Liability needs vary from business to business depending on the risk of lawsuit posed to the industry. General liability insurance is one of the most common and most important types of liability insurance, as it covers basic accidents and lawsuits that threaten nearly every business.

The limits for a general liability insurance policy may be between $1 million to $5 million, but these coverage limits and offerings vary depending on your insurer. Every business is different, so it is important to find an insurer and insurance policy that suits your needs.

Things you should consider before purchasing a general liability insurance policy include:

Size of the Business

As you would expect, larger businesses tend to need higher amounts of general liability insurance. This is due to the variety of risks from multiple locations to a large client base. The more people you may come into contact with, the more general liability insurance you may need to cover lawsuit expenses. How many locations or the size of your location can also matter, as multiple locations can increase the risk of bodily injury occurring on your business’ property.


Different industries face varying rates of general liability claims. Industries that are more client facing, for example, run higher risks of bodily injury and property damage lawsuits than businesses that do not. Even if your business doesn’t deal with clients on a day to day basis, general liability insurance can cover other claims such as personal and advertising injury. Personal and advertising injury covers claims against your business regarding libel, slander, copyright infringement, theft of an advertising idea, malicious persecution and more.

Past Claims

Having past general liability claims can help you calculate how much coverage your business needs. If your business has a history of claims, you may want to consider whether those claims were completely covered or if you need to raise the amount of general liability insurance your business carries. Keep in mind that having past claims may mean paying more for general liability insurance, however, so make sure that your business’ environment and work processes are as safe as possible in order to avoid future accidents.

Many business owners also choose to bundle general liability insurance with other coverages into packages such as a business owners policy. Business owners policies combine general liability and commercial property insurance into a flexible policy geared for small businesses.