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Find Insurance for Your Wholesale Business

A lot of people and businesses depend on wholesalers – from industrial manufacturers and commercial distributors to shop owners. You're a crucial part of the supply chain, and a hitch in your operations can have a ripple effect.

Business insurance can help your operations run smoothly. It offers financial protection that can help you quickly recover from common wholesaler liability issues, such as…

  • Third-party injuries.
  • Faulty products.
  • Damaged or stolen inventory.
  • Injured employees.

Let's look at a few key wholesaler insurance policies and how they benefit you.

General Liability Insurance

Wholesalers turn to their General Liability Insurance to address claims over:

  • Third-party bodily injuries (e.g., when someone trips over merchandise you're dropping off).
  • Third-party property damage (e.g., when you accidentally break client property).
  • Advertising injuries (e.g., when a competitor accuses you of libel or slander).

You're a trusted partner to suppliers and shop owners, but that doesn't mean they won't sue over damage you cause. For example, let's say you're a wholesaler for specialty sweets. While making a delivery to a small shop, you accidentally bump into a display of glassware, sending it all crashing to the ground. The inventory is ruined and the flying glass cuts the shop owner.

General Liability Insurance can pay for the broken inventory and the injured client's medical bills. If they sue you, your policy can also pay for your legal expenses.

Product Liability Insurance

When a product physically hurts a consumer, everyone in the supply chain can get sued over it. That includes you, the wholesaler.

Product Liability Insurance can address legal expenses when consumers sue you over:

  • Injuries caused by a product you sold.
  • Illnesses caused by a product you sold.
  • Property damage caused by defective products.

General Liability usually includes some Product Liability coverage for other industries, but wholesalers may need to purchase a standalone policy. Talk to your insurance agent to learn about the most cost-effective way to get Product Liability Insurance for your wholesale business.

Business Owner's Policy

Depending on what you sell, your business may qualify for a Business Owner's Policy (BOP), which bundles General Liability Insurance with Commercial Property Insurance at a reduced rate. Commercial Property can help pay to repair or replace your business property if it is stolen or damaged in certain situations (usually theft, fire, vandalism, or windstorms).

Because your inventory is central to your operations, the importance of Commercial Property Insurance can't be overstated. This coverage makes sure you can quickly bounce back from an unexpected disaster and repair or replace your…

  • Office space or warehouses.
  • Inventory.
  • Heavy equipment.
  • Supplies.
  • Furnishings.
  • Fixtures.

To qualify for a BOP, your wholesale business needs to have a low-risk profile. If it doesn't, you may need to purchase Commercial Property Insurance as a standalone policy instead.

Workers' Compensation Insurance

On-the-job accidents happen, and sometimes they're severe. If an employee gets injured while stacking pallets in your warehouse, it's your responsibility as their employer to cover those medical expenses.

Most business owners with employees carry Workers' Compensation Insurance to address this responsibility to their employees. It can pay for costs associated with occupational illnesses and injuries, including…

  • Medical expenses.
  • Partial wages while the employee recovers.
  • Funeral expenses if an employee dies from a work injury.
  • Legal expenses if your business is sued over a work injury.

Most states require businesses to carry Workers' Compensation Insurance once they have employees. Check the laws in your state or talk with your insurance agent to see if you need this policy.

Commercial Auto Insurance

If your wholesale business makes its own deliveries, it may need Commercial Auto Insurance, especially if your business owns the delivery vehicles.

A Commercial Auto Insurance policy can cover vehicles your business owns and personal vehicles you use for the business. If you get into an accident, it can pay for:

  • Repairs to the other vehicle.
  • Medical bills for the other driver.
  • Legal bills if your business is sued.

Worth noting: Your personal auto policy probably excludes coverage for accidents that happen during work trips. That's why you may want to purchase Commercial Auto Insurance if you frequently use your personal vehicle to make deliveries.

If your employees use their own vehicles to make deliveries, Hired and Non-Owned Auto Insurance may be a smart investment. This policy can address accidents that happen in an employee's vehicle during work trips for your business.