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Commercial General Liability Insurance Coverage

Commercial general liability insurance is often abbreviated to CGL insurance. We’ll discuss what it is and what it covers in this section.

What’s commercial general liability insurance?

Commercial general liability insurance, or CGL insurance, is designed to protect you if your company’s negligent acts result in someone getting hurt or damaging someone else’s property.

  • Negligent acts on your company’s premises
  • Negligent acts committed while conducting business operations off of your premises
  • When a third-party is injured when using the product manufactured or distributed by your company
  • If an employee damages a client’s property

If any of these scenarios happen to your company and you’re sued, commercial general liability insurance can help cover your legal expenses. This includes defense costs as well as any damages you are legally obligated to pay.

CGL insurance is designed to protect your business financially. It’s an essential coverage for all businesses.

Commercial General Liability Insurance Occurrence Basis

All of Bullfrog Insurance’s commercial general liability insurance policies operate on an occurrence basis. This means that only incidents that happen during the policy term are covered, with no reference as to when the claim must be presented.

For example, let’s say you’re insured with us for 5 years before you decide to sell your business. An individual slipped and fell, injuring themselves in the final year of operation. However, they don’t sue you until a year later. Because you had insurance when the original incident occurred, you’d be covered.

Commercial General Liability Insurance Coverage Scenarios

Here are some examples of times when commercial general liability insurance could help protect your business:

  • Third-Party Bodily Injury – An individual may make a claim against your business if they’re injured while on your company’s premises. For example, let’s say a customer is in your retail store. They trip on a carpet edge and break their ankle. They decide to sue you. Your CGL insurance would help cover the costs of this physical injury claim.
  • Third-Party Property Damage – If you, a client, or an employee cause damage to a third party’s property, you could be held liable. For example, let’s say an employee accidentally damages a client’s expensive flooring after spilling a can of paint. Your CGL insurance can help you cover the costs of repairing the floor if your employee and your business are found liable.
  • Reputation Harm – Another company may make claims against your business if they believe that their reputation was harmed due to something that you, an employee, or your regular business operations caused. For example, let’s say you did an interview promoting your company. In this interview, you made a general comment about your competitors. One of those competitors sees this interview and makes a claim against you for slander. In this case, your CGL insurance could help your business cover the costs of this legal dispute.

If you’re not sure if something would be covered, you can always contact us and ask.

What isn’t covered by commercial general liability insurance?

Commercial general liability insurance doesn’t cover:

  • Any liability claims other than bodily injury or property damage caused by negligent acts
  • Injuries to employees
  • Physical damage to your company’s property
  • Intentional acts to cause bodily injury or property damage
  • Injury or damage caused by operating a vehicle
  • Injury or damage caused by carrying out a professional service or providing professional advice
  • Financial loss due to your service or advice

Your policy documents will outline all exclusions with your commercial general liability insurance.

There may be other insurance products that can protect you and your business. If you’re interested, talk to one of our brokers for more information.

How much commercial general liability insurance do I need?

At Bullfrog Insurance, you have several levels of coverage to choose from:

  • $2 million
  • $3 million
  • $4 million
  • $5 million

This amount is your policy limit, or the maximum amount you will receive for all claims in a policy term (which is usually 1 year).

In order to figure out how much commercial general liability insurance your business needs, consider these questions:

  • What type of business do you have?
  • What is your company’s annual revenue?
  • How common are lawsuits in your industry?
  • How much do lawsuits usually cost in your industry?
  • Are required to carry a certain amount of CGL insurance as part of a contract?
  • Where is your business located?
  • Who are your customers?
  • Do you commonly have third parties (customers, vendors, et cetera) on your premises?
  • How many employees do you have?
  • Are there any bodily injury or property damage risks with your business operations?

As lawsuits can be very expensive, we recommend having a high level of commercial general liability insurance coverage.

Do I need commercial general liability insurance in Canada?

A single liability claim can put you out of business. If you could not afford the costs of a lawsuit out of pocket, you should have commercial general liability insurance.

While this protection is not required by law in Canada, you may have contract obligations requiring you to have a certain amount of CGL insurance. We recommend this coverage to nearly every type of business.

The Cost of Commercial General Liability Insurance in Canada

The cost of commercial general liability insurance in Canada starts at $500 to $1000/year or $42 to $84/month, depending on the insurer. Your CGL insurance rates will largely depend on your business operations, revenue and insurance options.

Let’s use the trades as an example: an electrician or carpenter or drywall specialist with $2 million of commercial general liability insurance coverage may have a premium of $500 to $1000. However, a roofer, plumber, or remediation specialist with the same amount of coverage may start at $2500.

Another example is retail. A grocer with $250,000 in revenue each year could pay around $1000 for $2 million in CGL coverage. A retailer selling kids ride-on cars with the same revenue and insurance could pay $10,000.

It all comes down to the risks and likelihood of a claim.

What affects commercial general liability insurance rates in Canada?

The following factors may affect commercial general liability insurance rates in Canada:

  • Your industry
  • Your business operations
  • Your annual revenue
  • The number of employees
  • Where your business is located
  • Where your business operates (I.e. in one province or nation-wide)
  • Your insurance history
  • Your coverage options

How to Get a Commercial General Liability Insurance Quote in Canada

Bullfrog Insurance makes getting a quote easy. Here’s how:

  • Step 1: Type in your profession, company name, phone number, email, and postal code.
  • Step 2: Answer a few questions about your business and its operations.
  • Step 3: Select your coverage.
  • Step 4: See your commercial general liability insurance quote!

It takes less than 5 minutes to get a quote. You can choose your insurance provider and get your policy right away, too!

What’s the difference between commercial general liability insurance and other types of liability insurance?

In general, liability insurance protects businesses if they are sued. Commercial general liability insurance is specifically designed for claims against your business for causing injury or property damage. Other types of liability insurance will cover different claims of loss, like financial loss, wrongful dismissal, privacy breaches and more.

Your business may require more than one type of liability insurance to be properly protected.

Who can sue my business for bodily injury or property damage?

Anyone can sue your business for bodily injury or property damage, such as:

  • Clients
  • Vendors
  • Visitors or passersby
  • Service providers (such as delivery, utility or repair service employees)

What can my business be sued for if someone is hurt or has their property damaged?

If someone suffers a bodily injury or has their property damaged, you can be sued for:

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Replacement of damaged property

Where we offer

Locations where we currently offer commercial general liability insurance coverage in Canada:

Why our customers love Bullfrog

Our customers love Bullfrog because we make insurance simple. Do it quickly online yourself or talk to one of our knowledgeable insurance brokers. We’re responsive and professional and our insurance coverage is quality and competitively priced.

Stephen

Harassement Solutions Inc.

Due to a client’s request, and for the first time, I needed Commercial general liability insurance, but I had no clue where to start. I googled “CGL” and up came Bullfrog Insurance. Even though my needs were relatively small, due to the client needs, they had to be very specific. Every question I asked was answered by the Bullfrog insurance representative, Raman, who was very helpful. And then, when I realized I needed more coverage, she didn’t flinch and let me know she’d get back to me right away. I got great coverage and all of it was done via email. Now I’ll know who to turn to for other small business insurance needs.