Question: I’m trying to keep my insurance costs down. Do I really need commercial casualty insurance?
Answer: Yes. In all likelihood, your business needs to have some level of commercial casualty insurance coverage.
Casualty insurance is any type of insurance that offers your business financial protection should it inadvertently cause injury or harm to a third party such as an employee, customer, or client. Casualty insurance could prevent you from having to pay health care-related costs, repair or replacement costs stemming from damage to a third party’s property, or lawsuit-related costs.
Some types of casualty insurance may be required by law. For instance, most states require any company with a certain number of employees to have Workers’ Compensation Insurance. This type of casualty insurance covers health care costs and lost wages for any employee injured on the job. In Florida, any company with four or more full- or part-time employees must have Workers’ Comp; construction-related companies must have it if they employ one or more full- or part-time workers.
Question: What kind of casualty insurance does my business need?
Answer: The specific type or types of casualty insurance your business needs depends on your industry and type of business.
At a minimum, your business probably needs some level of General Liability Insurance. General liability covers a diverse range of potential issues, from a customer slipping on a wet floor to claims that your advertising caused damage to a third party’s reputation.
Other types of coverages may be more industry-specific. For instance, if you perform a service or provide advice for a fee, you may need Errors and Omissions Insurance. It’s also called Professional Liability Insurance, and protects your business against lawsuits stemming from actual or perceived errors made by your business that caused harm to a third party.
There are different types of Errors and Omissions Insurance as well. Medical malpractice insurance is a specialty insurance required (or at the very least recommended) for all medical professionals. Management liability insurance, including directors’ and officers’ liability, employment practices liability, and fiduciary liability coverages, protects your business against risks associated with managing a business.
If your business involves any type of electronic data, cyber liability insurance may be appropriate as well. This type of casual insurance protects your business against lawsuits stemming from a cybersecurity breach and the potential release of personal information.
Other, less common, types of casualty insurance include Employers’ Liability Insurance, Excess Liability Insurance, Foreign Casualty Insurance, and other specialty coverages. Your insurance agent can help you identify specific risks your business faces and the types of casualty insurance you need to protect yourself against those risks.
Question: Where can I buy a casualty insurance policy?
Answer: Most insurance companies offer casualty insurance policies, and may bundle them together with other types of coverages such as property insurance.
As with all insurance policies, the key to maximizing your financial protection against risk while minimizing your cost is ensuring that you have the right types of coverages, at the right coverage levels, and at the best possible price.
An independent insurance agent can help. With their industry knowledge, an agent can evaluate the specific types of risk your business involves and help you determine the type of casualty insurance policies your business needs. They can also help you determine the limits on coverage appropriate for your business and industry.
An independent insurance agent can also gather quotes from multiple insurance companies so you know that you are getting the right casualty insurance coverage for your business, but at a price that works for you.
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