Florida prides itself on being small business friendly, so they don’t require general liability insurance, although they do require worker’s compensation insurance and commercial auto insurance. You’ll also need general liability insurance if you’re a contractor. Also, Florida has a reputation of being very litigious, so if you own a small business in the sunshine state, you would do well to protect yourself.
- Top 7 Companies for General Liability Insurance in Florida
- What is General Liability Insurance?
- What does General Liability Insurance Cover?
- What doesn’t General Liability Insurance Cover?
- How Much General Liability Insurance do I Need?
- How Much does General Liability Insurance Cost in Florida?
- How to find cheap general liability insurance in Florida
- General liability insurance for contractors in Florida
- General liability insurance for LLCs in Florida
- Small Business Insurance in Florida
Top 7 Companies for General Liability Insurance in Florida
We researched more than 15 companies offering general liability insurance in Florida and here are the top 7 companies that we recommend:
- CoverWallet: Best for Comparing Online Quotes
- Nationwide: Best Customer Satisfaction
- Hiscox: Best for Policy Customization
- The Hartford: Best for Industry-Specific Packages
- Next Insurance: Best for Self-Employed Small Business Owners
- Thimble Insurance: Best for Part-Time or Seasonal Business Owners
- Huckleberry: Best for AI-Powered Quotes
CoverWallet: Best for Comparing Online Quotes
CoverWallet is a digital business insurance broker. They work with several leading business insurance companies and are able to provide quotes from these companies. The benefit of working with a digital broker like CoverWallet is that you can compare several quotes of their partner companies in one place within minutes after providing your information once. This is probably the best way to compare online quotes without having to fill out several quote forms or talk to several agents.
Another benefit of working with CoverWallet is to utilize their great digital dashboard where you can manage all of your business insurance policies in one place after buying a policy through them. Otherwise, you have to pay $99 a year to have access to their digital dashboard. The dashboard offers great feature such as downloading digital certificate of insurance at any time, renewing the policy, or filing claims.
Nationwide: Best Customer Satisfaction
Nationwide tops J.D. Power’s Small Commercial Insurance Study for 2019.
They have excellent customer service ratings and financial strength. They insure most states, the exceptions being Alaska and Hawaii. If you need other types of business insurance, they have business property, commercial auto, workers compensation, and other types of insurance your small business might need.
Hiscox: Best for Policy Customization
Hiscox is the number one online small business insurer. They insure over 300,000 small businesses, and they can tailor policies to your specific business. You can get a quote online within just a few minutes. You can also choose flexible payment options. If you don’t have hundreds of employees, Hiscox is a great option.
The Hartford: Best for Industry-Specific Packages
The Hartford is one of the biggest providers of business insurance. They offer a wide range of small business insurance policies. Any small business can find the insurance policy that it might need at the Hartford. They also offer a very nice digital experience that allows you to get quotes and buy a policy completely online. This is a very nice feature for a large and established insurer like the Hartford. Their unique differentiating feature is industry-specific policy packages which makes it easier for businesses to buy the right policies for their industry.
Next Insurance: Best for Self-Employed Small Business Owners
Next specializes in small business insurance, particularly for the self-employed. To get a quote other than this one, they wanted us to enter our social security number or Federal Employee Identification number and they told us they could only offer a business policy with owner coverage included. It varies by state, because we had no problem getting a quote when we said we lived in California.
Thimble Insurance: Best for Part-Time or Seasonal Business Owners
If you have a seasonal business, or a part-time business, consider Thimble. They insure Florida, and you can get general liability insurance for as long as you want it—as little as an hour. You can add errors and omissions insurance, professional liability insurance, or drone insurance (Thimble actually started as a drone insurance company) and coverage can begin the same day For a photographer working in Florida, we got this quote for a million dollars in coverage:
Huckleberry: Best for AI-Powered Quotes
Huckleberry is a new company, launched in 2017. They offer business insurance completely online. You can get general liability insurance, workers compensation, business interruption insurance, and add-ons like professional liability insurance and employee dishonesty coverage.
They use AI to generate quotes, which are underwritten by Markel insurance. You can get an estimate in 60 seconds, although your final price could be higher or lower. They only in nineteen states thus far, but they have plans to expand and so far, the outlook is promising.
What is General Liability Insurance?
General liability insurance is sometimes known as commercial liability insurance. It protects you and your business if someone sues you for causing injuries. It also protects you against property damage. Many small business owners say if you only get one type of insurance, it should be general liability insurance.
What does General Liability Insurance Cover?
General liability insurance protects you from many common problems, such as:
- Property damage
- Bodily injury
- Advertising errors
- Copyright infringements
If you are sued, your general liability insurance should cover any settlement costs, court costs and medical payments.
What doesn’t General Liability Insurance Cover?
General liability insurance doesn’t cover everything, though. It doesn’t cover:
- Injuries to your employees
- Damage to you own property
- Professional mistakes
- Illegal acts
- Malicious acts
- Discrimination lawsuits
- Liquor liability
Some of these things just require different insurance, such as liquor liability and injuries to your employees (workers compensation). For things like malicious acts and illegal acts, you’re on your own.
How Much General Liability Insurance do I Need?
It depends on your business—general contractors probably need more general liability insurance than many small businesses. Most small businesses should consider a policy with $1 million per occurrence and a $2 million dollar aggregate. The $2 million is over the life of the policy, which is usually one year (you renew every year).
Furthermore, Florida requires contractors to have general liability insurance with at least $300,000 in bodily injury and $50,000 in property damage.
How Much does General Liability Insurance Cost in Florida?
How much you pay for general liability insurance is affected by a lot of factors, but the biggest factor is the industry you’re in and how much risk is involved. Any business that has customers coming in and out, such as brick-and-mortar stores, will pay more for business insurance. Contractors pay the most because construction is inherently risky.
Other things that affect your rates include:
- Claim history
- Years you’ve been in business
- Annual revenue
Most small businesses pay between $300 and $600 annually. Keep in mind that these are the costs of general liability insurance for small businesses of five employees or fewer and earning less than $100,000 a year. If you have more employees or make a lot more money, you’ll pay more.
Costs usually vary by carriers. So it is always a good idea to shop around with a few companies or with a digital broker like CoverWallet so that you can compare several quotes before selecting the right quote for your business.
How to find cheap general liability insurance in Florida?
General liability insurance is necessary to protect your business. It is possible to find cheap general liability insurance. Here are some tips to help you find the coverage you need at a fair price:
- Shop around for the best value. Get quotes from a few companies or compare the multiple quotes generated by a service like CoverWallet.
- Don’t stop shopping around. Make sure you get new quotes before you renew your policy.
- Safety-first policy: Make sure you implement safety standards and best practices in your business location and provide safety training to your employee regularly. Make use of safety programs offered by the insurance companies whenever available.
- Take advantage of discounts. If they’re not offered to you when getting a quote, ask about them, whether you’re buying online or through an agent.
Taking these steps will help ensure you’re not paying too much for your general liability coverage in Florida.
General liability insurance for contractors in Florida
Florida contractors need to show proof of general liability insurance before they can become licensed as contractors. The state minimums are $300,000 for bodily injury and $50,000 for property damage. If you are based in another state, you can obtain your insurance in that state and work in Florida, but you must adhere to the state minimums.
If you fail to obtain general liability insurance (or obtain it and then cancel it after you have a license) you can incur hefty fines, suspension of your license, and of course, the risk of lawsuits.
General liability insurance for LLCs in Florida
Florida is a pretty litigious state, so you don’t want to go without general liability insurance. While filing your business as an LLC protects your personal assets, it does not protect your business from lawsuits, frivolous or otherwise. It is often recommended that LLCs in Florida have general liability insurance, especially if you conduct your business at a physical location.
It is relatively reasonable. LLCs in Florida are reported to pay an average of $90 a month for their general liability insurance policy.
Small Business Insurance in Florida
Business Insider ranks Florida the 10th out of the fifty states in a list of the best states to start a business. Florida offers competitive tax rate, with no personal income tax. 10% of businesses in Florida are actually new businesses.
Florida’s labor force contains over 9 million workers and is the fourth largest in the country. Roughly two million small businesses make their home in Florida, employing 98% of the employees in the state.
Take extra steps to protect your small business. Florida is a litigious state and often rewards large settlements to those choosing to sue. You will regret not having small business insurance when incidents happen. Here are the best business insurance companies in Florida for your consideration.
Below are some of the popular small business insurance coverages in Florida:
- Workers compensation insurance in Florida
- Commercial auto insurance in Florida
- Professional liability insurance in Florida
Workers compensation insurance in Florida:
Workers compensation insurance is required in Florida if you have 4 or more employees, even all 4 employees are part-time. Construction companies in Florida are required to have workers comp insurance. Sole proprietors are not required to have workers comp insurance in Florida. Workers comp insurance pays for medical costs, lost wages, disability benefits, death benefits, re-training costs, etc. if and when an employee gets injured or becomes ill at work. Learn more at the best workers comp insurance companies in Florida.
On average, small businesses in Florida pay $1.43 per $100 payroll. In the past years, it has been reduced reflecting a better and safer workplace environment in Florida.
Commercial auto insurance in Florida:
Commercial auto insurance is required in Florida. If you use a vehicle for work, you need to have commercial auto insurance. Your personal auto insurance policy doesn’t cover your vehicle uses for business. Your personal auto insurance company will refuse the claims if they learn that you use the vehicle for business purposes. Learn more the differences between commercial auto vs. personal auto insurance and why small businesses need commercial auto insurance and the best commercial auto insurance companies in Florida.
Based on study, small businesses pay an average of $3,000 a year for commercial auto insurance coverage.
If you use a truck for your business, you need to have commercial truck insurance coverage, which may be a bit more expensive than personal auto insurance. Learn more about the best commercial truck insurance companies in Florida.
Professional liability insurance in Florida:
Professional liability insurance isn’t, in general, required in Florida, except malpractice insurance for doctors. However, your employers and/or your clients might require you to have it before they can employ you. Professional liability insurance covers lawsuits costs and fees and settlements related to mistakes or negligence you or your employees make while doing your work. If you and your business provide services or advice to your clients, it is likely that you need professional liability insurance coverage. It is often called malpractice insurance in healthcare and legal fields and errors and omissions (or E&O) in real estate, insurance, finance, and other consulting industries. Below are the most popular professionals that need this coverage:
- Lawyers – Top 5 Providers of Legal Malpractice Insurance & How Much It Costs
- Accountants & CPAs – Professional Liability Insurance (E&O) for Accountants and CPAs
- Tax preparers – The Best E&O Insurance for Tax Preparers
- Doctors – The 5 Best Providers of Medical Malpractice Insurance
- Consultants – Professional Liability Insurance (E&O) for Consultants
- Real estate agents – Top 5 Providers of Real Estate E&O Insurance & Costs
- Insurance agents – E&O Insurance for Insurance Agents: Cost and Top 5 Providers
- Engineers – Top 5 Providers of Professional Liability Insurance for Architects and Engineers
- Marketing and advertising services
- Psychologists – Top 4 Providers of Malpractice Insurance for Psychologists and Counselors
- Nurses – The Best 4 Providers of Nursing Malpractice Insurance
- Nurse practitioners: The Best Malpractice Insurance for Nurse Practitioners
- Dentists – Top 5 Providers of Dental Malpractice Insurance
- Dental hygienists – The Best Malpractice Insurance for Dental Hygienists
- Physician’s assistants – The Best Malpractice Insurance for Physician’s Assistants
- Physical Therapists – The 6 Best Malpractice Insurance Providers for Physical Therapists
- Chiropractors – 4 Best Choices for Cheap Chiropractic Malpractice Insurance
- Pharmacists – The Best Malpractice Insurance for Pharmacists and Costs
- Social workers – The Best Malpractice Insurance for Social Workers
Although Florida doesn’t require small businesses to carry general liability insurance, it’s a good idea. Otherwise, you would have to pay for settlements, court costs and medical bills out of pocket if someone sues you, and that can bankrupt many small businesses. Also, although living in Florida has many perks, the residents tend to be litigious. General liability insurance is fairly inexpensive and may save your business and your income.