It’s often said that being self-employed is a lifestyle choice. Self-employment gives you the opportunity to earn more money, the independence of being your own boss and the freedom to do something you love. Perhaps most importantly, it lets you create something that is yours. Whether you are just starting up or if you’ve worked hard to build something from the ground up, it’s essential to think about how to protect yourself and your business. Thinking ahead and preparing for the unexpected could give you the peace of mind needed to grow your business without hesitation, or fear of the unknown. Here are our top covers that business owners should consider and how they can help.
Protecting your business
Every business should consider buying insurance for Public & Products Liability. This provides protection for claims made against the business for injury to people and damage to property belonging to others that results from your negligence.
If you have any employees or labour only subcontractors, you must by law have Employers’ Liability Insurance.
Professional indemnity insurance is designed to protect your business if a client makes a claim against you where it is alleged your work, professional advice or service has caused the client to suffer a loss, either financial, reputational or other.
In practice, it can cover claims against negligence, breach of confidential information/data or poor advice, where the client loses money as a result (directly and indirectly). Most professional indemnity policies not only cover the compensation costs but the legal fees and other expenses associated with the claim.
Almost every business has some assets that it needs to run the business, even if it is only a personal computer or a tablet. This is often referred to as material or property damage insurance and cover is typically provided on either a named peril (fire, flood storm etc.) or on an All Risks basis.
A business interruption policy protects a business from financial losses that arise from an interruption to the normal operation of the business. This could be complete prevention of trading or something that limits the ability of the business to operate. The core cover is triggered by a loss that causes damage to the assets of the business, such as the buildings or machinery, but there are also some very useful extensions such as prevention of access to the premises, murder, suicide and disease and failure of public utilities.
Other insurances that may be relevant to a business and are widely available are:
- Legal Expenses
- Goods in transit/Marine
- Money & Assault
- Directors & Officers/ Management Liability
- Engineering – Equipment Breakdown
- Deterioration of Stock
- Loss of Licence
Deciding the type of insurance you need can be confusing. An insurance broker can help ensure your business is protected for every eventuality by identifying the insurances that are relevant to your business.
One of the biggest challenges in being self employed is if you cannot work you are unlikely to have any income. There are various products that can provide you with protection for such a situation.
Personal Accident &/Or Sickness Insurance
Personal Accident &/Or Sickness Insurance could offer you and your family financial protection in the event of injury or death resulting from an accident. The compensation received for a personal injury claim could help cover lost earnings, help pay bills and other outgoings.
Policies provide benefits in two ways, a capital sum to be paid on death or for a major injury such as a loss of a limb, and/or to provide weekly benefits if you are permanently or temporarily prevented from working.
Cover can be arranged for accident only or for accident and sickness on either a 24 hours basis or just for incidents happening whilst at work
Critical Illness Cover
Critical Illness Cover could alleviate the financial burden if an illness leaves you unable to work. As the name would suggest, Critical Illness Cover, offers help to policyholders diagnosed with a critical illness. Not all illnesses are covered, but your policy should specify the illnesses that are included.
The key benefit of this type of cover is that it offers the policyholder comfort knowing that bills and outgoings will be covered if they cannot work due to illness. Additionally, it could help policyholders who don’t have sufficient savings, or whose state benefits aren’t enough to cover their outgoings.
It is vital to be aware that Critical Illness Cover will only be paid to the policyholder and not their dependents. If you already have life insurance, it may be worthwhile checking to see if you are covered for critical illness.
Income Protection Insurance
As a self-employed business owner, when you’re recovering from an accident or illness, loss of earnings can be a source of stress and anxiety. Income Protection insurance is designed to ensure you receive a regular income until you’re able to work.
For individuals who are self employed or do not benefit from sick pay, Income Protection Insurance could offer a lifeline during a difficult period. Often policies cover long and short term illnesses.
The cost of the policy varies from person to person and will depend on many factors, including age, health, lifestyle and more.
These covers could provide invaluable help to business owners by removing concerns over financial burdens caused by claims against the business or loss of earnings. If you think you would benefit and would like to explore the options available to you, please speak to us. At Cascade Insurance, we work closely with our clients to understand their needs and to establish a relationship built on trust. Talk to us on 01233 512548 and let us know how we can help.