You’ve probably invested tons of time, your personal capital, and your life into your business. Protecting your business then, is really about protecting you. Having the wrong insurance can lead to wretched problems that will jeopardize your personal wealth.
Business insurance can be both complex and expensive. Finding the right coverage and broker can be time consuming. Here, we’ll lay out the basics of business insurance in NY to help solve those problems so you can be an educated buyer.
Most small businesses in New York buy coverage on a policy called a BOP or Business Owners Policy. A BOP is the best small business insurance policy. It will package together at least two main coverages: property insurance and liability insurance. A BOP will also contain several other coverage parts, including:
- Crime coverage,
- Auto liability coverage for non-owned and hired autos,
- Expanded property coverages including business interruption insurance,
- and more.
You may be able to include umbrella liability, cyber, and employment practices insurance as well.
More about that in a minute.
The advantage of using a BOP policy for your small business is that it’s flexible and affordable. It will include broad protection for many coverages in a single policy. A BOP also simplifies your billing and policy handling requirements as well.
As your business grows it may make sense to split off certain coverages onto their own policies. An example of this is cyber insurance. For a startup, purchasing cyber inside the BOP is limiting but acceptable.
After you grow, the cyber coverage built into your BOP will be insufficient. Purchasing standalone protection is broader and a better solution. The same is true for employment practice liability protection.
What other insurance coverages should a small businesses in NY consider?
If you have employees, you will need workers comp insurance NY as it’s required by law. With workers, you’ll also need statutory DBL or Disability coverage as well.
If you provide professional services then you’ll also need E&O insurance. E&O is also known as Errors & Omissions, or Professional Liability Insurance. All three coverage forms have the same meaning. This policy protects you from claims which arise from your professional services. Professional liability claims are generally excluded under General Liability section of the BOP.
If your business owns commercial autos, then you’ll need a commercial auto policy as well.
Most BOP policies can include umbrella coverage as well mentioned above. Most umbrella coverage quotes start at limits of $1,000,000 but it makes sense to review higher limits as well. It can be surprising how little it will cost to increase from $1,000,000 to $3,000,000 or higher.
There are a multitude of options when purchasing small business insurance in NY. The first decision a business owner should make is to choose an independent agent or broker who represents a broad cross section of insurers who can offer you advice and guidance. There’s no sense in going it alone and buying direct from a single source. That’s why we advocate using an agent that has expertise in business insurance in NY.
Have questions? Want to quote on Business Insurance? Give us a call! We represent most of the major commercial insurers. We’d be happy to discuss your needs, answer your questions, and work with you on getting the right insurance for you!