Popular QuestionsPopular Questions About Michigan Business Liability Insurance

What is business liability insurance?

Business liability insurance protects your business when it is negligent or causes harm to third parties—individuals or other businesses. Commercial general liability insurance (CGL) covers your business for these kinds of claims, and it is your first line of defense against costly lawsuits. 

All businesses are at risk for liability claims and lawsuits. You can be sued if injuries or property damage occur on your premises, or if you or your employees cause harm in the course of doing business. A Michigan commercial general liability policy pays for your attorney fees, as well as any settlements or judgments that you have to pay if you are sued. 

In addition to providing coverage for physical damage claims, your Michigan CGL policy also offers coverage for claims of libel, slander, copyright infringement, and false advertising. While this is very broad coverage, you may need special liability protection that is not included in a standard CGL policy. You may need to purchase additional commercial liability policies to cover any gaps in coverage. 

Why do I need Michigan liability insurance for my business?

Michigan business liability insurance protects you, your business, and your employees from bodily injury and property damage claims. While customer slips and falls are some of the most common commercial liability claims, your business can be held responsible for faulty products, reputational harm, and a variety of other negligent behaviors that cause either physical or financial harm to a third party. 

  • SMALL BUSINESSES IN MICHIGAN (2016) - 866,186 
  • MICHIGAN COMMERCIAL INSURANCE CLAIMS (2016) - $3,326,842,000

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. Liability claims may happen less frequently, but they are often far more costly.

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 Michigan 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 competitors 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 product

  • We call this “product liability coverage.”
  • Example: A child’s outdoor play set collapses and injures a child. 
What other types of Michigan liability coverage do I need for my business?

A Michigan commercial general liability policy provides coverage for a wide range of liability risks faced by your business. But there are some very specific liability exposures that are excluded from most CGL policies. 

If you are susceptible to certain types of claims that are not covered under your Michigan CGL policy (e.g., you own commercial vehicles), you may need to purchase an additional specialized liability policy or add a tailored endorsement to your CGL policy. 

  • COMMERCIAL AUTO INSURANCE provides coverage for property damage and bodily injury liability claims, vehicle damage, and medical bills, as well as any costs related to lawsuits due to auto accidents involving your business-owned vehicles. 
  • COMMERCIAL UMBRELLA/EXCESS LIABILITY COVERAGE provides liability protection above and beyond the liability coverage that is included in your CGL policy, commercial auto policy, or business owners policy. A commercial umbrella policy pays for damages when your other liability coverage has been exhausted. 
  • DIRECTORS & OFFICERS (D&O) LIABILITY COVERAGE provides protection for directors and officers of large companies against legal judgments and costs arising from unlawful acts, erroneous investment decisions, failure to maintain property, releasing confidential information, hiring and firing decisions, conflicts of interest, and many other types of errors. 
  • ERRORS & OMISSIONS (E&O)/PROFESSIONAL LIABILITY INSURANCE is recommended for lawyers, accountants, architects, engineers, IT companies, or any company where individuals provide a service to clients for a fee. It offers coverage for lawsuits that arise from rendering negligent professional services or failing to perform professional duties.
  • CYBER LIABILITY INSURANCE covers a range of potential liability exposures that can occur while using, storing, or transferring data electronically for business purposes. Any business that handles electronic data—especially personally identifiable information about its customers—is particularly susceptible to cyber threats. 
  • OTHER LIABILITY ENDORSEMENTS are used to add special coverage to standard CGL policies to fill coverage gaps. The most common commercial liability endorsements include employment practices liability, liquor liability, and employee benefits liability. 
How much does Michigan commercial liability insurance cost?

The cost of a CGL policy can range from $500 per year to thousands of dollars per year. 

Your premiums are based on several variables like the size of your business, its location, and most importantly, your industry. The coverage limits and deductibles that you select also determine the cost of your Michigan business liability coverage. 

Businesses in some industries tend to pose a greater risk to third parties (customers, suppliers, or the general public) than others. 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 typically pay more for liability coverage are:

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

Unfortunately, lawsuits are all too common in our society. Whether a claim is appropriate or unfounded, you have to defend yourself, and the costs can be devastating. You need Michigan commercial liability insurance as your first line of defense. 

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

  • There are 899 independent agents in Michigan who are ready to help. 
  • In 2017, our agents helped 5,362 Michigan residents. 
Top Business Insurance Companies in Michigan

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

markel
cna insurance
liberty mutual insurance
westfield insurance

InformationFInd the best insurance in your city

How Does Your City Measure Up?

Detroit, MI Business Liability Insurance 

Several variables impact your Detroit business liability insurance premiums. The location and size of your business are important factors, and the most important factor is your industry. The most prevalent industries in Detroit are:

  • MANUFACTURING
  • RETAIL SERVICES
  • ADMINISTRATIVE SUPPORT & WASTE MANAGEMENT

Manufacturers and retailers can be sued for a variety of reasons. Many claims against these kinds of businesses are product-related. If you are sued for bringing a faulty product to market, the resulting costs may include medical expenses, compensatory damages, attorney fees, court costs, and even punitive damages. These costs can be insurmountable. Your Michigan CGL policy may cover you for some product liability claims, but you may need additional coverage. 

Grand Rapids, MI Business Liability Insurance 

Every business has unique risk exposures, and some will pay more for Michigan business liability insurance. The most prevalent industries in Grand Rapids are:

  • MANUFACTURING
  • ACCOMMODATION & FOOD SERVICE
  • EDUCATIONAL SERVICES

When it comes to liability exposures, manufacturers and retailers have a lot to worry about. Trips and falls in the store or parking lot are a constant concern for brick and mortar stores. And both manufacturers and retailers can be held responsible for selling faulty products. Talk to an independent agent to make sure you have the right coverage for your unique risks. 

Sterling Heights, MI Business Liability Insurance 

Michigan 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 Sterling Heights are:

  • MANUFACTURING
  • RETAIL TRADE 
  • CONSTRUCTION

Manufacturers and retailers can both be sued for product-related damages. These lawsuits involve payouts for medical expenses and property damage, as well as attorney fees and court costs. The product liability coverage included in a CGL policy may not cover all of your financial responsibility for losses or injuries to a user or buyer of one of your products. Many manufacturers and retailers find that they need additional product liability coverage beyond what is included in their CGL policy.

Lansing, MI Business Liability Insurance

Your industry is the most important variable in determining the cost of your Michigan business liability insurance. Other variables, like your location and the size of your business also play a role. The most prevalent industries in Lansing are:

  • MANUFACTURING
  • ACCOMMODATION & FOOD SERVICE
  • CONSTRUCTION

Most manufacturers don’t have customers or the general public on their premises. But if you are a manufacturer in Lansing, 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. Because of their greater likelihood of causing harm to third parties, manufacturers, restaurants, and construction companies have some of the highest commercial liability insurance rates. 

Ann Arbor, MI Business Liability Insurance

Much of the industry in Ann Arbor is dedicated to serving students and educators at the University of Michigan. The most prevalent industries in Ann Arbor are:

  • EDUCATIONAL SERVICES
  • MANUFACTURING
  • HEALTHCARE & SOCIAL ASSISTANCE

Every business needs a commercial general liability policy to protect against common liability claims. Certain other businesses need additional policies to cover unique or additional risks. If you offer professional services, your oversights, errors, and omissions can lead to financial losses for your clients. In these cases, you need professional liability insurance to protect you where your Michigan CGL policy does not. 

Flint, MI Business Liability Insurance

Flint commercial liability insurance premiums vary 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 Flint are:

  • MANUFACTURING
  • CONSTRUCTION
  • RETAIL TRADE

Manufacturing, construction, and retail businesses have some of the highest rates for business liability coverage in Michigan. These businesses have the greatest risk for third-party claims of bodily injury and property damage. Construction workers might damage other people’s property while working, and manufacturers can produce faulty, dangerous products. Retailers are often blamed after customers are injured in a store or parking lot. Any one of these incidents can lead to a costly and disruptive lawsuit. 

Dearborn, MI Business Liability Insurance

Your Dearborn 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 Dearborn are:

  • MANUFACTURING
  • RETAIL TRADE
  • TRANSPORTATION & WAREHOUSING

Manufacturers and retailers are more likely to be sued for negligence than many other types of businesses. 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, you have to pay for your defense, which includes attorney fees, court costs, and any settlements or judgments that you are required to pay. CGL insurance is your first line of defense against these kinds of claims. 

Livonia, MI Business Liability Insurance

Your Michigan 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 Livonia are:

  • MANUFACTURING
  • RETAIL TRADE
  • CONSTRUCTION

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, the costs can be devastating for your business. A Michigan business liability policy is the best way to protect your business from the costs of liability claims and lawsuits. 

Westland, MI Business Liability Insurance

Manufacturing, retail, and waste management companies dominate the business landscape in Westland. These industries face a greater risk for liability claims because of the dangers they pose to customers, suppliers, and the general public. 

  • MANUFACTURING
  • RETAIL TRADE
  • ADMINISTRATIVE SUPPORT & WASTE MANAGEMENT

Manufacturers and retailers have a lot to worry about. Avoiding claims for negligence should be a top priority. Both manufacturers and retailers can be held responsible for selling faulty products, and retailers have additional risks with the general public exposed to injuries on their premises. An independent agent can help you find the right coverage for your unique risks. 

Troy, MA Business Liability Insurance

Manufacturers, retailers, and professional services firms are prevalent in Troy. Any business that is more likely to cause harm to third parties is also more likely to pay more for Michigan business liability insurance. 

  • MANUFACTURING
  • PROFESSIONAL, SCIENTIFIC & TECHNICAL SERVICES
  • RETAIL TRADE

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. Companies who provide professional services also have unique exposures. They can be sued if their advice or services are faulty and in some way cause financial or other damage to a client or customer. If you are sued for some type of negligence, the costs can be devastating for your business. A Michigan business liability policy is your first line of defense.