If you’re a small business owner in Ontario, you’ve likely got everything you own invested in your business. Which is why protecting it from unexpected perils is so important. Even if you’re on a tight budget, there are small business insurance solutions that can easily fit into that budget and protect your livelihood. We’ve outlined some coverages below that are absolutely necessary for every business owner.
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Small Business Statistics in Ontario
According to the latest numbers, there are approximately 440,000 employer businesses in Ontario, with about 430,000 of them being small businesses that employ 1-99 people. That means a whopping 97.7% of all businesses in Ontario are small businesses. Unfortunately, only 63% of new businesses survive longer than five years.
There are a number of strategic elements that go into running a successful business, one of them being a comprehensive business plan. And no business plan is complete without a risk-management strategy.
Enjoying success as a small business owner in Ontario depends on more than delivering a great product or service – it also means being prepared for life’s surprises and making sure your business is properly equipped to deal with them when they happen.
You don’t have to look far to find the world’s most successful businesses operating in Toronto, Kitchener-Waterloo and Ottawa. You may not aspire to be as big as them, but you no doubt want to emulate their success. One thing they all have in common is that they protect themselves against life’s inevitable pitfalls.
What Does Small Business Insurance in Ontario Cover?
We’ve listed our small business insurance products on this page (on the left-hand side). Below are some of those coverages with a brief explanation and a link to each page.
Small Business General Liability Insurance – As a small business, the last thing you can afford is a lawsuit for damages resulting from personal injury or property damage because of your products, services or business operations. A general liability policy for small businesses in Ontario can cover legal fees, awards for damages and settlement payments if a suit is brought against your company.
Small Business Umbrella Liability Insurance – The costs of a lawsuit can rise sharply and quickly. Sometimes the maximum coverage of a General Liability policy isn’t enough to cover what in the end could be a multi-million dollar lawsuit. Small Business Umbrella coverage kicks in to protect your business when a General Liability policy is exhausted.
Small Business Property Insurance – Fires, gas leaks, vandalism, sewage backups, floods, earthquakes and windstorms affect businesses of all sizes regularly in Ontario. For small business owners, the aftermath can be catastrophic. Without an insurance policy protecting your place of business, your inventory, your computers, your tools, equipment, etc., if all your assets are damaged or destroyed after such an event, it’s unlikely your business could survive.
Small Business Auto Insurance – In Ontario it’s mandatory. This policy covers you and your employees when using a vehicle for business purposes in much in the same way that a personal auto insurance policy would. It protects your business in case of a lawsuit stemming from personal injury or property damage caused by a collision involving a company vehicle.
Small Business Employee Theft Insurance – Unfortunately, employee theft can happen to the best of us. From stealing your small business’s assets like inventory or cash to committing computer or credit card fraud using your business to do it, if one of your employees steals, a Small Business Theft Insurance policy can cover your losses.
Small Business Cyber Liability Insurance – Cyber Liability insurance is increasingly becoming a necessity for small businesses in Ontario, regardless of industry. Hackers and cyber-criminals are targeting small businesses for small but quick payouts. Almost 20% of small businesses in Canada suffered a cyber-attack of some sort – whether it was ransomware, malware, denial of service, phishing attack, etc.
Small Business Credit Insurance – When extending credit to a corporate buyer or client, you run the risk of that receivable not getting paid or not getting paid on time. Not having cash on hand can stunt your small business’s growth, or worse. Small Business Credit Insurance is designed to cover uncollected income so that your small businesses can continue operating and expanding.
Small Business Employment Practices Liability Insurance – Much like a personal injury lawsuit, a lawsuit alleging harassment, wrongful dismissal or discrimination could be both financially and reputationally devastating. An Employment Practices Liability plan for small businesses can cover the legal fees you will need to defend your business and/or employees from these serious accusations.
Small Business Directors and Officers Insurance – Directors and officers of public, private, and non-profit businesses are personally liable for errors, omissions, misleading statements or breach of duty. D&O insurance for small businesses protects the decision-makers of your small business and helps you recruit top leadership talent.
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How Much is Small Business Insurance in Ontario?
There isn’t a universal small business insurance plan because every business is different – even those in the same industry. So how much you pay for small business insurance in Ontario will depend on a number of factors including:
- What type of business you’re in. Manufacturers, retailers, restaurant owners and service providers all have commonalities but all face different risks in their daily operations and therefore need different coverages. For example, a law firm in Ontario will have to carry Errors and Omissions coverage that a parts manufacturer will not need.
- The size of your business and your business assets. Your building, equipment, vehicles, inventory, tools, office supplies, computers, phones, etc., – even your income – all need to be insured. Your rates will also depend on the number of employees in your business and the amount of business you do.
- Where you do business. This includes both your physical location and where your business transactions take place. For example, if you’re a company that does business outside Canada, you may need Business Interruption coverage in case your business is hampered by political unrest in the country you do business in.
How much you pay for small business insurance in Ontario also depends on how many coverages and the types of coverages you need.
ALIGNED, Insurance Brokers That Advocate For Ontario’s Small Business Owners
To help you protect your small business in Ontario, you need a broker who is on your side and will fight to get you the best rates for the coverage you need. Contact an ALIGNED Advocate today to discuss your small business’s risk management strategy.