The chances of a business owner getting sued have dramatically increased in the last decade. General Liability insurance can prevent a legal suit from turning into a financial disaster by providing financial protection in case your business is ever sued or held legally responsible for some injury or damage. Don't count on your personal umbrella policy because there is generally an exclusion for business related liability.
General Liability pays for losses arising from bodily injury, property damage, or personal injury on your business premises or arising from your operations.
General Liability Protection includes:
A business owner needs the same kinds of insurance coverages for the car you use in your business as you do for a car used for personal travel -- liability, collision and comprehensive, medical payments and coverage for uninsured motorists. Many business people use the same vehicle for both business and pleasure. If the vehicle is owned by the business, make sure the name of the business appears on the policy as the "principal insured" instead of your name. This avoids confusion in the event that you need to file a claim or a claim is filed against you.
Whether you need to buy a business auto insurance policy will depend on the kind of driving you do. A good insurance agent will ask you many details about how you use vehicles in your business, who will be driving them and whether employees, if you have them, are likely to be driving their own cars for your business.
While the major coverages are the same, a business auto policy differs from a personal auto policy in many technical respects. Ask your insurance agent to explain all the differences and options.
A business owner's policy (BOP) has been compared to a homeowner's policy for business. It packages many coverages a business needs into a single policy. Typically a BOP policy includes General Liability to provide coverage when someone gets hurt on your premises or injured by something you do while representing your company on or off premises. Another coverage is Business Personal Property to protect your building/office contents such as desk, computers, chairs and inventory. Business interruption insurance covers losses that cause you to shut down operations or reduce production for a time. Loss of Business income replaces the normal income for up to one year or longer if operations are shut down due to a covered loss. Employee Dishonesty Protection covers employee forgery, embezzlement, and theft of property. Hired/Non-Owned Auto covers the employer when an employee uses their personal auto for company business such as making bank deposits or picking up supplies and are involved in an accident. Non-owned auto is when you need to lease/rent a vehicle to replace a company vehicle that is out of service.
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Workers compensation laws were created to ensure that employees that are injured on the job are provided with fixed monetary awards. This creates an easy process for the employee and eliminates the need for litigation. Since many states limit the amount an injured employee can recover from an employer it helps control the financial risk for business owners.
Workers Compensation Insurance is designed to help companies pay benefits to injured workers. As a protection for employees, most states require that employers carry Workers Compensation Insurance. Workers Compensation Insurance is not health insurance. Workers Compensation is designed specifically for injuries sustained on the job.
In most states you are required to carry Workers Compensation coverage if you have employees. Even in non-mandatory situations it is a very good idea if you have employees.
Do I need workers compensation insurance?
Employers have a legal responsibility to their employees to make the workplace safe. However, accidents happen even when every reasonable safety measure has been taken.