General liability accidents are common across industries and businesses. Knowing what kind of accidents to expect can help your clients prepare against them as well as have the right limits of general liability insurance in case an accident does occur.
Below are some of the common general liability accidents your clients may face from day to day.
Injuries are one of the most common liability accidents across industries, especially for businesses with physical locations. For example, slips and falls due to spills occur frequently in restaurants and stores, and your client could be on the hook for the related medical bills. General liability insurance can help cover the victim’s medical bills while also protecting the business from a related lawsuit.
This is especially important for businesses that offer physical activities such as exercise rooms, trampoline rooms, etc.
Property damage refers to third party property damage that occurs as a result of everyday business. If your client leases or rents a physical location for their restaurant and a fire breaks out, for example, damages the fire causes to the physical building may be covered under general liability insurance so that the business owner does not have to compensate the landlord out of pocket.
This can also apply to customer belongings that may be damaged while on the business’ property.
Product liability refers to bodily injury and property damage a product that is offered, manufactured or sold by the business may cause. There are often claims regarding injuries and damage from hair and skin care products such as rashes, burns and hair loss. This is where general liability insurance steps in to help pay for some of the damages as well as related lawsuits. No matter what kind of product your client sells or manufactures, general liability insurance—along with product liability—is a must.
Libel and Slander
Libel and slander are not physical damages but can be personal or reputational damage. For example, say the business hires a new social media expert. The social media expert makes a post about a competitor that the competitor believes is insulting, inflammatory and/or damaging to their reputation and decide to sue.
General liability insurance covers such accusations of libel and slander that may occur at any stage of the business. It covers lawsuit costs such as court fees, defense costs and settlement expenses.
Other Personal and Advertising Injuries
Personal and advertising injury refers to non-physical injuries a third party may suffer. Libel and slander are two types of personal injuries. Other types include:
- Malicious persecution
- Wrongful eviction
- False arrest
- Copyright infringement
- Theft of an advertising idea
- False detention or imprisonment
For example, say a manager is closing their store and sees someone lingering inside. The manager suspects the customer has been stealing but is unable to prove it. Instead of letting them out of the store, the manager closes up the store and refuses to let them out, perhaps even physically restraining them.
The customer is finally released after police are called and it is proved they did not steal. Later, the customer decides to sue the manager and the business.
Another example would be theft of an advertising idea. Say your client hires a new campaign manager who comes up with a brilliant marketing and advertising strategy. Their previous company sees the new advert as soon as it goes life and believes that it is suspiciously similar to the one your client’s campaign manager made for them previously. They decide to sue for theft of an advertising idea.
General liability insurance can cover these types of accidents as well as bodily injury and property damage. If someone feels that have been wronged by your client’s business and decides to sue, general liability insurance can cover a wide range of related lawsuits and expenses.
When is General Liability Insurance Not Enough?
Unfortunately, general liability insurance can’s cover every risk your clients or their business will face. While it is important for business owners to know general liability risks, they should also be aware of other types of liability issues that may threaten their business. Consider speaking with clients about adding liability insurance to their policies such as:
- Professional liability covers professional negligence that may cost clients money.
- Umbrella liability fills in gaps left by other liability insurance policies, including general liability.
- Cyber liability covers claims and accidents regarding electronically stored information, such as information loss due to cyberattacks.
Also Read: Explaining Non-Professional and Professional Negligence to General Liability Clients