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Posts Tagged ‘General Liability’

Handyman Insurance Basics

Tuesday, June 7th, 2016

At CommercialInsurance.NET, we will assist you with obtaining general liability coverage for a variety of small businesses, including handyman insurance. Whether you own a janitorial or lawn care business, act as a general contractor, artisan tradesman, or landscaper, we can find policies to fit your needs, even if your business seems to change from day to day, as it often does for the jack-of-all-trades who works as a “handyman”.

On a daily basis we at CommercialInsurance.NET encounter folks looking to supplement their income by taking on small projects. Whether you are just fixing a screen door as a handyman, or completely remodeling a kitchen and bathroom as a general contractor, if you are entering someone’s home or place of business, you need a commercial general liability policy. This post will outline some of the reasons why handyman insurance is important.

You may ask yourself, “Why do I need Handyman Insurance? Why do I need a commercial general liability policy for such a small business?” No matter how small the project is, you are putting yourself at risk simply by being in someone’s home or on someone’s business property. For instance, the smallest caulking job can cause thousands of dollars worth of damage due to water leaks if done incorrectly. A fallen broom or tool instantly becomes a bodily injury hazard, to name another example. Handyman insurance is a way to manage these risks.

Now, you may say, “I’m always careful. I’ll never have a claim due to a mistake.” While this may be true, your handyman insurance doesn’t just protect you from your own errors, it protects you when someone blames you for property damage. For example, let’s say you’re repairing someone’s gutter after a storm, and before you leave your customer asks if you can tear off and repair some loose shingles on the roof. Because your handyman insurance does not cover roofing operations, you inform your customer that roofing repair needs to be done by a roofer insured for those operations, and you go merrily on your way. Several months later, you find out you are being sued because of water damage due to that customers’ leaky roof. Of course you will win in court because you always have a contract signed by the customer specifying the work you have completed, but wouldn’t you like to have a handyman insurance policy that will take care of those unnecessary court fees and attorney costs?

One of the most common questions we get from new customers is, “What information do I need to provide for a handyman insurance quote? Can I just get a price?” Even though your handyman service may consist of nothing more than a few small repairs a month, your general liability coverage is based on your location (every general liability policy has a physical location associated with it), estimate of gross receipts, and whether you have any partners, employees, or independent subcontractors working with you. Your agent will also have to confirm the answers for certain questions to confirm your eligibility. These questions usually reference operations like roofing, licensed trades, or work on high-risk properties such as medical facilities, schools, or very large mansions or estates.The process takes just a few minutes of your time, but it might be one of the most important investments you make in your business.

Call one of our specialists today at 1-877-907-5267 to get your same day quote for a handyman insurance policy.

Contract Work and Business Insurance

Saturday, November 9th, 2013

The Question: I can’t find full time work and have found some contract work, do I need business insurance?

The correct answer to this question is a resounding yes.

A large number Americans have found themselves laid off or cut back to part time in the last several years.  In addition to a regular paycheck, the biggest loss is often medical insurance.  This scaling back of the economy has pushed many of these people to freelance work or consulting.  While this helps in replacing the paycheck, benefits and insurance are a different story.   In addition, they are now facing additional risk to the assets they currently have.

First, any business whether home based or not needs to have a basic insurance package in place.  A business owner’s policy may fit the situation by including property insurance, general liability, and usually some form of business interruption insurance all in one policy.

This type of policy will be less than purchasing each type of insurance coverage separately with individual premiums for each.  In addition, it is imperative if you are doing freelance or consulting work to get professional errors and omissions, or E & O insurance.

Struggling to make ends meets while doing contract and freelance work and trying to manage risk is a difficult but not impossible undertaking.  Allowing your home and family’s assets to be at risk should be unacceptable to you.  Many folks that utilize a home office and/or work out of their homes make the unfortunate assumption that their homeowner’s or renter’s policy will cover any losses.  Those policies don’t cover businesses.  Personal auto policies generally do not cover your auto when being used primarily for business purposes.  In addition, many policies have exclusion provisions for ‘illegal’ acts which could include ‘business being conducted in a residential area’ so it’s important to check your town’s specific ordinances and business permitting.

The next critical piece is getting medical insurance in place.  Getting a group insurance policy in place for your business may be expensive.  During the initial start up, there may be other alternatives to look at when it comes to medical insurance.  First, was COBRA available? Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) health provisions passed in 1986 allows continued group health coverage that otherwise would be terminated.  Health insurance is critical to managing risk.  A devastating medical issue could bring financial ruin to anyone.  If COBRA isn’t available, can you go on a spouse’s group health plan? The Affordable Care Act now offers various plans/exchanges in every state.

By taking on contract work, you have gone into business for yourself, like it or not.  Sit down with a commercial insurance broker and work together to manage the risk now facing you as a new small business.  Other resources are your state department of insurance and your present property and casualty agent.

Insurance For Events

Wednesday, August 31st, 2011

As we approach September, I am reminded of the Oklahoma State Fair.  It has been held in September as long as I can remember, and it has always rained during the fair’s time here.  This year we have suffered a horrible drought and heat wave, so I will not be complaining.  However, it does make me think about all the other events held throughout the year and what Event Insurance policies have been purchased.  There is an unwritten rule that where large numbers of people are gathered, there is always risk of bodily injury or property damage.  Risks are many times not fault of the event’s organizer but of weather.  An example of this is the recent tragedy of a stage collapsing in Indiana due to high wind.

 

But there are other types of exposures to be considered.  Event coordinators or even the venue itself becomes legally liable alone due to contractual language of a signed lease.  Also these events may suffer a monetary loss due to cancellation of the planned event.   Purchases for weather insurance, or other unforeseen risk such as fire and earthquake rendering the venue unusable may be made.  Other exposures may include liquor liability, rides, and petting zoos for which an insurance policy may be purchased.  If you are planning an event, talk with your insurance agent regarding possible exposures or one of ours to be assured of obtaining proper coverage.

 

Commercial Insurance.Net, LLC Advisor is not an attorney, accountant or certified financial planner and makes no representations or warranties to that effect.  Always check with your chosen professional as to statements made in this blog for your particular situation.

General Liability Property Damage Payment

Tuesday, August 16th, 2011

The Commercial General Liability policy covers bodily injury and property damage claims arriving out of business operations.  Bodily injury claims are not difficult to determine payment but there is some confusion as to how payments are determined for property damage to others.  Damages to property means damages the business has caused to property of others including property under the business care, custody and control.

 

The confusion comes from the consideration of whether the General Liability policy pays replacement or actual cash value for the damages to property of others.  The injured party believes damages should be paid at replacement value, while the policy intends to pay at actual cash value.  If the property can be repaired, then the policy will pay for necessary repairs.  However, if there is a contract for property under an insured’s care, custody or control, then the Commercial General Liability policy will pay for damage which the insured is “legally obligated”.  So in many cases, the policy pays replacement value.  Please consult your agent or one of ours if you have questions regarding your coverage.

 

Commercial Insurance.Net, LLC Advisor is not an attorney, accountant or certified financial planner and makes no representations or warranties to that effect.  Always check with your chosen professional as to statements made in this blog for your particular situation.

Contractors Equipment

Monday, August 1st, 2011

Most contractors understand their equipment is not covered under the General Liability insurance policy or the Commercial Auto.  Most understand an inland marine policy should be written on their tools and equipment.  This is also referred to as a “floater” insurance policy.  Therefore coverage for tools and equipment are covered for almost any risk that may occur anywhere.  It is often referred to as “all risk” or “special causes”.  This applies to owned items, but can also refer to non-owned, hired or leased items.  The

Hired  or Leased equipment coverage is where I want to draw attention.

 

It is fairly easy for a contractor to remember what one owns.  But the various job sites may require leasing or the hiring of equipment.  Without this coverage wording in your contractor’s policy, there may or may not be coverage for damage to the equipment.  Please consult your agent or one of ours to discuss these coverage issues for your particular business.

 

Commercial Insurance.Net, LLC Advisor is not an attorney, accountant or certified financial planner and makes no representations or warranties to that effect.  Always check with your chosen professional as to statements made in this blog for your particular situation.

General Liability VS. Professional Liability Insurance

Tuesday, April 19th, 2011

One question we are often asked is, “What is the difference between general liability and professional liability insurance.” If I have one of these types of insurance, why would I need the other?

When looking at business insurance, the kinds of risk can be significant. So can the costs associated with these types of risks. Not only are you insuring the risk of your business, its property, and employees, but those who come into contact with your business and employees. Your general liability insurance will cover these risks. Professional liability will cover these risks as well, although much more specific to certain professions and scenarios.

A general liability policy typically insure against claims of bodily or personal injury or property damage. The general liability policy will cover the legal fees and costs associated with the defense, settlements, and property damages.

Professional liability insurance, also known as errors and omissions or E & O insurance covers negligence as it pertains to your professional services provided. Generally, although not always, it is a financial claim versus a physical claim of liability against the business. Typically, there is a professional code of conduct or standards which are used as a measure. Naturally, this is all subject to interpretation and is usually determined through the courts.

With either general or professional liability, one claim can be financially devastating to a business. In these days of numerous and frivolous law suits, it is important to reduce the risk of any business. work with your licensed insurance professional to determine if a professional liability insurance policy is necessary for your business and also for its’ employees who may also work with clients providing services.

What Type of Business Insurance Do I Need?

Thursday, October 28th, 2010

Part I

Most people are familiar with the common types of commercial insurance, which include general liability, workers compensation, and property insurance.

General Liability Insurance

General liability insurance covers damages to a third party, property insurance covers damages to real business / personal property, and workers compensation insurance covers on the job injuries to your business’s employees.  Get a general liability insurance quote on our home page.

Now let’s examine each a little deeper and identify other types of insurance your company may need.

Property Insurance

Property insurance cover losses to real or personal property within the limits of the policy coverage. For example, damage from a fire to an office.

Some other types of property insurance include:

Glass Insurance

Glass insurance normally covers plate glass storefronts, and broken store windows which may be excluded in a policy.

Ordinance or Law Insurance

This type of insurance covers losses when your building has been shut down by law officials, needs to be upgraded or replaced to meet current code.  Such loss is typically 50% or more.  It is important to determine the age of your building and what current codes and law is (or could be) in your location.