Does your business need specialist insurance? Find out here
You might not think it, but your business may be a special case where insurance is concerned. You should check carefully to see if there are specialised risks to cover that pose a threat to your business.
You will probably need to speak to a broker about your specific requirements, but cover can usually be bought separately - though sometimes it will come as standard within a normal business policy. There are a number of types of cover:
Public liability insurance
�Awards for serious injury can run to scary amounts of money.�
This covers damages payments and any legal costs to members of the public for death, bodily injury or damage to their property which is caused by your business activities. Awards for serious injury can run to scary amounts of money - sometimes more than �1 million - so think carefully about the maximum claim that could be made against you. Standard policies provide up to �5m of cover, but you can negotiate more if necessary.
Product liability insurance
Cover for product liability is often included with public liability insurance. It's useful if you make, sell or repair products, because you could be held liable for damage or injury caused by defects in your their design or manufacture.
For instance, if you sell an electrical appliance which short-circuits and starts a fire in a customer's home, your business could be held accountable. Customers could claim against you even if you have not been negligent, so make sure your back is covered!
�You can choose to insure your entire turnover, or just part of it.�
It's not an unusual feeling for businesses: payment from a big client is overdue, nobody's answering the phone, and there's not going to be enough cash to pay the staff at the end of the month unless the money comes in.
Credit insurance covers you in this sort of situation. You can choose to insure your entire turnover, or just part of it. Alternatively, you may be able to insure selected accounts. Insurers will require you to carry at least 10% of the risk yourself.
If you give advice in a professional capacity (say you're a management or IT consultant), then this cover is an absolute must. If you don't have cover, and are proved to have been negligent, damages and costs can put you out of business - or even bankrupt you.
Some trade associations and professional bodies insist you have professional indemnity cover as a condition of membership. Unless you've never made a mistake in your life before, paying the premiums for this is a very wise move.
Finding a broker
One way of buying insurance is to purchase through a broker. If you haven't already found a broker to help with your business requirements, you can find a general broker in your local telephone directory.
However, please feel free to call 0115 948 7019 to discuss your needs with The Business Risk Solutions division of Lockton Companies, a specialist small business insurance broker who can give relevant advice as well as providing you with the cover you need. You can also email your enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.