Insuring your business is a complicated task of covering all your bases. Every business needs a unique combination of insurance coverages based on your facility, products, services, and other factors that might lead to related risks. However, one of the few insurance types that all businesses share a need for is property liability insurance. This one simple term includes a well-rounded package of coverage to protect both your physical and monetary assets in a wide variety of unfortunately common situations.
Property liability insurance is among the most common insurance packages adopted by business owners as it covers your bases in both a complete and precise way. Not to be confused with general liability insurance, property liability insurance takes care of your business no matter how or why a disaster occurs.
This month, we’re diving right into what property liability insurance covers for businesses.
Property Liability Insurance
The first step is to define exactly what we mean by property liability insurance. This is often said as one combination phrase, but really it’s short-hand for two completely different and equally necessary types of insurance coverage. The first is commercial property insurance. The second is professional liability insurance. Professional liability insurance differs from general liability insurance because it covers liability even if the company was negligent.
Now that we have the definition out of the way, let’s dig into the nitty-gritty of what commercial property insurance and professional liability insurance cover to form the property liability insurance package offered by insurers.
Commercial Property Insurance
Commercial property liability insurance protects a business’ physical assets including assets both owned and leased. Property insurance policies vary but can often support up to 5 different properties encompassing the building, the grounds, and the contents therein.
Protects Your Business Against Physical Damage
Property insurance protects your business from costs when the building takes physical damage This includes all types of damage. Weather and natural disasters are protected, as well as accidents and vandalism. Except in specific cases where the type of damage requires its own insurance, like earthquakes or floods. But unlike homeowner’s insurance, fire is usually included along with explosions.
The Building Structure
Your commercial property insurance protects the entire structure of the building from roof to basement. Costs related to repairing your commercial building after physical damage has occurred will be covered by the insurance after the cost exceeds the deductible.
The Grounds and Property Features
The grounds and facilities surrounding your building are also covered by commercial property insurance. This includes the parking lot and walking areas, the landscape and landscape features, and anything else you might have outdoors like, say, the cart returns or a facility playground. If any of these items are damaged, you may file a commercial property claim to attain funds for repairs.
Your Product Inventory
Interestingly, commercial property insurance also covers the contents of your property. Rest assured that in addition to any inventory insurance you may have separately, that commercial property insurance will fund the replacement of damaged inventory up to a limit.
Property Contents including Furniture, Fixtures, and Office Equipment
All of the furniture, fixtures, and supplies that make up our office insurance are covered. This includes any custom light fixtures, your tables and chairs, your laptops and devices, and any office supplies therein.
Business Liability Insurance
The other half of property liability insurance is business liability coverage. In addition to a policy that covers all of your physical property for most of the reasons it could possibly be damaged is a policy that covers all liability issues no matter the circumstances.
When the Company Was Negligent or At Fault
Business liability insurance differs from general liability insurance because negligence is not a factor. With general liability, you are insured against damages and lawsuits that result from your normal responsible course of business. Business liability as is included in property liability insurance covers your business’ assets even if the lawsuit was caused by company or employee negligence. That can be a huge weight off your mind, considering negligence can sometimes be as simple as an employee forgetting to salt the sidewalks.
Attorney and Settlement Costs for Liability Cases
Business liability insurance covers two aspects of the costs. It covers your attorney fees should you be taken to court over a liability case and it covers the cost of a settlement with the plaintiff. If you settle out of court in a liability case, which is often the smartest thing for a business to do, the damages paid to the plaintiff can come from your business liability insurance instead of the business revenue.
Business liability protect you specifically from cases that relate to the bodily injury of a customer or visitor to the venue, and possibly employees if the issue is not covered by worker’s compensation insurance instead. Whether rough-housing led to personal damage or the plaintiff tripped over a box on the ground, business liability will help you cover the costs.
If your business or employees cause property damage to another person’s possession, that too is covered. An example of this might be that a parking lot light fell and broke someone’s windshield. They may sue for damages and you may take them to court. But you won’t necessarily have to pay for the expense.
Products and Services
Finally, business liability insurance protects you from lawsuits relating to complete products and delivered services. If, for example, someone spills hot coffee on themselves because the cup wasn’t labeled “Hot” and takes you to court, business liability insurance will cover the legal costs and their minor burn treatment for the coffee injury.
Ultimately property liability insurance is incredibly useful and, in fact, absolutely necessary for a modern business. Whether you are just starting out or are already an established brand, it is essential to have a good property liability plan to cover all your bases. For more information about business insurance and how to pick the best comprehensive property liability insurance packages for your company, contact us today!