Business Insurance Requirements for Lawyers in California

California has a well-earned reputation for being one of the most litigious states in the country. With economic powerhouses in the Bay Area and Los Angeles and a rapidly aging population driving a surge in healthcare, there’s a large demand for lawyers in the Golden State.

The insurance you may need to protect your practice depends on your area of specialization, location, and other factors. While an independent tax lawyer in Rancho Cucamonga has different needs than a copyright office in Oakland, there are some commonalities.

California state law requires all small businesses with employees to carry workers’ compensation insurance. You are not required by California law to have professional liability insurance, but lawyers without coverage are required to disclose this to their clients in writing. You will likely also be asked to show proof of general liability insurance or property insurance as part of your leasing agreement if you plan to move into a commercial space. Lawyers are often tasked with storing sensitive client data, making cyber liability insurance another important policy to consider. In the aftermath of a cyberattack such as a data breach, this policy can assist with recovery costs.

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

Find the right insurance policy for your law firm

The most common policies for lawyers in California vary depending on a variety of factors, including revenue, client contracts, and partnerships. The table below illustrates which policies might work best for your business type.


Business type General liability / BOP Professional liability Workers' comp Cyber liability
Solo business owner X X   X
Contractor / freelancer X X   X
Employer X X X X


General liability insurance: General liability insurance is the foundation of California business insurance protection, with coverage that extends to bodily injury, client property damage, advertising injury, and the cost of legal defense. Most commercial leases require you to have this coverage.

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 lawyer malpractice insurance, can help cover legal expenses if you’re sued for unsatisfactory work or a business discrepancy. California state law requires lawyers who do not have a policy to disclose this to their clients in writing.

Cyber liability insurance: Cyber liability insurance can helps lawyers survive data breaches and cyberattacks by helping to cover recovery expenses. You may need this policy if you handle sensitive data, such as credit card numbers, passwords, or Social Security numbers.

Business owner's policy (BOP): Lawyers in California 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.

California workers’ compensation insurance: California state law requires workers’ comp coverage for all small businesses with employees. If an employee is injured on the job, workers’ comp can help pay for medical fees and lost wages. Lawyers are significantly less likely than other professionals to sustain on-the-job injuries, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Your specialization can impact your risk, though costly injuries from transportation incidents or contact with equipment can affect lawyers of all practices.

Business insurance costs for lawyers in California

Insurance expenses in California trend lower than the national median, according to an analysis of Insureon applications. Errors and omissions coverage costs more than other policies, both nationally and in California. However, without malpractice insurance, you could face significant financial losses if you are sued over your work. Overall, lawyers in California spend around $500/month to protect their practices.

Median Business Insurance Costs for California Lawyers

Save time and money with Insureon

Insureon’s industry-leading technology helps lawyers in California 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 California 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 lawyer insurance quotes today.