Traveling the Insurance Maze: How to survive

December 19, 2011

Finding an insurance agent that you trust is very crucial for getting the correct coverage at the best price. Unfortunately, there is not an insurance policy that will cover everything; there are usually exceptions to your policy that may not work with your animal shelter or rescue, so it is incredibly important to read all of the exceptions in a policy. On a better note, if there is a lawsuit against your Nonprofit Animal Rescue that is covered by your insurance, then the defense costs are covered by the insurance company, even the high cost of hiring a lawyer.

What does your policy cover?

General Liability:  In the case of bodily injury or property damage to another person not associated with your business, as a result of negligent actions for which your company is responsible, general liability insurance would be helpful to have. An prime example of this would be if a visitor to your shelter slips and falls outside on an icy sidewalk.  With this insurance, it is important to check to see if your policy excludes event coverage for off-site events because that could leave your company unprotected. General liability insurance may also cover medical payment which often covers medical costs for injured volunteers unless they are classified as “additional insured”.

Commercial Property:

Property insurance covers the animal shelter buildings and the contents of the business and may also cover loss of income in case your business suffers certain accidents such as fire. You should talk to your agent about receiving enough property insurance to be able to rebuild the shelter structure as well as replace the contents of it. The value of the land does not need to be covered because it will still be there even if your building gets damaged or destroyed. There are a few objects that usually are not covered by property insurance which include detached signs, fences and trees.

It is important check with your agent to make sure that your animal rescue or shelter is fully covered. You may event want to consider a specialist agency like Animal Welfare Organization Insurance Program for your insurance needs.  THey work hard to protect animal rescues and shelters like yours and will even give you a free policy review!




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