- Bryan Williams
The Sneaky P's of Commercial Insurance - Pollution Insurance (1 of 2)
While every business owner knows about the need to carry General Liability Insurance, Workers Comp Insurance if they have employees, Commercial Auto Insurance if a vehicle is being used for work & Property Insurance for any property that is being used for business purposes, there are 2 types of insurance that often go under the radar. Pollution Insurance & Professional Liability Insurance.
Pollution Insurance can cover bodily injury and property damage as a result of the sudden & accidental discharge of pollutants. It can also cover long-term pollution claims (such as seepage at a Gas Station or Chemical Plant). While most clients believe that Pollution Insurance is only important for big oil companies or Chemical Plants, the fact remains that many pollution lawsuits & claims arise from Real Estate Risks & Contractors.
Real Estate Risks (Lessor's Risks) have a major exposure to Pollution Claims. Some of the potential hazards in this space consist of Mold, Lead and/or Asbestos claims. Also, water run-off and Poor Indoor Air Quality due to bacterial build-up in the Vents can really wreak havoc when you find out that your General Liability Insurance Policy doesn't cover this type of claim. In fact, most insurance policies will have a Total Pollution Exclusion (CG 21 49).
Contractors will have the same type of Insurance Exclusions on their policies. While every single contractor has a risk for a Pollution Claim, the most common "at-risk" contractors are Roofing & Solar Contractors, Abatement Contractors, Painting Contractors and Demo & Excavation contractors. While some claims appear many years later - a roofer was sued for $250,000 due to the improper installation of a nursing home roof after mold was found 7 years later & the residents of the building had health issues. Others can happen immediately - a painter was sued for $200,000 after residents of the building claimed that the fumes weren't ventilated property.
While almost every single business has a risk to a pollution claim, it's our job to assess your overall business operations & advise you accordingly. If your business is in need of pollution insurance, we partner with some of the most reputable pollution carriers in the space & can help you find the best price and coverage for your particular need.
Give SBW Insurance Services a call today to discuss whether your business could benefit from having this coverage.