Thinking of Starting a Business in Louisiana? Consider These Commercial Insurance Policies
June 29, 2021
So you’ve made the decision to start a business. Congratulations on this big step! Before you begin operations, there are many steps you need to complete to make sure your business is set up for success. One of these important steps is acquiring the correct commercial insurance.
Purchasing commercial insurance helps protect you, your assets, and even your employees, if you have any. Additionally, insurance is often required for working in specific industries such as trade skills, construction, medicine, and more.
What Does Business Insurance Help Cover?
Business Insurance can help pay for many unexpected expenses resulting from accidents and incidents, and is there to take most of the financial impact of a claim. Some of these expenses could include:
- Attorney Fees
- Settlements and judgments
- Court Costs
- Repair or replacement costs for property
Should You Get Business Insurance Right When You Start the Company?
A question we see often is whether you should get business insurance right when you start the company or wait until you’re bigger and established. The short answer to this question is get it right away! But there are a few reasons for this.
If you’re starting your business while working out of your house, chances are your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance won’t cover your business-related accidents. If a customer visits your home and injures themselves slipping on a step you would likely be fully liable for this incident.
While you may think this is unlikely, it happens! But another reason to acquire insurance right away is to protect your upfront investments. With many businesses, there is expensive equipment involved. Say you have a video production company, are you willing to chance damaging your expensive cameras, lenses, and more, and having to pay to replace any damaged equipment completely out of pocket?
Which Type of Insurance Policies Should You Consider?
While every business is different and you should talk with an insurance agent to understand your specific needs, here are three insurance policies that we see benefit many clients.
Professional Liability Insurance (Errors and Omissions Insurance)
This insurance is a key part of any business that is relying on their expertise to conduct business. It will provide coverage to claims that assert that you made a mistake or failed to provide adequate services. Professionals that typically carry this policy are: architects, accountants, consultants, engineers, and IT Professionals.
One of the most common policies is a Business Owner’s Policy, or BOP. This combines the protection of general liability insurance and property insurance into a discounted bundle that is specifically designed for small, low-risk businesses. This can cover you for:
- Third-party lawsuits for property damage
- Third-party lawsuits for bodily injury
- Medical expenses for third parties injured on your premises
- Product liability lawsuits, which is when a customer sues you after being hurt by your product.
- Damage, theft, or vandalism of your business’s property.
Cyber liability is becoming more and more important for small businesses, not just large ones. In fact, according to Propertycasualty360.com, small and mid-sized businesses are hit by 62% of all cyber-attacks. This policy will cover the immediate costs of a data breach or cyber-attack including:
- Ransoms for getting back your data
- Hiring an expert to investigate the incident and help with regulatory compliance
- Public relations and crisis management
- Legal defense if a customer blames your business for not preventing the breach or attack.
- Civil awards, judgments, or lawsuit settlements
What is the Cost of Commercial Insurance?
How much is this going to cost? For most small businesses, commercial insurance is very affordable. According to Trusted Choice, a sole proprietor may only have to pay $500 per year for general liability insurance, while a small consulting firm is likely to pay around $3,000 per year.
While the costs likely aren’t a lot compared to many expenses your business will incur, you will probably not want to over protect yourself with policies or coverage limits not important to your business. And this is where an independent insurance agency, like Lewis Mohr Insurance Agency, comes in. With an insurance agency like us, not only will we be able to shop your policy around for the most affordable carrier, but we also have a team of experts ready to learn about you and your company so we can get you the coverages you actually need. Plus, we are right here in Baton Rouge, Louisiana ready to help you as your business grows and changes. Give us a call or contact us through our website to get started!