Understanding Workers Comp Insurance

When looking for workers comp insurance, it can be a minefield. There are now so many products and services in the marketplace that knowing what is best can take lots of research and effort. As such, this article is going to cover the key points to look for when deciding on insurance. After reading this article, the various products should become clearer.

Note that there are certain states that require, by law, employers to have workers compensation insurance, even if they have just one employee. This should be noted and then checked to ensure that the business avoids any expensive fines.

Here are some of the important considerations to make when looking:

Competitive pricing - obviously, this will be high on the list of priorities when it comes to searching for this type of insurance. With so many insurance companies competing in the marketplace, it makes sense to shop around and look for premium discounts and policy dividends, amongst other perks. Search for offers at certain times of the year, as this is when the insurance companies are most competitive.

Cash flow assistance - this is something that is overlooked but it is important if money is tight, and a budget needs to be adhered to. Look for flexible payment plans and companies that offer low minimum payments. This criteria will be based on the individual situation and needs, but match companies based on similar packages offered to get a fair comparison.

Efficient claim handling - should a claim need to be made, the faster, and more efficient the process, the better. In terms of specifics, inquire into how many people will need to be contacted and who deals with such claims. A long, convoluted process is the worst possible experience when a claim is made.

Easy to contact support staff - finding the lowest cost workers comp insurance can often be the worst choice, as they fail to provide good a support system. In such cases, the low cost is a false economy and should be avoided in favor of more professional companies. The ability to contact support staff and have an easy-to-use system is important to clarify premiums, and especially when making a claim.

Health care – find those with a good reputation for working with healthcare providers to promote fast and high quality care.

Where to purchase insurance - insurance can be purchased via an agent or a broker licensed to provide and write policies in the state. The list can be found on the local government website. It is also worth checking with local trade groups as they are usually able to negotiate a special rate for their members.

When looking for insurance companies, always check the reputation of the firm in question. Find those with a track record in the industry and those that place importance on financial stability and fast, efficient claims handling. These are very important factors, and should come ahead of simply finding the cheapest premium available.

Understanding Small Business Insurance

Regardless of the size of your company or the number of people it employs, it is essential to carry adequate insurance. Failure to do so could result in financial ruin or the dissolution of your business.

There are countless different types of small business insurance available including liability insurance, property insurance, business interruption insurance, workers’ compensation insurance and flood insurance, just to name a few.

Rather than buying separate insurance policies for all of these different concerns, many small business owners buy what is known as a Business Owner’s Policy (BOP).

BOPs typically bundle three types of insurance together: property insurance, general liability insurance and business interruption insurance. The following section looks at how each of these types of insurance can help protect your company.

Property Insurance

Like its name implies, property insurance helps protect any physical property that is owned by your business. This includes items like computers, furniture, equipment, supplies and inventory. This type of insurance usually includes coverage for accidental damage or destruction caused by fires or other catastrophic events.

General Liability Insurance

The second type of insurance included in a BOP is general liability insurance. This type of insurance covers any damage that is done to someone else’s property or person by you or one of your employees. For instance, if you operate a moving company and one of your employees accidentally breaks a homeowner’s vase, the liability insurance will help cover the cost of the broken vase.

Business Interruption Service

The third, and perhaps most important, type of insurance that is included in a BOP is business interruption insurance. This type of insurance helps cover the loss of income that you suffer if your business is unable to operate.

For instance, if a hurricane comes through and wipes out your facility, the insurance would help cover the cost of the downtime while you get your company back on track. Typically this type of insurance also helps cover any extra expenses that are incurred if you are forced to move to a temporary location.

What is Not Covered by a BOP

A BOP covers the basics for most small businesses. However, there are some things that it does not cover that you may need, depending on your location and whether or not you have employees. Here are a few of the additional types of insurance you may need to purchase.

Workers Compensation Insurance

If you have employees, you will need to purchase a workers compensation policy for them. This covers expenses for work-related injuries.

Flood Insurance

If you live in an area that experiences frequent floods, you will need to purchase flood insurance separately from your BOP. A flood insurance policy usually will cover your building and its contents.

Industry-Specific Insurance

Depending on the industry that you are in, there may also be other types of insurance that you need to carry. It is important to meet with a qualified insurance agent who is familiar with your industry to make sure you are adequately covered.

Small business insurance is absolutely essential. It helps protect your company from financial ruin in the event of an accident or natural disaster. Knowing which policies to carry is the best way to safeguard the future of your business.