What to Know About Commercial Liability Insurance in CT

June 03, 2024

In today’s litigious environment, Connecticut businesses of all sizes need robust safeguards against unforeseen liabilities. Commercial liability insurance acts as that shield, protecting your company’s assets in the face of lawsuits alleging bodily injury, property damage, or other covered losses.

Why Is Commercial Liability Insurance Crucial? 

The rise in lawsuits surrounding slip-and-fall accidents, product defects, and professional negligence underscores the critical role of commercial liability insurance. Without proper coverage, a single lawsuit could devastate your finances and potentially threaten your business’s very existence.

Consider the case of a woman awarded a $2 million settlement after a slip-and-fall incident resulting in a brain injury at the Noah Webster House museum in West Hartford, Connecticut. This case is a stark reminder of the immense financial risks businesses face without adequate commercial liability insurance.  

Without insurance coverage for such incidents, a business would be on the hook for legal fees and settlement costs, potentially leading to bankruptcy or severe financial strain. Commercial liability insurance safeguards against such scenarios, providing financial protection and peace of mind for businesses. It covers legal expenses, settlements, and judgments in case of lawsuits related to bodily injury, property damage, or personal and advertising injury. 

Ultimately, investing in comprehensive commercial liability insurance is not just about compliance; it’s a strategic decision to safeguard your business’s stability and longevity in an unpredictable world.

Understanding Key Coverages

Commercial liability insurance offers a financial safety net if a third party sues your business for damages or injuries. Here’s a breakdown of the core coverages:

General Liability Insurance

The cornerstone of any commercial insurance portfolio, general liability protects against claims of bodily injury, property damage, personal injury, and advertising injury arising from your day-to-day operations.    

  • Bodily injury: Imagine a customer slipping and falling on your wet floor. General liability would cover their medical expenses if they sued your company.
  • Property damage: This coverage protects against accidental property damage caused by your employees or operations.
  • Personal and advertising injury: Coverage extends to lawsuits alleging slander, copyright infringement, or invasion of privacy.         

General liability policies have coverage limits, representing the maximum payout per incident or over the policy period. A commercial umbrella policy can be added for additional protection beyond these limits

Professional Liability Insurance (Errors & Omissions)

This specialized insurance safeguards professionals such as accountants, architects, and consultants against claims of malpractice, errors, and negligence related to their professional services. It covers financial losses arising from judgment, planning, or work product design mistakes.  

Certain professions, such as medical practitioners in Connecticut, are mandated by law to carry professional liability insurance, typically with minimum coverage limits of $500,000 per person and $1.5 million per claim.

Product Liability Insurance

With product recalls becoming increasingly common, product liability coverage offers vital protection for businesses involved in the manufacturing, wholesaling, distribution, or retailing of products. 

Lawsuits can stem from product defects, design flaws, or inadequate warnings. Coverage extends to claims of injury or property damage caused by your products, including product recalls, consumer notification, and replacement merchandise costs.

Assessing Coverage Needs

Proper liability policies matched to your operations and risks could save your livelihood if you’re facing legal action. Ultimately, an informed commercial liability insurance investment can safeguard companies against potentially significant lawsuits. Contact Brooks, Todd & McNeil for more information and guidance.

About Brooks, Todd & McNeil

Since 1839, the independent agents at Brooks, Todd & McNeil have been pleased to offer our community the best and most affordable policies from a variety of providers. Our dedicated agents are ready to put their 75 years of combined experience to work on your claims. To learn more about our products and services, contact us today at (800) 448-4567.