What Types of Commercial Insurance are Essential in Florida

When you own a business, it is important to make sure you business is protected from all risk.  While you cannot predict what might happen, you can purchase commercial insurance and pass most or all of the risk on to the insurer you are paying to cover you.  When you are building a business insurance portfolio in Florida, there are several different forms of coverage you will need to consider investing in.  Before you think you are adequately covered, review the most important types of commercial insurance you need when you own a business and review your current portfolio to search for gaps.

Commercial General Liability Insurance

General liability insurance can be purchased in a Business Owners’ Package policy or separately.  This type of cover will protect your business against claims of bodily injury, property damage, and advertising injury.  If you are operating without general liability insurance, you will be forced to pay for claims out-of-pocket and may be forced to close your doors. 

Commercial Property Insurance

You need property insurance if you are a tenant or the owner of the commercial premises where you conduct business.  Commercial property insurance for building owners will cover the building, your business property, and also signage.  If you are renting, your property insurance will cover Loss of Income and tenant building improvements you have made.  Property insurance on your commercial property is just as important as having homeowners insurance.

Commercial Flood Insurance

Did you know that your commercial property insurance policy specifically excludes damages that are caused by a flood?  If you did not know this, it is important to invest in commercial flood insurance to protect your building, your business property, and even the products you sell.  This specialty policy will pay for repairs and will also pay for you to rent another space while your property is being restored.

Commercial Equipment Insurance

Some broad commercial insurance policies include limited coverage for commercial equipment.  If you have very valuable equipment, you will need a special commercial equipment insurance policy that will pay when the equipment breaks down.  This insurance will pay to repair covered losses, will pay you business income when the breakdown causes business interruption, and will pay for other expenses you might incur because of the loss.

Commercial Auto Insurance

You cannot cover your commercial vehicles with the standard personal auto insurance policy.  If you drive your vehicles for business, you will need a commercial auto insurance policy.  This policy will include commercial liability coverage, uninsured motorist coverage, collision, and comprehensive. 

Worker’s Compensation Insurance

If you have employees, you have a need for workers compensation insurance.  In fact, in the state of Florida, if you have 4 or more employees, you are required to carry this insurance.  While it is a requirement, it is also very important to have if your employees are injured at work.  Not only will the insurance pay for the employee’s medical care, when claims are paid the employee waives the right to sue you for negligence.

Operating without the right types of commercial insurance is one of the biggest gambles you can make as a business owner.  Do not take the chance and make sure you build an extensive insurance portfolio that will pass the risk on to the insurer.

In Tampa call Mid Florida Insurance Professionals for a free quote and a confidential conference.

 

Commercial Insurance for New Businesses

There are dozens of types of commercial insurance available, but you don’t need to buy all of them to start a successful business. Since every business is unique, you will need to design a custom insurance package that provides the level of protection you need. Listed below are five essential commercial insurance plans to help a new business in Tampa to run smoothly.

Property Insurance

This insurance protects the assets owned by your business in the event it gets damaged or destroyed. Property insurance is especially necessary if you own land or expensive equipment. Without it, an accident may cause your company to go bankrupt. Even if your business is run from your home, the average home-policy insurance will not cover commercial assets and property.

Property insurance is available in two main types: all-risk policies and peril-specific policies. As the name suggests, an all-risk policy will cover a wide range of incidents. A peril-specific policy will only cover a certain incident, such as crime, floods, or fires.

Product/Professional Liability Insurance

Product liability insurance is designed for companies that retail, distribute, wholesale, or manufacture a product. It protects the business from financial loss that may result from a defect product causing bodily harm or injury to a customer. The amount you spend on this insurance should be based on the products you are selling. For example, a shoe store would have far less risk than an appliance store.

Professional liability insurance is for a business that provides services. It protects the company from the effects of negligence, errors, and malpractice when delivering your service. Some governments require this type of insurance for specific professions. For example, doctors in many states have to buy malpractice coverage before starting their own practice.

Business Income Insurance

This type of business insurance will cover financial loss that may result when the company’s facilities are being rebuilt after a disaster. It is designed to cover any type of business and will provide the same financial position that the company would be in if there no income loss had occurred. Income insurance is not usually used as a stand-alone policy, but it can be added to a comprehensive package.

Worker’s Compensation Insurance

Employee injuries while on the job are not common, but when they happen, it can result in an expensive compensation package or even a lawsuit. A business with compensation insurance will take the financial burden off your business in the event of a mishap. Additionally, having this insurance usually prohibits the employee from filing a lawsuit against you.

Commercial Automobile Insurance

This last policy may seem surprising, but it is just as important as other types of insurance. Any company that uses trucks or cars will need coverage in case of an accident. This is particularly essential for companies with large fleets of vehicles, since it raises the possibility of a mishap.

Conclusion

Insufficient coverage is often the biggest mistake a new business owner can make. Even if the worst does not happen, it is always good to prepare for it. Spending $1,000 on insurance fees isn’t nearly as bad as losing a million dollars in a crisis. The agents at Mid Florida Insurance Professionals are Tampa’s experts in the Commercial  Property and Casualty Insurance industry. Call us today for a no-obligation consultation (813) 962-3082.

 

Proper Protection for Your Business with Commercial Insurance

There are a number of significant decisions that must be made by a new business owner. None may be as important as the decision to take out a commercial insurance policy. These policies are vital to the protection and overall success of the business. However, the term business insurance is a broad description and encompasses several specific types of policies. Therefore, it is important to understand the various plans available and the protection provided by each one.

Property insurance refers to a commercial policy that protects the location and/or contents of the business. For instance, if a business owner is operating from home or rental property, then this type of plan should be put in place to protect the contents. If the property is owned by the business operator, then the policy would cover the contents as well as the structure itself. These plans also insure the property of others that may be in the location. Several additions can be included to insure against specific disasters as well, such as fire, flooding or tornadoes.

Another important form of commercial insurance is a liability policy. These policies protect a business when liabilities are legally imposed due to the negligence of employees or the company itself.  Basically, it protects the business from being sued. There are various liability plans that can cover everything from harassment to the poor performance of stocks.

Commercial auto insurance is a must when operations involve the use of automobiles. This plan should not be mistaken for a regular automobile policy. Commercial auto policies cover any damage that may be done to others while using a business automobile. Actual coverage for the company vehicles must be provided within a regular car insurance policy.

There are several other types of business insurance policies available including health insurance for employees, workers compensation plans as well as life and disability plans. Other plans offer protection in the unfortunate event that a key owner or employee is injured or killed. This policy may provide financial means for the remaining employees or owners to buy out the effected partner’s share. Business interruption insurance covers damages or losses sustained to the profit of a business due to the inability to operate for uncontrollable reasons. A prime example would be if a business is damaged due to lighting and could not be in operation for several days.

As an experienced agent, I can help a business owner decide exactly what commercial insurance plans should be purchased. A business should tailor their policies to their individual needs and be aware of the exclusions and additions that may be necessary. Based on these changes, premiums can fluctuate. Running a business can be a quite unpredictable venture and owners should always be prepared for the worst case scenarios.

 

Business Insurance Indemnifies Owners Against Assorted Perils

Tampa Bay Commercial Insurance Summed Up in One Article

Misconceptions and half-truths often characterize business owners’ understanding of business insurance matters. Sole proprietors and business partners face a number of operating risks. Injury claims have become exceedingly common, fueled by anecdotal evidence of huge cash awards. Lawyers offer contingency representation that facilitates people filing suits, often for frivolous or fraudulent reasons.

Map of Tampa Bay FloridaCourts sometimes award plaintiffs exorbitant awards, and owners that have been found liable could loose their businesses, personal assets, homes, and reputations. Liens continue until settled, and determined plaintiffs can renew them. Courts can seize bank accounts, cash, and personal property to settle these judgments. Commercial liability insurance offers protection from claims of injuries or property damage occurring on business property.

The corporate business structure will not protect limited liability corporation owners from summary judgments. Courts can and do remove the veil of corporate protection under certain circumstances. Insurance coverage, however, offers protection against almost any possible risk. These policies can be tailored to specific industry needs, and package deals offer comprehensive coverage options at reduced rates.

Types of Commercial Insurance Agency Coverage

Choosing the right coverage makes sound financial sense, and some types of coverage might be mandatory for certain types of businesses. Types of coverage include the following options.

  • Workers Compensation

    This coverage is mandatory for companies that employ workers in most states. The insurance covers medical claims for employee injuries while working on the company premises. The coverage extends to include off-premise injuries when employers require workers to travel. Workers compensation premiums are based on payroll, and owners estimate their annual payrolls each year and must adjust premiums when the actual figures have been determined.

  • Commercial General Liability Insurance

    This coverage protects against customer claims when they suffer injuries or property damage while on company premises. The coverage pays medical bills, costs of property damage, and negligence awards. Liability insurance also offers protection against libel, slander, and the legal costs of defending companies against claims.

  • Commercial Property Insurance

    This protection covers company property against fires, natural disasters, thefts, vandalism, smoke damage, and other hazards. Loss can include buildings, company papers, cash, business interruption, and lost income due to supplier failures.

    • All-risk policies cover multiple risks except those perils specifically excluded. Most small businesses choose these plans for the comprehensive protections they afford.
    • Peril-specific coverage only covers the specific incidents mentioned in the policy. The premiums cost less, so these policies make good choices for businesses that face fewer risks.
  • Commercial Automobile Insurance

    Businesses that use vehicles in the course of operations need commercial auto insurance because personal auto policies will not cover accidents if underwriters determine that incidents occurred during business use. The policies not only provide protection for personal injuries and property damage but also cover auto damage and loss of use until replacements are made.

  • Commercial Flood Insurance

    Flood insurance always comes as a separate, independent policy. Some areas run little risk of flooding, while others in low-lying areas risk flood damage on a yearly basis. Some businesses at risk fail to take out this essential protection, assuming federal assistance should disasters strike. However, the government might require disaster-area businesses to obtain future flood coverage through the National Flood Insurance Program.

    Most flood policies cover the following situations.

    • Building damages and contents.
    • Cleanup and repairs after floods recede, including painting and debris removal.
    • Sandbagging to prevent or limit flood damage.
  • Commercial Equipment  Insurance

    Commercial equipment includes stationary and mobile equipment used in a business. Owners can choose from a variety of industry-specific policies and coverage options. Some owners only cover replacement or repair costs for breakdowns, but some equipment might cause injuries or property damage and need indemnity coverage. Insurance providers refuse to insure certain types of high-risk equipment, including underground apparatus.

  • Home Business Coverage

    More people work from home than ever before due to computers and online business opportunities. Working from home creates less stressful lifestyles, but these companies still must protect themselves. Home businesses face many of the same risks that traditional firms must handle.

    Personal insurance will not cover home-business use. The use of a personal automobile faces the same requirements at home as any retail location. The law prohibits some high-risk businesses from operating out of residential locations for zoning or safety reasons. In these cases, insurance coverage will not pay for businesses operating illegally.

Other Optional Coverage

A variety of optional coverage options furnish custom protection. These options include the follow special types of coverage.

  • Errors and Omissions

    This coverage provides protection from claims arising from failing to perform professional services as promised.

  • Life and Disability Insurance

    This coverage protects against the death or injury of a key employee or business partner. These policies allow surviving partners to buy out the deceased’s interest in the business, among other coverage options.

  • Scripted Policies

    Some businesses have special needs. For example, businesses that rely on physical abilities of a partner or employee might need to insure legs, arms, diving capabilities, or driving skills. Scripted policies can be tailored to cover an amazing variety of unusual, situations.

Business insurance offers a variety of custom-tailored options. Risk is substantial, and insurance coverage can address almost any eventuality imaginable.

Give Mid Florida Insurance Professionals a Call at: (813) 962-3082 We’re third generation of insurance professions with the knowledge and skills to get the coverage you need at the best prices available.

 

What Type of Commercial Insurance Do Florida Business Owners Need?

If you own a business you need to have a comprehensive insurance portfolio to cover a plethora of different claims that can arise during the course of owning a business.  While you never want to experience a loss, some losses simply cannot be avoided no matter how proactive you are.  The entire purpose of buying insurance to recover financially from an unintentional loss so you do not have to pay out-of-pocket.  If you are not sure what type of commercial insurance you need to carry in Florida, make sure you review the various types of business insurance that are available.  Surprisingly, there may be a number of different policies that you need that you are not currently carrying.

Commercial Property Insurance

You carry property insurance to cover your home.  Commercial property insurance in Florida is designed to protect the structure where you conduct business.  If you own the building where you operate, you will need a comprehensive plan that covers the entire building.  If you are renting the property, the landlord will require you to carry a tenant’s property insurance policy.  A tenant’s policy is more affordable because it only covers tenant improvements and not the entire building.  Some benefits of carrying property insurance when you are renting include coverage for loss of earnings when the building you are renting is not inhabitable.  Property insurance will also include coverage for business property, furnishings, and merchandise that is stored onsite.

Commercial General Liability Insurance in Florida

If you have property insurance, you do have liability coverage built into the policy.  You might wonder why you would need general liability insurance when you are already carrying a form of liability cover?  Businesses invest in general liability insurance because it gives added protection in the event that a third-party person is injured or their property is damaged by the business.  This type of insurance also covers libel, slander, and defamation.  If you do not have enough liability insurance protecting your business, you may spend thousands of dollars and years in court trying to defend yourself as a defendant.

Commercial Flood Insurance to Protect Property and Merchandise

Did you know that property insurance policies specifically exclude flooding and mudslides.  This means that you must carry commercial flood insurance in Florida to have any type of coverage in the event of a claim.  A flood is defined as water that has overflowed onto two or more properties.  This means that the flood occurring in your building would have to overflow off of the property to be considered a covered flood.  Flood insurance policies are nationally mandated and premiums are calculated based on flood zones.  If you are in a risky zone, you will pay higher premiums.  You can opt for a policy that covers only property, only contents, or both.  The deductible will be a high percentage of the damage sustained because of the flood.

Specialized Commercial Equipment Insurance

If you use special equipment, you need to list this equipment specifically or invest in a special rider.  Machine tools, printing equipment, restaurant equipment, dental equipment, computers, agricultural equipment, vending machines, and construction equipment are all types of machines that must be covered.  Considering the value of this equipment, there is no reason it should not be protected against unexpected loss.

Worker’s Compensation Insurance

Worker's Compensation & Commercial General Liabiltiy InsuranceYou also need to protect your employees.  In the state of Florida, in most cases you must carry work comp insurance if you have 4 or more full-time employees.  This insurance will cover all reasonable costs for medical treatment when the employee is injured on the job.

As you can see, there are a number of different types of business insurance that you must carry to keep your business protected.  Failing to purchase just one of the essential policies could close your doors for good in the tragic event that you have to file a claim.  Meet with an experienced commercial agent and review your insurance portfolio for holes.

For current rates and ways to save money on commercial insurance, Tampa Bay area business owners  should call Mid Florida Insurance Professionals at (813)  962-3082 for a quick quote and excellent rates on all commercial insurance plans.

 

Understanding Florida’s Worker’s Compensation Insurance

If you are planning on starting a business in Florida it is time to start researching Worker’s Compensation Insurance laws.  All business owners must invest in work comp insurance to protect their employees in the event that they are injured during the course of doing business.  Business owners who do not comply must pay penalties that are generally much higher than the insurance premiums.  When you are shopping for Worker’s Compensation Insurance, there are several factors you need to consider so you have peace of mind in knowing that all of your employees are protected.  Here are some important facts you should know so you are prepared when you meet with your agent:

What Businesses Are Required to Have Coverage?

The Reason for Florida's Worker's Compensation InsuranceBusinesses in every field or industry need to carry worker’s compensation insurance in Florida.  The Florida Department of Financial Services requires any business with four or more full-time employees to have continuous coverage.  If you are in the construction industry, you must carry insurance if you have one or more full-time employees.  Another exception to the rule has to do with farms.  Farms with 5 or more employees and 12 seasonal employees must have cover.

Understanding How to Categorize Your Employees

A worker’s compensation insurer will rate your premiums based on what your employees do.  If you have a number of different employees with different duties, you may pay different premiums for each department.  For example, your customer service payroll will be rated one premium and your logistics department will be rated another.  If you are ever confused by how your employees should be rated, explain what these employees do to the agent so they can select the right coding.

Understanding How to Report Payroll

Worker’s Compensation Insurance premiums in Florida are rated based on how much you expect to pay your employees for the year.  If you have hourly employees and you are not sure exactly how much each employee will work throughout the year, you have to make an estimate.  If you plan on hiring more employees, you may need to adjust the payroll throughout the term.  If you underestimate the payroll, you will have to pay more after your audit.  The additional charges can add up if you are way off on your payroll calculations.

What Does Worker’s Compensation Cover?

In Florida, work comp benefits will give employees access to all reasonable and necessary treatments for injuries that are sustained during the course of work.  Some of the things covered include: doctor visits, prescriptions, surgery, rehabilitation, x rays and other services.  Death benefits are also available if the employee dies as a result of injuries.

Carrying worker’s compensation insurance in Florida is a must.  Make sure you choose an experienced agent when you are quoting your insurance.  The agent will help you understand the premiums you are paying and they will also help you gather the documentation you need during an audit.  This insurance will prevent unnecessary lawsuits while still offering your employees the treatment they need to recover.

For a Worker’s Comensation insurance, in Tampa Bay and all of your business insurance needs, our agents can help you to create a plan and fill in the details. Call Mid Florida Insurance Professionals at (813) 962-3082.