What is a shop insurance policy?
Businesses will, understandably, want to protect themselves from the costs of sudden and unforeseen events. These could be anything from water damage to an alleged injury. The way to arrange this protection, is through the purchase of a business insurance policy.
Retailers are no different to other businesses and will arrange their cover through a shop insurance policy. These policies include the main covers that a shop, or retailer, may need.
What type of covers are included?
Not every insurer is able to provide cover for businesses. Of those that do, the majority will target certain sectors. Mainstream insurers provide packaged policies, for different trades. Shop insurance is one of the sectors targeted by a number of insurers and underwriters.
A typical policy will include these sections:-
Employers, product and public liability
Goods in transit
Does my business need shop insurance?
Of the covers above, only employers liability insurance is a legal requirement in the United Kingdom. Even though there is only one needed by law, the others are definitely sensible and prudent covers to arrange. An insurance policy is a contract between a business and insurer. The insurer agrees to provide cover, in exchange for a premium.
The policy will cover the business assets and potential liabilities. Any business will want to protect their assets. Typical covers are storm, fire, theft and accidental damage. Any business can be open to a claim for public, product or employers liability. You’ll want to arrange protection against these claims to. Liability claims can be costly, when you include the legal fees too.
In answer to the question. If you have a retail outlet or outlets, you’ll need insurance.
How long does a shop insurance policy last?
This may seem an obvious question, but if you’re new to business, you may not know. Nearly all business insurance policies run for a calendar year. The business picks the start date and the policy runs for one full year. The insurers agrees to provide cover, for the full period. Unless the insurer, or business, declares incorrect information or the risk changes, the insurer is committed to provide cover for a year.
How do I get a policy in force?
The first step, is to get a shop insurance quote. You can get a number of different quotes or a broker will do this for you. Once you have a quote that provides the cover, premium and levels of service you want, you can incept the policy.
We’ve mentioned a broker above, but this is not the only way to arrange cover.
Shop insurance comparison sites
There are a few websites that offer to compare shop insurance. We, Jelf Clark Thomson, are an independent insurance broker. Over many years we’ve seen and reviewed comparison sites. They do tend to concentrate on price. You do not get the same level of advice as you’d get from a broker. If you do choose to buy a policy from a comparison site, who do you actually deal with? Once the policy is arranged, you’re more likely to deal direct with an insurer, or underwriter.
You’ll be speaking to an insurer, usually, when you have a claim. This is exactly the time that you’d want a broker to be helping and supporting you.
The other point is, that after reviewing these sites for many years, you can usually get better cover for a better premium, through a broker.
An independent business insurance broker
An insurance brokers role, is to work for you, the business insurance purchaser. They’ll discuss your insurance needs and revert back to you with either a single or a range of quotes. This is a much better process than you doing all of the work, through a comparison site.
Shops will only rely on their insurance policy in the event of a claim. There are a few brokers that do not have their own claims department. When selecting your broker, there is a claims question you need to ask. In the event of making a claim, who do you, or your business, deal with? If it is the broker that provided the policy, supporting you through the process, this should be your preferred choice.
Business insurance brokers are the main providers of cover. Comparison sites have not made any real inroads to business insurance. There are a few other ways to buy this cover. Some banks and trade bodies promote insurance. When you investigate in more detail, they tend to be just introducing you to an insurance broker.
Every shop and retail business in the UK will need business insurance. The best way to arrange this cover is through an independent business broker. Jelf Clark Thomson have access to a number of business insurers. We can provide you with a range of quotes from over a dozen different insurers. Whatever your trade and whatever your size, we can provide the right quote for you.