Questions to Ask Insurance Brokers before Buying Insurance

meeting with an agent

Insurance is regarded as a basic necessity for any business owner to have in the event that some loss occurs that was both unforeseen and unintended. If you are the owner of a construction company or involved in the building trades (i.e. architect, designers and engineers), this type of protection may come in the form of construction liability insurance or insurance for equipment used in your business. In many cases forms of insurance such as these (known as casualty or liability insurance and property insurance) may be required before you are awarded a contract or can begin a construction-related project.

A purchase of insurance related to your business can be accomplished through a licensed agent or insurance brokers operating in your area. When considering construction liability insurance coverage for your business or other types of policies, what information do you need to know in order to make a well informed decision? Here are the main question areas to consider before you buy insurance and the information that you need to know.

What Type of Coverage Do I Need?

As mentioned there are different categories of insurance that provide for different types of needs for your business. A basic type of liability coverage that you need to consider is professional liability insurance for construction projects or construction liability insurance. This form of casualty insurance provides a benefit to a third party against any acts of negligence, errors and omissions or loss due to damages caused during the construction project. The purpose of this coverage is to protect you from the financial loss created by any of the above named risks and permit you to make whole the injured party.

Are there Optional Forms of Coverage I Should Consider?

The type of work that you are engaged in, from building design to building construction, will dictate the base amount of insurance coverage needed. You want to have an understanding from the insurance broker as to the extent of any base coverage and whether certain additional items should be considered under optional coverage forms. For example, if you use building materials that are prepared off-site and a loss is experienced during the transportation of those materials, you may find that your insurance for construction equipment will not cover such a loss. An inland marine insurance form may be considered as optional coverage in this situation. Taking the time to ask the right questions before purchasing coverage will help you acquire the appropriate type of coverage. An experienced insurance broker should be able to review the terms of any contract for the construction project that you are engaged in and determine an adequate amount of coverage for you. Ultimately, construction liability insurance should protect your interests and meet the minimum requirements specified for a particular project.

What other services can you provide to help my operation?

For many business owners, the insurance coverage is where the process begins and ends. Many insurance agents and brokers are happy to provide you with your coverage and that’s it. However, there is more to managing your risks than just the coverage and the premium. A good agent or broker can provide you services that help reduce your risks and streamline your operations. Look for a broker that can assist you with such things as loss control, claims consulting, electronic certificate issuance, contract reviews, risk management tools, safety training, automated OSHA reporting, and a multitude of other services that will have a positive impact on your bottom line. These services can help make your organization and its employees a safer, highly efficient operation.

For assessing your risk and purchasing the types of insurance your business needs, contact the professionals at Allied Insurance Brokers.

*Allied does not deem this blog entry as a complete and thorough listing or overview of the above topic, and does not recommend it be primarily relied on. It only highlights some common issues and resolutions. For a thorough overview, please contact Allied’s Risk Engineering Division.