Starting a business is an exciting challenge that the courageous and industrious can undertake. It is a path that can be full of opportunity, steep learning curves and setbacks. If you are a business owner in Ontario, you are likely already familiar with the need for business insurance. If however, you are new to the business world and are unsure about what business insurance covers, this article will guide you through the basics.
What Does Business Insurance Cover?
Business Insurance provides coverage for physical property owned by a company (including vehicles, products, tools, office supplies, and buildings) in the event of damage (for example, from a fire or flood). It covers lost revenue if work cannot be done, and also covers the cost of potential legal action against the business related to the work it does.
Smaller home-businesses may only require basic liability insurance coverage, while larger businesses with multiple locations will need more comprehensive coverage for employees, buildings, vehicles, and so on.
Most Common Types of Business Insurance
Worker’s Compensation Insurance (or WSIB Insurance)
Worker’s compensation insurance is legally required for all independent operators, sole proprietors, partners and executive officers of construction businesses in Ontario.
General Liability Insurance is often, but not always required by landlords or customers, and protects you and your employees from damage or bodily injury done to a third party.
Professional Liability Insurance/Errors and Omissions Insurance
Professional liability and E&O insurance is required for doctors, lawyers, architects, consultants and realtors to protect against legal action taken based on professional work or advice.
Home and property insurance is essential for businesses that own property and/or have physical inventory (electronics, tools, equipment) that need coverage.
Product Liability Insurance
Product liability insurance provides protection from legal action related to a product made or distributed by the company. This also applies to the construction/contractor industry to protect them from liability from completed projects. (See Contractor’s Insurance in Ontario)
Commercial Auto Insurance
Commercial auto insurance is required for any vehicle that is being used to transport goods, tools or equipment to different locations. If a business has fewer than 5 vehicles, these are insured separately; more than 5, and they can be insured as a fleet to optimize savings.
Cyber Insurance is critical if your business relies on technology in order to operate (for example, e-commerce transactions, payroll processing or keeping client records digitized).
How much does Business Insurance Cost?
There is no “one-size-fits-all” cost for business insurance in Ontario, simply because each business is unique. Depending on the industry, location, business size and individual business needs, Regal Insurance brokers work with you to determine which type(s) of protection you need. Reach out to one of our insurance brokers at Regal Insurance to find out how we can help you protect the business you’ve worked so hard to build.