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What Is Commercial Insurance?

Commercial insurance, also known as business insurance, protects businesses from certain types of financial loss, such as property damage from a natural disasters or liability if the business is sued. Unless your business is equipped with the funds to cover any potential loss you might encounter, your business will need some form of commercial insurance. 

Types of Commercial Insurance

There are variety of commercial insurance types covering different aspects of business. The nature of your business will determine your commercial insurance needs. The two main types of commercial insurance are property insurance and liability insurance.

  1. Property insurance protects buildings, furniture, vehicles, inventory, and other common business-related property.
  2. Liability insurance, or casualty insurance,  protects against liability relating to leasing mishaps, contracts, accidents, professional malpractice, and other business-related liabilities.

A business can buy property insurance and liability insurance separately or together. Typically buying them together is cheaper than buying them separately. Every policy is different, so you should know exactly what kind of risks your policy protects against before purchasing it.

What Does Commercial Insurance NOT Cover?

Commercial insurance will generally only protect against liability stemming from negligence or strict liability suits. In other words, only accidents or otherwise unintentional harms may be covered. Most commercial insurance policies do not cover:

This makes sense – allowing liability insurance to cover intentional illegal actions would encourage bad behavior and be contrary to public policy.

What to Do If Your Business’ Claim Is Denied

If your commercial insurance company has denied coverage on a claim, the first thing to do is make sure that your policy covers the type of damage or loss claimed. If your policy does cover your business' claim, you should file an immediate appeal. If your insurance company still refuses to pay, consider taking legal action for breach of contract and/or bad faith.

Does My Business Need a Commercial Insurance Attorney?

Commercial insurance policies tend to be very complex and specific. Additionally, state regulations may affect exactly what your policy can cover. Having a business attorney go over your business' commercial insurance policy can help your company understand its coverage. If your business has to go to court, a lawyer will know your state's laws and give you the best chance of winning your lawsuit.

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Last Modified: 05-06-2015 01:17 PM PDT

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