Popular QuestionsPopular Questions About Massachusetts Business Liability Insurance

What is business liability insurance?

Business liability insurance protects your business in a variety of scenarios in which your company is negligent or causes harm to individuals or other businesses. Commercial general liability insurance (CGL) is the most important component of your business liability coverage. It is the first line of defense from lawsuits and liability claims against your business. 

Any business owner, no matter how many precautions he or she takes, is at risk for liability claims. Liability claims can arise from injuries or property damage that occur on your business property, or those that are caused by you or your employees in the course of doing business. CGL policies pay for attorney fees and any judgments that you might have to pay if you are sued, and also provide coverage for claims of libel, slander, copyright infringement, and false advertising. 

That’s a lot of coverage! But CGL insurance still does not cover every type of liability exposure that you might have. Let’s just say that it covers the basics, but since every business is unique, you may need deeper liability protection depending upon the type of business you do and the risks you face. You may need additional commercial liability policies, or you may need to add endorsements to other insurance policies in order to cover all the bases. 

Why do I need Massachusetts liability insurance for my business?

Business liability insurance protects you, your business, and your employees from bodily injury and property damage claims. Customer slips and falls are some of the most common commercial liability claims. Customers may fall and be injured on your premises due to poor lighting, wet floors, loose or uneven flooring, or other hazards. 

  • SMALL BUSINESSES IN MASSACHUSETTS (2016) - 639,334  
  • MASSACHUSETTS COMMERCIAL INSURANCE CLAIMS (2016) - $3,214.186,000

While most commercial insurance claims involve property losses due to events like theft, fire, and weather, the most common claims are not necessarily the most expensive for business owners.  

40% of small businesses are likely to experience a property or general liability claim in the next 10 years. Here are some examples of the most costly claims: 

  • REPUTATIONAL HARM: $50,000 Average Cost Per Claim 
  • VEHICLE ACCIDENT: $45,000 Average Cost Per Claim 
  • PRODUCT LIABILITY: $35,000 Average Cost Per Claim 
  • CUSTOMER SLIP & FALL: $20,000 Average Cost Per Claim 
  • STRUCK BY OBJECT: $10,000 Average Cost Per claim 
What does Massachusetts commercial liability insurance cover?

CGL policies cover three types of liability exposures 

  • PREMISES AND OPERATIONS: Claims against your business for bodily injury and property damage related to the ownership and maintenance of the business premises, or as the result of business operations conducted both at and away from the business premises 
  • PRODUCTS AND COMPLETED OPERATIONS EXPOSURE: Claims for bodily injury and property damage that result from faulty products or completed operations (work performed by your business) 
  • INDIRECT/CONTIGENT EXPOSURE: Claims resulting from the negligent actions of independent contractors and subcontractors that you hire 

Specifically, a CGL policy may pay for the following types of claims, up to the limits of your policy. 

DAMAGE TO SOMEONE ELSE’S PROPERTY 

We call this “property damage liability insurance.” 

Example: A plumber working on a home remodel forgets to turn off the water and floods the homeowner’s finished basement.  

SOMEONE ELSE’S MEDICAL BILLS 

We also call this “bodily injury liability insurance.” 

Example: A delivery person slips and falls on a restaurant’s recently mopped floor and breaks an arm. 

HARM TO A COMPETITOR’S REPUTATION 

We call this “personal injury liability insurance.” 

Example: Your employee makes slanderous or false statements about a competitor, causing loss of business and reputational harm.  

HARM CAUSED BY A PRODUCT 

We call this “product liability coverage.” 

Example: A child’s outdoor play set collapses and injures a child.  

What other types of Massachusetts liability coverage do I need for my business?

While your CGL policy offers broad coverage for many of the liability risks faced by your business, it doesn’t cover everything. In fact, there are some very specific risks that are excluded from most CGL policies.  

If you have certain risk exposures that are not covered under your CGL policy, you may need one of the following types of special coverage.  

40% of small businesses are likely to experience a property or general liability claim in the next 10 years. Here are some examples of the most costly claims:

  • REPUTATIONAL HARM $50,000 Average Cost Per Claim
  • VEHICLE ACCIDENT $45,000 Average Cost Per Claim
  • PRODUCT LIABILITY $35,000 Average Cost Per Claim
  • CUSTOMER SLIP & FALL $20,000 Average Cost Per Claim
  • STRUCK BY OBJECT $10,000 Average Cost Per claim

What does Massachusetts commercial liability insurance cover? 

CGL policies cover three types of liability exposures:

  • PREMISES AND OPERATIONS: Claims against your business for bodily injury and property damage related to the ownership and maintenance of the business premises, or as the result of business operations conducted both at and away from the business premises
  • PRODUCTS AND COMPLETED OPERATIONS EXPOSURE: Claims for bodily injury and property damage that result from faulty products or completed operations (work performed by your business)
  • INDIRECT/CONTIGENT EXPOSURE: Claims resulting from the negligent actions of independent contractors and subcontractors that you hire

Specifically, a CGL policy may pay for the following types of claims, up to the limits of your policy.

DAMAGE TO SOMEONE ELSE’S PROPERTY

  • We call this “property damage liability insurance.”
  • Example: A plumber working on a home remodel forgets to turn off the water and floods the homeowner’s finished basement. 

SOMEONE ELSE’S MEDICAL BILLS

  • We also call this “bodily injury liability insurance.”
  • Example: A delivery person slips and falls on a restaurant’s recently mopped floor and breaks an arm.

HARM TO A COMPETITOR’S REPUTATION

  • We call this “personal injury liability insurance.”
  • Example: Your employee makes slanderous or false statements about a competitor, causing loss of business and reputational harm. 

HARM CAUSED BY A PRODUCT

  • We call this “product liability coverage.”
  • Example: A child’s outdoor play set collapses and injures a child. 
How much does Massachusetts commercial liability insurance cost?

The cost of a CGL policy can range from $500 per year to thousands of dollars per year. Premiums vary significantly from business to business and industry to industry. What you pay will be based on factors like the size of your business, its location, and your industry. Costs also vary based on the coverage limits and deductibles that you select.  

The most important factor in the cost of your CGL policy is the type of risks that are inherent in your business. A restaurant owner in a busy entertainment district will pay far more for a CGL policy than a freelance marketing consultant. The restaurant owner faces risks from customer slips and falls and several other exposures, while the marketing consultant never has customers on its premises and does not produce a product that can cause physical harm.  

Some industries that can expect to pay a lot for liability coverage are: 

  • Janitorial and cleaning services 
  • Construction 
  • Manufacturing 
  • Retail trade 
  • Wholesale trade 
How do I find the best business liability insurance in Massachusetts?

Your business is incredibly vulnerable without adequate liability protection. Without CGL insurance you could face complete financial devastation and the inability to continue to operate if you are sued.  

An independent agent in Massachusetts can help. Independent agents have access to multiple insurance companies, so they can help you find the policy that best covers your unique risks.  

  • There are 1,291 independent agents in Massachusetts who are ready to help.  
  • In 2017, our agents helped 3,541 Massachusetts residents.
What are the Top Business Insurance Companies in Massachusetts

An independent insurance agent compares policies from multiple companies to find the best coverage for your needs.  

acadia insurance
cna insurance
the main street america group
central insurnace companies

InformationFInd the best insurance in your city


Boston, MA Business Liability Insurance 

A variety of variables determine the cost of liability insurance for your Boston business. While the location and size of your business are important, the biggest factor is your industry. The most prevalent industries in Boston are: 

  • PROFESSIONAL, SCIENTIFIC & TECHNICAL SERVICES 
  • ACCOMMODATION & FOOD SERVICE 
  • EDUCATIONAL SERVICES 

Customer slips and falls and other types of injuries are common in restaurants, hotels, and other businesses where people gather. Any business with daily foot traffic from both customers and suppliers should expect to pay far more for commercial liability coverage than a business with far less risk for causing physical harm to others. And remember, professional services providers may pay less for their CGL policies, but they might need additional coverage to protect against lawsuits stemming from negligent service or advice. 

Worcester, MA Business Liability Insurance 

Every business has unique risk exposures, and some will pay more for liability protection. The most prevalent industries in Worcester are: 

  • RETAIL TRADE 
  • MANUFACTURING 
  • HEALTHCARE & SOCIAL ASSISTANCE 

When it comes to liability exposures, retailers have a lot to worry about. Trips and falls in the store or parking lot are a constant concern. Runaway shopping carts and busy workers can damage your customers’ cars. What’s more, you can be held responsible for selling faulty products. For these reasons, retailers in Worcester will likely pay more for liability insurance than some other types of businesses. 

Springfield, MA Business Liability Insurance 

General liability insurance costs vary based on the size and location of your business, and most importantly, by the type of business you own. Businesses with a greater likelihood of being sued for negligence or causing harm can expect to pay more for coverage. The most prevalent industries in Springfield are: 

  • MANUFACTURING 
  • RETAIL TRADE 
  • HEALTHCARE & SOCIAL ASSISTANCE 

Manufacturers and retailers can both be sued for bringing faulty products to market. The resulting payouts for medical costs, compensatory damages, economic damage, attorney fees, court costs, and even punitive damages can be insurmountable for a small business. The product liability coverage included in a CGL policy may cover your financial responsibility for losses or injuries to a user or buyer of one of your products. But in order to have sufficient protection, many manufacturers find that they need additional product liability coverage beyond what is included in their CGL policy. 

Lowell, MA Business Liability Insurance 

Your industry is the most important factor impacting the cost of liability insurance for your Lowell business. Other variables, like your location and the size of your business also play a role. The most prevalent industries in Lowell are: 

  • MANUFACTURING 
  • RETAIL TRADE 
  • ACCOMMODATION & FOOD SERVICE 

Most manufacturers don’t have customers or the general public on their premises. But if you are a manufacturer in Lowell, you still need general liability insurance for occasions in which your business is negligent and causes bodily injury or property damage to a third party. Manufacturers, retailers, and hospitality businesses have some of the highest commercial liability insurance rates. 

Cambridge, MA Business Liability Insurance 

Cambridge is home to Harvard University, and much of the industry in the city is dedicated to serving students and educators. Businesses looking for liability insurance should know that the type of work they do plays a huge role in the cost of coverage. The most prevalent industries in Cambridge are: 

  • EDUCATIONAL SERVICES 
  • PROFESSIONAL, SCIENTIFIC & TECHNICAL SERVICES 
  • HEALTHCARE & SOCIAL ASSSTANCE 

Professionals of all kinds need CGL insurance to protect against common liability claims. What’s more, they must pay special attention to whether or not they can cause harm to an individual or business with the services they provide. Sometimes a client is simply hard to please, but negligent oversights, errors, and omissions happen too—despite your best intentions. In addition to a CGL policy, many business owners in Cambridge need professional liability insurance to fill any gaps in coverage. 

New Bedford, MA Business Liability Insurance 

The cost of New Bedford commercial liability insurance varies significantly from business to business. Rates depend on the location and size of your business as well as the type of industry you are in, and more. The most prevalent industries in New Bedford are: 

  • CONSTRUCTION 
  • MANUFACTURING 
  • RETAIL TRADE 

Construction, manufacturing, and retail businesses have some of the highest rates for Massachusetts business liability coverage. That is because these businesses have the greatest risk for third-party claims of bodily injury and property damage. Construction workers can, and often do, damage other people’s property while working. Manufacturers can produce faulty, dangerous products. And retailers often experience customer slips and falls. Any one of these incidents can lead to a costly and disruptive lawsuit. 

Brockton, MA Business Liability Insurance 

Your Brockton business may pay more or less than average for commercial general liability insurance. It all depends on the type of industry you are in and a few other variables. The most prevalent industries in Brockton are: 

  • RETAIL TRADE 
  • CONSTRUCTION 
  • ACCOMMODATION & FOOD SERVICE 

These are some of the most danger-prone industries in terms of the likelihood of being sued for negligence. If your business causes an injury or property damage, you can be expected to pay for repairing and replacing damaged property, medical bills, and more. If you are sued, the costs can be devastating for you business. CGL insurance is your first line of defense against these kinds of claims. 

Quincy, MA Business Liability Insurance 

Your CGL insurance premiums depend on several factors including the size and location of your business, and most importantly, your industry. The most prevalent industries in Quincy are: 

  • PROFESSIONAL, SCIENTIFIC & TECHNICAL SERVICES 
  • RETAIL TRADE 
  • ACCOMMODATION & FOOD SERVICE 

Professional services firms face different liability risks than retailers and restaurants. While general liability insurance provides broad coverage for bodily injury and property damage caused by your business, it does not cover you for failures, mistakes, or oversights in the professional services that you provide. What if a project is not completed as promised, or you fail to complete a project on time or on budget? Delays or other unexpected problems can be costly for your clients. You can be sued for errors or professional negligence that harm your clients, and you can make mistakes—no matter how careful you are. You might need additional coverage beyond your CGL policy in order to properly protect your business. 

Lynn, MA Business Liability Insurance 

Manufacturing, retail, and waste management companies dominate Lynn’s business environment. All of these types of companies face an elevated risk for liability claims because of the dangers they pose to customers, suppliers, and the general public. 

  • MANUFACTURING 
  • RETAIL TRADE 
  • ADMINISTRATIVE SUPPORT & WASTE MANAGEMENT 

Most manufacturers and retailers have product liability exposures. Claims for product-related damages are usually related to manufacturing or production flaws, design defects, or defective warnings or instructions. If you are sued for some type of product negligence, you may be required to pay for medical costs, compensatory damages, economic damages, attorney fees, court costs, and more. A CGL policy is the best way to protect your business from these devastating costs. 

Fall River, MA Business Liability Insurance 

Manufacturers, construction companies, and retailers are the most prevalent industries in Fall River. These industries have some of the costliest CGL coverage because they pose a greater risk of causing bodily injury or property damage to others. 

  • MANUFACTURING 
  • CONSTRUCTION 
  • RETAIL TRADE 

Manufacturing and construction companies may not typically have customers or the general public on their premises, but these businesses still need general liability insurance for occasions in which the business is negligent and causes bodily injury or property damage to a third party. Your CGL policy protects you in the event of third-party lawsuits, with coverage for attorney fees, court costs, settlements, and judgments up to the limits of your policy. You need an experienced agent to help you determine how much liability exposure you have, and if you need special coverage beyond what is included in your general liability policy.