The answers to all your questions about business insurance

Who needs business insurance?

Every business needs insurance to be protected, but not every business has the same insurance needs. The Hanover offers tailored industry-specific solutions for businesses, designed to help protect against the unique risks in your industry. Whether you are a small- or mid-sized business, our agents will work closely with you to understand your business and help build a customized insurance solution that fits your needs. Looking for insurance guidance? Find an agent in your area.

What does business insurance cover?

Depending on each policy, business insurance offers protection from different business-related risks, including accidents, property damage, loss of income and more. Business insurance solutions include, but are not limited to:

  • Property insurance provides coverage for your property from common risks such as fire, theft, and water damage
  • General liability insurance to help protect your business from the costs to defend and settle claims against your business
  • Commercial auto insurance to help protect your fleet and commercial vehicles
  • Workers’ compensation to provide your employees with a financial safety net for work-related accidents or illnesses
  • Commercial umbrella to add an extra layer of protection from the financial damage of lawsuits
  • Professional liability to help protect against lawsuits related to your products or services
  • Management liability to help protect businesses and their leaders from allegations of wrongful acts

Many insurance companies also offer package solutions as a good starting point for many business insurance programs. Your Hanover agent can work with you to customize a total business insurance solution.

What kind of business insurance do I need?

Most small business owners need general liability insurance and commercial property insurance, at a minimum. These coverages can often be purchased through a package business owners’ policy (BOP). Depending on what industry or the type of business the company falls into, more customized coverages should be considered in order to be properly covered for perils they may face, such as equipment breakdown, workers’ compensation, international coverage and much more. Exact requirements for business insurance vary by state, by business size, and by industry. To find out what insurance you need for your business, talk to your Hanover agent. They can work with you to customize a total business insurance solution specific to your needs.

What is a business owner’s policy?

A business owner’s policy (BOP) combines property, liability and business interruption coverages for small- to-midsize businesses. Coverage purchased as a package is generally less expensive than if purchased through separate insurance policies and can help ensure proper underlying limits are in place.

Is my business insurance tax deductible?

In general, you can deduct your insurance premiums as a business expense if those policies benefit the business, trade or profession and serve a business purpose. Talk to your independent agent and consult a tax professional to determine your specific deduction eligibility.

Is business insurance required?

The federal government requires every business with employees to have workers’ compensation, unemployment and disability insurance. Some states also require additional business insurance. Business insurance requirements vary by state, so talk to your independent agent and visit your state’s website to find out the requirements for your business.

Do I need international business insurance?

If your business meets any of the following criteria, you likely need insurance that extends beyond your standard policy, including international business insurance:

  • You have international customers
  • You or your employees travel overseas for business
  • You are sourcing any materials from outside the United States
  • You have a foreign manufacturing facility

Talk to your independent insurance agent about your international business needs.

What does workers’ compensation insurance cover?

Workers’ compensation is insurance that pays for medical care and physical rehabilitation of employees injured on the job and helps to replace lost wages while they are unable to work. State laws, which vary significantly, govern the amount of benefits paid and other compensation provisions. Conducting routine site and equipment inspections and staying up to date with training of safety policies will help to keep workers safe from injury. An important thing to consider is also having a program in place that helps injured workers get the right level of care they need, such as NT24, and one that helps get them back on the job quickly after recovering from an injury. Talk to your independent agent to learn more.

How much workers’ compensation insurance do I need?

Workers’ compensation laws vary by state, but the amount of required coverage likely depends on the number of employees at your business. Talk to your independent agent to help tailor a policy to meet your state requirements as well as the needs of your business.

Do I need umbrella coverage for my business?

An umbrella policy kicks in after your other policies (like commercial auto liability, general liability or other liability coverages) have been exhausted due to an expensive covered claim, providing the underlying limits satisfy the umbrella requirements.

Check out our article on eleven everyday business activities that suggest you need an umbrella policy. If your business performs any of those activities, consult an independent insurance agent to customize a commercial umbrella policy for total business protection.

What does business interruption insurance cover?

Business interruption insurance is a commercial coverage that reimburses a business owner for lost profits and continuing fixed expenses during the time that a business must stay closed while the premises is being restored because of physical damage from a covered peril, such as a fire.

Business interruption insurance also may cover financial losses that may occur if civil authorities limit access to an area after a disaster and their actions prevent customers from reaching the business premises. There are many options for business interruption coverage. Your independent agent can help you learn more about the options and choose the coverage that is best for your business.

What additional insurance coverages should I consider for my business?

There are several specialized coverages from which a business could benefit that go beyond standard coverage. These include, but are not limited to:

Employment practices liability (EPL): EPL protects against the financial damage of claims brought by employees and third parties for wrongful employment acts based on discrimination, workplace hostility, defamation or humiliation and more.

Professional liability (E&O): This coverage can provide protection for defense costs and settlement payments for allegations that your work or advice was inadequate, contained errors or failed to meet specifications.

Fidelity and crime: Fidelity and crime insurance coverages provide financial compensation for loss of goods or cash through theft, fraud, forgery or other crimes committed by your own employees.

Management liability: Management liability insurance helps to financially protect businesses, along with their executives, directors, officers and managers, from allegations of sexual harassment, discrimination, wrongful termination and other “wrongful acts.”

Consulting with an independent agent about your business needs can help you decide which additional coverages are right for your business.

Do freelancers need business insurance?

Freelancers and 1099 contractors can benefit from the financial protection provided by business insurance. General liability insurance can protect freelancers from bodily injury, property damage, libel, medical statements and more. In addition to general liability insurance, The Hanover’s Professional Liability Advantage may protect businesses, including freelancers, from legal judgments and fees caused by “wrongful acts.”

Where do I get business insurance?

Business insurance is complex. Consulting with a trusted advisor can help ensure your business has the protection it needs. To acquire an insurance policy for your small- or mid-sized business, contact your local independent agent. They can work with you to tailor a policy to suit your business’ needs.