As a business owner, insurance will no doubt be high on your list of priorities. The world of insurance, and the variety of different types of cover available can seem daunting to delve into. Perhaps your enterprise is just finding its feet, or maybe you’re well-established but need to brush up on the latest lingo. In either case, this handy ten-point glossary should give you all the basic knowledge you need to approach your business insurance requirements.
- Comprehensive Cover
If your business requires a vehicle or vehicles for its operation, Comprehensive Cover is definitely something to consider. It includes cover for damage to your own vehicles, as well as third party cover for fire, flood and theft. It’s the highest level of motor insurance cover available in the UK, which is why it’s favoured by businesses to protect their valuable assets.
- Public Liability Insurance
This type of insurance is particularly apposite if you work with the general public, or interact with customers. It covers your business in the event a member of the public sues because of accident or injury on your premises. And it’s not just customers who might sue. You also have a duty of care to prevent accident and injury to licensees (contractors who carry out work on different premises) and trespassers, who might enter your premises without permission. Public Liability Insurance is designed to cover costs such as compensation, repairs, loss of income and medical bills.
- Employment Practices Liability
While many businesses seek cover in case of injury claims from customers, employees are to be considered, too. Employment Practices Liability serves to protect a company’s manager in the event of harassment, discrimination or wrongful dismissal claims by current or former employees.According to a report on Gov.co.uk, in 2015/2016 there were no fewer than 83, 031 Employment Tribunal applications, which demonstrates the value of this type of cover.
A basic term, and perhaps obvious, but worth listing for completeness. Excess is the amount your business pays towards an insured claim. There are two types of excess. The first is ‘compulsory excess’, which is a set amount determined by the insurance company. The second is ‘voluntary excess’, which is an amount you choose to pay. Voluntary excess is inversely proportional to the cost of your policy (i.e. the more voluntary excess you pay, the cheaper your overall policy should be), but paying more voluntary excess also increases the amount you’ll pay if you make a claim.
- Cyber Risks Insurance
As of February 2016, The Guardian reported that 74 percent of small organisations had reported a digital security breach within the last year. As more and more sensitive information is now stored in ‘cyberspace’, and so many business transactions take place online, Cyber Risks Insurance is becoming increasingly relevant. This is sometimes known as ‘e-risks’ insurance and covers your business in case of computer viruses, attacks by hackers, or incidents of online identity theft.
- Business Interruption
Should your business activity be brought to a standstill for some reason, for example, fire or flood damage, power cuts, unexpected inclement weather or legal proceedings, you can quickly lose a great deal of income. Business Interruption Insurance covers you against this, allowing you to claim for a shortfall in profits during a period of interruption, as well as compensation for additional expenses required to get the business back up and running as usual.
- Commercial Business Insurance
Commercial Business is a type of comprehensive cover that can be particularly beneficial for smaller businesses. It combines a range of different types of useful cover in a single policy, to protect the business’s financial interests. It tends to include core business insurances like Public Liability Insurance, and Employer’s Liability Insurance and is designed to encompass more commonly experienced losses such as property damage, employee injury, theft and liability.
- Buildings Insurance
This type of insurance covers damage to physical structures such as warehouses, shops, factories, and offices. It often covers damage to fittings and fixtures, too. Should your building be damaged by fire or flood, for example, Buildings Insurance enables you to carry out repairs with minimal interruption to trading. It can be vital to bear in mind the re-build value of your premises in the event of a total loss, rather than just the property’s market value, when determining the level of cover you need.
- Hire and Reward
This type of insurance is particularly relevant to businesses which transport passengers or goods, for example, taxi companies, couriers, hauliers, and furniture removers. Essentially, any business that carries people or property in exchange for money can benefit from Hire and Reward Insurance. It covers you in the event of a road accident that injures a passenger, or damage to goods being transported. A related class of insurance is ‘Carriage of Own Goods’, which can benefit builders, electricians and other workers who carry equipment in their vehicles.
If you’re looking for the best insurance deal and want to cut out the legwork, a broker is one handy solution. Brokers work with many insurance companies to compare prices and policies, acting as a middleman to match them with their customers’ needs to find the very best cover for them. Brokers can also be referred to as ‘intermediaries’. Amongst the most reliable and qualified insurance brokers out there is Be Wiser Business Insurance. Their dedicated team is experienced in giving reliable advice on all types of cover, for businesses of all sizes and natures. They listen to your needs and provide quotes from leading insurers, making the process of acquiring cover streamlined, transparent and stress-free.