What determines damages and liability?
Since the legal definition of negligence is “failure to exercise reasonable care,” a number of issues can determine if a business is liable for damages suffered by another party. Failing to repair a pot hole located in the company’s parking lot, lack of proper lighting in a stairway, improperly training employees for their job functions, or failing to provide instructions for using a product safely can all constitute liability on the part of a commercial entity.
The rules for determining liability and damages are ultimately set by the law of the state where the suit is filed. The economic losses proven to be endured by a plaintiff partly determines the amount of damages awarded in a particular case. Some states also award plaintiffs for non-economic losses like pain and suffering.
What Kind of Business Liability Insurance Policy Should I Get?
The most economic and efficient choice for small businesses is the Business Owners Policy (BOP). It combines liability and property insurance into one contract. A business may also elect to buy a Commercial General Liability (CGL) policy. If you are unsure about which policy suits you best, then consult with your agent to come up with the best solution.
What Kinds of Damage Does the BOP Cover?
The BOP covers property damage, bodily injury, or advertising and personal injury. Your business liability insurance provider will generally pay these damages up to the limits of your policy and according to your deductible.
To be more specific, bodily injury includes disease, sickness, injury or death. It also includes emotional injuries such as humiliation or post-traumatic stress syndrome. Personal and advertising injury includes slander, libel or any kind of defamatory or derogatory verbal or written publication that violates one’s privacy rights or infringes upon one’s copyright.
Who is Insured Under my Business Liability Insurance Policy?
The BOP insures the parties named by the Declarations in the policy, including a sole proprietor or partners, with regard to their business-related duties. Officers, directors, stockholders, employees, and volunteer workers are all covered with respect to their connections with the business.
How Much Coverage Do I Need?
This figure is relative and is best determined on a case-by-case basis. Generally, the degree of business liability insurance coverage your company needs depends on the risk you perceive. Talk with other businesses of comparable size in your industry to see what kind of coverage they have. You will likely need the same or something similar. Also, join a few associations like the Chamber of Commerce to meet others in your industry and to take advantage of some great group rates. Lastly, consider the amount of risk that comes with your business and industry and consult with your agent accordingly. Because of the risk involved, some industries simply have a need for more coverage.
Whatever industry your business is involved with, be assured that some type of liability insurance is needed. Quite frankly, no business should operate without it, especially with the litigious nature of our society. You must keep your business and personal assets protected from the affects of a tough legal battle. Regardless of what type of contractor’s insurance you need, we can help you find excellent coverage for the price that is right for you. For more information about business liability insurance, click for a free quote or call our insurance specialists at 1.800.649.9094 today.