How Much General Liability Coverage You Already Have

General Liability Insurance is the primary source of liability coverage for most professionals and business owners. General Liability Insurance responds to claims due to bodily injury, property damage, personal injury, and advertising injury.

Bodily injury and property damage are pretty self-explanatory - they are damage to a persons body or to their owned property. Personal injury refers to a broader group of offenses that harm a person but does not cause injury to their body. This includes: false arrest, detention, or imprisonment; malicious prosecution; wrongful eviction; slander; libel; and invasion of privacy. In some policies, bodily injury and personal injury are grouped together under the heading of "personal injury."

Advertising injury is an injury caused by certain offenses that are connected to the insured party's advertisements of the goods sold or services offered. The offenses that can trigger advertising injury are libel, slander, invasion of privacy, copyright infringement, and the misappropriation of ideas for advertisements. The kinds of losses insured by Professional Liability Insurance policies are not included in this basic list of coverages provided by a General Liability Insurance policy. However, not all policies are the same. Some General Liability Insurance policies offer broader coverage that includes some professional liabilities, and others can be endorsed to add this kind of coverage.

In addition, some broader Professional Liability Insurance policies overlap with General LiabiliSty coverage and provide insurance for risks such as bodily damage. Medical Malpractice Insurance is an obvious example of this, since it covers injuries done to people during medical procedures - clearly a bodily injury, not just a financial one.

In some cases, when a professional or businesses owner has a limited exposure to Professional Liability risk, the insurance provided by an endorsement to a General Liability policy may well be enough. Other types of professionals may need a separate policy to provide adequate coverage. Some doctors may only need Medical Malpractice Insurance and not require General Liability coverage at all. Which avenue a specific professional takes will depend on his or her own risk profile. However, anyone contemplating purchasing a Professional Liability Insurance policy should look at their General Liability policy to make sure they understand the exposures for which they do and do not already have coverage. An insurance agent will be able to help with this analysis.

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