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Business Owners Need To Protect Their Assets

May 7, 2008
Whenever you start a business, even one based in your home, there are certain risks involved. Many of them are known, such as having no customers and losing your shirt but unfortunately many business owners fail to recognize some of the risks that jump on board when they start a new business venture. Even some of the smallest businesses become target of scam artists and some who are looking for a walk in the park on your dime.

Businesses that have a traditional presence or ones that invite customers to their home may also be inviting litigation if any of your customers are injured while on your property. It is bade enough that people can sue the property owner for injuries sustained on their property even if they were not invited onto the property, but when you have a business, not only re you inviting people on the property, you are promising them a safe environment in which to conduct business.

There are certain circumstances that can mitigate your responsibility for accidents, especially if you can prove the person was acting in a reckless manner at the time the injury occurred. In climate that experience a lot of snow, most states offer the business owners a window during which patrons to a business carry the blame for slipping on ice or snow during and immediately following the weather event. That will not always stop a lawsuit and a business without liability insurance can suffer some heavy losses defending an action that will probably be thrown out of court anyway.

Fire and theft insurance are a given and if the business has a lien against it, most lenders require the business to be insured against loss for fire and other natural disaster. However, most owners of home businesses seldom give two thoughts about making sure they cover their assets in event of an accident on their property. They may also not realize that their homeowners or renter's insurance will not cover accidents if they occurred while the property was being used to conduct business, unless business use of the home is stipulated in the policy.

You may also want to look at your car insurance as well. Most policies stipulate that a vehicle used for business purposes will not be covered in the event of an accident while on business. Theft from the home as well as from the vehicle may also be affected by using them for business. Meeting with your insurance agent can help make sure you have adequate coverage for many different scenarios, even some of those you have not thought about.

You will want to choose your insurance company carefully as well as your agent. Online insurance sales are very popular these days, but if someone breaks into you house and steals all of your business-related equipment you do not want to have to wait several days before getting a check for replacements. Contacting you local insurance agent and getting the claim filed can put you back in business much faster making the few extra dollars it may cost you well worth the investment.
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