There is a lot to think about when you go into business for the very first time. One of the first things you will need to do is ensure that you are insured properly. Finding out what it is exactly that you need insuring against is another step entirely, and should be treated as such. It is at this stage that you will need to find out what insurance is out there and what you would benefit from, and in doing this you may need to assess your business yourself and determine what the risks are and what situations you may be involved in. It goes without saying that no two business are the same and so will need different policies. The level of risk associated with your business in terms of risk to your employees or consumers will need to be individually assessed too. By finding out what you can and preparing yourself fully before you purchase your cover, you are better placed to avoid paying more that what you actually need to.
If you operate from an office or you own a shop then you might want to insure your goods, whether they be your PC and laptop or actual stock that you sell to your customers. Contents insurance insures all the contents of a property so that whatever is stolen or damaged can be replaced quickly and with relative ease. This insurance guards against almost anything that can happen to the things you own whilst they are at your place of work, and so is a pretty good type of insurance to have. It isn’t necessary though if you operate as say a business consultant for instance, as you will probably travel light, be supplied with equipment when you get to your destination, and you won’t have any goods or stock that you need to store.
Insurance that guards you against a lawsuit or claim from someone that has used your business or service is called general liability and is something most people who operate within a business setting – whatever the nature of that business – cannot really do without, and so is well worth thinking about.
If you supply a product or have stock that you sell then you may want to insure your business against a claim against what you have sold. This is known as product liability, and again is worthwhile thinking about if you sell anything at all.
If you work as a sole trader, working within peoples’ homes as perhaps a painter and decorator then you might want to insure yourself in case a customer claims that you have caused a fault or damage in their house. Expert liability insurance will protect you from any such claim.
Of course insurance doesn’t just apply to businesses that offer goods, it applies to businesses offering services, which is why malpractice insurance exists to cover people who provide a service related to health care. If a person who has received the care of an individual and believed that they suffered as a result, then this insurance will cover the professional that delivered the service.
Essentially, business insurance can come in lots of different forms, so it is important you find out what applies to you and what you think you could benefit from.