Nobody wants to do business with someone who isn’t insured – it makes the business owner seem unprofessional and lacking a certain seriousness. But if you own a business, public opinion is far from the only reason why you should have a good insurance plan – should something go wrong, your own pocket is not a place from where you want the damages money coming from. Here are some types of insurance you, as a business owner, should look into.
The meat and potatoes of business insurance
These days, you can get insured against an ingrown toenail, but do you really want to? Many non-basic insurance premiums are uncomfortably high – if you’re good at what you do, the basics should serve you just fine for the time being.
The first form of insurance every savvy business owners rushes to is liability insurance. Even if you have a limited liability company, you should put some serious thought into getting a policy that protects you in the case of legal issues – lawyers and courts ask for a pretty penny, and everyone can sue everyone (or so Ally McBeal told us). Should someone strike you with an unjust lawsuit, you don’t want to be the one paying for legal fees – likewise, should something go wrong on the job, a liability insurance policy will compensate the victims.
Afterwards, it’s a good idea to insure the tools of your trade with a property insurance policy that will protect your headquarters and the objects in it. The effectiveness of this policy will vary – from weather-related woes all the way to breaks and malfunctions caused by you or your employees, depending on the premiums you’re willing to pay for. Likewise, consider vehicle insurance – if you’re running a door-to-door business like tree service, your vehicle can be every bit as important as your shears.
Professional liability insurance is another good thing to have, especially if you have many people working for you: you might be supremely confident in your skillset, but can you vouch that none of your employees will make mistakes? If you get sued over some type of malpractice, this policy can act as an extension of the liability insurance by helping you deal with any payments you are forced to make.
The insurances of your employees
Other than insuring your brand, you should also think about the various insurance policies that your workers will have. It’s probably the dream of every bad employer to have his employees pay for their insurance premiums in full, but many states now force business owners to pay for their workers’ health and unemployment-related policies.
This is also why every business owner should think twice about expanding the workforce: you might be able to set aside extra paychecks, but can you bear the many additional fees that come with more employees as well? If you don’t want to pay for someone else’s disability insurance and unemployment tax, you should consider working with what (or rather, whom) you have until you enjoy greater profits.