Overview Any business faces unpredictable threats and risks on a daily basis. A fire, robbery or employee injury may destroy everything your company stands for. To protect yourself from the unforeseen and make sure your business survives, you should purchase the right business insurance. For a monthly premium your policy will ensure you are protected from a range of pre-specified risks. Because every business is different insurances come in different forms with different levels of cover. To help you determine which policy is best for you, we have partnered with specialist insurance brokers. Working with a broker simplifies the complex task of protecting the assets of your company and the liabilities it may face. Our specialist insurance broker will help you find competitive quotes for the coverage you need from leading insurance companies like Royal and Sun Alliance, Norwich Union, Groupama, Fortis, Axa, Hiscox, and Denhams. How it Works You will need a number of insurances to cover all of your assets from possible loss or damage and to protect you from any potential liability. Researching and purchasing each insurance separately is expensive and time consuming. An alternative to this is to buy a packaged insurance policy. A packaged policy is a product that offers the most common insurances required to run your business bundled together in one offering and the flexibility to adjust the coverage to meet your specific needs. Packaged policies offer a number of benefits. You know the cover will be comprehensive enough to cover the main risks affecting your business whilst avoiding duplication and overlap of cover. It is also easier to manage as you have a single set of documents, one point of contact and one renewal date. Packages are often less expensive as insurers will offer a better total premium when they are providing all your cover. The following insurances are common, highly practical and in some cases a legal requirement.
- Employers liability insurance. If you employ anyone outside your immediate family, you are required by law to purchase employer's liability insurance. This insurance offers you protection for any liability arising from injury or illness sustained by employees while they are working for you.
- Motor insurance. If you use a motor vehicle for your business, you have to insure at a minimum against third party liability by law. You should also strongly consider extending your protection to cover your motor vehicle from collision and theft.
- Public liability. This will protect you from any liabilities from a Third Party (other than your employees) bodily injury or damage to their property that may occur during the normal operation of your business.
- Products liability. This will protect you from any liabilities from a Third Party bodily injury (other than your employees) or damage to their property that may occur from products you sold or supplied.
- Material damage insurance. There are several different insurances that are designed to cover your various assets (building, computer equipment, stock, or contents) from loss or damage caused by various causes (fire, flood, theft or other disasters).
- Business interruption insurance. This covers you from the loss of turnover or trading profits from damage to your property that prevents the normal operation of your business.
- Money insurance. In specific circumstances this will reimburse you for money that is lost or stolen from the premises, your home or whilst you are moving it to another location.
- Goods in transit insurance. Covers you for accidental loss, destruction or damage to goods in transit and the cost of alternative transport if needed.
- Other insurances for your business Other insurances may be considered a standard part of an insurance policy for your business. If so, our intelligent RFQ form will allow you to request the appropriate insurance. These additional insurances will be denoted by the question mark beside the line item representing them. If you click on the question mark, text explaining the insurance will be provided.
Things to Watch out for
- Excess. An Excess is the first part of every claim that you are responsible for. Usually you can reduce the cost of your insurance by increasing the Excess amount.
Amounts insured. It is your responsibility, and vitally important, to supply accurate information to the insurance company as to the value of your assets. In some circumstances, incorrectly valuing the amount to be insured could affect your claim. If you cover your assets for more than they are worth (over-insure), you will pay a higher premium than necessary. If you cover your assets for less then they are worth (under-insure), you will not receive enough compensation to cover your losses. Our specialist insurance broker will be happy to discuss this with you. In some cases an insurer may wish to survey your premises before agreeing to cover the insurance requested.
- Pre-set Conditions and Exclusions. Understanding how you are covered, is as important as understanding how much you are covered for. You should be aware of any pre-set conditions and exemptions that may exist with the cover. For example some cover is dependent on you having an alarm fitted or securing your equipment in a particular way. Full details of conditions can be found in the policy wording and are shown on your quote schedule. Our specialist insurance broker will be happy to discuss these with you if you have any questions.
- Know your insurance company. As part of your decision making process you should look beyond the numbers (cost of cover and amount you are covered for) and examine the potential insurance provider. It might be better to pay a little higher premium but deal with an insurer who has extensive knowledge about your industry or business insurance. You might want to also check the insurers financial history and claims process before you decide to take their policy.
FAQs How can I make sure that my policy adequately covers my business and the appropriate assets?
One way to make sure you protect all your assets is to create a list of any business assets you would want to cover and check your policy for their inclusion. Make sure you have included cover for all your tools, fixtures and fittings, equipment, stock and any other important items. Our specialist insurance broker can advise you on suitable levels of cover if you are in any doubt. How will my claim history affect me?
Typically before an insurance company will provide you with a quote, they will look at all your previous claims including ones that were not paid. If the insurer notices several claims in the last few years they are likely to increase your premium. How do I file a claim?
Usually the process of filing for a claim is quick and simple but when a disaster occurs it's easy to become confused.
- DO notify our specialist insurance broker as soon as possible
- DO tell the police immediately if you have suffered a theft or malicious damage.
- DO take all possible action to prevent further loss or damage and thereby minimise or reduce the loss
- DO NOT admit liability or offer to pay compensation to anyone. Pass all correspondence to our specialist insurance broker, unanswered immediately.
- DO tell our specialist insurance broker im
mediately if you receive a solicitors letter, summons, notice of prosecution or similar communication and DO NOT acknowledge it.
- DO take any immediate action possible to prevent it happening again.
How can I help speed up the claim process?
Be prepared to provide any information that is requested by the insurance company or adjuster. The best way to prepare is to be proactive and document vital information before a problem comes to pass. For example, you may want to keep duplicate records of key purchases offsite.
How do I adjust my insurance policy to reflect a new asset I just purchased?
When you purchase a business asset, you should contact your insurance broker and determine how you can include it in your current cover. Your broker should be able to cover the extra item immediately. New documents will be issued as soon as possible and the extra cover will then be included as part of your policy when you come to renewal.
Glossary Asset – An item of economic value owned by you or your company. Claim – A notification to the insurer that a covered peril has occurred and compensation for loss or damage is required. Claims history – Your history of insurance claims. Excess – The first part of every claim that you have to pay. Insurer / Insurance Provider – The Company that provides the cover and will pay you for any claims. Insurance Broker – An insurance professional able to provide independent advice on a wide rang of insurance matters. Liability cover – Can include employers, personal and product liability. Refers to your legal liability to pay the compensation and costs awarded against you in respect of loss or damage sustained by a third party. Loss Adjuster – An expert in processing claims from start to finish. A loss adjuster will be appointed by the Insurance company to negotiate a settlement, within the terms of the policy, which is fair to both you and the insurance company. Premium – The amount you pay to receive cover under the terms of your policy.
Inception Date – The date on a policy for which cover begins. Any claims made before this date will not be honoured.