The impetus of this article is simple – we are asked multiple times a day by well-intentioned investors... More...
In today’s litigious society, even small mishaps can result in large lawsuits, and when it concerns general liability coverage, all policies are NOT created equal. Investors and contractors alike risk legal issues arising from unfair and discriminatory housing claims, injuries caused by poor property maintenance, damage from improperly-performed work or repairs, and many other issues. With numerous companies available for us to shop rates and coverages with, InsuranceForInvestors provides all types of comprehensive personal and general liability coverage for individuals, general contractors, rehabbers, artisan contractors, and more. It is important to note that there are several different types of liability policies, including:
In most (but not all) cases regarding investment property, liability coverage is automatically included with the underlying property policy, but this is not always the case and there are many variations regarding this coverage depending upon the company it’s written with. Do you have any idea how you’re covered? Is it ‘premises liability’ only? Does it cover personal injury? Animal injuries? Are you protected against tenant-created situations? Is it ‘claims-made’ or ‘occurrence-based’ coverage? These are very important questions that you should have the answers to before something unexpected happens and you find yourself in a legal battle. Even if you’re innocent, you still have to pay legal fees and court costs to prove it. That’s exactly what liability protection is for.
Without question, general liability insurance, along with the correct property coverage, is essential for anyone investing in real estate or doing business in today’s society. Liability insurance protects the assets of an individual or business when sued for causing physical harm, personal and/or injury (not the same thing as bodily injury), or property damage. For contractors and construction professionals, this is extremely important when considering ‘completed operations’ and the risk of using subcontractors.
The amount of coverage a business or individual may actually need depends on a couple of different factors:
Under a general liability insurance policy, the insurer is obligated to pay the legal and defense costs of an insured party in a ‘covered’ liability claim or lawsuit. ‘Covered’ liability claims include bodily injury, property damage, personal injury, and advertising injury (damage caused from slander or false advertising). The insuring company also covers compensatory and general damages. Punitive damages aren’t covered under general liability insurance policies because they’re considered to be punishment for intentional acts.
In addition, general liability policies always state a total maximum amount that the insurer will pay during the policy period. As a different item, these policies also list the maximum amount the insurer will pay for any one single claim or occurrence. For example, if your policy has has a $1 million per-occurrence limit and you are successfully sued for $1.3 million, the insurer would pay the $1 million limit and you would be personally responsible for paying the remaining $300,000.
In order to protect against these situations, which can and do occur frequently, many individuals and businesses also purchase an additional ‘umbrella policy’, which acts as a second-layer of defense and picks up where the general liability coverage ends. Umbrella policies cover payments that exceed the underlying policy’s limits and provide additional coverage for liabilities not normally covered in a standard liability policy.
Standard General Liability is usually appropriate for General Contractors, subcontractors, and residential home builders. Subcontractors include a wide range of skills or trades which include, but are not limited to, plumbing, electrical, framing and carpentry, drywall and plastering, masonry and stone work, painting, roofing, HVAC, flooring, and more.
If you are searching for liability protection from a stable company with great coverage and reasonable premiums, call us today at (512) 501-4010 or (800) 299-8994 to discuss your needs and your own situation. Our job is to do what is in your best interest and we have numerous companies available to quote with and we will explain, in as much detail as you like, the specific coverages and protections necessary for your situation. You may also email us at Info@InsuranceForInvestors.com or click the quote request button at the top of this page.