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What is General Liability Insurance?

Liability insurance (also known as Commercial General Business Liability) protects a company’s assets and pays for obligations – medical costs, for example –incurred if someone gets hurt on your property or when there are property damages or injuries caused by you or your employees. Liability insurance also covers the cost of your legal defense and any settlement or award should you be successfully sued.  Typically these include compensatory damages, nonmonetary losses suffered by the injured party, and punitive damages. 

General liability insurance can also protect you against any liability as a tenant if you cause damage to a property that you rent, such as by fire or other covered loss.

Finally, it can also cover claims of false or misleading advertising, including libel, slander, and copyright infringement.  

Does your Business Need Liability Insurance?

We live in a litigious society and even if you think you’re unlikely to face a claim, getting insurance is a wise investment that doesn’t cost much – annual premiums range from $750 to $2,000 depending on your line of business and coverage needs. That’s certainly a lot less than the thousands, if not millions, of dollars you may need to spend fighting your case in court.

General liability insurance can be purchased on its own, but it can also be included as part of a Business Owner’s Policy (BOP) which bundles liability and property insurance into one policy. If you have a BOP, check it to see what your liability coverage limit is. You may find that it is quite low, in which case you may need additional coverage through a separate policy.