Certificates of Insurance (COI) are usually the last thing on a contractor’s mind – especially if they’re planning to make a bid on a job. Bidding takes a lot of work, as it requires a contractor to do three things: Carefully generate the proper calculations, negotiate with new clients, and continually adapt to the needs of both parties throughout the course of the project. Insurance companies take these things into consideration when they need to create estimates for liability coverage, but general contractors don’t think about such things every time they place a bid on a potential job. It may seem like extra work to think about insurance on top of your bidding process. Even so, it’s very important to consider insurance, and especially your COI, as a naturally occurring part of that process.
If you’re not convinced, you may find some wisdom in these reasons why you should get a jumpstart on your COI.
Proof of Insurance Increases Your Professional Image
Although insurance coverage is not required in every state, it is still a very easy way to give your company the professional standing it needs to get ahead of its competition. Having general liability insurance when you don’t legally need it shows your customer that you care enough about the work you do to the extent that you’ll make sure their best interests are always covered. Companies who do not have business insurance that covers their clients run the risk of giving off the impression that they are looking for ways to cut corners, or that they have no regard for clients or their property. Even when this is not the case, paying into reasonable monthly premiums protects you and the customer in the event of an accident, as well as creating an air of professionalism.
Proof of Insurance Helps You Remember Important Information About Your Insurance Policy
Your insurance certificate is a simple document which displays your insurance carrier, your type of coverage, your policy limits, the serial numbers associated with your policy (or policies if applicable), all pertinent contact information, all effective dates (including the expiration date), and any additional coverage your policies might have. The information contained on this important document not only helps customers understand how they are covered, but it also gives peace of mind to construction companies. This is because a COI help these companies practice effective risk management, emergency planning, and budgeting for business expenses.
Small Business Owners Don’t Need to Worry About Significant Income Loss in the Event of an Accident Involving a Client or Third Party
As previously mentioned, not having professional liability insurance looks unprofessional. But another drawback includes the fact that failing to have such insurance may cost small businesses much more than they can afford all at once should an accident ever happen. Liability claims are bound by various regulations, which means that if your company is found liable for an accident claim and you don’t have policy coverage on hand, you are still liable for the full cost of the damage. For contractors, this cost can range from thousands to millions of dollars – depending on the nature of the damage. Rather than paying this all up front and potentially losing business assets (or even the business itself), general liability insurance keeps you covered year-round and makes damage payments much more manageable.
Having a Certificate of Liability Insurance Keeps You in Compliance with State and Local Laws
Local and state laws are often hard to keep up with because legal writing is difficult to read for the uninitiated. The amount of laws small business must navigate often won’t make the situation any easier, either. It can seem impossible to keep up with legal requirements, but that is where a certificate of insurance fits perfectly with your business needs. A perk rarely considered by certificate holders is that they have the benefit of working with an insurance agency that understands legalese. Their agents can help your company with compliance, while also empowering you as a responsible business owner.
There’s no point in getting caught without professional liability insurance if it’s not necessary. Call your trusted insurance agent, like the ones at ContractorsLiability.com, to get the liability coverage you need today.