Posted on May 17, 2014
Commercial insurance plays a critical role in protecting New Hampshire businesses. The risk of accidents, mistakes and property damage can lead to potential large losses and financial ruin. With all the hard work that business owners put into building their businesses, it only makes sense to properly insure valuable assets from potential lawsuits and claims.
The most common types of insurance that companies purchase are property and general liability. The State of New Hampshire only requires that companies with employees have workers compensation insurance, but without the full protection of more comprehensive coverage, businesses leave themselves wide open to claims that they cannot possibly cover on their own should they be found legally and financially responsible.
New Hampshire Liability Coverage
General liability insurance aids New Hampshire companies by protecting them from the devastating effects of lawsuits. This broad coverage protects companies from such issues as defective products, false advertising, slander and damage to other people's property. When a court finds a company liable for injury, liability coverage pays the damages, legal fees and medical bills up to the policy limits or amount of insurance available.
Home based businesses also have unique insurance needs. Most homeowner policies do not provide all the insurance coverage needed to fully protect business owners that work out of their homes. Additional liability and property insurance is required for more comprehensive protection. This coverage can be obtained through a homeowner's policy by endorsement. It can also be purchase in the form of an in-home business policy or a business owners policy (BOP).
Workers Compensation Coverage
When employees are injured on the job, workers compensation insurance pays for their medical expenses and lost wages while they are unable to work. Workers comp payments begin on the 4th day of employee disability although the waiting period is waived when the disability lasts for 14 days or longer.
New Hampshire requires that all employers provide workers comp coverage for their employees. While self-employed individuals, sole proprietors and partnerships are not required to maintain workers comp insurance, they may elect to purchase the coverage for themselves.
Business property owners and tenants need commercial property insurance to protect their building, inventory, furniture and equipment. If a fire or burglary occurs, this coverage will pay to repair or replace the property so that companies can get back to business quickly. Property policies are also available to replace income when a covered event cause a business to temporarily closes while repairs are being made. Business interruption insurance helps business owners by paying fixed expenses that accrue despite lost sales due to closure for damages.
Commercial Flood Insurance
After heavy rain and flooding, property owners must work through the cleanup and repair necessary to get life back to normal. While storms, hurricanes and tornadoes will unexpectedly happen, business owners can take steps to prevent flood damage from creating potential financial devastation. Commercial property insurance policies do not cover flooding related damage. Companies need to purchase separate policies to make sure that when these weather related conditions occur, their buildings, inventory and equipment will be repaired or replaced if damaged.
Flood insurance may be obtained from the National Flood Insurance Program with limits up to $500,000 for building and $500,000 for building contents. Because there is a 30-day waiting period before the insurance goes into effect, planning ahead before the next flood is imperative.
Wind, Hurricane & Hail Insurance for New Hampshire
As part of the Eastern Seaboard, New Hampshire businesses may have difficulty when it comes to insuring against wind, hurricane and hail damage. These businesses are also susceptible to damage caused by winter storms and heavy snow conditions. Many commercial property insurance policies do not include these perils for coverage and separate policies must be purchased. On some policies that do cover wind and hail, there may be different deductible amounts as compared to the standard deductible. Business owners need to review their present policies to make sure that coverage is provided, and if so, that it is sufficient to cover replacement of property due to significant damage or loss caused by wind, hurricanes or hail.
Additional Information on New Hampshire Insurance