How to Insure Your Interior Design Business
As an interior designer, you transform spaces. Homeowners and business owners trust you to update and beautify their homes and offices.
You face risks, though, as an interior designer from professional errors, slips and falls, and unsatisfied clients. You need an insurance package to protect you as an interior designer.
How interior designer insurance protects you
Interior designer insurance has liability insurance coverages that help protect you should a client get injured, her property is damaged, or should you be accused of negligence in your professional work as a designer.
Interior designer insurance helps protect you from these 3 claims:
- Slips and falls
You have just finished cleaning in one of your client’s rooms and the client then slips and falls on the wet floor, fracturing a wrist. Your commercial general liability (CGL) insurance can help cover the cost of the client’s medical expenses and help cover legal advice if you are being sued.
You don’t complete an office renovation on time, causing a delay in its reopening. The client sues you for negligence. Your professional liability coverage can help cover defense costs and any settlement resulting from the allegations of breach of professional services.
Your computer has been hacked, compromising the security of your clients’ information and payment information. Without cyber liability insurance, you will have to pay out of your pocket for the cost of restoring your system and you may also be liable for damages to clients’ whose information has been stolen.
As an interior designer, here’s an insurance check list:
- Do you have the best business insurance rate that suits your interior design business?
- Do you have the right amount for your deductible and regularly review it to make sure it’s the right amount for your interior design business?
- Do you know the value of your equipment and is it properly insured?
- Are you or your employees using personal vehicles for your work?
At Western, we will save you time and money by doing the insurance shopping for you to find the right package at the right value for you as an interior designer.
What do I need in my interior designer insurance package?
Commercial general liability (CGL) insurance
It’s also known as “slip-and-fall” insurance because it protects against claims alleging third-party bodily injuries, such as a client slipping, falling, and getting injured as you design their new space.
It can also help protect you against third-party property damage such as spilling paint on a client’s furniture, false advertising, and libel or slander.
Without commercial general liability insurance, you would be responsible for paying any liability costs out of your own pocket.
The minimum recommended amount of CGL would be $1 million, but it would not be unusual to have a higher amount of coverage depending on the size of your interior design business and what kind of work your business does.
Professional Liability Insurance
This type of insurance is also known as errors and omission (E&0) insurance.
If you are faced with a lawsuit, professional liability insurance can give you another layer of security. It can help protect you against loss in the event of a lawsuit due to a negligent act, or an error or omission in the course of your offering interior design services to a client.
In addition to claims of error, omission, or negligence, E and O can also protect against slander, libel, and breach of contract.
Some of the most common interior designers’ E & O situations may include:
- Design projects that are not completed according to the contract, such as being over budget, not delivered to specification, or not delivered on time.
- The use of incorrect materials or mistakes in measurements.
- Changes to layouts, plans and scheduling that are not communicated to clients and/or suppliers.
Professional liability insurance (E&0) helps protect you when you give advice, make recommendations, and provide design solutions to clients.
It helps cover legal defence costs and settlement costs.
If you keep client information online and take online payments, your computer system could be hacked.
Without cyber insurance, you will have to pay out of your pocket for the cost of restoring your system. You may also be liable for damages to third parties whose information has been stolen and you may have to pay for notification expenses to inform customers affected by a breach.
Commercial Auto: Your personal car insurance usually won’t cover your business. If you have a vehicle that you use as part of your interior design business, then you need to be covered by commercial auto insurance.
How much insurance do I need as an interior designer?
It will depend on the size of your business and the kind work that you do.
Ask your Western business insurance expert to determine the right level of coverage for you as an interior designer.
What do I do if my interior design business has an insurance claim?
- Contact your broker immediately after any business-related mishap. Waiting to file a claim can confuse insurers about the severity of the damages to your business.
- Know your policy so that when you contact your broker you are familiar with what will be covered or not.
- Document the damage. Take photos right away and write down what happened.
- Do not throw away damaged goods after taking photos. Keep the physical evidence so that your adjustor can see it.
- Do not invite lawsuits. Don’t say anything that could be used against you, especially if you aren’t sure what happened.
- Be honest about what your damaged property is worth. Damaged commercial property is generally valued according to its actual cash value or replacement value.
Western Insurance has licensed BUSINESS INSURANCE EXPERTS to get your interior design business the right insurance package. Our experts are available now to help you navigate the business insurance journey to protect your business.
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