What Insurance do I need to Start a Business?

07 March 2019

When it comes to finding your feet with your business, you have to understand that there are a lot of things that have the potential to go wrong. You might not like thinking about it, but even the most successful of businesses have slip-ups. Whether that is due to poor business management, unqualified staff or even due to unpleasant customers, from the moment you open your doors there are vulnerabilities in your business that only become more obvious if you do not address them.

Finding the right insurance to protect your start-up company is the perfect way to shield it from any incoming disasters. Understandably, you may be worried that having to invest in so many forms of start-up insurance will drain your bank account - but this is a concern you can alleviate easily. By picking and combining the right business insurance plans, you will be able to save money by making sure you only pay for insurance that you genuinely need. Here are some of the most necessary forms of insurance to get your business started.

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BOP (Business Owners Policy)

If you are looking for business insurance for a startup that can cover all bases and make sure that you do not have to pay for multiple insurance policies, you may want to consider investing in BOP, aka. Business Owners Policy. A BOP will protect you and your startup business from a number of common vulnerabilities. This insurance includes interruption insurance, liability insurance, property insurance, vehicle/automobile insurance and crime insurance.

This sort of insurance is fantastic for businesses looking to personalise their policy. Some companies may need a more customer orientated business plan, whilst another may have more fleet orientated needs, and thus require fleet or automobile insurance. Money can be saved by simply investing in insurance that can benefit the business, as well as provide the protection the business needs to allow it to thrive.

These combined policies tend to be quite cheap in comparison to buying single policies, however. They are therefore fantastic for new and up-and-coming companies in particular, who are still trying to find their footing. Buying the services on their own can be extremely expensive, especially if you buy several policies at once. So, instead try buying a policy that simply covers more than one aspect of your business. The money you save can be spent on more important aspects of your business, such as improving the professional building or buying new equipment for your work.

General Liability Insurance

Whether your business is homebased or office based, you just have to have General Liability Insurance to make sure that if there is any damage done to a third party (aka., A. Customer) through the work of your employees, offered services or products. Whilst it is a legal requirement to have Employer’s Liability Insurance to protect you from lawsuits from your own workers, General Liability Insurance will protect you against things that are out of your control, such as how your clients are treated by your staff or react to your products.

Remember that if you are worried about your clients reacting to your products, be sure to warn them and have them sign a liability waver/agreement, ensuring they fully understand any risks behind a potential treatment. If there is a future problem then you should always document it in a book to make sure that the same problem does not occur in the future. It can also be used for evidence if you ever need a clear way to reflect on the events that occurred in your business.

Property Insurance

Whilst you may not want to consider this sort of insurance if you are working from your home, if your business involves personal property, business equipment, computer/ICT equipment, stock/inventory or tools, then you need to have some means of protection just in case of damage from fire, vandalism, theft or smoke. This insurance will mean that if you lose equipment due to an accident or criminal behaviour, then you have the means to replace them.

If you are worried about your business being interrupted due to property damage, then you may also want to consider investing in business interruption/loss of earning insurance as part of the overall policy. This means that you can protect your earnings or, better yet, earn them back if your business cannot remain in operation.

Professional Liability Insurance

It can be a difficult process when you are looking to hire the correct staff to support your business. After all, you want them to be well-trained, hold skills from either an apprenticeship or university qualification, and just have a good attitude in general. Despite the skills that your employees may have, they can also have bad days. That may mean that they accidently injure a client or even decide to pick a fight with them. Sometimes a simple accident, such as an employee slipping on the ground, is a sure-fire way to start a lawsuit. That’s why you need to invest in Professional Liability Insurance. Not only will it protect you from any negative outcomes caused by bad staff, but if a staff member is injured or can no longer work due to negligence, this form of insurance will protect your business against a lawsuit.

Personal Automobile Insurance

If you are a small business that works with moving vans, delivery vehicles or perhaps a Fleet Square, then you just have to start looking into an insurance policy that will protect your drivers, products on the move and any other people that are on the road. Whilst you can look into general car insurance (i.e. Third Party) or more specialised forms of insurance (like Fleet Insurance), if your business just needs a few vehicles to get from point A to point B, Personal Automobile Insurance will be incredibly useful to your business.

Not only does it cover all road vehicles (such as Trucks, Cars and Motorcycles), but it will protect you financially against physical and bodily damages, as well as any liability problems that may come about due to one of your employees being involved in a collision whilst driving on the road.