Due to varying occupational tasks and work environments, there are unique risks to every type of contractor job. Therefore, Toronto contractors need customized and transparent insurance policies that address their exact coverage needs. KASE Insurance is an award-winning commercial insurance brokerage firm that provides tailor-fit insurance plans for contractors in Toronto and across Canada.
In this blog, we will discuss how you can protect yourself from legal, medical, and repair costs associated with third-party injuries and third-party property damage. And at the end of this guide, we will also touch on additional coverages that you can opt for in order to have full protection. It’s also important to note that any high-risk contractor job needs life insurance and/or disability insurance before anything else.
Let’s get started!
1. What Type of Insurance General Construction Contractors and General Residential Contractors Need
As a general construction contractor and/or general residential contractor, you are tasked to complete various types of construction or renovation projects effectively and safely. General contractor’s liability insurance will give you the needed coverage in the following situations:
- Miscalculations with high-power or heavy tools leading to injuries to clients or the general public
- Miscalculations leading to property damage
- Injuries to clients or the general public due to poorly placed tools or falling equipment
- Work-related mistakes that lead to injury or damage
2. What Type of Insurance Concrete Contractors Need
As a concrete contractor, your clients depend on you for the structural integrity of their homes or buildings. General contractor’s liability insurance will cover you in situations such as:
- The material for the concrete foundation turns out to be subpar and causes problems later on
- The workmanship is deemed as negligent or subpar and the client sues
- Client is injured at your work area by tools, equipment, or materials
- Miscalculations with power tools lead to property damage
Additionally, builder’s risk insurance coverage can provide coverage while a structure is under construction and while materials for the structure await installation; working similarly to property insurance. If your business operates one or more concrete transport trucks, you may also consider adding heavy trucking insurance coverage to your policy. This coverage protects you in case an accident involving your concrete transport truck causes injury or property damage.
3. What Type of Insurance Roofers Need
Roofing contractors are always working in elevated situations, usually on top of structures, and this comes with plenty of risks. General contractor’s liability insurance will cover you in the following situations:
- Falling tools, equipment, or materials causing injury to the people below
- Falling tools, equipment, or materials causing property damage to the structure or to a nearby car
- The constructed roof causes injury or damage at a later date and the contractor is accused of negligent work
Additionally, while the roof is still under construction, replacement, or repair, builder’s risk insurance can provide coverage for the roof and for the materials that will be used for it.
4. What Type of Insurance Masonry Contractors Need
Masonry contractors typically work on a vast array of projects including repairing or installing bricks/blocks/stones on fireplaces, fences, siding, walkways, and the like. As you go about your work, general contractor’s liability insurance can protect you in the following cases:
- Poorly placed tools or materials causing injury to the client or other third-party individual
- The client is dissatisfied with the workmanship and sues for damages
5. What Type of Insurance Waterproofing Contractors Need
As a waterproofing contractor, you are usually working on the clients’ basements and rainwater management systems. Contractor insurance can help protect you in the following cases:
- Client blames you for a foundation crack discovered in their flood-prone basement
- Miscalculations with tools lead to new damage or aggravated damage on the foundation wall
- The client or other third-party individual falls into an excavated part of the property and is injured
- The client is dissatisfied with the waterproofing service and decides to press charges
6. What Type of Insurance Plumbers Need
As a plumbing contractor, you need to successfully deal with every single type of home or commercial plumbing problem. Plumbing contractor liability insurance will protect you in cases such as:
- Miscalculations with tools causing extensive damage to the client’s pipes
- Mistakes with tools leading to damage on other parts of the property
- Equipment left lying around causing the client to sustain an injury
- A plumbing problem is insufficiently remedied and you are later on sued for negligent work
In addition, surety and bonding insurance can protect your business in the event that you are faced with lawsuits and financial loss because contractual agreements cannot be met.
7. What Type of Insurance Electricians Need
The job tasks of an electrician aren’t just risky for the contractors themselves, but also for third-party individuals and for the property they are working on. Electrician contractor liability insurance will protect you in the following scenarios:
- A client or other third-party individual is injured or electrocuted while you are working on a project
- Your work accidentally starts a fire, causing extensive property damage to the property you’re working on and/or those nearby
- Installed electrical components causes a fire later on and the client sues you for damages
8. What Type of Insurance HVAC Contractors Need
HVAC contractors are responsible for installing, maintaining, and repairing HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) systems. Contractor insurance will cover you if you are faced with the following situations:
- Moisture damage caused by HVAC work
- HVAC installation problems lead to lawsuits
- Miscalculations leading to accidental property damage or third-party injury
In addition, installation and tool floater insurance will provide coverage for uninstalled materials or fixtures for HVAC installation/maintenance in the event that they are damaged, lost, or stolen.
9. What Type of Insurance Landscapers Need
As a landscaper, your main duties may include planning and maintaining private and public gardens, parks, and various other outdoor landscapes. Landscaper insurance will cover you in situations such as:
- A rock or pebble getting propelled through the lawn mower, causing nearby glass to break
- The client or another third-party individual gets injured by equipment or materials lying around
- The client or another third-party individual falls into an excavated area and gets injured
- The project was delayed or did not meet the client’s expectations and the client decides to sue
10. What Type of Insurance Hydrovac Contractors Need
Working as a hydrovac contractor means that you work with high-pressure machinery to efficiently complete excavations. As such, the job comes with its own risks. Hydrovac contractor insurance will cover you in scenarios such as the following:
- You fail to put up a danger sign while doing excavation work and this results in third-party injury
- Miscalculations lead to damage towards underground utilities
- Hydrovac equipment breaks down and needs repairs
- Business operations lead to first-party or third-party environmental claims
11. What Type of Insurance Snow Removal Contractors Need
As a snow removal contractor, you are tasked with big responsibilities during the harshest season of the year. Snow removal insurance will cover you in cases such as the following:
- Cars, mailboxes, or other roadside variables are grazed or damaged by the snow plow or shovels
- Third-party individuals are injured by the snow plow or other occupational equipment
- The created snow banks restrict visibility on the road, causing an accident and you are sued for negligence
- You ineffectively apply anti-icing which results in a lawsuit for negligence
- Your snow plow breaks down or becomes a target of vandalism
12. What Type of Insurance Demolition Contractors Need
Demolition contractors often work with high-powered equipment and/or explosives. Unsurprisingly, this poses various threats to the contractors, third-party individuals, and to nearby property. Trades/construction insurance, which typically includes surety and bonding insurance, will protect you in cases such as:
- Flying debris damages nearby property or injures a third-party individual
- Demolition equipment causes damage to a nearby property
- Demolition equipment causes injury to a nearby third-party individual
- Contractual obligations were not met and this leads to a lawsuit from the client
Additional Toronto Contractor Insurance
General liability insurance is a must-have for all kinds of contractors because it gives comprehensive protection in the event that business operations inadvertently cause third-party injuries or property damage. Incidents like this can easily escalate into lawsuits, medical expenses, and property repair/replacement costs.
Additionally, you can insure the vehicle that you use with commercial auto insurance. In most cases, personal auto insurance will not give you coverage if the accident happens while the vehicle is used for commercial purposes.
Lastly, depending on the nature of your work, you may need pollution liability insurance. Pollution is defined as the discharge, release, or escape of a thermal irritant, contaminant, or pollutant. This is the coverage you need in the event that you are sued for sudden or gradual pollution which can be within a building (e.g. through a contaminated HVAC system) or outdoors (e.g. work operations that cause a toxic spill).
Customized Insurance for Every Type of Contractor
Here at KASE Insurance, we make it a point to provide customized and transparent insurance policies for all types of contractors. So, whether your occupation is in this guide or not, we can put together a policy that fits any Toronto contractor insurance needs. With our many years of experience providing commercial insurance for nearly all kinds of industries, we are certain that we can serve you well.