Business Insurance Blog

October2016

6 things you cannot ignore when it comes to your commercial building insurance

As a commercial property owner, the cost of being underinsured can be significant. Yet, so many owners underestimate the total cost of rebuilding their commercial property. To add insult to injury, if your building is not insured for full replacement value, your insurer can apply an under-insurance clause that will limit your claim payment.

With the help of your Insurance Broker, make sure to factor in these 6 additional expenses when working out the replacement value for your building:

  • Debris Removal – This is often overlooked, but you WILL have to remove the damaged building at your property location before you can start to rebuild and replace. Plan accordingly.
  • Architects, Engineers, etc. – Before you can start the rebuild, you’ll need to hire a variety of people to get the project underway. This includes, but is not limited to, surveyors, architects, and (in some cases) engineers.
  • Government Regulations – If your property currently occupies an area that’s governed by local building regulations, you’ll need to factor compliance with those standards into the final cost. Example: Accessibility, Fire Safety, Etc.…
  • Goods & Services Tax (GST) – As you already know, end-consumers are required to pay a 10% GST on most sales. After calculating the total expected costs of a full rebuild, add 10% of that total to ensure that your GST is covered.
  • Legal Expenses – Legal disputes are an unfortunate reality when building, or rebuilding, your building. Be sure to factor in possible disputes with your local government, or with the contractors, architects, and engineers that you pay to complete the project.
  • Material and Labour Costs – Be sure to update your building sum insured on a regular basis to keep inline with inflation. While you may be depreciating the value of your building for tax purposes, the actual cost to rebuild your building will generally go up over time due to an increase material and labour costs.

If you want to learn more about commercial property insurance, call Guard Insurance Brokers on 1300 167 143 and speak to one of our friendly Insurance Brokers.

September2016

Key Concerns for Business Owners

A recent survey conducted by Vero has provided valuable insight into the primary concerns of small to medium business owners. The top concerns identified were; 

  • Increase in costs 
  • Economic downturn
  • Competitors 
  • Being unable to trade
  • Equipment breakdown
  • Adverse publicity 
  • Adverse regulatory changes 
  • Workplace accidents 
  • Political instability 
  • Cyber attack

As a business owner, it’s very important to identify the key risks to your business and have a plan in place to minimise any negative financial impacts. 

While insurance is not the answer to all the concerns listed above, it is an important step in building a risk management plan for your business and protecting the financial security of you and your family. 

If you would like to discuss how insurance can play a part in protecting your business, please call us. Our team of professional brokers are happy to help. 

May2016

Management Liability Insurance: Are you covered?

Over the last couple of years, we’ve noticed legal proceedings concerning negligence and / or breaches of legislation occurring more frequently. As a business owner, you’re exposed to significant legal defence costs and fines. Even if you’ve done nothing wrong, you can still be required to pay legal expenses to defend yourself if a disgruntled employee brings a case against you. 

Management liability insurance is designed to protect companies from the expenditure involved in defending their business and payouts / fines that may be awarded.   

Management Liability covers a broad range of areas. Key sections include issues pertaining to OH&S, Employment Practices, Employee Crime, and Statutory Liability. To help you develop a better understanding of this insurance, one of our insurance partners have provided a few real claims examples below.

If you would like to discuss Management Liability insurance in more detail, please give us a call.

April2015

Public Liability Insurance – Injury to Sub-Contractors

Over the last couple of years, we have noticed insurers starting to ask a lot of questions around the use of sub-contractors, particularly in any trades related industry. This additional underwriting is a result of increasing claims for personal injury to sub-contractors. 

As a sub-contractor is not deemed to be an employee, they are not covered under the businesses workers compensation insurance. So if a sub-contractor is injured while working under your direction, they (or their workers compensation insurer) can bring claims against the business owner’s public liability insurance. Claims are being made on the basis of business owner’s not providing (and documenting) adequate training, safety procedures or insuring a safe working environment. 

December2014

Business Insurance – Are you Underinsured?

New research from CGU has revealed that underinsurance is potentially a serious risk to the sustainability of many small businesses with many operators facing devastation if they suffer a major setback or loss.

The research, carried out in partnership with loss adjusters McLarens Young International, reviewed actual levels of underinsurance – not just business perceptions of the problem.

December2014

What is Business Interruption Insurance?

To put it simply, Business Interruption insurance protects against loss of profit resulting from an interruption to your business activity. Interruption to your business activity has to be caused by an insurable event such as Fire, Storm, Accidental Damage, Machinery Breakdown or other events you are insured against as stated in your business policy.

Common problems suffered by businesses as a result of interruption include:

  • loss of profit margin on stock destroyed;
  • non-fulfilment of standing orders;
  • breaking of contracts and / or loss of customers to competitors;
  • certain continuing expenses, for example, rent, payroll, interest;
  • additional expenditure in order to minimise loss of income, like rental of temporary operating premises, or working additional shifts;
  • the availability of replacement plant and machinery or parts for damaged plant and machinery;
December2014

Business Insurance – The Risk of Under-Insurance

Apart from the obvious risk of not insuring your business assets for full replacement value, an additional risk lurks in the fine print of your business insurance policy. The clause I am referring to is generally called an “Under-Insurance” or “Co-Insurance” clause.

It’s a difficult clause to explain, and I do recommend you refer to your policy wording for worked examples, however the general provision of the clause allows the insurance company to only pay a percentage of a claim in the event your business is under insured.