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  • Business Insurance for Startups

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    General Liability Insurance for Startups

    As a small business owner, finding the right insurance that meets your needs can be a challenge. For most businesses, including startups, general liability insurance should be considered a requirement. It can be hard to know what insurance you need when embarking on a new business venture. Startup businesses have different needs than established companies and require an insurance plan that grows with the business.

    Read more about other types of insurance for startups:

    General liability insurance may not make you “lawsuit proof”—but it can provide your business with adequate financial protection should it be hit with a significant legal claim or settlement. No matter how diligent you are in following best practices and taking care of your customers, your business remains vulnerable to accidents, injuries, and claims of negligence, as well as baseless charges of harm.

    Liability insurance for startups is typically structured to cover both actual financial settlements and the legal costs of defending lawsuits. If your business is registered as an LLC or a corporation, your personal assets are shielded from any liabilities that may arise from lawsuits connected with your business. But your company’s assets aren’t. That’s why general liability insurance is considered such a critical component of business insurance.

    These are the major types of events that are typically covered by a general liability policy:

    • Accidents and injuries to both people and property that occur on a business’ property or arise from its operations, including bodily injury
    • Medical payments made for minor injuries sustained by visitors on a company’s property
    • Liability for damage to others’ property in the course of doing business
    • Accusations of slander or libel as a result of a company’s advertising
    • Other events, including fire damage to lessees in the case of rental property

    You should keep in mind that general liability insurance does not cover damages or lawsuits associated with workers’ compensation, or professional liability and errors and omissions insurance; separate policies are needed for these coverages.

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    • The National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ (NAIC) website offers useful “Tips & Considerations Concerning Liability Insurance." They believe having solid, documented practices and safety procedures in place may help your business be considered a lower risk—and may lower your premiums.
    • What can you do to make your workplace as safe as possible? At the very least, you should have fire and security alarms. If you have employees, train them to coordinate their efforts in the case of an emergency, including serious injuries, fires, and evacuations.
    • Remember that you can claim a tax deduction for your liability insurance premiums. Keep good documentation.