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    What Business Owners Need to Know About Property Damage Claims

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    property damage insurance Canada

    Regardless of your profession, accidents happen. Find out how to protect your business from property damage claims with professional liability insurance.

    When you think of property damage insurance, you may automatically think of accidents that impact your business contents. Water damage to your office or damage to your own vehicle that you use for company travel are a few examples that may come to mind.

    However, professional liability insurance can cover more than just the cost of repairs and replacement for your business contents. With small business insurance, you can also opt to include commercial general liability (CGL) in your coverage to financially protect you in the event that your company is responsible for damages to your clients’ belongings. This would be if a client sues you for destruction done to their property, rather than you submitting a claim to cover damage done to your contents.

    Read on to find out the type of claims that can be brought against your business and how your professional liability insurance policy can help protect you.

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    Types of Property Damage Claims Against Businesses

    No matter what type of business you run, if you damage your clients’ property as a result of your product, service, or negligence, you can be held financially responsible for costly expenses, such as:

    • The cost of repairing a client’s damaged property

    • Expenses relating to the replacement of a client’s destroyed personal items

    • Medical bills in the event that a client also experiences bodily injury

    • Legal, court, and/or settlement fees

    As mentioned above, the CGL offered in policy packages like APOLLO’s Professional Liability Insurance can help financially cover business owners in the event that they are responsible for or accused of causing damage to a client’s property or belongings. Below, we outline a few different claims scenarios of what this could look like.

    Claims Scenario 1

    After arriving at a client’s home, a photographer sets up his equipment. His assistant accidentally knocks over a light, which breaks the client’s 60-inch television. As a result, the client demands reimbursement for property damages, leaving the photographer responsible for the cost of replacing the television.

    Claims Scenario 2

    While visiting an accountant’s office, a client brings her laptop to discuss her finances. During the visit, a glass of water gets knocked over by the accountant, damaging the client’s computer beyond repair. The client sues the accountant for the negligence which led to the destruction of her laptop. The accountant is now faced with costly legal fees and the replacement costs of the client’s expensive computer.

    Claims Scenario 3

    A data analyst invites her client to her office to review a report. Before the meeting, the client parks his car in the designated spot associated with the analyst’s business. When the client goes to leave in his car, he runs over a few nails, which deflates two of his tires. Since the analyst was aware that there were nails outside of her office space, she may be held at fault for any repair and legal expenses should the client sue her for damages.

    Protect Your Business with Professional Liability Insurance

    You never know when the unexpected will happen. Small business insurance can help protect your company in the event of an accident, negligence, or even a claim that you’re not at fault for. This can provide you with the peace of mind that you won’t lose out on thousands of dollars in court fees or awarded damages, allowing your business to remain open in the event of a lawsuit.

    Quite different from the home insurance that protects your house or collision insurance that covers auto accidents, APOLLO’s Professional Liability Insurance can be tailored to your business’ unique needs. It offers coverage for over 100 classes of professions and businesses and includes:

    • Errors and Omissions coverage up to $5M

    • Optional add-on packages to fit your business needs, such as:

      • Commercial General Liability coverage up to $5M, which includes $1M Non-Owned Auto

      • Office Contents coverage up to $250K

      • Privacy Breach Expense coverage up to $100K

    • Unlimited Access to a Legal Helpline

    • Coverage for businesses with up to 20 employees

    • Flexible monthly and annual payment options

    • Available in all Canadian provinces and territories, except Québec

    • Up to three operation selections allowed for a single policy

    • Revenue outside of Canada and the United States permitted

    APOLLO is Canada’s leading online insurance company, making Professional Liability Insurance effortless for individuals and small businesses. Start your online application now, and you could be insured in the next 15 minutes.

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    Originally published July 7, 2022, updated August 25, 2023

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