Business Insurance Checklist

Every business needs insurance. The types of insurance coverage you need and the amounts of coverage will vary depending on the type of business, the size of the business and the amount of risk the business is willing to assume. If your business provides personal services or if you are operating the business without a corporate structure, you must consider your personal risks as well. You may want to work with an insurance professional to make sure you have the protection you need.

Here are seven types of insurance—along with their corresponding issues—that you may want to consider.

Health Insurance

Many businesses provide health insurance as part of their overall employee benefit program. The cost of health insurance continues to rise, and you may want to consider having employees pay some part of the cost. If you have a small business with only a few employees, you may want to consider a group plan to cover employees and your family. By being part of a group and having employees pay part of their costs, you may be able to improve your coverage while incurring only minimal additional costs.

Issues Comments

To contain costs, have you considered sharing the cost with employees and choosing levels of deductibles and co-pays that result in lower costs?

 

What type of plan do you have? What else is available?

 

What kind of coverage do you have? What else is available?

 

What are the deductibles and co-pays?

 

Have you considered sharing the costs with your employees?

 

What are the total costs?

 

What is the source of the policy?

 

Property Insurance

Just about every business should have insurance to cover loss or damage to property, inventory or equipment. Premiums vary according to the type of property, coverage limits and what you insure against. If you have electronic equipment such as computers, be sure to investigate how your policy works in case of damage to the files (for example, power outages or surges) as well as damage to the equipment itself.

Issues Comments

Have you made a list of all equipment that needs to be covered? Be sure to include original cost, estimated value, and identification information.

 

What are the deductibles?

 

What are the total costs?

 

What is the source of the policy?

 

Business Interruption Insurance

If your business were displaced because of a fire, flood or other disaster, you would need to reestablish the business in another location. Business interruption insurance could provide the needed funds. Temporary space, equipment and supplies could be covered by a policy of this type.

Issues

Comments

Have you made a list of what would be required in case of an emergency?

 

What are the total costs? (Depending on the extent of your needs, business interruption insurance may not be too expensive.)

 

What is the source of the policy?

 

Liability Insurance

This insurance can cover damages as a result of your actions or negligence, or if someone is injured at your place of business. For example, large damage awards have been made in cases where a customer slips and falls because the business did not melt the ice in front of the door. Be sure to discuss this type of coverage with a qualified insurance professional to ensure that you are adequately covered.

Issues

Comments

Is coverage provided through other policies that you currently hold or are considering?

 

What are the deductibles?

 

What are the total costs?

 

What is the source of the policy?

 

Worker’s Compensation Insurance

This insurance provides coverage for medical and related costs for accidental injuries suffered by employees in performing their duties. The amount of coverage required varies by state.

Issues

Comments

Have you discussed your needs with an insurance professional?

 

What are the total costs?

 

What is the source of the policy?

 

Auto Insurance

If you use an automobile—even a personal one—you may be required to have a commercial auto insurance policy. If you are a sole proprietor and use your car, be sure to discuss this with your auto insurance provider.

Issues

Comments

Have you discussed your needs with an insurance professional?

 

What are the deductibles?

 

What are the total costs?

 

What is the source of the policy?

 

Umbrella Insurance

This relatively low-cost coverage fills in the gaps of your other policies or provides additional coverage once the original policy limits are exceeded. This can be extremely valuable in case involving large losses. Many companies offer umbrella insurance policies, and you may find that one of your professional organizations has a relationship with an issuer that will keep your cost low.

Issues

Comments

Have you checked with professional organizations to see if they offer umbrella policies?

 

What are the total costs?

 

What is the source of the policy?

 

Summary

Most businesses need more than one type of insurance coverage. Spending some time considering what is needed and how the policies can be structured for your business is well worth the time and effort. Managing and growing a business is difficult enough without having to worry about not being covered if unforeseen events occur.

Product Information

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