- General liability insurance
General liability insurance covers common business risks like customer injury, customer property damage, and advertising injury. It protects your small business from the high costs of lawsuits and helps you qualify for leases and contracts.
General liability protects against common IT risks
General liability insurance is often the first policy that an IT business needs. Your clients trust you with their technology, and they could hold you responsible if it’s damaged. General liability insurance protects client property and guards against third-party injuries. It is often required when you sign a commercial lease.
General liability insurance provides coverage related to:
- Client injuries
- Client property damage
- Advertising injuries, such as slander
Bundle policies to save money and increase protections
If you run a small technology business, you may be able to bundle general liability insurance with commercial property insurance in a business owner’s policy. A BOP costs less than purchasing each policy separately. Businesses that are eligible for a BOP typically:
- Have fewer than 100 employees
- Have a small office or workplace
- Generate less than $1 million in annual income
- Operate in a low-risk industry
- Require less than one year of business interruption insurance
What coverage can general liability provide in IT?
If a client or delivery person slips and falls at your firm or home office, your business could face a lawsuit. That means you might end up paying for the injured person’s medical expenses, along with the cost of hiring a lawyer. General liability insurance can cover:
- Medical bills
- Attorney’s fees
- Court-ordered judgments
- Funeral expenses in fatal incidents
This policy does not cover employee injuries. For that, you’ll need workers’ compensation insurance.
Client property damage
In the tech industry, even a simple mistake can be costly. General liability insurance protects you when customer property is damaged. For example, if a technician at your computer repair shop accidentally drops a client’s laptop, your general liability policy could help pay for the cost of replacing it. If there is a disagreement over the cost of repairs, general liability could cover attorney’s fees or a court-ordered judgment.
General liability insurance also protects your IT business from off-site incidents. For example, if a telecom cabling installer damages equipment while working at a client’s office, any resulting lawsuits alleging property damage would be covered by your policy.
While advertising your company and its services, it’s possible to inadvertently copy a competitor’s slogan or replicate another business’s advertising campaign. Accidental advertising injuries are covered by general liability insurance. That includes:
- Defamation, both libel (written) and slander (spoken)
- Copyright infringement
Other important policies for technology professionals
While general liability insurance covers many common risks in the technology industry, it does not provide complete protection. IT project managers, software developers, web designers, and other technology professionals should also consider:
Technology errors and omissions insurance: This policy is critical for IT consultants and other tech professionals. Also called professional liability insurance, it can cover lawsuits related to work mistakes, such as an error that causes a client’s server to crash.
Cyber liability insurance: While technology E&O covers third-party cyber liability, you may want to invest in first-party cyber liability insurance to protect your own company’s data, such as clients’ credit card numbers.
Fidelity bonds: IT companies are often privy to sensitive client data. This means an employee could jeopardize your business by engaging in unlawful access, theft, or fraud. Fidelity bonds safeguard your business against certain criminal acts committed by employees.
Workers’ compensation insurance: Most states require technology businesses with employees to purchase workers’ compensation. This policy covers medical bills and partial lost wages from work-related injuries and illnesses.
Commercial auto insurance: This policy is required for business-owned vehicles. It can cover property damage and medical bills in an accident involving your IT company vehicle, along with theft, vandalism, and weather damage.