If you own a business, especially a small business, you wear many hats. You’re in charge of hiring, new business development, IT, accounting, and perhaps even cleaning the office. You don’t have much extra time in the workday to deal with an unpleasant surprise, like a public liability claim. Though you cannot safeguard your business against all risks, but you can mitigate them by instituting a sound Risk Assessment and Management strategy.
What is a Public Liability Claim?
The reasoning behind this type of lawsuit is that customers should be able to assume that when they visit a public place, like a restaurant or grocery store, that they’ll be safe. If a customer becomes injured in a business and can prove that the business could have taken steps to prevent the cause of the accident, that person can file a public liability claim. There’s a legal term, duty of care, that means the owner of occupant of a building must take steps to ensure that anyone who has a legitimate reason to enter that building is safe. If something happens at your business that causes injury to a customer, vendor, employee and it’s proven you were negligent, that means you’ve breached your duty of care. Slip-and-fall injuries are common reasons for public liability claims. If a spill happens at your business and you don’t quickly place barriers or signs alerting people to the danger, and you don’t clean it up quickly, and someone slips and becomes injured, you could be subject to this type of suit.
Reduce Your Risks
Now that you know what a public liability claim is, educate your staff, identify what risks your business is most susceptible to, and develop a plan to reduce them. Having a spill-response plan that is beneficial to any type of business. According to the National Floor Safety Institute, falls represent the leading cause of hospital emergency room visits, perhaps because they can happen anywhere.
Other risks are more specific. If you run a restaurant and a customer becomes ill after eating food that was stored at an improper temperature, improperly cooked, or cross-contaminated, you could face a public liability claim. If you’re in the construction business and a bystander is injured by falling debris because you didn’t adequately fence off the jobsite, you could be at risk.
Every business has unique risks they must protect against. One thing that all businesses can do to protect themselves is to have a comprehensive insurance policy that covers them should their most probable risks occur. Contact us at The Rubin Group, 877.806.7239, for skilled guidance crafting a policy that covers your unique circumstances.