Many businesses, especially small businesses, ignore the need of business liability insurance. Though, they take all measures to protect their businesses against risks by taking insurance for physical assets like buildings, stocks and goods, they do not consider protecting their businesses against various possible liabilities they may face. Protecting against all the possible kinds of liabilities is of great importance to a business, given the severity of damage they cause to the business's reputation, finances and survival.
This article will help you know the various types of insurance policies available and their importance for a business.
Types of business liability insurance
Business liability insurance helps small business owners to secure their businesses by protecting against liabilities like public liability, employer's liability, professional liability and product liability. Depending upon the type of business you are in, you should purchase the suitable insurance. Following are some of the prime types of insurance suitable to small businesses.
• General liability: This insurance is helpful to small businesses in protecting the owners from claims of liability raised due to property damage or a physical injury caused to the general public, employees or customers resulting from the operational negligence in course of the business. This insurance protects you by compensating for the medical expenses of bodily injuries caused to a person. It also protects you against claims of damage to the third party's property.
• Professional liability: If you are a software consultant, plumber, chartered accountant or any such professional offering your service for price, the probability of facing professional liability is high. Professional liability protects professionals from risks of liability resulting from loss of data, claims involving malpractice, say, copying of data, breach of confidence, accidental loss of data or inadvertent mistake by your employee. The cost of litigation is too high in these cases and this insurance takes care of those expenses.
• Product liability: When an individual gets injured by using a defective product that you have sold or manufactured, law suit can be filed by this individual against your business. Product liability protects your business from such liabilities by taking care of all the legal hassles and the compensation claims.
Importance of business liability insurance
Business liability insurance protects your business from various liabilities. It is, however, advisable to check the suitability of the insurance with respect to the amount of coverage and the risks involved in the business. Let's discuss its importance:
• Protection against claims resulting from injuries, damages and malicious ad: Business liability insurance protects your business from liabilities involving bodily injury caused by the operations of your business to any of your customers, employees or general public.
Likewise, if your business causes damage to property, say, while displacing the inventory from/to the warehouse to/from your business, there is high probability that you would face liability for property damage.
Personal injury cases arise when any of the employees gets injured while on job. This insurance protects you against the risk of liability when one is injured in course of the business, say, in accident. In such a case, the insurance protects your business, by compensating for the medical expenses incurred in the treatment of the person.
Another risk is a business advertisement that unintentionally causes resentment. A malicious advertisement brings forth litigation against your business. The insurance protects your business, by awarding the suitable compensation to the aggrieved party in case of such litigation. It also compensates for the litigation expenses.
• Legal fees and medical bills: Business liability insurance finances the medical expenses involved in the treatment given to the injured and the expenses involved in litigation. Even the insurance lawyer would represent you in the court, in the instance of inability to attend the court hearing.
Business insurance is, thus, important to protect your business against various liabilities. It is, however, significant to choose appropriate insurance policy - right cover and the right type taking into account the risks of hazards in your business. Both, inadequate or excess insurance coverage can cause financial loss to your business.