Business Insurance for Offices: A Business Owner’s Guide

insurance for office

Office spaces can offer a place to collaborate with colleagues, meet with clients, or simply provide a quiet environment for digging into the work of running your business. But they can also represent a liability: Any physical space is vulnerable to damage, and offices often have valuable business assets, like equipment and inventory. Additionally, business owners can be held responsible for third-party injury or damage to personal property that occur in their office spaces.

For these reasons, many small business owners secure insurance for office spaces. This type of business insurance often includes both commercial property insurance and general liability coverage, and it can help you ensure the longevity of your business by providing compensation and coverage for unexpected (and costly) events.

Office insurance can also provide protection for home-based business owners. Because homeowner’s insurance policies typically do not cover home offices, many home-based business owners purchase separate insurance for their home offices.

What is office insurance?

Office insurance is a type of insurance that covers office workplaces. It can include coverage for damage to commercial property and to business assets such as inventory and equipment, as well as general liability coverage for injuries that occur on the premises.

Insurance for offices typically covers:

  • Damage to a business’s property. Office insurance can provide coverage for damage to office space, inventory, and equipment caused by a natural disaster, fire, or accident.
  • Theft. Insurance for offices can also cover losses to equipment or inventory related to vandalism or theft.
  • Liability arising from injuries on premises. Office insurance can provide compensation for third-party injuries, which are any injuries to a non-employee. If a customer sprains their ankle on a staircase or a vendor walks into a particularly clean glass door, office insurance can pay the injured party’s medical expenses and cover your business’s legal fees.
  • Damage to customer property. General liability insurance for offices can also provide coverage for any damage to or loss of a customer’s personal property that occurs on the business premises as the result of a covered incident. If several of your customers’ computers are stolen out of your computer repair shop, for example, office insurance can cover the cost of replacement.

    Some commercial property renters require business owners to obtain an office insurance policy in the form of business renters insurance. This protects both the business owner and the property owner by ensuring that funds are available to repair any damage to the commercial space.

    What does office insurance not cover?

    Insurance for office spaces typically covers liability and property damage claims. It generally does not cover the following:

    • Damages to commercial vehicles or liability for commercial auto accidents
    • Employment claims, such as discrimination or wrongful termination suits
    • Claims of negligence in the performance of professional services
    • Injuries to your business’s employees
    • Compensation for lost income resulting from a business interruption

    Depending on your business model, you may also want to obtain coverage for these incident types by purchasing policy add-ons or separate policies or by pursuing a broader coverage scope through a business owner’s policy.

    Commonly added business insurance coverages include:

    • Business income interruption insurance. Business income interruption insurance (or business income insurance) covers lost income as a result of natural disasters or property crimes. If your office insurance is provided as part of a business owner’s policy, this type of coverage may be included in your insurance package.
    • Commercial auto insurance. Commercial auto insurance provides liability coverage and coverage for damage to commercial vehicles.
    • Employment practices liability insurance. Employment practices liability insurance provides business owners with coverage for employment claims such as discrimination or wrongful termination.
    • Professional liability insurance. Professional liability insurance offers financial protection against claims of negligence in the performance of professional services. This type of coverage can also be referred to as errors and omissions insurance.
    • Workers’ compensation insurance. Workers’ compensation insurance covers liability claims made by a business’s employees. Many states require business owners to carry workers’ compensation insurance.

    How to obtain office insurance

    Insurance for office spaces can be purchased on its own, or obtained under a business owner’s policy or through business renters insurance.

    To obtain office insurance, contact an insurance broker, use an online marketplace, or directly contact an insurance agent to obtain a quote. Many business owner’s policies—a type of small business insurance that bundles multiple coverage types into one package—include insurance for office spaces.

    To find the best-fit plan for your business, solicit quotes from multiple small business insurance providers before selecting a plan, and carefully review insurance rates, coverage limits, and exclusions.

    Insurance for office FAQ

    What kind of insurance do I need for my office?

    The type of office insurance you need will depend on your business’s risks and operation specifics. Typically, small business owners benefit from obtaining office insurance that covers damage to property and inventory and offers general liability protection. Business income interruption insurance, which can compensate business owners for lost income resulting from a covered incident, can also be beneficial.

    How do I choose insurance for my business?

    To choose an insurance plan for your business, consider your risks and your ability to absorb the financial burdens of an accident or natural disaster. Many small business owners opt for a business owner’s plan (BOP), which provides basic general liability coverage, commercial property insurance, and business income interruption insurance for a discounted rate. Comparing quotes and coverage options from multiple insurance providers can help you obtain the insurance rates and business coverage you need.

    What are the different types of business insurance?

    • Commercial property insurance
    • General liability insurance
    • Business income interruption insurance
    • Commercial auto insurance
    • Employment practices liability insurance
    • Workers’ compensation insurance
    • Professional liability insurance
    • Cyber liability insurance