What is Commercial Insurance? 8 Common Types of Commercial Insurance

What is Commercial Insurance – Overview

Commercial insurance provides coverage to businesses and corporations. It is mainly designed to cover losses for companies, employees, and business owners. Different types of businesses have different needs and situations, so commercial insurance is available in various styles.

Small business owners often wonder what kind of commercial insurance is best suited for their business. Though the answer varies, depending on the type of business, there are different types of commercial insurance programs that business owners should consider buying.

Numerous regulations in the United States mandate commercial insurance. It helps businesses avoid liability against risks that could affect their growth and success. Some commercial insurance also protects the business’s reputation and well-being while keeping it safe against financial losses.

8 Common Types of Commercial Insurance

Commercial insurance differs from personal insurance in that the former can cover multiple employees and stakeholders. Due to the extensive range of risks and property values it covers, commercial insurance often has higher coverage limits.

In addition, commercial insurance agents and providers are specially trained in the risks and threats that businesses face regularly and rarely. Commercial insurance plans are usually customized to a business’s industry and daily activities.

Some of the most common types of commercial insurance include:

What is Commercial Insurance

What is Commercial Insurance – Common Types of Commercial Insurance

1. General Liability

General liability insurance covers third-party bodily injuries and property damage occurring on business premises or as a result of business operations, along with associated legal costs. This insurance also covers advertising injuries, such as libel, slander, and copyright infringement claims against the business.

2. Business Interruption Insurance

Business interruption insurance comes in handy when the flow of your business is affected by a major storm, a power outage in the local grid, and even hacking incidents. This commercial insurance helps to build the confidence of business owners in case of an untoward incident that disrupts the normal day-to-day operations of your business.

This type of commercial insurance is meant to protect your business during covered events. It can even make financial reimbursement for business losses, besides providing funds to temporarily operate in an alternate location.

3. Workers’ Compensation

Workers’ compensation is an extremely necessary type of commercial insurance as it protects the business against injury to workers/employees during work hours. Though most small business owners tend to believe that an untoward accident cannot happen at their workplace, the facts tell a completely different story.

Without a proper workers’ compensation plan in effect, damage from injuries acquired at work can cost thousands of dollars and even millions in some cases. Without sufficient insurance coverage, business owners are prone to punitive damages, suffering and pain lawsuits, and potentially high medical bills.

Workers’ compensation insurance requirements vary by state, and in many cases, it is mandatory even if a business has only one employee. It is highly advisable to check your local requirements, as these vary slightly. Buying a workers’ compensation insurance policy is significantly more affordable than the potential cost of a lawsuit.

So, it makes complete sense to be proactive and have extensive workers’ compensation insurance coverage. The policy usually covers out-of-pocket expenses, such as medical bills and lost wages.

4. Commercial Auto Insurance

Commercial auto insurance covers the loss of or damage to workers and equipment, both financially and medically. Such damaging events are unpredictable, and commercial auto insurance helps to minimize the risk. Commercial auto insurance protects business vehicles and their operators against financial losses from accidents, ensuring operational continuity.

5. Employment Practices Liability Insurance

Employment practices liability insurance (EPLI) protects against claims made by employees alleging discrimination, wrongful termination, harassment, and other employment-related issues. It is offered as a stand-alone product or can be combined with existing commercial insurance policies. Commercial insurance protects businesses against employee lawsuits alleging unfair or inappropriate acts. Violating an employee’s rights, knowingly or unknowingly, can have devastating consequences for business owners and employers.

EPLI is offered as claims-made or occurrence-based coverage to prevent these consequences. Most EPLI policies are claims-made, meaning the policy must be active both when the alleged incident occurs and when the claim is filed for coverage to apply.

6. Cyber Insurance

Cyber liability insurance is crucial for businesses of all sizes to protect against data breaches and cyber-attacks, not just due to lack of high-tech security systems. This insurance policy offers coverage against data breaches and the losses resulting from them.

In a data breach, important and private customer data, such as name, date of birth, addresses, etc., can end up in the wrong hands. Cyber insurance covers costs associated with data breaches, including customer notifications, credit monitoring services, and legal fees.

7. Management Liability Insurance (D&O)

Management liability insurance, or Directors and Officers (D&O) insurance, protects directors and officers from personal losses if they are sued for wrongdoing in managing a company or nonprofit.

This commercial insurance covers costs and damages (settlements and awards) arising from wrongful action allegations and lawsuits brought against members of the board of directors or an organization’s officer.

D&O insurance can also cover the organization for legal fees, settlements, and other costs incurred in defending directors and officers against lawsuits.

8. Errors and Omissions Insurance (E&O)

Errors and omissions insurance, also known as professional liability insurance, protects against losses from professional errors, omissions, or negligence. This commercial insurance policy is meant to protect businesses from the consequences of an error or omission on the part of the business owner or employee that causes a lawsuit to be filed against the business organization.

Businesses that provide any kind of service for a fee should have E&O insurance coverage. This covers several situations that conventional business liability insurance does not. For instance, E&O insurance is essential for professionals like lawyers, real estate agents, financial advisors, architects, and healthcare providers, among others, to protect against claims of negligence or inadequate work.


As seen above, different commercial insurance policies are available in the market. Commercial insurance is necessary to safeguard businesses against numerous liabilities and risks, such as employee injuries, damage to business property, compensation, etc. It is highly advisable to consult with a local insurance agent to understand the specific commercial insurance types even more.

See Also

What is the Difference Between Term and Whole Life Insurance

What is Universal Life Insurance

State Farm Medical Insurance

What is Short Term Medical Insurance

Short Term vs Long Term Disability

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