Business Insurance Requirements for General Contractors in Ohio

As home values climb and commercial construction spikes in Columbus, Cincinnati, and Cleveland, it's a good time to be a general contractor in Ohio. To capitalize on these opportunities, you often need general contractor’s insurance to protect your business.

Ohio contractors must have at least $500,000 in general liability insurance to get licensed. The state also requires you to carry workers’ compensation if you have any employees. Workers’ comp must be purchased from Ohio’s state-run fund. You also usually need a license/permit bond to work on public projects.

Insureon makes shopping for insurance easy with industry-leading technology that gathers quotes from top U.S. carriers that fit your needs. Read more to find out which policies are most common for general contractors in Ohio, and start an application to get your free quotes today.

Find the right insurance policy for your contracting business

The most common policies for general contractors depend on a variety of factors, including revenue, client contracts, and partnerships. The table below illustrates which policies might work best for your business structure.

 

Business type General liability / BOP Bond Workers' comp
1099 or independent contractor X X  
Business owner with employees X X X
Solo business owner X X  

 

General liability insurance: General liability insurance is the foundation of a general contractor’s protection. This coverage can address bodily injury, client property damage, product liability, and the cost of legal defense. You must have at least $500,000 in contractor liability insurance to be licensed in Ohio.

Professional liability insurance: Many clients require proof of professional liability insurance before entering contracts for professional services. This policy, also called errors and omissions insurance or contractor’s liability insurance, can help cover legal expenses if you’re sued for unsatisfactory work or a business discrepancy. Certain towns in Ohio may have requirements for this coverage.

Business owner's policy (BOP): General contractors sometimes qualify for a business owner’s policy. This package helps your business save money by bundling commercial property insurance with general liability at an affordable rate.

Inland marine insurance: While property insurance can cover equipment that stays at your primary business location, inland marine insurance can cover items you use in the field, such as tools and any other equipment you use on the job. These items move from location to location, which subjects them to more opportunities for loss, damage, and theft. That’s why they require special coverage.

Commercial auto insurance: Commercial auto insurance can cover vehicles your business owns or uses for business purposes. If your vehicle is involved in an accident, this policy can cover your liability for the other person's bodily injuries and property damage. It can also pay to repair your car when it is damaged by theft, weather events, or vandalism.  

License/permit bond: General contractors often need a license or permit bond before they can start construction projects. This bond offers project stakeholders a guarantee that you will perform your work and adhere to state or town regulations. If you fail to uphold that agreement, the insurance company reimburses the stakeholders for their losses. Unlike a typical insurance policy, you are obligated to pay the insurer back.

Builder’s risk insurance: Builder's risk insurance addresses unique property exposures that property insurance doesn’t cover. Primarily, it protects structures in progress from damage caused by fire, vandalization, and non-severe weather events. It can also cover building materials and equipment that must stay on site.

Ohio workers' compensation insurance: Ohio requires this policy if you have any employees. Ohio has a monopolistic state workers’ compensation fund, meaning that you must purchase your workers’ comp policy from the state. If an employee is injured on the job, workers’ comp can help pay for medical fees and lost wages.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, general contractors in the United States are most commonly injured by overexertion; slip, trips, and falls; and contact with equipment on the job. These injuries can lead to lost wages and missed project deadlines; workers’ comp coverage can help offset these costs.

Most Common Workplace Injuries: General Contractors in the U.S.

Business insurance costs for general contractors in Ohio

According to an analysis of applications through Insureon, some general contractor insurance policies in Ohio are less expensive than the national median.

For example, the median cost of commercial auto insurance is $1,367 per year less expensive for Ohio general contractors than the national median. The yearly median cost of general liability is $186 less for general contractors in Ohio, and surety bonds are about $96 less than the national median.

Insureon does not have data on the cost of workers’ compensation in Ohio, as this policy must be purchased through the state workers’ comp fund.

Median Insurance Costs for Ohio General Contractors

Save time and money with Insureon

Insureon’s industry-leading technology helps general contractors in Ohio save time and money shopping for insurance by comparing policies from dozens of top U.S. carriers. Simply apply online and review quotes for the policies that best fit your business needs. Our insurance specialists are licensed in Ohio and can answer your questions as you consider coverage.

To make the application go even quicker, have this information ready:

  • Workforce details, such as the number and types of employees.
  • Current and projected revenue.
  • Business partnerships.
  • Insurance history and prior claims.
  • Commercial lease insurance requirements.

Apply for free general contractor insurance quotes today.