Most projects and jobs contractually require contractors to have General Liability insurance. This policy protects your company assets if a job site accident causes bodily injury or property damage to a third party. It also may provide coverage for against claims for, libel, slander, false advertising, and copyright infringement.
Here are several common construction claims and how General Liability insurance could provide protection for you.
Slips, Trips, & Falls
- A general contractor is working on renovating an office building. The job site has several areas where work is being done, and building supplies, tools, and debris are spread around. Despite efforts to keep the site safe, a delivery person slips on a wet surface in a work area, is injured, and goes to the emergency room for treatment. The injured person’s medical expenses, including hospital bills, doctor fees, and rehabilitation costs, would most likely be covered by General Liability insurance. If the injured party decides to sue the construction company, the policy covers legal fees, court costs, and any settlements or judgments awarded for covered losses up to the policy amount.
- A construction site has various surfaces in different phases of completion. A subcontractor fails to adequately level or mark a recently poured concrete floor. A visitor to the site, unaware of the uneven surface, trips and falls, sustaining injuries. The injured party files a slip and fall claim, arguing that the contractor did not provide a safe walking surface or adequate warnings about the uneven floor. General Liability insurance will help cover the legal costs, and if the contractor was negligent, it will cover any settlement or award up to the policy limit.
- While replacing a roof, a contractor accidentally drops a tool, which hits the owner’s parked car in the driveway. The owner files a claim for the cost of repairing the vehicle. General Liability insurance will cover the costs of repairing the car and any associated legal expenses if the car owner decides to file a lawsuit against the contractor.
- A contractor is hired to install new windows in an office building. Due to an installation error, water seeps into the building during heavy rain, causing damage to interior walls and flooring. The building owner files a property damage claim against the contractor seeking compensation for repairing water damage and any necessary renovations. A General Liability policy would cover the costs if the contractor were found responsible.
It’s always important to carefully review your insurance policies to ensure you have adequate coverage for potential liability claims associated with your specific line of work.
*NOTE: The insuring agreement in a policy sets out the covered perils, assumed risks, and nature of coverage that the insurance company provides to its insured in exchange for the premiums paid. Thus, the terms and conditions of the policy will dictate whether coverage exists and the nature of any potential benefits.