Working from home or having a business out of your home has a range of benefits, but it also comes with its own set of dangers. While not having a physical location can save you money on property insurance and rent, your general liability risks don’t necessarily decrease. It is important to be aware of the liability dangers you can face working from home.
Common General Liability Claims
Common general liability claims that can occur at a home business include:
Property Damage Lawsuit
Say you run a handyman business on the side. You fix people’s jewelry or enhance their jewelry from the comfort of your own home before sending it back. One day, your dog decides to swallow a customer’s ring. The client then decides to sue for the value of their ring. General liability insurance can help cover legal costs related to a third-party property damage lawsuit, including court fees and settlement expenses.
General liability often covers product liability, as well. If you provide a product, you are liable for damage or injuries it may cause. For example, say you make chew toys for dogs. You send off a toy to a client, and their dog immediately falls ill after playing with the toy. The client may then choose to sue you, claiming your product made their pet sick.
A commonly overlooked part of general liability is personal or advertising injury coverage. Personal or advertising injury covers claims regarding:
Say you are renting a room out of your home to a single person. Some of your things begin disappearing, and you believe the renter is stealing from you. They deny it when you bring it up, but in a heated argument, you claim they’re evicted and must leave. Later, you discover that it was actually a family member who was borrowing your things.
The previous renter may then sue you for wrongful eviction.
Whether you start your own business or do your job completely remote, liability risks can face you in your day to day operations. Be sure to speak with an insurance agent and discuss the best general liability coverage for your business to protect against a possible lawsuit. You can often bundle liability insurance with additional coverages, as well.