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Commercial Insurance Buying Guide

Published December 15, 2020

Written by: Tracey Berg
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Tracey Berg

Tracey Berg is the president of Cerity, a workers’ compensation insurance provider founded with a bold vision to reimagine small business insurance. With its digital-first approach, Cerity is transforming the entire process to empower business owners to quickly and easily protect their team, assets and livelihood through an online workers’ compensation solution. Follow Cerity on Twitter @CerityisHere


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As a business owner, you know that countless factors go into running your business. Regardless of your business’ industry or size, one consideration you must prioritize is commercial insurance.

What Is Commercial Insurance?

Most of us are familiar with personal insurance policies. Whether it’s renter’s insurance, homeowner’s insurance or car insurance, we have experienced the benefits and peace of mind provided by personal insurance policies. Commercial insurance policies offer similar protection and coverage to business owners, their businesses, property and employees.

Commercial policies protect business owners and employees from potential financial losses such as lawsuits, customer incidents, on-the-job employee injuries, damage, theft and more. Like personal insurance, commercial insurance has conditions and terms that policyholders should know to best understand their coverage, such as exclusions, policy limits, deductibles and premiums.

Types of Commercial Insurance

There are many facets of commercial insurance, each of which serves a specific purpose and offers protection for different circumstances.

  • General Liability Insurance. Liability coverage for businesses protects them in the event that (a) someone is injured on the business property due to negligence, (b) damage is caused to another’s property due to business negligence, (c) damage is experienced as a result of your product, (d) slander and defamation lawsuits are filed against your business, and/or any third-party lawsuits occur as a result of the incidents listed here.  
  • Property Insurance. Commercial property insurance protects property such as land, buildings and the assets held within from physical damage, theft, natural disasters and fires. Additional coverage can be added to property insurance to ensure other specific assets or wages are protected.
  • Errors and Omissions Insurance. Typically used in legal, insurance and tech industries, errors and omissions insurance covers businesses in the event of mistakes or inadvertent errors that cause injury.
  • Commercial Auto Insurance. If a business uses automobiles such as cars, trucks or vans for business operations, commercial auto policies protect employees and property in the same way auto policies do for individuals.
  • Workers’ Compensation Insurance. Workers’ compensation policies offer benefits and protections in the event an employee is injured on the job or experiences illness as a result of their job. In addition to covering employee medical expenses, workers’ comp typically offers coverage for lost wages and legal fees if the employee chooses to sue their employer for damages. Most states require businesses to carry workers’ comp insurance by law.

Choosing Insurance for Your Business

Now that you have a clear idea of the various commercial insurance policies available to you, it’s time to assess your business and determine which of these policies are applicable to your unique needs.

It’s also wise to check your local state laws because some states require that businesses maintain a minimum level of coverage for various aspects of their business, such as workers’ compensation.

Once you’ve chosen which types of commercial insurance are right for your business, research different providers and get multiple quotes. Many providers even allow business owners to buy their commercial insurance policies online, making things quick and easy.

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