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Contractors Insurance​

We insure General Contractors who build homes from the ground up, subcontractors who specialize in a particular trade, and everything in between. Our goal is to ensure you have the appropriate coverages to protect your business, to work with you and your clients to meet contractual obligations as they pertain to the insurance requirements, and to get certificates of insurance out to you as soon as possible so you can focus on your business operations.

In an effort to maintain a strong working knowledge of the insurance coverages available in the construction industry, Kristie English earned the Construction Risk and Insurance Specialist (CRIS) designation, and maintains this certification through ongoing training and education.

Insurance coverages relevant to contractors

  • Commercial General Liability
    This is coverage to protect you and your business assets for claims and lawsuits alleging you have caused damage to another person, entity, or their property
     

  • Commercial Umbrella (Excess Liability)
    This provides an additional layer of liability coverage over the top of your underlying liability insurance limit. Be sure to understand if your excess policy goes over the top of just the general liability, or if it also covers excess over the auto insurance.

     

  • Commercial Auto & Trailer Insurance
    This is coverage to protect you and your business assets for claims and lawsuits alleging you have caused damage to another person, entity, or their property
     

  • Hired & Non-Owned Auto
    This provides an additional layer of liability coverage over the top of your underlying liability insurance limit. Be sure to understand if your excess policy goes over the top of just the general liability, or if it also covers excess over the auto insurance.

     

  • Tools & Equipment
    This is coverage to protect you and your business assets for claims and lawsuits alleging you have caused damage to another person, entity, or their property
     

  • Rented & Leased Equipment
    This provides an additional layer of liability coverage over the top of your underlying liability insurance limit. Be sure to understand if your excess policy goes over the top of just the general liability, or if it also covers excess over the auto insurance.

  • Office Contents
    This is coverage to protect you and your business assets for claims and lawsuits alleging you have caused damage to another person, entity, or their property
     

  • Inland Marine
    This provides an additional layer of liability coverage over the top of your underlying liability insurance limit. Be sure to understand if your excess policy goes over the top of just the general liability, or if it also covers excess over the auto insurance.

     

  • Course of Contsruction / Builders Risk
    This provides an additional layer of liability coverage over the top of your underlying liability insurance limit. Be sure to understand if your excess policy goes over the top of just the general liability, or if it also covers excess over the auto insurance.

  • Workers Compensation / WA Stop Gap / Employers Liability
    This is coverage to protect you and your business assets for claims and lawsuits alleging you have caused damage to another person, entity, or their property
     

  • Professional Liability (i.e. Construction Consultant)
     

  • Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI)
     

  • Crime
     

  • Pollution


 

Bonds relevant to contractors

These vary from state to state. In Washington, we have three main types of contractor’s license bonds. The purpose of the license bond is to protect the consumer. The state or vendors can make a claim on your bond if you have outstanding bills with them for work comp insurance premium or building materials and supplies, for example.

 

  1. Specialty Bond $6,000
    If you don’t hire subcontractors, and you only do one line of work in your business, this is the appropriate bond for you.

     

  2. General Contractor’s License Bond $12,000
    You need this bond if you hire subcontractors or do more than one type of work in your business (i.e. flooring and drywall work).

     

  3. Electrical Bond $4,000
    This type of bond is specific to the electricians and telecommunications contractors.


 

Other bond types for contractors

 

  • Bid, Payment, and Performance Bonds
     

  • Janitorial Bond
     

  • Employee Dishonesty Bond
     

  • Right of Way (ROW) Bonds
     

  • Street Obstruction Bonds
     

  • Side Sewer Bonds

     

Certificates of Insurance

Any time you hire a subcontractor to do work on your behalf, it’s imperative you obtain a certificate of insurance from them, with your business name listed as an Additional Insured. Simply having a certificate with your name at the bottom, is not adequate. Remember that your subs must be licensed, bonded, and insured as well. Hiring uninsured individuals without putting them on your payroll as W-2 employees puts you at risk of receiving a fine from the state, and potentially voiding your own general liability insurance policy.

Ask English!

 

Question

Since I have a General Contractor’s license with the state, that means I can do any type of construction work and be covered, right?

Answer

Assuming you’re not working in a trade that requires specific training and licensing such as a plumber or electrician, you may not be violating any state licensing law. Your insurance policy, however, will only defend you against claims arising out of jobs you’ve done that are within the guidelines of the policy. For example, if you install a new roof without subbing that out to a contractor insured to do roofing, and you have a roofing exclusion as most policies do, you will likely not be covered.

 

Likewise, if you work in a tract development and have a tract home exclusion on your policy, you’re exposed again.

 

This is why it’s important to work with your broker to identify what types of jobs you want to focus on, and to understand which types of jobs drive the premium, so you can keep your insurance premiums down and not jeopardize your insurance.

 

Questions?

We are glad to help you understand the regulatory requirements and best options for protecting your construction business.

 

Call us at (833) BIG-TREE / (425) 673-7948, or use our online form to request a quote.

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DISCLAIMER

This website provides only a simplified description of coverages and is not a statement of contract. Coverage may not apply in all states. For complete details of coverages, conditions, limits and losses not covered, be sure to read the policy, including all endorsements.

© Copyright 2020 English Insurance Group, LLC. All Rights Reserved.