Insurance is essential for any business, but contractors assume unique risks that require customized protection for a wide range of potential losses. Often, a client’s insurance will not provide coverage for a contractor, and many clients require proof of insurance before accepting a contractor’s bid for a job. At Long & Company, we offer customized insurance solutions for general contractors, as well as artisan contractors. Coverage may vary depending on the size and scope of your business, as well as your risk exposures. Ultimately, our goal as an independent agency is to help you find reliable coverage at affordable, competitive rates that protect your bottom line.
General contractors oversee the completion of a project, from new construction to expansions and renovations. They typically manage a team of sub-contractors, many of whom are artisan contractors. The general contractor on a job is responsible for overseeing the schedule of completion, supplying labor and equipment, providing a safe work environment, and communicating progress with the property owner client.
Artisan contractors work on job sites – sometimes several in one day – to perform skilled work in specific fields, such as plumbing, carpentry, roofing, pest removal, tree removal, electrical work, HVAC services, and more. They may work primarily with general contractors, or they may offer for-hire services directly to property owners. Artisan contractors often require unique coverages that provide broad risk protection for liability, tools, equipment, work trucks, and more. Some artisan contractors may benefit from consolidated property and liability coverages in a BOP (Business Owner’s Policy), as well as additional stand-alone coverages like commercial vehicle coverage. At Long & Company, we can help you assess your commercial risks and make coverage recommendations based on your needs.
Types of Contractor Insurance
Contractors usually purchase several different types of insurance coverage. These may include:
No contractor expects to take on liability for a client’s loss, but accidents happen. If your business is sued for a third-party injury or for causing property damages, general liability insurance can help pay for legal fees and other lawsuit expenses, as well as protect you against expensive judgments and settlements that might otherwise cost you your business. GL insurance can spare you hundreds of thousands of dollars in damages, helping your business to continue serving customers despite the threat of litigation.
Commercial Property Coverage
This type of insurance provides a safety net for the money you’ve invested in physical assets for your business, including the office you own, storage, your signage, equipment, and more. It can protect you against losses caused by certain covered events, such as fire, smoke, explosion, hail, wind, theft, vandalism, fallen objects, and more.
Workers Compensation Insurance
If you hire employees to work for you – even just one – you may be required to carry workers compensation insurance coverage. This insurance helps protect your business against employee lawsuits when workers are hurt on the job. It pays benefits for employee medical bills and provides compensation for lost wages while the employee recovers from his or her injury. Coverage is not contingent upon proof of liability.
Your truck is probably one of the hardest workers in your business. Contractors typically put a lot of miles on their commercial vehicles, increasing the risk of accident-related damages and liability. Commercial auto coverage helps protect the value of your vehicle, paying for repairs or compensating you for its loss after a covered event. It can also protect your business against liability if you are at fault for a collision that causes third-party property damages or injuries.
Builders Risk Coverage
For a general contractor, there is a heightened risk exposure period that lasts from the time you break ground until the time you hand over the keys. When damages occur at a construction site or vandals cause losses that set a project back several weeks and thousands of dollars, the contractor may be responsible for the damages. Builders risk insurance help reduce your risk of financial loss if damages occur at your job site due to a covered event.
Professional Liability Coverage
As a professional in your field, your clients depend on you to get the job done efficiently and correctly. If you make professional errors or are negligent in overseeing the project, you may be held liable for any financial damages it causes the client. Professional liability insurance helps cover you against these types of mistakes.
Employee Dishonesty Coverage
You cannot control the behavior of workers, and even a thorough background check with references cannot guarantee an honest hire. When employees engage in dishonest practices or fraud, this type of coverage can help protect you against loss.
Tools and Equipment Coverage
Imagine how much your business would lose if your most valuable equipment were damaged or destroyed. From small tool kits to heavy equipment like dozers, you need coverage that protects expensive equipment on the job, in storage, and everywhere in between.
Commercial Umbrella Coverage
Even businesses with high-limit liability coverage can face bankruptcy in cases of extreme liability. Commercial umbrella insurance can provide an extra layer of protection when your financial responsibility exceeds the limits of your primary coverage. Talk to your agent about coverage options and how a commercial umbrella policy can help you extend your liability protection with millions of dollars in additional coverage.