what does bop insurance cover in SC

Not turning a profit isn’t necessarily the biggest risk business owners face on a daily basis. Threats ranging from natural disasters to theft, vandalism, and beyond loom behind every successful business, and without the proper coverage, they just might wreak havoc. When your business is your corporate brainchild, it deserves to be protected. Fortunately, a South Carolina independent insurance agent can help you find the right BOP insurance. Here’s a closer look at this coverage.

What Is BOP Insurance?

Commonly called a “BOP” for short, business owners policy insurance is a carefully crafted package of essential coverages for small business owners. BOPs come with a set of standard coverages such as liability and property protection, and add on a set of customized coverages that tailor to unique business niches. For example, BOPs are available for bakeries, salons, food trucks, bars, and just about any kind of business you can imagine.

What Does BOP Insurance Cover in South Carolina?

BOPs are set up to protect owners of small businesses in South Carolina by offering a pre-crafted selection of coverages needed by all businesses, and then topping it off with specific coverages needed by a certain type of business. So depending on your unique business, your package will vary.

Here are the standard coverages offered in BOPs in South Carolina:

  • Commercial general liability: Protects your business against property damage or bodily injury claims made by a third party.
  • Property damage: Covers loss of or damage to your physical property, including your office space and often the inventory inside it from things like fires, storms, vandalism, etc. Coverage often extends to permanent changes you make to the interior of a building as well, such as installed light fixtures.
  • Business income: A part of property insurance, this aspect covers the financial loss suffered while a business is closed due to fire damage or other disasters.

Once the standard coverages needed by South Carolina business owners across the board are taken care of, your business still needs additional protection tailored to your unique niche. The following are just a few examples of additional coverages offered by BOPs in South Carolina:

  • Hired and non-owned auto liability: If your employees drive to perform company operations but you don’t have company vehicles, you might need this coverage.
  • Crime coverage: Covers losses due to criminal activity such as theft or fraud. Coverage even applies to employees who steal from the company.
  • Employee dishonesty coverage: Covers harm to the business caused by employees with questionable motives.
  • Boiler & machinery coverage: Also known as "equipment insurance," coverage applies to electric equipment in the building (e.g., AC units and boilers) that breaks down due to power surges, etc. Property insurance may cover this stuff, but not always.
  • Glass breakage coverage: Covers the glass windowpane of your business’s storefront, where applicable, from things like vandalism and car crashes.
  • Druggist liability insurance: Covers liability exposures for professionals like pharmacists who have the potential to make very costly mistakes by giving someone the wrong prescription, for example.

This list of available add-ons to a BOP is far from exhaustive. The more complex the business, the more types of coverage it’s likely to require. Working together with a South Carolina independent insurance agent is the best way to ensure your business has every aspect covered from all potential risks.

What Does BOP Insurance Not Cover in South Carolina?

Just like any other type of policy, BOP insurance comes with a list of specific covered perils and a list of non-covered perils. While specific exclusions will depend on your individual policy, two major perils not covered under BOP insurance are flood damage and earthquake damage. Special flood insurance and earth movement policies would be required to protect your business from damages and/or suspended operations caused by these types of disasters.

Flooding is certainly a concern in a coastal state like South Carolina. In order to protect your business from getting washed up, it’s a good idea to look into getting coverage, especially if your town is at an especially high risk for flooding or hurricanes. Flood insurance policies are only available through the National Flood Insurance Program, which is a part of FEMA. Your South Carolina independent insurance agent can help point you in the right direction.

Additionally, BOP insurance in South Carolina tends to exclude the following coverages:

  • Professional liability
  • Commercial/business auto
  • Workers’ compensation
  • Health/disability

When it comes to professional errors/negligence, company vehicles, and the safety of your employees, you’ll need to work with your South Carolina independent insurance agent to purchase separate policies to cover these important areas, if they apply to your business.

Do I Need BOP Insurance in South Carolina?

The short answer is really yes, you do. You’ve worked hard to establish your business, so having the right protection is beyond important, it’s crucial. A BOP can help your business recover from tragedies that could potentially result in financial losses, and can help prevent bankruptcy following a particularly harsh disaster. BOP insurance packages provide coverage for many common risks to business owners in South Carolina.

BOP insurance packages in South Carolina typically provide coverage for the following perils:

  • Fire and smoke
  • Lightning
  • Explosions
  • Windstorms and hail
  • Aircraft or vehicle damage
  • Riot or civil commotion
  • Vandalism
  • Sprinkler leaks
  • Building collapse
  • Volcanic action
  • Certain types of water damage

In addition to these specific covered perils, there are a handful of major reasons any business owner should get coverage. Here are the three main ways BOP insurance is helpful:

  • Protection of your stuff: Including your personal property, equipment, and your office building against things like theft, vandalism, and other damage.
  • Protection from legal consequences: If any aspect of your business causes damage or bodily harm to a customer, you could be sued.
  • Protection from lost revenue: In the event your services are suspended or shut down, your business could stand to lose a lot of profits.  

Your South Carolina independent insurance agent can help you review your BOP insurance to answer any remaining questions about your coverage. They’ll also be able to help you figure out whether you’ve got enough coverage, or if you should purchase more.

How Much Does BOP Insurance Cost in South Carolina?

While it depends heavily on the specific business, what it basically comes down to is the simpler a business is, the cheaper the premium since it’s less of a risk for the insurance company. So, a small South Carolina surf shop might pay only $350 or so per year, while a hotel in Charleston or Myrtle Beach might pay $3,500 or more annually. It all depends on the size and risk level of the business. Your South Carolina independent insurance agent can help fill in the blanks.

Why Work with a South Carolina Independent Insurance Agent?

In order to get the protection you need and deserve, you’ll want to work with a trusted expert. And who could be better for the job than a local agent who shares your area code? Independent insurance agents act as your own personal insurance shoppers, offering you tons more options than one-policy companies. With just one call, they’ll hook you up with multiple quotes.

South Carolina independent insurance agents are armed with knowledge on what coverage is needed in your area, and they’ll get you set up with just enough of it — not too little, not too much. They’ll handle all the heavy lifting so you can rest assured you’ll be set up with the right coverage at the right price.

They’re not just there at the beginning either. If disaster strikes, your South Carolina agent will be there to help walk you through the claims process and make sure you’re getting the benefits you're entitled to. Now that’s thinking ahead.

Article Reviewed by | Paul Martin

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