Wilmington, NC is home to nearly 15,000 businesses. Those operating in the accommodation and food services and the retail trade industries are most abundant in this city, but a wide range of businesses have found success here. As a business owner in Wilmington, it is important that you protect your commercial enterprise with a comprehensive insurance plan.
Buying businesses insurance can be complicated. Fortunately, you do not need to go it alone. An independent insurance agent in Wilmington can help you build a solid coverage portfolio by identifying your company’s specific risks and determining which of the many available insurance policies can best cover against them. Find an agent near you to learn more.
Liability Insurance for Small Businesses in Wilmington
Liability insurance is designed to cover court costs, legal fees, and damages associated with certain liability lawsuits. Because liability lawsuits can frequently result in judgments exceeding $1 million, this insurance can prove extremely valuable. All business insurance policies include commercial general liability insurance (also referred to as CGL). Your company’s CGL has two main coverage components:
- Premises liability insurance: Covers third-party injuries, illnesses, and property damage when they occur on your business property.
- Product liability insurance: Covers third-party injuries, illnesses and property damage when they are caused by products your business produces, sells or promotes.
An independent insurance agent can identify your business’s other liability risks that are not covered by CGL. They can then recommend the appropriate policies to cover against these exposures. Examples of some of the other liability insurance products available to you include:
- Liquor liability insurance: Covers businesses that sell or furnish alcoholic beverages in the event that an intoxicated patron causes injury or property damage to others.
- Employment practices liability insurance: Covers your business against lawsuits related to alleged illegal business practices such as harassment, discrimination, and wrongful termination
- Environmental liability insurance: Covers businesses that use or produce toxic substances in the event that an accident causes pollution of the ground, water, or air.
- Errors and omissions insurance (E&O): Covers individuals in professional positions against lawsuits for damages caused by errors in judgment and other professional mistakes
You can learn more about these and your many other liability coverage options by consulting a local independent agent.
Cyber Liability Insurance Protects Wilmington Businesses
Cyber liability insurance is a relatively new liability product. It was designed to protect businesses from the growing threat of cybercrime. It provides coverage in the event that criminals hack into your business’s computer systems and access sensitive customer data that your company has stored electronically.
- Number of identity theft complaints in North Carolina per year: 7,334
- Ranked 27th highest for identity theft complaints in the US
- Only 22% of businesses have a cyber/data breach response plan
If your Wilmington business uses computers to record your customers’ personal or financial data, it is at risk. Be sure to ask your independent agent for more information about how cyber liability insurance can offer a layer of protection.
Property Insurance for Small Businesses in Wilmington, NC
Wilmington businesses may experience property loss and damage due to hazards such as accidental structure fires, property crimes, and severe weather events.
- Number of federally declared disasters in NC since 1953: 58
- Most common reasons for declared disasters: Hurricanes, Floods, and Tropical Storms
All business insurance policies include commercial property coverage. This is designed to compensate your business for loss or damage to your commercially owned property, including merchandise, computers, furniture, signs, inventory, tools, and more. Some commercial property needs to be covered by specialized insurance such as inland marine insurance or boiler & machinery insurance. Your independent agent will be able to help you make sure that all of your business-owned property is appropriately covered.
Business Interruption Insurance for Wilmington Businesses
Major disasters like fires and hurricanes can do more than just damage property. They also have the potential to force businesses to remain closed for an extended period while repairs are made. A closure that lasts for weeks, or even months, can be financially devastating for a small company. That is why, in times of disaster, business interruption insurance is so important. Business interruption insurance is designed to provide companies with a continuation of income when a covered event leads to a long-term closure. That way, your business can continue to pay monthly expenses and employee salaries even while it is unable to generate revenue. This coverage is typically limited to one year.
Wilmington Businesses Need Workers’ Compensation Insurance
In North Carolina, most businesses are required to cover their employees with workers’ compensation insurance. Some businesses, such as sole proprietors and certain agricultural employers, are exempt. If in doubt, your independent agent can help you determine whether your business is required to carry this insurance. Workers’ compensation insurance is designed to cover the cost of medical treatment, lost wages, and other associated expenses if an employee is injured or becomes ill on the job.
This insurance can also provide family members with financial compensation in the unfortunate event of a fatal workplace accident. The cost of your workers’ compensation policy will be based on your company’s overall payroll and the types of jobs your employees do. You can expect it to cost more to cover a tree-trimmer than to cover a salesperson at a clothing store. Your agent can help you find the best coverage through a commercial provider.
Employee Benefits for Small Businesses in Wilmington
Studies conducted by human resource professionals have shown that when businesses offer employee benefits such as vacation time, sick time, life insurance, and healthcare coverage, they are better able to attract and retain highly skilled workers.
- Average amount spent on healthcare coverage by NC businesses: $1,568,586
- Ranked 41st for highest medical insurance costs in the US
- Average annual cost of health care in NC: $5,310/person or $15,023/family
There are many different life and health insurance products available, and this can make it hard to decide which plans are the best to include in your employee benefits package. Fortunately, local independent agents are available to answer your insurance-related questions and explain the pros and cons of each of your various options. Your agent can then help you review a selection of competitively priced policies. That way, you will be able to make an informed decision when making a selection.
Why Work with an Independent Insurance Agent?
Every company has its own specific risks and exposures. That is why insurance companies make it possible to fully customize your commercial coverage. An independent agent can guide you in your search for the best insurance to cover your particular business. Because they can work with multiple insurance companies, these agents can find you appropriate policies at competitive prices.
Contact an independent insurance agent with an office in or near Wilmington to learn more. You will soon discover how easy it can be to build a comprehensive business insurance portfolio.
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