Small business insurance checklist

The first step to effectively choosing what coverages you may need is understanding what small business insurance is.

two small business owners reviewing data on a laptop and tablet.

If you’re a small business owner, you know the struggle of juggling multiple tasks each day. Between overseeing daily operations, handling finances, and managing personnel, your checklist of responsibilities can seem never-ending. Amidst these tasks, choosing the right insurance carrier and coverages for your business can feel daunting. But the process of choosing insurance for your small business doesn’t have to be complicated. The first step to choosing what coverages you may need is understanding what small business insurance is.

What is small business insurance?

Small business insurance refers to a range of insurance policies designed to protect small businesses from various risks and liabilities. These policies typically provide coverage for different aspects of a business, including property damage, liability claims, employee-related risks, and more. Small business insurance is crucial for protecting business owners from financial losses that may arise from unforeseen events or lawsuits.

Are you legally required to have business insurance?

The legal requirement for business insurance varies depending on factors such as the type of business, its location, and the nature of its operations. While some types of business insurance are mandatory by law, others are optional but highly recommended to protect the business and its stakeholders.

The initial step in selecting a small business insurance policy involves determining the types of insurance mandated by law for your business. Depending on your business activities, certain types of insurance may be obligatory.

What questions should I ask to help determine the insurance coverages my small business needs?

We created a checklist of questions to help you determine which coverages might be a good fit for the risks your small business faces.

Use this checklist during your next conversation with your independent insurance agent.

What insurance does my small business need?

General Liability insurance for small business

General Liability insurance is like a safety net for your small business, offering protection against a range of common risks and potential lawsuits. It can provide coverage for bodily injury, property damage, and advertising injury claims that could arise from your business operations or premises. Without it, a single accident or lawsuit could spell financial disaster, potentially leading to costly legal fees, settlements, or even bankruptcy.

Professional Liability insurance for small business

Professional Liability insurance, also known as Errors and Omissions insurance, is vital for small business owners who provide certain services or professional advice. It protects against claims of negligence in the services you provide, ensuring you’re not held personally liable for financial damages. Without this coverage, even a minor mistake or perceived failure to meet expectations could lead to costly legal battles, tarnish your reputation, and jeopardize the future of your business.

Commercial Property insurance for small business

Commercial property insurance is essential for small business owners because it protects their physical assets, such as buildings, equipment, inventory, and furnishings, from a variety of risks, including fire, theft, vandalism, and natural disasters. Without this coverage, a single unforeseen event could result in devastating financial losses, potentially jeopardizing the business’s ability to recover and continue operations.

Do you have employees or intend to hire any?

Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI) for small business

Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI) helps protect against claims made by employees regarding wrongful employment practices. These claims could include allegations of discrimination, harassment, wrongful termination, or retaliation. Without EPLI coverage, defending against such claims can be financially devastating and could potentially damage your business’s reputation.

Workers’ Compensation insurance for small business

Workers’ Compensation insurance is crucial for small business owners with employees as it can provide coverage for medical expenses and lost wages for employees who are injured or become ill on the job. Not only does it protect your employees, but it can also shield your business from potential lawsuits related to workplace injuries. Without Workers’ Compensation coverage, you could face hefty fines, legal penalties, and even the risk of financial ruin if an employee is injured on the job.

Do you or your employees drive company vehicles?

Commercial Auto insurance for small business

Commercial Auto insurance is essential for small business owners who utilize vehicles for business purposes. It can provide coverage for accidents, damage, and liability related to company vehicles, protecting both your assets and your employees. It can also provide coverage for medical expenses incurred by drivers injured in the accident. Without this coverage, you risk significant financial loss and legal liabilities if a vehicle used for business activities is involved in an accident or incurs damage.

Do you store sensitive customer information, such as payment info, addresses, etc.?

Cyber Security insurance for small business

Cyber Security insurance is vital for small business owners in today’s digital landscape. It helps provide financial protection against data breaches, cyberattacks, and other cyber incidents that could compromise sensitive information or disrupt business operations. Cyber coverage can also include data compromise response expenses like a forensic review of the extent of the breach and notification to affected individuals. Without this coverage, businesses face the risk of substantial financial losses, reputational damage, and potential legal liabilities associated with cyber incidents.

Do you transport or store items at off-site locations?

Inland Marine insurance for small business

Inland Marine insurance may be needed for small business owners who transport goods or equipment over land. It provides coverage for property that moves from one location to another, protecting against damage, theft, or loss during transit. It also provides coverage for business equipment and tools used or stored at job sites, like cameras, laptops, and contractor equipment. Without this coverage, businesses risk financial loss and disruptions to their operations if their valuable assets are damaged or lost while in transit or stored at an off-site premise.

Do you feel like your business needs extra protection?

Commercial Umbrella Liability

Commercial Umbrella Liability insurance provides an extra layer of protection beyond the limits of your primary liability policies. It can help shield businesses from catastrophic financial losses due to large liability claims or lawsuits that exceed the limits of underlying policies. Without this additional coverage, a single substantial claim could potentially exhaust the limits of primary policies, leaving your business vulnerable to significant out-of-pocket expenses or even bankruptcy.

How do I determine the amount of coverage needed for my business?

Consulting with an independent insurance agent is invaluable when determining the amount of coverage needed for your business. Independent agents have the expertise needed to assess your business’s unique risks and recommend appropriate coverage levels based on your industry, size, and location. By thoroughly understanding your business operations and potential liabilities, an independent agent can tailor a comprehensive insurance plan that adequately protects your assets and mitigates financial risks. Find an independent agent near you to get started.

Find an agent

Our independent agency partners will help you compare coverages and share industry insights as you shop for the right insurance policy for your needs.

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Coverages may not be available in all states. Coverages described are subject to all the terms and conditions of the policy, including deductibles, exclusions, and limits of liability. Not all agents are authorized to write all types of insurance. Policies may be underwritten by SECURA Insurance Company or SECURA Supreme Insurance Company, affiliated companies referred to collectively as SECURA Insurance Companies. Please read the policy carefully. Any claim example is for educational and informational purposes only. The information in this document will not be used to determine the coverage of an actual claim presented. All claims are adjusted based on the relevant facts, conditions and coverages at the time of loss. For specific terms and conditions, please refer to your coverage form. Coverage is also subject to applicable deductibles and limits of coverage.

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