More than 3,700 small businesses can be found in the city of Hagerstown. Retail trade and manufacturing businesses do particularly well in this Maryland city, but companies representing a wide range of industries are thriving here. If you are a business owner in Hagerstown, you can protect your investment with a comprehensive business insurance plan. Every year, companies in Maryland collect about $2.4 billion in business insurance claims. Make sure that your Hagerstown business gets the compensation it needs when disaster strikes. Talk to a local independent insurance agent for help identifying which of the many available commercial insurance policy types are right for your firm.
Liability Insurance for Small Businesses in Hagerstown
Liability insurance is designed to absorb the court costs, legal defense fees, and damages associated with covered liability lawsuits. Given that the majority of liability lawsuits brought against companies result in judgments of $1 million or more, this insurance can prove extremely valuable. All business insurance policies include commercial general liability insurance (CGL). Your company’s CGL has two main coverage components:
- Premises liability coverage: Covers the associated costs if an accident on your business premises results in third-party injuries, illnesses, or property damage.
- Product liability coverage: Covers the associated costs if a product your business produces, sells or promotes causes third-party injuries, illnesses or property damage.
For many businesses, CGL alone is not enough. An independent insurance agent can identify your business’s other liability risks, and can recommend the right liability products to protect against them. Some examples of other liability insurance products that may be appropriate for your Hagerstown business are:
- Errors and omissions insurance (E&O): This professional liability insurance covers individuals in professional positions if negligence, mistakes, or errors in judgment cause third-party damages.
- Commercial vehicle liability insurance: This commercial auto insurance is required if you have a business-owned vehicle. It covers liability costs if an employee is in an accident.
- Liquor liability insurance: This can protect businesses that serve, sell, or otherwise furnish alcohol to patrons.
- Employment practices liability insurance: This covers your business against lawsuits related to perceived illegal business practices such as discrimination and wrongful termination.
Learn more about your various liability coverage options by talking to a local independent insurance agent.
Cyber Liability Insurance Protects Hagerstown Businesses
Cyber liability insurance is yet another liability product, and it is one that deserves a more in-depth look. It can protect your business in the event of an electronic data breach. This may happen if cybercriminals manage to break into your business’s computer system and access your customers’ information, such as financial and personal data.
- Number of identity theft complaints in Maryland per year: 5,734
- Ranked 10th highest for identity theft complaints in the US
- Only 22% of businesses have a cyber/data breach response plan
Even if your business protects its computer system with strong firewalls and secure passwords, determined hackers can often find ways around these precautions. They can then use the data they acquire to commit identity theft, fraud, and other crimes. A large data breach can result in an extremely expensive liability lawsuit against your business. If your Hagerstown business electronically stores sensitive data, be sure to talk to your independent agent about the benefits of including cyber liability insurance in your coverage portfolio.
Property Insurance for Small Businesses in Hagerstown, MD
Hagerstown businesses are at risk for property damage caused by hazards such as structure fires, property crimes, and severe weather events. Your business insurance policy will include commercial property coverage. This is designed to provide compensation for loss or damage to your business-owned property. Covered assets include furniture, computers, merchandise, tools, and outdoor signs.
Some business property requires specialized coverage, like boiler & machinery insurance or inland marine insurance, so be sure to consult your independent agent. Also, be aware that flood damage is typically excluded from commercial property insurance coverage. If your business is at risk, your agent can help you secure a supplementary flood insurance policy.
Business Interruption Insurance for Hagerstown Businesses
- Number of federally declared disasters in MD since 1953: 32
- Most common reasons for declared disasters: Floods and Hurricanes
A major disaster, like a hurricane, can do more than just damage your business-owned property. These events can also result in your company needing to remain closed for an extended period while repairs are made. This can be financially devastating for a small business, which is why business interruption insurance can prove vital. Business interruption insurance can provide your company with a continuation of income so that you can continue to pay monthly expenses and employee salaries until you can return to normal business operations. A local independent agent can explain more and help you review quotes for this important coverage.
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Hagerstown Businesses Need Workers’ Compensation Insurance
If one of your employees is injured or becomes ill on the job, your business is responsible for covering the associated medical expenses, lost wages, and other expenses. Workers’ compensation insurance (commonly called “workman’s comp”) is designed to provide this coverage. The cost of your workers’ compensation policy will be based on your company’s overall payroll and the types of jobs your employees do. The more likely your employee is to suffer a debilitating injury, the higher the price of your insurance. It would cost more to cover employees in a manufacturing plant than to cover workers in a department store.
Maryland state law requires most businesses to carry workers’ compensation insurance. Your independent agent can help you determine whether it is more cost-effective for you to purchase a policy through a commercial provider or through Maryland’s state-administered fund. Alternatively, if approved, some businesses can choose to self-insure.
Employee Benefits for Small Businesses in Hagerstown
Hagerstown businesses with at least 50 full-time employees are required to furnish these workers with subsidized health insurance coverage. There are many different healthcare products available, so it can be difficult to determine which policy is the best choice.
- Average amount spent on healthcare coverage by MD businesses: $944,612
- Ranked 33rd for highest medical insurance costs in the US
- Average annual cost of health care in MD: $5,654/person or $15,820/family
Health insurance is expensive, but providing it to your employees can be beneficial. Studies by human resource management groups have demonstrated that offering employee benefits such as life insurance and healthcare coverage can actually help your business attract and retain talented employees. Your local independent agent can help you review a wide range of competitively priced life and health insurance policies. That way, you will be well-equipped to make an informed decision when making a selection.
Why Work with an Independent Insurance Agent?
When you work with an independent agent in Hagerstown, you can be sure that your business insurance plan does not include any unintentional coverage gaps. These professionals can help you identify your company’s various risks and can guide you in your search for the best insurance policies to cover against them.
Find an independent agent in or near Hagerstown to learn more. You will soon discover how easy it can be to build an all-inclusive commercial insurance plan.
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