Finding the best insurance for your handyman business does not need to be a complicated and time-consuming process. At Safeguard Insurance we write all types of business insurance for handyman operations including general liability, workers compensation, and commercial auto. To make sure you find the right policy, here are some handyman insurance myths to consider when shopping for coverage.
Myth #1: General liability policies are all the same.
The truth is that general liability coverage – more specifically the conditions and exclusions – will vary greatly between insurance carriers. Before buying an insurance policy you should carefully review the quote, policy forms cited, and discuss with the agent any endorsements or exclusions you do not understand. Pay careful attention to endorsements that limit coverage to a particular classification, and remove contractual liability.
Handymen should also understand that most general liability policies have limited, or no coverage, for damage to property in your care, custody, or control and damage to “that particular part of real property on which you or any contractors” are working on. Further, the standard general liability policy (CG0001 04/13) excludes damage caused by incorrect or defective workmanship.
A quality handyman insurance policy will offer have an option to buy a sub-limit of coverage for care, custody, and control losses. Some carriers (such as Liberty Mutual) will also provide limited coverage for incorrectly performed work. Please note that no insurance policy is designed to be a warranty of your workmanship, so the scope of these type of endorsements will be limited.
Myth #2: My employees are independent contractors so I do not need workers compensation.
Every US State has very specific laws that define the employee-employer relationship. Generally speaking, if your workers are in the same industry as your business and you control where and what they do, they are considered employees for workers compensation purposes. Should one of those workers be injured during the course and scope of employment, it is likely you will be responsible for all medical costs and indemnification of wages. Plus, the State may assess fines and penalties for failure to provide workers compensation coverage.
Another benefit of workers compensation insurance is the protection afforded the employer under “exclusive remedy” laws. Under exclusive remedy, the employer is protected from litigation by an injured employee if the employer provides workers compensation insurance.
Myth #3: My tools and equipment are covered by auto insurance.
Unfortunately, your auto insurance provides no coverage for tools and equipment you carry to job locations. Tools can be covered by a floater policy that may be added to your general liability policy. Or, you can purchase a separate equipment floater from a specialized insurance carrier.
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At Safeguard Insurance, we have been providing affordable and comprehensive handyman insurance policies for nearly 20 years. We work with several A-rated insurance carriers, such as Liberty Mutual and Acuity, that offer excellent pricing and broad, flexible coverage. Contact us today for a no-obligation handyman insurance quote.