For every small business owner, protecting their company against the unknown is a top priority. Keeping the company protected can mean many things, like locking the doors at closing, maintaining positive business relationships and hiring trustworthy employees.
An important aspect of safeguarding a business against the unexpected is the right insurance policies. Business insurance helps keep your company funded after an event puts it at risk.
There are countless situations that can put a business at risk, including natural disasters that cause damage to physical structures, theft that disrupts the company's income or an injured employee that requires the company to help pay for medical expenses.
Business insurance policies can cover each of these situations. However, it's important to understand the differences in the various types of policies available to small business owners.
Types of small business insurance
Every business is unique, which means their insurance policies should be, too. The risks that could threaten a company depends on many factors, including the industry in which the company operates, where it's located, the types of equipment used and much more.
Though policies may differ, there are a few general insurance products that most small businesses in Papua New Guinea can benefit from:
All businesses in PNG that have employees are legally required to have a worker's compensation insurance policy in place. This type of policy protects your workers if they become injured or ill due to their job duties.
In the event of a workplace accident, worker's compensation will help you pay for their medical bills, if necessary, and cover their lost wages while they're recovering and unable to work.
Commercial motor vehicle insurance
Any business that uses vehicles should have a commercial auto insurance policy. Your personal car insurance policy will not cover accidents or events that occur while the car is being used for work purposes.
Commercial motor vehicle insurance policies are specifically created for public motor vehicles that are used for business, including delivering food or supplies, transporting workers to job sites or taxi services.
For many business owners, their commercial property – including storefronts, equipment, supplies and inventory – is the heart of their business. An unfortunate event, like a natural disaster, theft or vandalism, can destroy business property, leaving the owner with few resources to build their company up again.
Property insurance helps by providing funds to help recover and resume business.
Public liability insurance
You may not think of your business as a threat to others, but the truth is, every business has the potential to cause harm to another person. A visitor may trip over a loose cord on the floor of your shop, or a customer may have a bad reaction to one of your products, or a mistake in production could lead to the injury or illness of a consumer.
Public liability insurance helps protect against financial loss if your business causes harm to another person. Where applicable, it can help cover legal costs, medical expenses or court fees associated with an injury that's deemed the fault of your business.
How to choose the right business insurance policy
Small business owners are experts in their own industries and companies, but not necessarily in business insurance policies. That's OK; there are plenty of resources that can help entrepreneurs determine the best insurance policies for their individual level of risk.
Working with an insurance broker that specialises in business insurance policies can be helpful to small business owners who are taking out their first insurance policies, or who want to ensure they're properly covered.
Brokers have access to multiple insurance companies and products, which means they can tailor a policy to each of their clients' unique businesses. This personalised approach allows them to ensure the business is not overpaying or underinsured.
To learn more about commercial insurance policies that fit your business's needs, reach out to the insurance professionals at Trans Pacific Assurance Limited.