Insurance and Liability for Landscaping Businesses  

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When it comes to businesses in the landscaping sector, landscaping liability insurance is about the last thing that comes to mind. After all how much can happen in the great outdoors that causes major loss and damage?
The reality is like any other business; landscapers need a variety of insurance coverage to ensure their operation is protected. In many cases multiple policies with the correct inclusions will be required to ensure the business is well covered in the event of an accident. It seems that there is a general lack of insurance awareness in just about every business sector, and in particular about what sort of coverage is required.

This is why it is important to ensure your policy covers all of the different aspects of your business. Or in the case that it does not, ensure you have separate policies to cover what your landscaping general liability policy will not.

  • Coverage for a Vehicle – Multiple Drivers – It is important to ensure your vehicle is covered both under your general liability policy and under its own automobile policy. This is because, while the automotive policy will cover the cost of repairing the vehicle and any others in an accident, it often does not cover injury to the other people in the accident. If they decide they want to sue for damages, a good landscaping general liability insurance policy will come into play. It is also important to double check and ensure all drivers are insured on the policy.
  • General Liability Property Damage – Landscaping businesses generally work in the outside spaces of homes and businesses. This means they are often close to buildings, and any number of scenarios could occur that cause damage to the property. For example, it is not uncommon for mowers to fling rocks. These rocks often hit windows causing thousands of dollars in damage.

Without insurance, the cost of repairing the window will be an out of pocket expense for your landscaping business. Also if one of your staff cuts a customer lawn on a hot day in the middle of the afternoon and it dies you could find yourself on the hook for a replacement.

  • Business Interruption – There are many happenings in life that would dictate having a business interruption provision on your general liability insurance policy. This policy provision allows you to make an insurance claim for lost revenues and profits as a result of storms, longer winters, damage to equipment due to weather, or an accident that results in the destruction of your business equipment (A truck accident on the way to a job with your equipment would do this.)
  • Employee Injury – If an employee ends up injured or in an accident on the job, it could lead to a major judgment, and a need for treatment. A serious incident with a lawnmower could cost a landscaping company millions.

Let’s take a closer look at insurance options for the landscaping business.
Property insurance for the landscaping professional
As a landscaping business, you invariably have to work with a lot of tools and equipment.  These tools have to be insured with a property insurance policy.  Your property insurance covers the following:

  • The physical space where you sell landscaping items like fountains, sheds, decorative rocks, lawn care tools and so on.
  • All your work equipment like mowers, tillers, land levellers, drag booms.
  • Smaller tools like sod lifters, turf sweepers, shovels, rakes.
  • Computers used in keeping track of activities and finances.

Most equipment used in in the industry isn’t cheap. Getting this type of insurance rules out the possibility of losing years of investment to theft, weather or vandalism.
Commercial auto insurance for landscaping businesses
This is another important policy every landscaping business must consider.  It is important because the success of the business relies heavily on transportation and this means increased possibility of a mishap that can prove very costly and ultimately debilitating for the business.
With the right commercial auto policy, your insurance company will take care of all accident-related expenses, medical bills, vehicle damage and claims arising from a lawsuit.  Even when you have the most careful drivers and employees, there is no telling what another driver in front or behind is going to do while out on the road!
Workers compensation policy for landscaping professionals
As mentioned earlier in this piece, landscaping professionals are more susceptible to injuries and workplace illnesses than counterparts in most other sectors.  This makes a workers compensation policy one to consider for most landscaping businesses.
Think of how many times you and your workers have to handle hazardous pesticides, fertilizers and other chemicals in a single work week. Also think of the number of hours that go into the handling of dangerous equipment like lawn mowers and chainsaws.  This will show you why bodily harm and hearing issues are real concerns in the landscaping business.
With workers compensation insurance, you will have the financial resources to take care of employees’ work-related problems if and when they arise.
Extra protection insurance for landscaping businesses
This is for landscaping businesses that would like additional protection aside from their insurance plans. With this insurance option, you can increase the cover on all the other policies above when the need arises.
This is an important policy option, because there are times when your business will be faced with claims more expensive than your initial cover. With extra protection, your insurance company will have to come up with the deficit in this situation. The amount they can provide as varies between insurers, but,most, can provide an extra million to take care of deficits in your current arrangements.
The most important thing is to speak to a reputable liability insurance expert.  This way you can be sure you have chosen the right insurance plans for your landscaping business.  General liability insurance is not always a suitable solution.
As it says on the Bizinsure Website, a“General Liability policy will protect you against any claim by an outside party regarding injury or damage to their property. In these instances, your policy will cover your legal expenses as well as your cost to replace or remedy the situation.”
It is always better to be prepared for unlikely scenarios, as many could force you into bankruptcy in the case of a major judgment against you. Know your risks and make sure you are covered against them.

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