When you started your small business, you probably envisioned that first sale, your first compliment from a satisfied customer, the first time you proudly introduce yourself as your own boss. But you probably didn’t imagine anything bad happening. Like that time everyone got a little too excited about karaoke at the company Christmas party resulting in a few stitches and a busted water cooler. Or the time your favorite customer was dive-bombed by angry mocking birds as she walked into your shop last Spring. Or the moment next year when your marketing intern will accidentally violate another company’s copyright in a blast email sent to thousands of your customers.
Okay, so odds are these crazy things won’t happen to you or your small business. But in the rare event that something unexpected happens, your Commercial Liability Insurance Form will protect you.
The folks over at Nationwide Insurance explain it in simple terms: If damages are filed against you or you’re sued, general liability insurance covers the insurance company’s investigation and attorney expenses, any judgment or settlement, medical expenses in case of injury and bonds if they must be subsequently posted. Claims can also arise from bodily injury or property damages resulting from accidents on your premises or from your products, your operations or advertising for your business (like the crazy Christmas party or kamikaze birds). Liability insurance can also cover things like advertising injury (marketing violates someone’s copyright) and even offers some protection against alcohol-related accidents (as long as your business is not in an alcohol-related industry, such as a distillery or pub).
Commercial Liability Insurance, in general, will not usually cover employee injuries (that’s what workers’ comp is for), auto accidents, punitive damages, intentional acts (like an employee purposefully assaults a customer), or your overall workmanship.
Remember, this is just a layperson’s overview. For a more in-depth explanation of your business’s unique commercial liability policy, talk to your insurance agent and read the fine print carefully. Make sure you understand your legal and financial responsibilities before you sign anything. It’s always best to be prepared for what might happen, rather than do damage control after the fact.
If you’ve investigated all your options, and you are ready to fill out & submit your Commercial Liability Form, click here to get started.