General Liability Insurance

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What is general liability insurance?

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General liability insurance

This policy provides coverage for customer injuries, customer property damage, and lawsuits related to both. It's usually the first policy small business owners purchase because they often need it to sign commercial leases and client contracts.

When do businesses need general liability insurance?

Almost every business needs some form of general liability insurance coverage (also known as commercial general liability insurance) to protect company assets and sign important contracts. General liability can help small businesses pay for unexpected lawsuit costs, sign deals with new clients, rent commercial space, and avoid bankruptcy. This policy also reassures clients that you'll be able to compensate them if you damage their property or injure someone with your work. Most small businesses get a policy shortly after they are founded. Read more about general liability coverage.

A store open for business.

Businesses that purchase a policy typically:

  • Have a location that is open to the public.
  • Interact with people on a job site.
  • Handle client property.
  • Rent business space.
  • Sell products to customers.
  • Advertise or market their services.
  • Use social media and have an internet presence.

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General liability insurance protections

Home businessFreelancerSmall business
Liability protectionYou may need general liability to pay for business-related bodily injury and property damage lawsuits.A client may ask you to provide a certificate of insurance in case you damage equipment at their office.You sign a commercial lease and your landlord requires general liability.
Advertising injury protectionYou launch a website and want protection for slander, libel, and accidental copyright infringement.You want protection in case someone involved with a project accuses you of libel or slander.You launch your first advertising campaign and want protection for advertising injury lawsuits.
Home business
Liability protection
Advertising injury protection
You may need general liability to pay for business-related bodily injury and property damage lawsuits.
You launch a website and want protection for slander, libel, and accidental copyright infringement.
Freelancer
Liability protection
Advertising injury protection
A client may ask you to provide a certificate of insurance in case you damage equipment at their office.
You want protection in case someone involved with a project accuses you of libel or slander.
Small business
Liability protection
Advertising injury protection
You sign a commercial lease and your landlord requires general liability.
You launch your first advertising campaign and want protection for advertising injury lawsuits.

General liability insurance costs

General liability insurance cost estimates

General liability insurance can cost as little as $21 per month for some small businesses. Several factors affect policy costs, including:

  • Industry and risk factors.
  • Coverage limits.
  • Location.
  • Number of employees.
View General Liability CostsView General Liability Costs

Learn more about general liability insurance

Find more answers to frequently asked questions about general liability.

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