Every business startup faces certain risks the minute they open for business. These risks are not just for the brick and mortar retailer or independent contractor, but also for the online business as well. The last thing a new business owner wants to deal with is a customer, vendor, or employee bringing an action that must be responded to. Unless you have an attorney in the family, you are going to need to put up some cash just to have an attorney respond to a complaint.
How to Mitigate
The most affordable way to mitigate the risks on the horizon is to purchase the appropriate insurance coverage for your industry so that your risk is transferred to a financially sound third party insurance company. It’s important to know from the beginning, the insurance company not only pays for damages, but they also have a duty to defend you and your business.
Coverage to Consider
To understand the risks that may be present in the industry you operate in, consider yourself a consumer or employee and think about all the things that can go wrong:
- You or an employee of yours causes injury to a customer or damage a customer’s property. This risk would be covered by the General Liability policy. This coverage can be purchased on a stand-alone basis or part of a Business Owners Policy.
- Your store is broken into or damaged by fire or windstorm. Commercial property insurance will reimburse you for the repairs or replacement of your building or its contents. This coverage can be purchased on a stand-alone basis or as part of a Business Owners Policy.
- Your employee is making a delivery for the business and is injured in a car accident. The injuries to your employee would be covered under a Worker’s Compensation policy since the accident happened while the employee was performing a work-related
- Your website contains some information, logos, or slogans that are very similar to another business who then brings an action for copyright infringement. This would be covered under the Personal Injury coverage in your General Liability or Business Owners Policy.
- You are driving a company owned vehicle and get into an at-fault accident that causes severe injuries to the other driver. You would have coverage for this with your Commercial Auto Policy.
- As a web developer, you have a contract with a customer that believes you did not do the job that was specified in the contract, you were late delivering it and wants a refund and damages for financial losses while the site was down. Your Professional Liability policy would pay for your defense, settlement costs, or damages awarded by the court.
Suffice it to say that for every risk that can be anticipated, there is affordable insurance to protect you and your business. The good news is that in many cases, most of the coverages mentioned above can be packaged into one or two policies making the coverage that much more affordable. Don’t take a chance. Get your new business covered.