The town of Agawam, MA, is home to more than 1,000 businesses. Each plays an important role in the health of the local economy. If you own a company in this Springfield suburb, having the right business insurance products can protect it from undue financial losses when disaster strikes.
Putting together a comprehensive business insurance policy package can be challenging, but you do not need to do it alone. Independent insurance agents can help you identify all of your company’s various exposures and can recommend the right policies to cover against each of them.
Consult an insurance agent near you for help finding suitable, yet affordable, business insurance coverage.
What Kinds of Liability Insurance Do Businesses in Agawam, MA, Need?
Any business, regardless of size, can be sued. Even if the courts end up ruling in your favor, a liability lawsuit filed against your company can bring about large financial losses if your business is not properly insured.
That is why business liability insurance is so important. It can protect your company by covering expenses like court costs, legal fees, settlements, judgements, and other damages if it is sued for a covered event.
There are several different kinds of business liability products available to choose from. Some policies you may want to consider include the following.
- Premises liability insurance: This covers third-party injuries and property damage if it is caused by an accident on your business premises.
- Product liability insurance: This covers third-party injuries, illnesses, or property damage if it is caused by a defect in a product your company produces or sells.
- Employment practices liability insurance (EPLI): This covers against accusations of illegal employment practices like discrimination, sexual harassment, and wrongful termination.
- Cyber liability insurance: This covers your company’s obligations to affected individuals if cybercriminals access sensitive personal or financial data your business has electronically stored.
- Professional liability insurance: This covers individuals in professional positions if negligence, errors in judgement, or other professional mistakes cause their clients financial losses or other damage.
- Liquor liability insurance: This covers your business’s potential liabilities if a patron becomes intoxicated at your establishment and then goes on to cause property damage or injuries to others.
- Environmental liability insurance: This covers cleanup costs and damage if an accident or a natural disaster causes toxic substances sold, used, or produced by your business to contaminate the environment.
To be fully protected against lawsuits, you will need to purchase the right policies to cover against each of your company’s liability exposures.
What Kinds of Property Insurance Do Businesses in Agawam Need?
Businesses in Agawam, MA, are most likely to experience property loss or damage due to hazards such as the following.
- Property crimes: This includes theft, vandalism, and arson
- Fires and explosions
- Severe storms: This includes hurricanes, tropical storms, thunderstorms, windstorms, and hail storms
- Harsh winter weather: This includes heavy snows, ice accumulation, and prolonged freezing temperatures.
Fortunately, with the exception of floods, each of these hazards is covered by commercial property insurance. This coverage is a standard part of every business insurance policy.
As with any insurance policy, commercial property insurance has some limitations. You may therefore want to purchase additional coverage so that your business property is fully covered.
Here are some supplemental policies you may want to consider.
- Flood insurance: As was mentioned earlier, flood damage is not covered by commercial property insurance. Fortunately, if your business is at risk, you can purchase an affordable commercial food insurance policy through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).
- Inland marine insurance: This can cover your company’s portable property when it is in transit or is being stored away from your place of business, such as at a worksite or in a warehouse.
- Boiler and machinery insurance: This can cover the cost to repair or replace your company’s well-maintained essential machinery and equipment if it breaks down or malfunctions. It can also cover revenue losses caused by the mechanical failure.
- Bailee’s insurance: This can cover your customers’ valuable property when it is in your business’s care, custody, or control, such as when you are performing repair, alteration, or maintenance work on it.
You will want to be sure that the coverage limits on each of your policies are high enough to enable your business to replace all of its property if it is impacted by a major disaster like a structure fire.
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How Can Business Interruption Insurance Help Companies in Agawam, MA?
Major disasters do not occur frequently in the Agawam area, but they do happen. For instance, in 2011, Hurricane Irene damaged a number of homes and businesses in the city. Also in that year, a rare F3 tornado ripped through the northern part of the town. Fortunately, the damage it caused was minimal.
A catastrophic event like a windstorm or tornado can do more than just damage your business property. It could also necessitate your company to close down for several weeks while repairs are made.
If your business is forced into long-term closure due to damage caused by a covered event, business interruption insurance can help. This insurance is designed to provide a continuation of income until your company is able to return to normal operations.
The coverage provided by business interruption insurance enables your business to continue paying regular monthly expenses like loan installments, rent, and employee salaries even though it is temporarily unable to generate revenue.
Do Businesses in Agawam Need to Have Workers’ Compensation Insurance?
If your employees are injured on the job or develop an occupational illness, your business is responsible for covering their medical treatments and financial losses. Workers’ compensation insurance is designed to provide this coverage.
Virtually all employers in Massachusetts are required by law to carry workers’ compensation insurance. You do not need to cover sole proprietors, partners, or LLC members but you can if you want to.
Rates for workers’ compensation insurance are based primarily on the types of jobs your employees do and the likelihood they will be seriously injured while doing them.
What about Insurance Products for Employee Benefits Packages?
A competitive employee benefits package that includes perks like paid vacation, a pension or retirement plan, subsidized health insurance, and life insurance options can give your company an edge when it comes to hiring and retaining highly qualified employees.
There are several decisions that need to be made when shopping for insurance products for employee benefits. These can include choosing between HMOs, PPOs, and managed care plans, and then reviewing the networks, deductibles, copays, prescription plans, and coverage limits of each option.
Because of the many variations, many find it difficult to determine which policies are the make the best choices. An insurance professional who is familiar with your city can go over the pros and cons of each of your options so you can make an informed decision about which to purchase.
Why Work with a Local Independent Insurance Agent?
There are many insurance products and policy options available to business owners in Agawam. This makes it possible to fully customize your company’s coverage. Independent agents can ensure that you are buying the coverage your company needs and that you are getting it at a competitive price.
Let a local independent agent perform a complete risk-assessment of your business and make suitable recommendations. Arrange an obligation-free consultation with an insurance agent near you to get started.
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