From the moment you decided to start your own business you’ll be expecting to take some risks but why would you take any that aren’t completely necessary? There are some types of commercial insurance that you are legally obliged to have in place, and there are others that you should opt for just to be sure.
Public liability insurance
No matter what type of business you’re running, you are required to have public liability insurance in place. This will protect both you and a member of the public if they suffer an injury on their property is damaged because of a fault caused by you. It will cover the following:
This will cover the cost if any third party has been injured or if their property has been damaged as a fault of your business. It does not matter whether this incident takes place in your business premises, a customer’s premises or somewhere else.
If a claim is made against you, legal action may take place, but this cover will help you cover the cost of any proceedings.
The cost of repairs
Damage that you have caused to a customer’s premises will need to be repaired.
If the injuries inflicted require medical attention, this cover will pay for any claims made by the NHS or, in some cases, a customer’s private healthcare.
Employer’s liability insurance
If your business has employees, whether permanent or temporary staff, casual workers or contractors, you’re legally obliged to take out employer’s liability insurance. This will cover your business in the event that someone is injured or become seriously ill while working for you. Failing to take this out may mean that you’re hit with fines of up to £2,500.
You can reduce your claim risk by adhering to the correct health and safety procedures which will reduce any chance of illness or accident occurring on your premises. You should also carry out regular risk assessments with your employees.
Professional indemnity insurance
Although it’s not a legal requirement, businesses that provide advice, designs or any other service to clients or customers should always opt for professional indemnity insurance. This will cover you in the event that one of your clients suffers a financial loss at the result of your negligence because more than often they’ll seek recompense. Without professional indemnity, you may be faced with paying thousands of pounds in both compensation and legal fees – leaving your financial position incredibly vulnerable, especially if your business is small.
Commercial property insurance
Those that are landlords for investment purposes or making money from commercial property should have this insurance cover in place. It’s likely that your property houses expensive equipment, furniture or inventory that will need to be replaced in the event of a theft, flood or fire. Usually, this type of insurance does not cover you if something such as an earthquake occurs although, of course, this will depend a lot on where it is that you’re based. On top of basic commercial property insurance, you can add the cover that you think is relevant to your business such as buildings cover, landlord’s contents cover and rent receivable.
A job that demands you drive your own car or van for work will need to pay for business vehicle insurance. This must not be mistaken for simply commuting to and from work, however. It’s probably that you’ll pay a higher premium for business vehicle insurance and that your chosen insurer will require you to answer a number of questions that apply to the cover such as the nature of your work, how long you’re required to drive for and how many miles you get through in a year. There is not one standard business vehicle policy:
Use by you
This will cover the main driver (with the option to add a spouse) if they drive in connection with their business.
Use for all drivers
This is the same level of cover as the above, but it has the benefit of being able to add more than one driver on the policy.
Commercial travelling policies
This will cover people whose permanent job is driving such as taxi drivers.
So, are you covered? If not, it’s worth visiting an insurance comparison site today so that you can get the policies that you need.