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In Home Business
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In Home Business

Millions of Americans are operating full- or part-time businesses from the comfort of their homes. One of the secrets to running a successful home-based business is being able to separate your business activity from your home activity.

Whether you spend two hours or 62 hours per week on your at-home endeavor, it remains a business with all the risks and rewards associated with owning a business. To safeguard against the risks, you need to be aware that your homeowners insurance policy offers limited or no protection for your business while it is being operated from your home.

If you rely on your homeowners policy as your only means of insurance protection , you may find your business underinsured or uninsured in the event of a loss. This brochure provides useful information for designing an insurance program for your home-based business.

Doesn't My Homeowners Policy Cover My In-Home Business?

Homeowners policies were never intended to cover business exposures. Consequently, coverage for the items you use in your business such as computers , fax machines, filing cabinets, tools and inventory are limited to $2,500 in your home and $250 away from home under most policies. And your homeowners coverage provides no liability insurance for your home-based business.

How Do I Get The Coverage I Need?

First, let's take a look at what coverage you may need. Insurance coverage gener all y f all s into two categories. This is true of homeowners, auto and most business policies. Those two categories in business terms are:

*Property Coverage--Your business structures and possessions are covered against loss or damage caused by certain covered risks such as fire and theft.

*Liability Coverage--This means that if you become leg all y obligated to pay money to another person for bodily injury or property damage caused by your business, your insurance company will cover those costs (up to the maximum indicated in your policy), including the costs of defending your business in the lawsuit. This liability coverage extends to medical payments for injured parties, for which you may be held responsible.

Of course, every business has its own special requirements. There are many specific insurance coverages available to address the needs of your in-home business.

What Are My Policy Options?

There are several types of insurance policies available for in-home businesses. They include:

*Incidental Business Endorsement--Depending on your business, you may be able to attach an "incidental business endorsement" to your existing homeowners policy which will cover other structures or equipment on your premises that you use for business. This endorsement can also be tailored to include your business liability.

*Business Owners Package Policy--If your in-home business does not qualify for coverage under the "incidental business endorsement" you can purchase coverage for your home-based business under a business owners package policy, referred to as a BOP, which provides property and liability coverage.

*In-Home Business Owners Policy--Some insurance companies offer policies that combine homeowners and business owners coverage into a single policy, designed specific all y for in-home businesses. These policies provide both business coverage such as business liability and replacement of lost income, and homeowners coverages such as fire, theft and personal liability. These policies eliminate gaps and duplications in coverage, and the rates reflect the in-home status of your business.

Check with your Trusted Choice SM insurance agent to determine which of these coverages is appropriate for your in-home business.

Too often you are the most overlooked or undervalued asset you possess. If you owned a machine that generated thousands of dollars in income per year, would you buy insurance to protect against possible damage or loss? And wouldn't you want to insure for direct damages, plus coverage for lost income while the machine were broken or worse yet, if it were destroyed.

Have you ever considered that you are such a machine? Thanks to your efforts, you and your family have food, shelter and possessions. Life, health and disability insurance provide coverage for your personal wealth-generating machine.

If you are no longer able to provide for your dependents because of death , life insurance is designed to provide assistance for final expenses and ongoing income. If you are unable to work due to sickness or injury, health insurance is designed to cover �repair� costs, as well as provide an ongoing income during the period you are �out of service�. And if your injury or illness is more long-term, disability insurance helps supplement your lost income.

If you haven�t recently reviewed your family�s health, life and disability coverage now is the time to do so. Talk to your Trusted Choice SM agent about your specific needs for life, health and disability insurance so that you can best protect you.

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