About Commercial Umbrella Insurance

Commercial umbrella insurance is used to protect a business when an accident occurs and existing liability policies for insurance is not able to cover all expenses related to the claim. Standard types of liability coverage for businesses can take care of general situations. However, when serious situations happen, umbrella insurance makes sure that a business is fully protected. Accidents are bound to happen and people are known to sue. Below are some possibilities that are involved with business accidents:

  • A company party goes overboard that results in a number of damages and injuries
  • The building of a business experiences a leakage of carbon monoxide resulting in multiple deaths or injuries
  • A company is accused of not rendering professional and appropriate services

These policies pick up from where the business general liability, auto liability and any other types of liability coverage end. This insurance policy is a smart and inexpensive method in providing additional coverage against property damage and/or bodily injuries.

An example of a claim:

If a business has a policy that covers the business for a million dollars and the business is sued for around 1.5 million dollars, the umbrella coverage will pay out the outstanding amount of 500,000 dollars. This saves the business from having to come up with the outstanding amount from business profits.

Customizing Your Policy

Every business is different. Professional practices like law firms, veterinary offices and doctors rooms operate differently from business locations, such as, an auto body shop. The respective liability needs for each business will also be different. Umbrella insurance providers offer tailor made policies in order to meet up with the requirements of each business.

Business owners of auto body outlets may require a policy that will offer additional coverage for the garage liability, while a law firm that focuses on client entertainment may need additional limits on liquor liability. Businesses are encouraged to ask for a quote that will be customized in order to meet up with their specific needs of the business.

How Umbrella Insurance Operates

Commercial umbrella insurance policies are used for two purposes. It is used to expand on the current limit a business already has for existing or for underlying types of liability policies. If the general policy for liability offers a coverage of $1 million for each occurrence or cover for a total of $2 million. The umbrella policy allows the business to expand the limits to around $3 million for each occurrence along with a $4 million average and an umbrella policy of $2 million.

The second purpose involves expanding coverage for items that the underlying policy will not cover. For example if a liability policy for auto only covers accidents that occur in specific areas, the umbrella policy can be used to expand on the coverage area.

Business owners interested in umbrella insurance should provide their chosen umbrella insurance providers with operational and financial details of the business when obtaining a quote. The insurance provider will need to know about the business along with the current insurance policies that the business has.

Tips On Choosing Commercial Auto Insurance

There are a lot of options for commercial auto insurance, and it’s a competitive industry, but you still need to take some precautions in order to find a policy that will not only be affordable, but will also give you the full cover you need. Good coverage doesn’t need to be expensive; you just need to know what to look for and what information to gather before you start asking for quotes.

Before you start looking at insurance companies conduct your own risk assessment. Check if there are any ways you can lower your risk. Look through your employee’s driving records – driving records are a major factor in premium rates, so taking these into consideration can help you to attain a more affordable policy.

Although a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License) may not necessarily be required in order to drive your vehicles, it is often the case that drivers who hold these have higher driving skills and may qualify for discounts. If you do have any employees who hold CDLs, make sure you mention this when you ask for a quote from the insurance company.

It is worth asking your agent if there are any discounts that your business may qualify for. Not all of these are pointed out and you may have to ask in order to find out about them. For example, some insurance firms will offer discounts on their auto insurance policies to businesses that have been in business for a minimum amount of time, and pay in full up front.

Make sure before you request a quote that you have all of the information handy that can affect the quote or conditions of the policy, including details of any special equipment, any inventory that is transported in the vehicles, and any relevant details regarding employee driving records. Supplying accurate information in full when requesting a quote from an insurance company will help you to get a realistic idea of what kind of cover they are able to offer you, as well as the price of the premiums.

It is also advisable you conduct an online search for feedback on the company before you do business with them. Typing the company’s name, along with “complaint” into a search engine, for example, will bring up any previous feedback on social media or forums from clients who have had negative experiences with that particular firm. While not all feedback will be warranted, if there is more than one client complaining about the same issue, you’ll know that there is probably something in it and will be able to take that into account when making your decision.

It is important to regularly review all of your insurance policies in order to make sure that you are not over-paying or paying for cover you no longer need. In order to make sure you have the commercial auto insurance that gives you the full cover you need without paying for unnecessary cover, it is a best to review your insurance options annually.

Understanding Professional Liability Insurance

Professional liability insurance is also known as professional indemnity insurance. It is a type of insurance that helps to protect those individuals and companies who provide services and advice, should a negligence claim be made by a client. In effect, it will help the individual or company from bearing the complete cost of defending the claim, as well as the cost of damages, should they be awarded in a lawsuit.

There are certain professions which require this form of insurance by law. These are generally those in professional practice, such as doctors and lawyers. In other cases, it can be required based on contract by other businesses.

Coverage for individuals and businesses is important as it will cover a myriad of possible claims. For example, it will cover an alleged failure to perform the agreed upon terms of a contract. It will also cover the policy holder for any financial loss caused by an error in the service being sold.

Such instances and particulars are not covered by the more general insurance policies, and as legal claims are still rising, it makes very good sense to get as much coverage as possible. Certain policies will also cover defense costs in certain circumstances, but they are specific to the policy and the company providing the policy.

However, there are certain things that liability insurance does not cover. The major point to note here is that criminal prosecution is not covered under such a policy. Likewise, there are many liabilities which come under civil law which are not covered.

Based on the profession, this form of insurance can be termed differently. As such, in the medical profession it is known as malpractice insurance. Lawyers, consultants, brokers and insurance agents use the term, errors and omissions (E&O) insurance, to refer to the same type of policy.

When looking for coverage, here are some of the factors to consider:

Worldwide coverage - this is important as a large part of business today is conducted via the internet. With this aspect of the policy in place, it means that the policy will cover the business for work completed anywhere in the world, provided the covered claim is filed in the US (but it can vary from one insurance company to the next).

Covering past work - this is something to be vigilant of. If this is included in the policy it means that any claims arising from work completed before the insurance policy was taken out is also covered. The actual date will be agreed upon before the policy is signed, but this does provide added security.

Responsiveness to claims - knowing how quickly the insurance company will take to defend the claim made against the business is vital. The very best policies will defend the business immediately, which protects the business and provides time to gather the details.

Professional liability insurance is required in certain circumstances, but it is also recommended for businesses engaged in contractual work in the professional services industry.