2014

Must-Know Insurance Policies for Interior Signage Companies

To cover your interior sign company's liabilities and help it recover from unexpected losses, you'll need a variety of different insurance policies. The policies you should know are…

General Liability Insurance for Interior Sign Companies

General Liability Insurance covers many common liabilities every sign-making businesses faces, including specific sign / advertising liabilities. General Liability Insurance pays for lawsuit expenses, including…

  • Lawyer and paralegal bills.
  • Courtroom costs for evidence and witnesses.
  • Judgments and settlements.

General Liability Insurance covers third-party lawsuits, which are lawsuits filed by people who are not employed by your business. Third parties include customers, clients, competitors, contractors, subcontractors, and others.

GLI can pay your legal expenses when third parties sue you over…

  • Damaged property.
  • Advertising injury.
  • Copyright infringement.
  • Personal injury.
  • Libel.
  • Slander.

GLI pays for a number of the lawsuits that can happen from your business's normal operations. When a customer slips and falls while visiting your sign shop, your business could be liable. When one of your sign installers damages the client's wall, you could be responsible for the damages.

In addition, General Liability Insurance covers some libel, copyright, and advertising lawsuits, which are particularly threatening for a sign company. If a client's competitor sues your business because your sign resembles their trademarked designs, General Liability Insurance can pay for the lawsuit.

Property Insurance for Interior Sign Design and Production Businesses

Property Insurance can cover the cost to repair or replace business property that is lost / damaged by…

  • Fires.
  • Acts of vandalism.
  • Burglary.
  • Covered weather events (including winter storms, non-major storms, windstorms, and other events).

Some storms, weather events, and natural disasters are not covered. Each insurance company may offer different coverages, but in general, many major storms (i.e., the ones named by the National Weather Service) won't be included. If you want more coverage, talk with an insureon agent about adding riders and other policies to cover your business.

Property Insurance covers your business by paying to replace the property that is lost or damaged after a covered claim. This means that if a fire damages your property, your insurance can send you a check to replace and repair what was lost.

You may be wondering about what types of property are covered. Your insurance policy can cover…

  • Rented and own sign shops.
  • Sign-making equipment.
  • Office equipment.
  • Computers, printers, and other electronics.
  • Furniture.
  • Buildings.
  • Inventory.
  • Supplies.

Let's say a storm damages your building, causing a leak in your roof. Some of your computers and electronics are ruined. Your inventory of sign materials is damaged. Property Insurance can help your business repair the building and replace your damaged equipment and inventory.

If your business is forced to shut down when its offices are damaged, Property Insurance can also pay your business to relocate and reimburse it for the lost income it suffers while it rebuilds. This coverage is called Business Interruption Insurance and is often included with Property Insurance.

Business Owner's Policies for Office Sign and Business Sign Companies

Business Owner's Policies are a less-expensive insurance option for qualifying small businesses. In order to purchase this insurance, your business…

  • Can't have 100 employees or more.
  • Can't need more than 12 months of Business Interruption Insurance.
  • Can't be a "higher-risk" business (i.e., one that operates in large premises or in a dangerous industry).

Business Owner's Policies combines Property Insurance and General Liability Insurance into one insurance package. For qualifying small businesses, this can be a savvy way to get basic insurance policies at a discounted price.

Cyber Liability Insurance for Interior Signage Companies

To guard your business from the costs of a cyber attack, your sign business will need Cyber Liability Insurance (also called Cyber Risk Insurance or Data Breach Insurance).

Hackers routinely target small businesses in order to access data and steal money. Hackers break into your networks in order to find social security numbers, bank account numbers, debit and credit card information, and other private data.

Small-business owners often make the mistake of assuming that hackers won't target their business because it is small, but that's not true. With almost three-fourths of all cyber attacks targeting small- and medium-sized businesses, small sign companies actually have more risk than large businesses.

There are two types of Cyber Liability protection…

  • First Party Response.
  • Third Party Defense and Liability.

First Party Response is most likely the insurance you'll need. This policy covers many of your business's expenses when it is attacked. First Party Response pays for…

  • Costs to contact and inform customers about the breach.
  • Crisis management counseling to guide your business through its legal obligations and other responsibilities.
  • Advertising and P.R. campaigns to help your business restore its reputation.
  • Investigations to find the weak points in your security and figure out who hacked your business.

The second type of coverage, Third Party Defense and Liability, is less common among sign companies. Usually, this policy is for computer-related professions, IT companies, or software businesses. If your business makes a product that can be hacked, you're liable when it does get hacked.

Errors and Omissions Coverage for Interior Sign Design and Production Businesses

Errors & Omissions Insurance (also called E&O coverage or Professional Liability Insurance) protects sign companies from lawsuits about the work they do.

Professional Liability Insurance pays for lawsuits when your customers claim your business…

  • Made mistakes on their signs.
  • Failed to deliver the quality of signage they anticipated.
  • Was negligent in its professional duties as a sign maker.
  • Delivered inferior quality signs.

In other words, this insurance pays for lawsuits when frustrated or disappointed customers sue you.

Here's an example. You've redone the interior signage for a new restaurant that's trying to rebrand itself from a fast food operation to a sleek, fast-casual dining experience. Everything looks sharp, but months down the road, the business files a lawsuit against your business, claiming you failed to deliver the quality of signs they wanted. They haven't attracted enough new customers and are blaming your work.

In this situation, E&O Insurance can pay for your lawsuit. It's not uncommon for E&O lawsuits to be unfounded. Your customer could be filing a completely unjust lawsuit against your business.But even if it's unfair, you may still have to defend yourself in court. You'll want E&OInsurance to make sure you can hire a proper legal defense without having to sacrifice money from other budgets or hire a cut-rate attorney.

Workers' Compensation Insurance for Office Signs and Business Sign Companies

Workers' Compensation Insurance (aka Workers' Comp or Workman's Comp) is one of the most universally owned insurance policies for sign companies. Nearly every state in the U.S. can hold businesses liable when their employees are injured at work or become ill from a work-related illness. Because of this, employers purchase Workers' Comp to protect their liabilities.

Workers' Comp pays for both medical costs of injured employees and legal costs for employers who are sued by injured workers. Covered costs include…

  • Lawyers' bills, settlement, judgments, and other legal costs for employers who are sued in a Workers' Comp lawsuit.
  • Hospital stays, surgery, and other medical costs for employees after a workplace injury or illness.
  • Paid medical leave for employees who need time to recover before they can get back to work.

Like legal bills, medical bills can get expensive quickly. If one of your employees falls off a ladder while hanging a sign, how much would their broken hip cost you? According to the New York Times, hip replacement surgery costs, on average, almost $80,000. Add to that the cost of a lawsuit and many businesses would be forced to close down and file for bankruptcy.

Workers' Comp not only protects your employees, but it also protects your business from having to pay for overwhelming medical and legal costs.

Insureon Customizes Business Insurance for Interior Signage Companies

Fill out our simple online insurance form and receive a free quote on business insurance for sign companies. Our agents will customize your insurance to fit your business, finding coverage that fits your liabilities without breaking your budget. Submit our online application, and get a free quote custom-tailored to your business's needs.

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