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It’s Not Just General Liability Anymore

Business needs in the 21st century are far more complex than just one general policy will cover. We live in a “sue crazy” culture and the reality is there are just as many people looking to nail it to the corporation as there are happy consumers eager for your product. We hope this guide helps.

Years ago your business insurance choices were simple. You called an agent uptown they set you up with general liability and you hung up a shingle and opened up shop.

Unfortunately, business needs in the 21st century are far more complex than just one general policy will cover. We live in a “sue crazy” culture and the reality is there are just as many people looking to nail it to the corporation as there are happy consumers eager for your product.

The internet has brought us many benefits and has given businesses a whole new opportunity to promote our company and our products, but it also has exposed companies to a whole new level of vulnerability.

All of this needs to be taken into consideration when looking into the insurance you’re going to require.

Given the complexity of modern business, you simply can’t rely on “Al” in his dusty office on Third Street to meet all of your insurance needs. Here are just three of the many important types of commercial insurance.

  • General Liability
  • Cyber
  • D&O

General Liability Insurance

One would think that general liability insurance would be a given for any business, but you would be surprised. Liability is the simplest, cheapest and easiest insurance you can buy and no decent company would go without it.

There was a landscape gardener in Wisconsin who scoffed at the whole idea of liability insurance and sarcastically said; “What’s the worst I can do-put a shovel through a window?” That same guy hit a gas line while planting a rose bush, walked away and blew up the client’s house – true story.

The fact of the matter is that you just can’t anticipate every little thing that can go wrong or where a client may make take issue and you need to be fully covered to account for that.

Cyber Insurance

Every day, there are hundreds of businesses around the world are hacked by savvy dark-web criminals. They steal everything from confidential customer data to bank accounts and can clean you out overnight.

Cyber insurance in the 21st century has become as standardized as general liability and unless your company only does business the old-school way of paper and pencil, you need to be covered. Any online activity, from a website to a weekly blog, leaves you wide open to a cyber-attack.

Most often these cyber-attackers hold sensitive data hostage and demand a small ransom in order for it to be returned. These aren’t huge ransoms, either, but rather small enough that the company is better off just quietly pay it instead of risking publicity by reporting the attack.

You don’t want to find yourself or your company in that position.

It doesn’t matter what kind of encryption your company is using, any online activity or transactions you may engage in, there is some hacker out there, somewhere, who can and will gain access if given the opportunity.

A company can lose everything without warning and be open to a lawsuit from every client or investor who lost any data at all.

D&O Insurance

D&O insurance is quite simply a form of liability insurance that directly covers management and the board of directors. One only need watch the evening news to see why this is important to any company.

If someone files suit against a company they can also sue the company’s executives and board of directors. In most cases, they can be held personally liable for any lawsuit and be ordered to pay damages as a result.

This is just as important for the small business owner who doesn’t have the personal resources to cover the scope of this type of suit.

A company just can’t anticipate where a suit could come from, either. It could be anything from a disgruntled employee to an angry investor claiming the CEO gave misleading data during the investment phase.

D&O insurance has your back here and covers the cost of legal defense, damages or any settlement that may come as a result of a suit.

The reality is that as much as you’d like to continue to have the local “Al” on Third Street handle your insurance, you simply can’t afford the risks involved.  In this day and age, a company needs a modern insurance solutions broker that can meet all of the current challenges of today.

There’s just no other way around it.

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Charong Chow

Charong Chow is Head of Content at Embroker, which empowers businesses to take the risks that will help them grow. Embroker provides technology that takes the pain out of insurance, offers expert service from the best brokers in the game, and partners with the nation’s leading carriers to surface policies tailored to your company.

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