The success of any business depends on hard work and ingenuity. Business insurance helps protect the effort and money you’ve invested in your business is covered in case a disaster strikes. But because businesses are so diverse, there are a variety of optional coverages that you should consider, too. These extras are added to your business insurance policy as endorsements.
Here’s how to help cover four common business risks with endorsements.
1. Data breaches: Any business that has personal or medical information about customers, tenants or employees is at risk for a data breach.
Don’t think it can’t happen to you? A study commissioned by Hartford Steam Boiler and conducted by the Ponemon Institute found that over half of small businesses have experienced a data breach, and many did not inform victims as required by state law. Most states have breach notification laws that not only require a business owner to inform any affected individuals (customers) of a data breach but also specify the manner and period in which the business owner must inform customers.
Two coverages you may want to consider:
- Data Breach Response Expenses: It could cover your expenses to notify affected individuals of a breach per state laws.
- Data Breach Liability Coverage: It could cover damages that you are legally obligated to pay due to fraudulent use of your customers’ non-public personal information that is lost, stolen or accidentally released. It also covers the cost to defend lawsuits seeking damages.
2. Employment liability: These days, hiring, firing and day-to-day employee management can be a risky business. You’d like to think that your employees would never dream of filing a claim or suit against you or your business for discrimination, wrongful termination, harassment or sexual harassment. Unfortunately, it does happen. Responding to claims or suits like these will require time and money.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) received 89,385 charges of workplace discrimination during fiscal year 2015, which ended in September. EEOC also secured more than $356.6 million for victims of discrimination in the private sector.
With Employment Practices Liability Coverage, you will not have to face an employment claim on your own. It can help protect you against liability damages and cover defense costs.
3. Professional liability: You’re expected to have technical knowledge or training in a particular area of expertise or perform certain services according to the standards of your profession. If you fail, you could be held responsible for any harm that you caused to another person or business. Professional liability coverage can provide you with protection for claims arising out of negligent business or professional practices.
4. Personal identity theft: As a small business owner, your personal credit may be tied closely to your business. Having your own identity stolen, could jeopardize your credit and affect your business operations.
Last year, fraudsters stole $16 billion from 12.7 million U.S. consumers, according to the 2015 Identity Fraud Study, released by Javelin Strategy & Research. That means that every 2 seconds in 2014 there was a new identity fraud victim.
Personal Identity Recovery coverage can be added to a business insurance policy1 and provide:
- Case management services to assist you in recovering a personal identity by contacting authorities, credit bureaus and businesses to correct the records.
- Reimbursement for necessary and reasonable expenses that you incur because of identity theft, including lost wages, mental health counseling and child and elder care supervision costs.
Talk to an Erie Insurance agent to learn more about the risks that you may face and how to protect your business.
1Available with Erie Insurance UltraflexSM and Ultrapack PlusSM policies. See individual policies for specific coverage details. Certain terms and limitations may apply. Refer to ERIE’s disclaimer.