General liability insurance is commonly used by businesses across sizes and industries. If you are looking to insure your business, you may be surprised to find that general liability isn’t required by state or federal laws for most businesses in the U.S. This doesn’t mean you won’t need it, however.
In some cases, you will be required to carry general liability insurance by a lender or landlord. If you take out a loan for your business or rent a space for your operations, you may be required to carry general liability insurance. This is to protect those who have financial stake in your company from possible monetary loss or lawsuits in case an accident occurs during your operations.
General liability insurance may also be required to apply for and obtain certain professional licenses. If you plan on offering any specialized or professional services, you will likely need general liability insurance.
What Does General Liability Insurance Cover?
General liability insurance covers three main areas:
- Bodily injury under general liability insurance covers injuries a visitor may sustain on your business’ property. This insurance can help cover the victim’s medical bills and protect your business against a lawsuit regarding the injury.
- Property damage under general liability insurance covers damages someone may sustain to their personal property due to an accident on your business’ premises. It can help pay compensation for the damages and protect your business against a lawsuit.
- Personal and advertising injury covers claims against the business regarding libel, slander, copyright infringement, malicious persecution and more.
Who Needs General Liability Insurance?
Essentially every business needs general liability insurance. Every industry faces common dangers when it comes to injuries and damages on their property. Whether you own a commercial property or work out of your home, general liability insurance can protect your assets.
Many small business owners choose to combine their general liability insurance with commercial property insurance into a single business owners policy. Business owners policies are geared for small businesses and can combine important coverages to save you money on business insurance.
Is General Liability Insurance Expensive?
On its own, general liability insurance is relatively inexpensive. Rates depend on a variety of factors, however, such as your location, the size of your business, industry, coverage limits, deductible and more. Your general liability limits may be different than another business depending on your specific coverage needs.