July is the month we celebrate independent retailers highlighting their positive social and economic impact in our communities and to our nation, and encouraging consumers to shop locally. Independent Retailer Month, as it’s coined, “celebrates the independent retailers that are the backbone of our communities and engages independent retailer associations and local officials to promote shop local campaigns.”
In order to assist independent retailers in their continued success, not only is it important for local residents in the communities to patronize their establishments, it’s also critical that these retailers are well protected against the exposures they face in their daily operations. This includes providing insurance products that will address everything from liability risks to property damage, loss of income, equipment breakdown, vehicular accidents, on-the-job accidents and cyber attacks.
Often, indie retailers look to their local independent insurance broker for expertise and guidance in securing the right mix of products. RPS is available to assist you with providing small businesses with the protection required to mitigate and transfer their risks. We can provide you with a Business Owners Policy (BOP) that bundles essential commercial lines coverages in a single policy. Commercial Property insurance, Commercial General Liability insurance and other critical coverages, such as Business Interruption and Equipment Breakdown, can be written with a BOP. Depending on the client, you can also include coverage for improvements the retailer has made to a space it leases, outdoor signage or other items, employee crime, money and securities and specialty equipment. In addition, special liability risks such as food-borne illness, product recall, liquor liability and others can be added to round out the coverage in a BOP, based on the retailer’s unique exposures.
A Commercial Umbrella policy is also a critical component in an insurance program to protect against catastrophic liability events. Slips and falls are common injuries at retailers because of all the customer foot traffic. A General Liability policy may not have sufficient limits to cover a serious or even fatal injury. Umbrella insurance provides your clients with an extra layer of protection for a relatively low cost.
Workers’ Compensation insurance is mandatory in the majority of states and can be obtained with a pay-as-you-go option in which the insured makes premium payments each time he/she runs payroll. In lieu of paying a large lump-sum payment to cover the estimated Workers Comp cost, with pay-as-you-go Workers Comp, the amount paid is based on each payroll. If the insured adds or loses employees, the premium will change, a particularly smart option for retailers with seasonal or highly fluctuating payroll. Pay-as-you-go frees up cash flow for other business areas, provides the ability to pay accurate premium amounts and averts audit surprises.
Cyber Liability insurance is must-have coverage for retailers, including for small businesses. Sixty-two percent of cyber attack victims are small and mid-sized businesses. Cyber coverage protects businesses from losses or damages resulting from cyber attacks and data breaches. These expenses can include data loss and restoration, extortion, legal fees, and regulatory fines.
Talk to the professionals at RPS about helping independent retailers with their insurance needs. Just give us call