds: contract bonds and commercial bonds. Contract bonds guarantee the performance of a contract such as: performance, bid, supply or maintenance. Commercial bonds guarantee terms such as: permit, license, court, public official and fidelity bonds.

There are many different types of business that may require a Surety Bond such as financial institutions, healthcare, retail and service related businesses, contractors and technology companies to name a few. Surety Bond premiums vary and will depend on the type of bond, amount of the bond and the credit or financial strength of the person or business requiring it.

What is group insurance?

Group Benefits typically refer to employer sponsored benefit plans for employees such as health, vision, dental, short and long term disability insurance, life insurance and 401K or 403B, pensions or deferred compensation retirement plans. Group Benefits plans usually provide employees with options for increasing coverage on themselves, adding family members and different deductibles at varying price points.

Many health insurance coverage providers offer employers and employees access to Group Benefits coverage. There are many different plan types and coverage options available depending on the provider. Up until recent health care legislation changes Group Benefits policies were the only guaranteed issue medical coverage for employees choosing to participate with pricing based upon the census information of the employee work group.

Group Benefits can also include “supplemental insurance” for catastrophic events like cancer, accident, accidental death or dismemberment. These policies can be offered through the employer or purchased separately by the employee as part of their payroll deductions.