If you have a small business, you might be able to buy a business owners policy, also called a BOP, as the foundation of your insurance package. BOPs are very convenient, because while they are one policy, officially, they still contain several types of business insurance. There are cost perks, and a better cohesion of benefits. Still, BOPs are usually just the ground level of your insurance coverage. You’ll likely need a few additional policies to supplement the BOP’s already-solid options. How can you add them to your portfolio?
BOPs allow business owners to get a few of a business’s most-essential types of insurance. Namely, policies usually contain:
· Property & Structure Coverage
· Possessions/Contents Coverage
· Commercial General Liability (CGL) Coverage
· Business Interruption Coverage
In most cases, you can adjust your policy to offer coverage up to certain limits. You can also work to tailor the provided coverage to special circumstances within your operation. At the same time, you’ll still only pay one premium for your policy.
All the same, not all businesses qualify for BOPs. Perhaps more importantly, however, most businesses need additional coverage besides a BOP alone.
How Can You Get Extra Coverage
Once you start to assemble your BOP, you will likely need to add extra coverage to your insurance portfolio.
In some cases, you can add extra coverage to your policy in the form of riders or endorsements. These are, in essence, coverage elements that you can essentially tack onto the BOP beyond the standard coverage elements.
However, in other cases, you cannot add essential, necessary coverage to a BOP. That’s why most businesses carry additional policies beyond the BOP itself.
Among the necessary policies your business might need, consider the following;
· Workers’ compensation insurance to pay for the costs of injuries sustained by employees on the job.
· Commercial auto insurance that insures company-owned vehicles and employee-drivers
· Cyber liability insurance that will protect clients and the business in case of data breaches, cyber theft or other system failures
· Errors & omissions (E&O) insurance to apply to third-party liability losses arising from mistakes in your professional services or advice
· Equipment breakdown insurance that pays for repairs and lost income from failures in critical equipment.
· Umbrella liability insurance that can cover your existing CGL (and other policies’) liabilities in excess of the basic limits.
· Flood insurance, if your property lies in an area of flood risks.
· Employment practices liability insurance (EPLI) policies will pay in case you face accusations of mishandling of employment terms, harassment, discrimination, etc.
Once you know you have a BOP, talk to your agent about your need to expand your coverage. They can tell you which, how much, and how policies can be added to your greater business insurance portfolio.