Whether you’re a one man band or a national multi million pound business, commercial insurance is necessary to help protect, not just your assets, but in some cases your clients assets too.

When you finally decide to take the plunge and start your own business, Insurance probably isn’t at the top of your mind so how do you know what Insurance policies you need to take out?

Read our top 5 policies which you should most definitely consider;

1. Employers Liability Insurance

This is vital, but sometimes confusing. You may not know who is classed as an employee. Just because they are not on your books doesn’t always mean you don’t need to consider covering them. Points to take into consideration and disclose to your broker; Do I hire Sub-Contractors? Am I a limited company? Do I rely upon voluntary helpers? It’s also a legal requirement to protect the people who work for your organisation, however big or small.

2. Public Liability Insurance

Accidents happen and Public Liability Insurance will compensate for your customers or members of the public who have suffered a loss down to your negligence, which gives you financial piece of mind. The self-employed businesses to the small to medium enterprises should certainly consider this. It’s also important to take into consideration the limit of indemnity, whether it’s £1million, £2million, or £5million, some contractors/organisations may require a minimum limit from their providers.

3. Office/Premises Insurance

If you have a premises whether it’s an office, shop or salon and even if you work from home, you need to make sure you protect your property, such as portable equipment, office contents, stock and not forgetting the building itself. In most cases cover is provided on an ‘All Risk’ basis which covers for nearly every eventuality with the few exceptions. Do you take equipment away from the premises, such as laptops, mobile phones and tools? Will you also need cover for your contents whilst being transported in a vehicle? All factors you will need to take into consideration and disclose to your broker.

4. Business Interruption

What if your business had been impacted by a claim which had interrupted you from trading? How would you pay the bills and employee’s salaries, for example? Business Interruption cover protects you when an unforeseen circumstance affects you from trading, this could be a fire, flood or maybe just being unable to access your premises due to a gas leak or a neighbouring property being closed off. This will protect your income or your additional costs and expenses to continue trading. You should also discuss in depth with your broker the Maximum Indemnity Period to ensure you are not left short of time. Most indemnity periods are now 24 months but if you are within a specialist trade or trade from a listed building for example you may wish to increase this amount if the worst case scenario should happen.

5. Professional Indemnity Insurance

We all want to do our best for our clients and customers, but sometimes we make mistakes. Professional Indemnity is designed to compensate your clients’ financial loss when a mistake is made by you. If you are providing expert, professional advice, such as consultancy work, you could need this. Also, if you are an electrician and providing wiring inspections for example, you may also require this policy. Most people associate PI cover with white collar occupations but if you’re providing professional skilled advice this could relate to any trade. Like Public Liability, some organisations may demand a minimum limit of indemnity from their suppliers or contractors. You should discuss with your broker further if you think this is a policy you may need and they will be able to advise you and discuss the limit of indemnity you may require.

If you are starting a new business venture or simply unsure what commercial insurances are right for you, please contact me on 01392 429096 or email; amy@northcottbeaton.co.uk to discuss further.