Somerville, MA is home to many small businesses. From lawn care services run out of people’s homes to the many shops that line Elm Street, these businesses not only provide needed goods and services to the community, they also contribute to the health of the local economy. Business insurance helps them stay profitable when disaster strikes.
Independent insurance agents in Somerville can help you identify your company’s various exposures and can recommend the right business insurance products to cover against them. Find an insurance agent near you to learn more.
Why Do Businesses in Somerville Need Liability Insurance?
Businesses sometimes end up on the wrong end of a liability lawsuit. When this happens, having the right liability insurance in place is crucial in order to avoid large financial losses. Business liability insurance is designed to absorb expenses like court costs, legal defense fees, and financial damages if your business is sued for a covered event.
All business insurance policies include commercial general liability insurance (CGL). It is designed to cover a number of common liability risks faced by businesses. It provides basic liability coverage such as:
- Premises liability insurance: This covers against third-party injuries or property damage that may occur on your business property.
- Product liability insurance: This covers against third-party injuries or property damage that may be caused by a defect in a product your company produces, sells, or promotes.
- Advertising liability insurance: This covers lawsuits related to advertising such as copyright infringement, false advertising, and deceptive pricing.
Most businesses have liability risks that go beyond what your standard CGL insurance can cover. An independent insurance agent can help you identify your business’s other liability exposures, and can recommend the right policies to cover against them.
Examples of some of the many commercial liability insurance policies you may want to consider include:
- Cyber liability insurance: This is designed to cover restitution and damages if hackers break into your business’s computer system or attach skimmers to your credit card readers and access sensitive customer data like financial and personal information.
- Employment practices liability insurance: This is designed to cover your business if a current, former, or prospective employee makes an accusation of discrimination, harassment, wrongful termination, breach of contract, or other illegal employment practices.
- Commercial vehicle liability insurance: This is designed to cover your company’s increased liability risks if you own and operate a vehicle or fleet of vehicles. This coverage can be particularly beneficial if your business uses large trucks, since these can do much more damage in an accident than a car.
Talk to your insurance agent to learn more about these and the many other commercial liability products that may be a good fit for your Somerville business.
What Are the Property Damage Risks in Somerville, MA?
Every business insurance policy also includes commercial property insurance. This is designed cover loss or damage to your company’s assets, including merchandise, inventory, furniture, computers, tools, outdoor signs, and more.
Businesses in Somerville are most likely to experience loss or damage due to hazards such as accidental fires, property crimes, hurricanes, windstorms, hail, heavy snow, and freezing temperatures. Fortunately, your commercial property insurance is designed to cover against all of these hazards.
One hazard that is not covered, however, is flood damage. Businesses located near the Mystic River are most at risk, but when heavy rains fall, flash flooding can happen anywhere. That is why you may want to supplement your business coverage with a flood insurance policy through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).
A local independent agent can help you secure a commercial flood insurance policy as well as any other property coverage that is appropriate for your business, such as inland marine insurance or boiler & machinery insurance.
How Does Business Interruption Insurance Help Companies in Somerville, MA?
Occasionally, businesses in Somerville are impacted by catastrophic events like severe, damaging storms and accidental fires.
Disasters in Massachusetts
- Number of federally declared disasters in MA since 1953: 54
- Most common reasons for declared disasters: Severe storms, hurricanes, and heavy snows
- Average number of tornadoes in MA per year: 1.4
Damage to your business-owned property isn’t the only expensive risk you face during a catastrophic event like a hurricane. Major damage to your business could potentially force it to remain closed for several weeks while repairs are made.
Without an ongoing stream of revenue, many small businesses cannot handle this financially and end up going bankrupt. Business interruption insurance protects against this risk by providing a continuation of income when your company is forced to temporarily close down because of damage caused by a covered event.
This insurance provides the funds your company needs to pay monthly bills, loan installments, and salaries until you can get back to normal operations. Talk to a local independent insurance agent to learn more about business interruption insurance for your Somerville business.
Are Employers in Somerville Required to Carry Workers’ Compensation Insurance?
Workers’ compensation insurance is designed to cover your employees’ medical treatment, lost wages, and other related expenses if they suffer a work-related injury or an occupational illness. This insurance can also offer death benefits to surviving family members if a workplace injury is fatal.
All employers in Massachusetts are required by law to carry workers’ compensation insurance. This is true even if they have only a single, part-time employee. There are a few exceptions. It is not necessary to buy coverage for:
- Sole proprietors, corporate partners, or LLC members
- Domestic servants who work fewer than 16 hours per week
- Workers engaged in interstate or international commerce
- Salespeople paid by commission
- Real estate agents
The cost for workers’ compensation coverage is based on your company’s overall payroll and the likelihood that your employees will sustain serious injuries based on the types of jobs they do. You may qualify for discounts on your coverage if your business has a good safety record.
An independent insurance agent can help you compare rates from insurance companies that specialize in covering businesses in your industry.
Are You Looking for Insurance to Include in Employee Benefits Packages?
Some businesses offer their employees great benefits packages that include health insurance, life insurance, paid vacation and sick leave, and other perks. If you are looking to build a benefits package for your workers, you may need some help finding affordable insurance products to include in it.
- Annual amount spent on healthcare coverage by MA businesses: $1,064,684,000
- Average annual cost of health care in MA: $6,379/person or $17,424/family
While there is no denying that health insurance is expensive, providing it to your employees can actually save your business money.
Studies by human resources experts have shown that workers who have health insurance tend to use fewer sick days, and that when companies offer good benefits packages, they are better able to attract and retain good employees. Your business may also qualify for tax credits.
When it comes to health and life insurance products, there are many different policy types and options available to you. You may therefore find it beneficial to have the guidance of an experienced independent insurance professional when you are making a selection.
Why Work with One of Somerville’s Independent Insurance Agents?
There is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all business insurance policy. Insurance companies offer a wide variety of products and options so that business owners can fully customize their insurance coverage portfolios.
Independent insurance agents in Somerville can help you choose the right policies and options to meet your company’s specific coverage needs.
Because they do not work for a particular insurance company, independent agents can shop around to help you find the best business insurance policies at the most competitive prices. Set up a one-on-one consultation with an insurance agent near you to get started.
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