Any small business can be prone to numerous challenges, as economic conditions and other forms of liability can change every day. There are several types of legal woes you can encounter, whether you own a busy retail front, delivery service, or medical practice. You may be accused of issues ranging from negligence and giving inadequate professional advice, or a customer may suffer an accidental injury on your property. General liability insurance and professional liability insurance provide coverage for these problems, with an impeccable small business insurance plan arming you with both.

What is General Liability Insurance?

General liability insurance is a type of coverage that protects you from accidental property damage, along with injury to other parties. It also can cover your potentially extensive legal costs for issues such as reputational harm, advertising injury, and copyright infringement.

What Does General Liability Insurance Cover?

General liability insurance protects your small business against numerous types of damaging claims, including:

  • Bodily Injury: This covers accidental injuries to others that are not among your actual employees. If a customer happens to slip and fall on an icy area in front of your business, this would cover their medical bills along with your legal costs if you happen to be sued.
  • Property Damage: This will cover incidents of accidental property damage to others. One example would be if you were working on a client’s pool and accidentally damaged the tile while actively on the job site.
  • Copyright Infringement: This covers claims that your promotional materials or other forms of campaigns may have used someone’s intellectual property. It could take place in advertisements or other marketing materials without having adequate authorization in place.
  • Advertising Injury: This covers claims that your promotional materials or other forms of campaigns may defame another individual. These usually stem from the business owner and frequently occur in the entertainment, real estate, and political spheres.
  • Reputational Harm: This coverage takes care of claims against saying anything negative that could hurt an individual or their business. Detailed interviews with the press are one instance where this can easily occur.

How Much Does General Liability Insurance Cost?

The average cost for general liability insurance is around $44 per month, according to the well-researched experts at Insureon. Nearly 30% of their policyholders are currently paying under $30 per month for their general liability policy.

The amount you’ll pay for coverage depends on several different factors, such as:

  • Your industry’s risk level: Construction poses many varying levels of risk, and can lead to more expensive premium requirements. Heights, sharp equipment, and pace of duties are all factors here.
  • Business ZIP code: Starting your business in a densely-populated area such as downtown opens you up to more potential claims. Here, much as with other careers, the risk can be worth the reward.
  • Age of the business: If you are just now offering your services to the public as a brand-new business, your limited experience could see you paying higher rates.
  • Coverage Details: Your choice of deductibles and policy limits will impact your overall cost. opting for both small deductibles and higher policy limits are elements that will increase your cost.
  • Claims History: If you have a history of no claims at all filed during years past, you will benefit from lower rates. This is a very telling indicator of how much risk your provider can expect to encounter when offering you coverage.

Who Needs General Liability Insurance?

Here are some common business activities that will require general liability coverage:

  • Dealing with vendors, clients, or the general public frequently.
  • Engaging in promotions such as billboards, and other forms of advertising.
  • Hiring temporary workers.
  • Posting frequently on social media.
  • Requiring coverage for standard contractual obligations.
  • Conducting business at third-party locations.

Examples of workers and businesses who can benefit from general liability insurance include:

  • Accounting firms
  • Construction companies
  • Contractors
  • Consultants of different varieties
  • Cleaning crews
  • Financial providers and advisors
  • IT/tech startups
  • Landscaping pros
  • Manufacturing businesses
  • Media and advertising services
  • Real estate agents

What is Professional Liability Insurance?

Professional Liability Insurance is a type of small business insurance for claims against you about a mistake you could make during your duties. Even if the claim has no merit, it falls in this category. If you are an accountant and happen to give misleading information to a client and they unintentionally lose revenue, professional liability would pay your legal costs if sued for this incident. Professional liability is also called errors and omissions insurance.

What Does Professional Liability Insurance Cover?

Professional liability insurance will cover your legal expenses for errors that you make on the job. Settlements and judgments are included with this coverage, as well as penalties from licensing boards. Here are some examples of errors made by a professional that could result in potential lawsuit:

  • Copyright infringement: This occurs when an entity such as a marketing or advertising agency unintentionally incorporates a copyrighted image in their work, such as a photograph. if the proper permission is not obtained, this becomes a difficult problem quickly.
  • Inaccurate advice: This could take place when a real estate agent provides advice that leads to an unsatisfactory purchase, or even a sale that is lower than expected.
  • Misrepresentation: If you are working on a large project and don’t complete it on time, your client could potentially lose income by not being able to open.
  • Negligence: Someone such as a busy attorney could neglect to submit a client’s complaint within a reasonable statute of limitations, which could result in a financial loss. This coverage would take care of finalized losses as well as accumulating legal expenses.
  • Violation of good faith and fair dealing: This can take place quite frequently in the real estate round, where withholding vital Information such as structural problems would cause enormous trouble for a home buyer.

How Much Does Professional Liability Insurance Cost?

The average cost of professional liability insurance in Missouri is around $58 per month, according to Insureon. The price you ultimately pay for your coverage depends on factors such as the following:

  • Industry your business is in: The type of business you run will impact your professional liability costs.
  • Relevant industry experience: Many Insurance companies will view businesses with less experience as possessing a potential for higher risk. This can lead to higher insurance costs.
  • Business Location: The geographical location of your business is a governing factor for its expense. If you reside in a city or state with significantly higher attorney and representation costs, you will have higher premiums for liability.
  • Details of your coverage: The coverage limits and deductibles you select will greatly impact your premium costs.
  • Number of employees: As your team gets larger, your expenses for professional liability will heighten. Even though a larger workforce provides you with more opportunities, it unfortunately also gives you a greater likelihood of occasionally making the wrong call.

Who Needs Professional Liability Insurance?

While working in some professions, you may be required to buy professional liability insurance as a mandate from the state’s licensing board. Even if it is not a requirement for you, it’s an option that is worth taking a look at, because without it you would be paying for extremely legal expenses directly out of pocket if you encounter a legal dispute. Following are some good examples of businesses that could benefit from a professional liability policy:

  • Accounting firms
  • Consultants
  • Counselors
  • Graphic Designers
  • Health care professionals
  • Insurance agents
  • Investment advisors
  • Marketing executives
  • Financial planners
  • Real estate professionals
  • Personal and athletic trainers
  • Tax preparers
  • Those in the tech sector

Protecting Your Life’s Endeavor From Marred Mishaps:

Your business is undoubtedly something you have worked hard for and a living testimony to your hard work! Contact us at Alexander Insurance Agency of St. Charles today to get started on your plan for multi-layered protection. There are many pitfalls when it comes to a day’s profitable activities, as profiteers from false accusations are everywhere. Inclement weather, claims made during the day’s duties, and other erroneous events can be, unfortunately, quite commonplace. Our expertise and extensive knowledge will allow us to locate the ideal policy to withstand the forces of business and commerce!