Commercial insurance policies provide cover for buildings and property against all kinds of perils, but it is important to consider what it would cost to get your buildings reinstated following a total loss catastrophe such as a fire or major flood, and to ensure that your business insurance policy contains provisions to cover all the costs of reinstatement expenses.
If you under-estimate the total rebuilding costs of your commercial premises when initially applying for cover, then following any future claim, any payouts agreed will be subject to reductions by what is called ‘average’.
Average will reduce the claim payout proportionally by the amount of under-insurance of the declared value from the actual current rebuilding costs. For example if your premises costs 150,000 to rebuild and you have declared the sum insured at 120,000, your claim will be reduced by a fifth.
If allowances are not made for all the costs of rebuilding, including those that may not at first be apparent, when applying for a commercial property insurance quote, then it is more than likely that the premises will be under-insured.
Commercial buildings cover may or may not include cover for fees for architects, surveyors or consultant engineers that may be required before rebuilding work can be commenced. These will usually work alongside any loss adjusters appointed by the insurer to minimise costs and agree any rebuilding proposals. Insurance companies will not pay rates for fees above those set by the governing professional trade bodies.
It is important to establish whether professional fees are included in the policy cover and if not, add an amount to cover these to the declared sum insured. When doing so be aware that these professions usually charge a very high hourly rate, and inflation should be allowed for.
Another area that can often cause disagreement between an insured and an insurance company following total loss of the premises, is that of debris removal and clearance of the site in preparation to rebuild.
Most commercial policies will include a section outlining the insurance companies responsibility as regards the insured premises site clearance and debris removal. This typically includes cover for dismantling and demolishing buildings, shoring and propping up dangerous or adjacent buildings and site clearance. More often than not the amount for this is included in the sum insured, in which case this should be calculated and also added in to the rebuilding cost at proposal.
Debris clearance can be extremely expensive, especially if for example hazardous building materials such as asbestos have to be removed, or if the site was storing chemicals or dangerous machinery that have to be treated and removed by specialist clean-up teams.
This type of insurance coverage applies to a group involved in a commercial venture. Their services meet the requirements of commercial trucks, fleet cars and tow trucks. Commercial insurance companies offer a range of policies that allows a business to have their insurance needs tailored to fit their specific needs. With these companies having such a wide scope of acceptance, they are sure to be able to offer coverage for nearly every driver and business no matter what the vehicle model.
The commercial truck insurance policies can also be customized to best serve a drivers needs such as facilities like 24/7 claims service, flexible payment schemes and even discounts. These truck and trailer policies will cover everything from:
• Front loaders
• Garbage trucks
• Flatbed trucks
• Box trucks
• Pick ups
• Dump trucks
They will also offer assistance for:
Truck Insurance Filing. This is very important especially when you need to show proof that the insurance coverage you own is sufficient for the vehicle you operate.
Federal Insurance Filing. This applies to businesses involved with hazardous cargoes, for hire trucking and interstate trucking. An example of this would be, if your company does specialist, long haul or regional trucking. If the goods you are hauling are non-exempt and move across state lines then for-hire truckers would also need a federal filing.
Businesses that never cross a state line or engage in intrastate trucking do not require federal filing. Private haulers carrying their own goods like farmers, retailers and manufacturers or those hauling goods under someone else’s authority like a truck owner leased to another carrier are considered unregulated and as such do not need to have federal or state registration.
Apart from the trucking authority, there may be other reasons a business may be required to show proof of insurance. Those that use over-sized vehicles or drivers with only a probationary license may require either a non-trucking filing or a certificate of insurance.
If your business is involved in the movement of hazardous cargoes or passengers it may well serve you better to go to a specialized insurance company.
These insurance companies deal with hundreds of questions every day of the week, below are a couple of the more common ones with the answers.
• What type of cover should my business have? Given that different businesses have different needs, it’s a wise choice to choose a company that can tailor a policy that will cover all your needs.
• Does my business really need commercial auto insurance? Most businesses are required to have commercial vehicle insurance. Take the freelance rep using their own car to get their goods to customers- they would not need a commercial insurance coverage, an ordinary personal insurance would suffice.
• Do all commercial insurers cover all vehicles and businesses? The answer is no, some companies make exclusions on what they will and will not cover. This is why it’s always better to try and find a company that deals with your type of hauling needs.