There are many skills and characteristics that go into advising business owners on NY small business insurance, expert knowledge of NY small business insurance products is a must. For that reason I have been in Hartford, CT attending the Travelers Insurance Producer School for the last ten days.
Small Business Insurance Coverages
The following list outlines a few of the NY small business insurance coverages and concepts that I learned this week that I believe are not common knowledge to most small business owners.
- Employees Not Insureds
- In a standard commercial general liability insurance policy your employees are not insured for bodily injury that they cause to each other. Though this gap in coverage does not directly impact your business, lawsuits between employees can cause serious business interruptions. There are endorsements to NY small business insurance policies that can add back this coverage.
- Personal & Advertising Injury Claims
- Personal & Advertising Injury claims are paid on a per person and/or per organization basis. This means that one act in which you are found liable can have multiple awards based on the number of offended parties. This differs from Premises/Operations or Products/Completed Operations liability which is awarded on a per occurrence basis.
- Reservation of Rights Letter
- There are circumstances when a small business owner has a loss and coverage cannot be determined immediately. In these cases the insurance carrier will still defend the small business owner during the resulting trial. However, in this instance the insurance carrier will send the small business owner a Reservation of Rights Letter. The Reservation of Rights Letter allows the small business owner the option of choosing their own defense council if the small business owner so chooses, (with reimbursement by the carrier at a “reasonable” hourly rate). The carrier also reserves the right to NOT provide coverage based on the facts uncovered during the trial.
- Do not assume you have NY small business insurance coverage just because the carrier provides you with defense.
- aka Fire Legal Liability
- Every business owner that has rented a space for his/her business is familiar with fire legal liability (now known as Damage to Premises Rented to You). What this small business owner does not know is that the clause in the rental agreement indemnifying the property owner is Null on the Commercial General Liability insurance policy if the Fire is started by a 3rd party. This is a major gap in NY small business insurance coverage if not attended to.
- Valet Parking
- Your business does not have NY small business insurance coverage for any vehicle valet parked by your employees if the vehicle is off your business premise or the adjacent streets. This may seem inconsequential since most business owners would just hire a professional valet company, however for the rest of you this is an important gap to be aware of.
All of the gaps mentioned above can be addressed through additional coverages and/or endorsements.
However, it is important to understand that these do exist on a standard NY business insurance policy.
The Murray Group business insurance specialist team can help you address coverage gaps in your current business insurance policy. Call us at (518) 456-6688 and click here to contact us by email and make sure you’re properly covered.