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Contractor and Tradesman Insurance

Tradesman insurance, also known as contractor insurance, is a specialized type of insurance designed to protect professionals in various skilled trades from the risks associated with their work. Whether you’re a plumber, electrician, carpenter, or contractor, having the right insurance coverage is essential for safeguarding your business against liabilities, accidents, and unexpected events. 

Our agents can work with you to find the most affordable package of coverages for your budget.

Types of trades we insure:

Common insurance coverages required for contractors, subcontractors and independent tradesman include:

General Liability Insurance

General liability insurance provides coverage for third-party bodily injury, property damage, and advertising injury claims against your business. This coverage is essential for protecting you from potential lawsuits and financial losses arising from accidents or injuries that occur on the job site.

Commercial general liability on an occurrence coverage form. The limits of liability shall not be less than:

$1,000,000 each occurrence (combined single limit for bodily injury and property damage);
$1,000,000 for personal and advertising injury liability;
$1,000,000 aggregate on products and completed operations;
$2,000,000 general aggregate.

Commercial Automobile Liability Insurance

If you use vehicles for business purposes, such as transporting tools or traveling to job sites, commercial auto insurance is essential. This coverage protects your vehicles and drivers in case of accidents, collisions, or other vehicle-related incidents.

$1,000,000 Combined single limit each accident for bodily injury and property damage. Include coverage on all owned, hired, and non-owned automobiles.

Workers’ Compensation (Statutory) and Employer’s Liability

Workers’ compensation insurance provides coverage for medical expenses, lost wages, and rehabilitation costs for employees who are injured or become ill on the job. In many states, workers’ compensation coverage is mandatory for businesses with employees, including tradesmen who hire workers.

$1,000,000 each accident for bodily injury by accident; $1,000,000 each employee for bodily injury by disease; $1,000,000 policy limit for bodily injury by disease.

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Tradesman and Contractor Insurance FAQs

Contractors liability insurance is a critical safeguard for your business, providing protection against a variety of risks and liabilities that contractors commonly face. Here’s how this insurance coverage can protect your business:

  1. Third-Party Bodily Injury: If someone is injured on your job site due to your negligence or the actions of your employees, contractors liability insurance can cover medical expenses, legal fees, and any settlements or judgments resulting from a lawsuit.

  2. Property Damage: Accidental damage to third-party property during the course of your work can result in costly repairs or replacements. Contractors liability insurance can cover these expenses, ensuring that your business is not held financially responsible for accidental damage.

  3. Completed Operations: Even after your work is finished, there’s a risk that defects or issues may arise, leading to property damage or bodily injury. Contractors liability insurance provides coverage for claims that arise after your work is completed, offering protection for your business well into the future.

  4. Advertising Injury: If your advertising inadvertently causes financial harm to another business, such as through copyright infringement or defamation, contractors liability insurance can cover legal expenses and damages arising from advertising-related claims.

  5. Legal Defense Costs: Regardless of fault, lawsuits can be expensive to defend. Contractors liability insurance can cover the costs of legal defense, including attorney fees, court costs, and settlements or judgments, helping to protect your business’s financial stability.

  6. Contractual Liability: Some contracts may require you to assume liability beyond what is covered by your standard policy. Contractors liability insurance can include coverage for contractual liabilities, ensuring that you can fulfill your contractual obligations without exposing your business to undue risk.

Understanding the difference between a certificate holder and an additional insured is crucial in the realm of insurance, particularly in the context of liability coverage. Here’s a breakdown of each:

Certificate Holder:

A certificate holder is an entity, often a client or business partner, who is provided with a certificate of insurance by the policyholder’s insurance provider. The certificate serves as proof that the policyholder (usually a contractor or service provider) has insurance coverage in place.

  • Role: The certificate holder does not have any rights under the insurance policy itself but is merely provided with documentation confirming the existence of insurance coverage.

  • Coverage: The certificate holder is not typically covered under the policy and cannot make claims or receive benefits from the policy. Instead, they use the certificate as assurance that the policyholder has the required insurance coverage as specified in a contract or agreement.

  • Example: A construction company may provide a certificate of insurance to a property owner to demonstrate that they have liability coverage while working on a project. The property owner is the certificate holder, using the certificate as evidence of the contractor’s insurance.

Additional Insured:

An additional insured is a party added to the insurance policy of another entity, typically the policyholder, to extend coverage under certain circumstances. This arrangement is common in contracts where one party requires protection from the potential liabilities of another party.

  • Role: An additional insured has specific rights and coverage under the policy, typically for liabilities arising out of the actions of the policyholder. They are entitled to defense and indemnification from the insurer in the event of a covered claim.

  • Coverage: Depending on the terms of the policy and endorsement, the additional insured may have coverage for certain liabilities, such as bodily injury or property damage, caused by the actions of the policyholder. However, coverage is usually limited to liabilities directly related to the activities of the policyholder.

  • Example: A property owner may require a contractor to add them as an additional insured to the contractor’s general liability policy. This ensures that the property owner is protected from liabilities related to the contractor’s work, such as accidents or property damage on the job site.

Contractors operate in dynamic environments where various risks are present on a daily basis. To adequately protect themselves and their businesses, contractors should consider several types of insurance coverage. Here are some essential types of insurance for contractors:

  1. General Liability Insurance: This foundational coverage protects contractors against third-party claims of bodily injury, property damage, and advertising injury. It covers legal expenses, medical bills, and settlements or judgments resulting from covered incidents.

  2. Professional Liability Insurance: Also known as errors and omissions (E&O) insurance, professional liability insurance protects contractors from claims of negligence, errors, or omissions in their professional services. It provides coverage for legal defense costs and damages awarded in lawsuits.

  3. Workers’ Compensation Insurance: If contractors have employees, workers’ compensation insurance is usually mandatory. It covers medical expenses, lost wages, and rehabilitation costs for employees who are injured or become ill on the job. It also protects contractors from lawsuits filed by injured workers.

  4. Commercial Auto Insurance: If contractors use vehicles for business purposes, such as transporting equipment or traveling to job sites, commercial auto insurance is essential. It provides coverage for vehicles and drivers in case of accidents, collisions, or other vehicle-related incidents.

  5. Property Insurance: Property insurance covers the physical assets of a contractor’s business, including tools, equipment, and buildings, against damage or loss due to fire, theft, vandalism, or other covered perils.

  6. Tool and Equipment Insurance: Tools and equipment insurance covers the cost of repairing or replacing tools and equipment that are damaged, lost, or stolen while on the job. It ensures that contractors can continue working without interruption in case of equipment breakdowns or losses.

  7. Builder’s Risk Insurance: For contractors involved in construction projects, builder’s risk insurance provides coverage for damage to buildings or structures under construction. It protects against risks such as fire, theft, vandalism, and natural disasters until the project is completed.

  8. Surety Bonds: While not insurance per se, surety bonds provide financial protection for clients in case contractors fail to fulfill their contractual obligations. They assure clients that projects will be completed as agreed upon, and they provide compensation if contractors fail to deliver.

The requirement for contractors to have insurance varies depending on several factors, including the type of work they perform, local regulations, contractual obligations, and whether they have employees. While there is no universal mandate for all contractors to carry insurance, certain types of coverage may be required or strongly recommended in many situations. Here are some common scenarios where contractors may be required to have insurance:

  1. Contractual Requirements: Contractors may be required to carry specific types and levels of insurance coverage as a condition of their contracts with clients, project owners, or general contractors. These requirements are often outlined in contract documents and may include general liability insurance, workers’ compensation insurance, and additional insured endorsements.

  2. Licensing and Permitting: In many jurisdictions, contractors are required to obtain licenses or permits to perform certain types of work. These licensing requirements may include mandates for contractors to carry insurance coverage such as general liability insurance or workers’ compensation insurance.

  3. Project Requirements: Contractors working on construction projects or government contracts may be subject to project-specific insurance requirements imposed by project owners, developers, or government agencies. These requirements typically include various types of insurance coverage to protect all parties involved in the project.

  4. Protecting Assets and Liabilities: Even in cases where insurance is not explicitly required by law or contract, contractors may choose to carry insurance coverage to protect their assets and liabilities. Insurance coverage such as general liability insurance, professional liability insurance, and property insurance can help contractors mitigate risks and safeguard their businesses against financial losses resulting from accidents, injuries, or property damage.

  5. Worker Protection: If contractors have employees, they are typically required to carry workers’ compensation insurance to provide coverage for employees who are injured or become ill on the job. Workers’ compensation insurance helps ensure that employees receive medical care and compensation for lost wages without resorting to lawsuits against their employers.

Whether you need workers’ compensation insurance as an independent or self-employed contractor depends on several factors, including your location, the nature of your work, and whether you have employees. Here’s a breakdown:

  1. Location: Workers’ compensation insurance requirements vary by state and country. In some jurisdictions, independent contractors are exempt from the requirement to carry workers’ compensation insurance, while in others, they may be required to carry coverage depending on the type of work they perform.

  2. Nature of Work: The type of work you perform as an independent contractor can influence whether you need workers’ compensation insurance. Some industries, such as construction or healthcare, may have specific regulations requiring independent contractors to carry workers’ compensation insurance, regardless of whether they have employees.

  3. Employee Status: If you work entirely on your own without any employees, you may not be required to carry workers’ compensation insurance in some jurisdictions. However, if you hire employees to assist you with your work, you will likely be required to carry workers’ compensation insurance to cover their medical expenses and lost wages in case of work-related injuries or illnesses.

  4. Contractual Requirements: Even if you are not legally required to carry workers’ compensation insurance as an independent contractor, your clients or project owners may require you to have coverage as a condition of your contract. They may want assurance that you can cover potential liabilities arising from injuries or accidents on the job.