Small Business Insurance – Understanding the essentials
It should be as much a part of your business as an accountant or business banking. Because without the right insurance, you risk losing your business or facing financial difficulty if something goes wrong.
Why get business insurance?
While running your own business can be highly rewarding, there are risks involved too. If a client falls at your premises and claims for compensation, or you’re taken to court for negligence, you could face a bill for thousands of pounds, even if you’re subsequently proven to have done nothing wrong. And if your office gets flooded and you can’t work there for a month, you’d want to claim for interruption to your business.
Having the right insurance is a legal requirement in some cases, and essential for your peace of mind, to protect you, your business, your employees and your property.
How much cover?
Insurance is a monthly cost for your business, so it’s important to make sure you’ve got the right amount. Too much cover and you’ll be paying over the odds for something you don’t need; too little and you could have gaps in your cover that would prevent you from being able to claim.
Firstly, it’s important to distinguish between compulsory insurance and what you can tailor to help keep your business protected.
Compulsory business insurance
- Employers’ liability insurance: if you employ anyone (including yourself if you run a limited company on your own), this is a legal requirement to protect your business against compensation claims from an employee who is injured or becomes ill as a result of their work. You can be fined up to £2,500 if you don’t have it.
- Third party motor insurance: you need to have this as a bare minimum for any vehicles used by your business.
Other insurance to protect your business
Alongside the compulsory insurance element, you should also consider covering yourself for:
- Professional indemnity insurance: protect your business against claims from clients for faults or negligence in your work that lose them money.
- Public and product liability insurance: if a member of the public is injured or becomes ill due to something you or your employees do, or a product you make, this will cover the cost of claims against you.
- Tax enquiry and legal expenses insurance: legal fees, court cases and compensation can cost thousands of pounds, even if you win the case. This covers those expenses. If you are a contractor, we also offer IR35 contract reviews, please ask for details when calling us.
- Buildings and contents insurance/Material damage insurance: protect your physical assets, including your premises, equipment and stock, against theft and damage from flood or fire.
- Personal accident and sickness: when your business relies on you, this covers you if you can’t work due to illness or an accident both at work and outside it.
Tailored insurance for your company
No two businesses are the same, even in the same industry. So as well as choosing the cover above, think about your other insurance needs. If you run a small motor fleet, that would mean new care replacement cover; if you’re a pub owner it’s cover in case you lost your license; and if you’re a property owner, then it’s cover for loss of rent.
To find out how you can protect your business, get a quote now or for more advice, call us on 0333 321 1403 and speak to our friendly advisers.
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