Cell phone stores sell cell phones and accessories. If you own a cell phone store, you might also offer cell phone repair services.
Property damage at your store and lawsuits claiming that you’ve been negligent in some way can threaten your assets and the long-term financial strength of your cell phone store.
But cell phone store insurance can help you mitigate your risks and protect your business. With the help of an experienced independent insurance agent, you can assess your unique risks and find the right business insurance policies from highly rated insurers that specialize in what you do.
Why Do You Need Cell Phone Store Insurance?
You keep highly valuable inventory and equipment on-site. You risk property damage to your building, inventory, and other commercial property from a variety of unexpected events. And you probably often have customer property in your store for repairs or other services.
What’s more, you can be sued for injuring third parties, damaging their property, or selling a faulty product.
Just a few of the risks that your cell phone store faces include:
- Property damage due to fires, storms, burglary, or vandalism
- Lawsuits based on claims of injury or property damage
- Lawsuits based on claims of false advertising, slander, or libel
- Employee theft or crime
- Mishandling customer data
- Damaging customer property
- Employee illness or injury
Your cell phone store business insurance protects you in these and other circumstances. Without it, any one of these types of incidents could cost tens of thousands of dollars—at least. For a small business, any unexpected loss could quickly force you to close your doors for good.
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What Does Cell Phone Store Liability Insurance Cover?
Liability insurance is the first essential type of business insurance coverage for a cell phone store. Your cell phone store insurance package may contain the following types of liability coverage.
Commercial General Liability (CGL) Insurance
Provides coverage for costly claims and lawsuits. If your business is accused of causing third-party bodily injury or property damage (e.g., a customer is injured while simply shopping in your store), the CGL policy will pay for direct medical expenses as well as attorney fees, court costs, and any settlements or judgments that you must pay if you are sued. General liability insurance also provides coverage for claims of slander, libel, and advertising injury.
CGL policies also include product liability insurance. It covers damages and your legal fees if a product that you sell malfunctions and causes any sort of loss or injury for one of your customers.
Provides coverage in the event of a data breach involving your business. It helps pay for the costs of notifying affected clients, as well as public relations and investigation costs, and more. If you operate an online store, this coverage is essential.
Provides excess liability protection beyond the limits of certain other liability policies. This policy can be invaluable for that once-in-a-lifetime judgment rendered against you.
Provides coverage if an employee or former employee sues you for discriminatory employment practices.
What Does Cell Phone Store Property Insurance Cover?
In addition to liability coverage, you’ll also need property insurance to reimburse you when your physical assets are damaged or destroyed. You probably have owned or leased retail and office space, and perhaps even warehouse space. All of these spaces are filled with valuable inventory, furniture, equipment, and other business personal property that is susceptible to theft, vandalism, fires, storms, and certain other causes of loss.
Commercial property insurance protects buildings and their contents, inventory, computers, office equipment, furniture, and all of your business personal property—whether it is owned or leased—if it is damaged by fire, smoke, theft, vandalism, or some other covered peril. You need this coverage to protect your expensive inventory, as well as all the other contents of your retail, office, and warehouse space.
If you sustain damage that forces you to temporarily close or relocate, business interruption coverage will reimburse you for ongoing expenses (rent, salaries, etc.) and lost income during the closure or relocation period.
You may also need additional property coverage. Talk to your independent insurance agent about your need for the following.
- Flood or hurricane insurance: Your basic commercial property policy does not cover flood or hurricane damage. Talk to your agent about flood and hurricane insurance if your store is in an area that is prone to these events.
- Computers and media coverage, or electronic data processing (EDP) insurance: Pays for lost data and related lost income if your computers or network are damaged by theft, vandalism, viruses, or malware. It may pay for loss of data or software and physical damage to computers or hardware.
- Crime coverage: Protects your business from the costs of theft, dishonesty, and fraudulent acts committed by an individual employee or a group of employees. It also covers theft or vandalism by customers or other visitors.
- Utility interruption coverage: Provides income protection if you are unable to operate due to a covered utility (water, electrical) interruption.
- Inland marine insurance: Covers tools, equipment, and supplies when they are in transit. For a cell phone store, this may mean the inventory and other items being transferred from a warehouse to your store, or items that are being shipped from your store to another location or to a customer.
- Workers’ compensation insurance: Provides coverage for medical expenses and lost wages for injured workers. Business owners are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance to protect their employees. Specific coverage requirements vary by state.
Do Cell Phone Store Franchisees Need Special Insurance?
Many cell phone stores are “authorized retailers,” or independent owners of cell phone franchises. Franchisees are independently owned and operated businesses that determine many of their own operations, employment conditions, and more.
If you are a cell phone store franchisee, you’ll need to purchase your business insurance on your own.
This is because every state and municipality has different regulations regarding insurance. A franchisor couldn’t possibly provide compliant business insurance for all of its franchisees. What’s more, while the franchisor plays a role in your business, it has no control over your day-to-day operations, employees, or any other factors that could lead to liability claims. The franchisor cannot purchase business insurance for you or on your behalf.
But that doesn’t mean that the franchisor has no involvement in your business insurance purchase. Most franchisors will require franchisees to purchase certain types of business insurance, or franchise insurance, in order to comply with the franchise agreement.
If you’re a franchisee, you're likely to be required to name the franchisor as an additional named insured on your franchise insurance, to ensure that the franchisor is protected from any claims against your shop.
Cell Phone Repair Businesses Face Unique Risks
If you offer cell phone repair services, you know that the items that you take into your possession for repairs are highly valuable to their owners, and can contain sensitive information that must be protected. In addition, cell phone owners are often highly inconvenienced when they must part with their phone in order for it to be fixed. You need to get the work done right, quickly, with no errors.
Imagine all of the adverse events that could take place while someone’s phone is in your possession. An employee can drop and break a cell phone while it is in for repairs. A fire could damage your store and everything in it, including phones being held for repairs. Or an attempt at a repair could actually further damage a phone, or destroy or expose a customer’s sensitive or important data.
If you take in customer cell phones for repairs, you’ll want to consider bailees coverage. Because standard business property and liability policies only cover your own business property, you need special coverage for your customers’ property that is in your possession. Bailees coverage is an add-on to a business property policy that covers non-owned property (customer devices) that is stored at your shop or in your possession.
How Much Does Cell Phone Store Insurance Cost?
Cell phone store insurance costs will vary depending on the size of your business and the coverage you need. A multi-location business with a large online presence will pay more than a single-location, brick-and-mortar only establishment. A store in a hurricane zone might pay more than one located away from the coast.
With so many variables (e.g., number of employees, amount and value of inventory, size and location of your buildings, etc.), insurance costs can be hard to predict.
But an independent agent can guide you though your options so you get coverage that meets your budget.
Find and Compare Quotes
An independent agent can work with you one-on-one to determine the types and amounts of coverage you need. Your agent can get quotes from multiple insurance companies so you can evaluate the cost and coverage options and make the best choice.
Benefits of an Independent Insurance Agent
Independent insurance agents simplify the search process for finding the right cell phone store insurance. They’ll walk you through some handpicked policy options and explain the details.
Most importantly, they’ll be there for you when claim time comes. They know the ins and outs of the process and will make sure your claim is handled appropriately.
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The Lowdown on Online Quotes
Online quotes can be tempting. They are fast and easy to get—but are they accurate? And are you getting quotes for the right coverage? For business owners, choosing speed over accuracy can cost you.
Online quotes can’t and don’t see the whole picture. They can leave out important coverage that will leave you devastated if something unexpected happens. And they can leave out cost-saving opportunities that an agent can help you take advantage of.
Instead of getting an online quote, find an independent insurance agent now, and get one-on-one consultation and affordable options for the best coverage for your unique needs.
TrustedChoice.com Article | Reviewed by Paul Martin
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