The very best advice to determine what you’ll pay in business liability insurance is to meet with at least two insurance brokers and have them shop the coverage. More than not, most companies will seek quotes from the same carriers so seeking the advice of say five brokers is really not necessary. They should offer you a worksheet to determine asset values, exposures, number of employees and job classifications, amount of personal liability coverage needed and more.
Have the insurance broker shop the GL policy and include the add-ons—ask them to be frank about what you need and don’t need. For example, if your business owns no autos, make sure the policy isn’t quoting owned autos. Or, if you have no employees, you won’t need employee theft coverage—but beware, as some policies include unneeded coverage and add-ons. Because insurance lingo can be hard to decipher, if you don’t understand what each part of the policy insures—ask.
As a small business owner, (I have owned small Mom and Pop car dealerships) with revenues in the $4,000,000 range and less than 50 employees and annual polices (for all types of needed coverage) cost me around $30,000 to $40,000 annually.
Of course if your firm is an architectural firm or accounting office, your premiums will be half—except for errors and omissions coverage and personal umbrellas. Contractors and other businesses deemed to place employees in possible harmful situations—even if safety gear is available and required—may be as high as $50,000 to $60,000 annually to protect not only your employees but business assets, liability, property damage, etc.
Finally, you should re-shop your policy annually to see if another company is willing to offer you a cheaper premium and always keep in mind even in the business world, too many claims will make your premiums rise or in some instances, a carrier may drop you because they consider you a high risk due to claims.
Insurance can be tricky if you don’t understand all the ins and outs and I don’t recommend obtaining a policy online—find a broker in your area and strike up a relationship—even if that means having them insure your home and personally owned autos, boats or motorcycles. The more business you offer them, the harder they will work to find affordable premiums for your business needs.