Adding Endorsements To Your Small Business Insurance

Businesses grow and change all the time, which means that, at some point, you might need to modify your commercial insurance policies. While your policies are contracts, they are not completely set in stone. An insurance endorsement can add, take away, or exclude certain types of coverage. While some endorsements are added by your insurance company to minimize their risk, others can be beneficial because they allow you, the business owner, to customize your policies, which could save you money. For example, if you find that your policy has something that you do not need, you can request an endorsement to remove it. On the other hand, there might come a time when you need to extend your policy so that your business is fully covered. In this case, you can request an endorsement to add certain types of coverage. 

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Endorsements Explained

Endorsements are documents that are attached to your original insurance policy and are only good for that particular policy’s period. Some endorsements are added by your insurance company and can either exclude certain things from being covered or clarify what is covered by a policy. For example, some commercial property insurance policies have a wind and hail deductible endorsement, which requires you to pay a separate deductible in the case of wind or hail damage, while some general liability policies have exclusions for damages resulting from exposure to asbestos. Some endorsements clarify what is covered, such as a professional service exclusion, which makes clear that your general liability policy only covers bodily and property damage, not damage caused by professional advice.

As previously mentioned, other endorsements are additions that you can request for your policy. These changes can allow your business to grow and change while still remaining fully covered by your insurance policy. For example, if you change your business’s address, add another location, or add a new product, then you can make changes to your policy without the risk of losing insurance coverage. 

Common Endorsements

There are some common endorsements that you might want to consider for your business:

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Adding locations and increasing your limits can be done with adding endorsements to provide more liability coverage.
  • Additional Insured– This is most often paired with a general liability insurance policy and allows you to add a third party to your policy, such as a subcontractor who is doing work for you.
  • Adding/Changing Location– You can request endorsements to make administrative changes to your policy, such as a change of address or a change in the policyholder’s name. You can also add locations to your policy coverage; this will protect your new location and your current location. 
  • Extended Reporting Period– This will give you the ability to report claims after the expiration date of your insurance policy on a claims-made professional liability policy, or on an error and omissions insurance policy.
  • Increased Limits– This endorsement allows you to increase your limit of liability for your business property, as well as to extend workers’ compensation benefits not covered by state law. 
  • Industry-Specific Endorsements- You can also add coverage that is specific to your industry with certain endorsements, such as a contractor’s enhancement endorsement. These endorsements will cover equipment, property, and other tools specific to your industry, and at a cheaper rate than if purchased individually. 

Adding An Endorsement

Adding endorsements to existing policies is a great way to continue your coverage as your business continues to grow. You can personalize your policies to add endorsements that fit your business’ needs. Adding them is easy: simply speak to your current agent, and ask that they be added when your policy renews, or when you are shopping for a new policy. 

It can be confusing to know just how much coverage you need for your growing business. EZ.Insure specializes in breaking down your needs and your risks. We will provide you with a trained, licensed agent who will compare business insurance quotes in minutes. We aim to find you the most coverage with the most savings, all at no cost to you. To get free quotes, simply enter your zip code in the bar above, or to speak directly with an agent, call 888-615-4893.

What You Need to Know About Insurance Endorsements

When it comes to making a claim on your commercial insurance policies, there’s no arguing with your insurance company about what is covered and what isn’t. But that doesn’t mean that once a policy is written it’s set in stone: there is a way to change your coverage before you make any claims in order to better suit the needs of your business. You can do this by adding what’s known as endorsements to your policy. Endorsements modify business insurance policies to add, delete, or exclude certain types of coverage. Knowing how endorsements work means you’ll be able to better customize your policy – without having to shop for a new one! 

What Endorsements Can Dowoman s torso in a suit holding a paper with "terms and conditions" on it

Endorsements are simply additions to your existing policy that add or remove coverage. Think of them as another one of the building blocks of your policy, which is also made up of:

  • The insuring agreement: this is the meat of the policy, which lists the risks you’re being covered for
  • Exclusions: don’t forget to read these carefully! These are everything your policy specifically doesn’t cover. For example, the insuring agreement for your property insurance might list wind damage due to hurricanes, but you probably aren’t covered for flooding, which requires a separate policy. 
  • Conditions: these define what you need to do in order to remain covered

So, how do endorsements fit into all of this? They can:

  • Remove coverage – an endorsement can basically act like an exclusion, removing a covered risk from your insuring agreement. For example, if you know you don’t need coverage for property damage or bodily injury due to asbestos, you can request an endorsement to remove this coverage. This can help save you money – the fewer the risks you have covered, the less you’ll pay! man in a business uit pressing an addition sign that is lit up
  • Add coverage – if you’re worried about certain risks that aren’t covered by your policy, then you can purchase an endorsement to make sure you’re protected. For example, your standard property insurance policy might include water damage, but it might exclude mold damage – you can purchase an endorsement to cover that risk. Adding coverage will increase your premium – but, remember, you’ll be covered in case the worst happens, and won’t have to pay out-of-pocket for any damages. 
  • Modify coverageendorsements can also make other changes, such as increasing or decreasing your deductible, or changing your policy terms – meaning, you can purchase an endorsement that extends the life of your coverage.
  • Make editorial or administrative changessometimes mistakes get made, or you just need to change some information in your policy – endorsements can also help with that. For example, if your agent leaves a crucial word out of your policy, it can change the whole meaning – an endorsement can be used to make an editorial change to fix that issue. You can also use an endorsement to change your mailing address or update your name.

Examples of Common Endorsements

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Insurance endorsement can save you extra money by customizing your commercial plan.

Endorsements can do a lot of heavy lifting when it comes to your commercial insurance, adding, removing, and making any changes necessary in order to fully customize your policy. There are many endorsements out there, including ones that are standard, ones that are customized (non-standard), as well as some that your insurer considers mandatory and others that are voluntary, or requested by you. Some common insurance endorsements that small business owners use to customize their policies include:

  • Additional insured endorsement – usually added to a general liability policy, this adds someone other than you to your policy, such as a subcontractor doing work for you.
  • Extended reporting period endorsement – usually added to a claims-made professional liability policy, this endorsement allows you to report claims even after the expiration date of your policy.
  • Prior acts coverage endorsement – usually added to a claims-made liability policy, it protects you against losses that happened before you bought your current policy.
  • Equipment breakdown endorsement – changes your commercial property insurance so that you’re covered in case of a sudden, accidental equipment malfunction, such as a short circuit or power surge.

How to Get an Endorsement

Some of the language related to endorsements might be complicated, but getting one isn’t. You can request one from one of our agents at any time – when you’re shopping for a new policy, when your policy comes up for renewal, or at any time during your policy’s coverage period. Simple as that. If you have any questions about endorsements, if you think you might need one, or even if you’re shopping around for a new plan, reach out to EZ! We’ve got all the answers when it comes to commercial insurance, and we’ll always find the best – and most customized – policies for you and your business. And we’ll do it all for free! To get started simply enter your zip code in the bar above, or you can speak to an agent by calling 888-615-4893.