When it comes to insurance, it is important that you choose smart policies. Insurance involves an arrangement in which the insured transfers their liability to an insurance carrier by paying a premium. The insurance company will then defend lawsuits against the insured for a specific loss. This loss could be for any specified damage, injury, illness or death.
So how do you know if you’re properly covered? If you own a business, chances are you have a general liability insurance policy. Whether it’s a stand-alone policy or part of your business-owners policy (BOP), general liability insurance is a crucial piece of protection.
The problem is that no two insurance policies are the same. There’s no such thing as a “one-size-fits-all approach to insurance.” That’s why at Brashears Insurance, our team is dedicated to making sure you have the right coverage for your specific needs and you understand what is and is not covered.
General Liability Insurance
General Liability Insurance is a safety net. Many smaller companies are not financially sound enough to weather a loss without the proper insurance protection. A General Liability Insurance Policy may be necessary if:
- You visit with the client at the customer’s workplace
- You have the client’s equipment in your location
- You have third party sites for business-related activities
- Contractors or freelancers are under your use
- You have an interest in operating a business
- You are contractually obligated to buy General Liability insurance before entering into an agreement
- You have a Commercial Lease
- You are a landlord
More importantly, if you’re a sole proprietor operating without the protection of a corporation, you may be personally liable for any damages caused by your business. That means your personal assets, including your home, and your family’s livelihood is at risk.
General Liability Insurance – What’s Covered
Most general liability insurance policies include coverage for:
- Bodily injury claims by a customer at your place of business
- Injuries/damages caused by your products or services
- Third party property damage
- Personal injuries (employees excluded)
- Libel and slander claims
- Advertising injury for the unintentional use of third party’s advertising idea
- Copyright infringement
- Medical expenses for non-employee injuries.
- Legal expenses, including court costs, settlements, and judgments.
General Liability Insurance – What’s Not Covered
While these policies may seem all-encompassing, there are a few important things not covered by a typical general liability insurance policy, including:
- Damage to your personal property
- Company vehicles, including boats and RVs
- The release of waste/pollution resulting in property damage and/or bodily injury
- Employee injuries (see Worker’s Compensation)
- Electronic data liability (See cyber liability insurance)
- Employment disputes
- Professional mistakes (see Errors and Omissions insurance)
Duty to Defend
A General Liability Insurance policy will handle most possible and unpredictable exposures to liability. A general liability insurance carrier has a duty to pay for all covered claims, by the terms and conditions of the policy. The carrier also must defend. The obligation to defend the insured in any lawsuit is critical. Most policies will pay an attorney to defend the insured and the insurance company in the event of a lawsuit, less any deductibles, of course.
As a full-service brokerage, Brashears Insurance agents are ready and able to answer any questions you may have about general liability insurance. Contact us today for a free consultation.