Junk or debris removal companies must have safeguards in place to lower their company’s risks and protect employees. Debris removal insurance is a necessity for any business that specializes in removing “junk,” which can include:
- Construction material
- Virtually any garbage or junk
Debris removal insurance coverage requirements will vary by the type of junk you remove and the risks that it poses to employees or the business. You may be required to have significantly higher coverage limits if you deal with hazardous materials because there are more risks involved.
What is Debris Removal Insurance?
Debris insurance covers you in the event that debris removal is a necessity. Insurance needed for junk removal business will include debris removal to protect your business and workers when working in:
- Dangerous conditions
- Hazardous conditions
Cost of Debris Removal Insurance Coverage
Insurance will vary from city to city and depend greatly on the type of debris that you handle. If you handle hazardous materials, your policy will be more expensive than a company that hauls furniture or wood away.
A few factors that are considered when calculating your insurance quote include:
- Company location
- Company size
- Gross revenue
- Number of employees
- Equipment value
You will also pay higher premiums if you have low deductibles or higher limits on your policy. Discussing your options with an insurer will allow you to maximize coverage while staying within your budget.
Does Your Business Need Debris Removal Insurance?
Debris removal insurance is a necessity for obvious companies, such as junk removal, but you’ll also need it for a variety of specialties, such as:
- Asbestos removal
- Debris cleanup
- Debris removal
- General contractor
- Pollution cleanup
Any business that involves debris removal of any kind will want to consider obtaining multiple forms of insurance to provide robust coverage.
What Does a Normal Debris Removal Policy Include?
Working with an insurer that specializes in debris removal policies will provide the best coverage. Policies are comprised of multiple forms of insurance, which often includes:
General liability insurance offers base coverage for businesses and is a must-have in any industry. This form of insurance covers many third-party claims, such as:
- Bodily injury
- Property damage
In addition to third-party claims, general liability insurance will provide coverage to you when working at a job site and in your office or warehouse, too. If you have to keep any junk in a warehouse and a worker is injured when handling it, additional insurance may be necessary.
If a lawsuit is filed against you, this coverage will also cover any settlements or legal fees that you incur.
Your vehicle is a necessity to haul debris from one location to another. Commercial auto will extend to your vehicles and passengers. If your vehicle is in an accident, the insurance will cover:
- The value of the vehicle so that it can be replaced
- Third-party injuries
- Passenger injuries
Additional insurance may be necessary if you haul debris in a trailer.
Errors and omissions insurance is another concern, and it’s one of the easiest to overlook. If you’re called to a site to remove debris, you may remove materials that are not truly debris. In this case, you may be held liable for your error.
E&O insurance will cover the expenses involved in defending yourself against these claims.
Junk removal is an industry with a lot of “unknowns.” You may be called to help clean up a home that was damaged in a natural disaster, and you may be required to remove asbestos from the site.
Hazardous material can pollute the environment and cause serious illness to team members, homeowners, business owners or anyone who comes in contact with it.
If you accidentally expose anyone to these materials, pollution liability will offer protection.
Note: Pollution insurance often includes items that are excluded from a general liability policy.
Debris removal insurance policies often neglect the most important asset of your business: employees. If your employees are injured on the job or become ill due to handling certain forms of debris, workers’ compensation insurance will cover these costs.
Most states will require you to have a workers’ compensation policy unless you’re the only one who works for the company.
Workers’ comp will cover:
- Medical expenses for employees injured on the job or who are sick because of exposure to certain materials
- Pay for lost wages due to a job-related illness or injury
Additionally, workers’ compensation will protect your business from being sued by the employee.
If you have a commercial property, you need commercial property insurance. This insurance will cover you in the event of:
- Other natural disasters
- Other perils
In addition, if your building is damaged or destroyed, commercial property insurance will also offer debris removal. You will need to safely remove the debris that is left behind after building damage, and insurance will cover a major part of this expense.
If you have a business owner’s policy, or BOP, it will include both business interruption and general liability insurance.
Tools and equipment insurance is a good option if you use any specialized insurance to handle debris safely. If your tools or equipment are damaged in an accident or stolen, this form of insurance will cover them.
Items that are left on the job site, in your vehicle or at your commercial property will be covered by this type of insurance.
Even borrowed or rented equipment is often covered under a tools and equipment policy.
Debris Removal Coverage Requirements
General liability and commercial auto insurance are two forms of insurance most business entities need to operate legally in their state. You’ll want to consult with an insurer in your state to verify that you meet all insurance requirements, including:
- Adequate coverage limits
- Adequate types of insurance
A typical policy will have the following limits:
- General liability of up to $1 million per occurrence
- Commercial property insurance of $25,000 per occurrence
- Workers’ compensation of $500,000 per accident
This is a breakdown of an average policy, but you may choose to increase or decrease limits.
If you plan on hauling any type of special debris, such as hazardous materials, you will want to mention this to your insurer. A lot of items are excluded from policies, and it’s up to you to ensure any item you have isn’t an item on the exclusion list.
Pollution liability insurance is a prime example of a type of insurance that fills in exclusion gaps that exist in general liability policies.
Debris removal insurance protects both you and your business from liability. Many businesses will verify that you have the proper insurance before awarding you a contract, so if you lack the right policy, you may not be able to land certain contracts.