General Liability Insurance Overview for Law Firms
General liability insurance coverage is something most law firms simply must-have, so it is essential that you understand what it does and doesn’t cover.
What’s typically protected by commercial liability insurance coverage
Business is inherently risky, but business liability coverage safeguards against many known and unknown risks. Commercial liability insurance coverage protects you, your law firm, and your employees from claims involving bodily injury or property damage up to the limits of your policy.
Policies shield you from the expense of out-of-court settlements, litigation, and judgments awarded by courts.
Lawsuits, investigations, and settlements
If damages are filed against you, or you’re sued, general liability insurance covers the insurance company’s investigation and attorney expenses, any judgment or settlement, medical expenses in case of injury, and bonds if they must be subsequently posted.
Claims can arise from bodily injury or property damages resulting from accidents on your premises or your products, your operations, or advertising for your business.
What’s typically NOT protected by business liability coverage
Here are some situations that would not be protected by general liability insurance coverage.
Employee injuries. Workers compensation is the insurance you would need to protect your employees when they are hurt on the job.
Professional mistakes. Business liability insurance coverage won’t cover a professional mistake, but professional liability will. It insures against mishaps that may occur as you offer your opinion, solution, service, or recommendations in the course of business.
Auto-related coverage. Business liability coverage does not protect you against auto accidents. Purchase a separate auto policy to protect your business.
Punitive damages. Though there can be exceptions, a general business liability policy rarely pays for punitive damages resulting from a lawsuit.
Intentional acts. General business liability insurance does not cover damages or injuries resulting from expected or intentional acts. For example, if an employee assaults a customer, your business liability coverage would not cover the damages if they sue. But if the employee were defending himself or the company from a criminal act, the liability insurance would provide coverage.
Your work. Referred to as the “workmanship” exclusion, and is common in general liability policies. Insurance policies do not respond to what would normally be picked by a company’s warranty for their work.