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It is hard for a small business to handle a slip-and-fall incident without protection. Some companies overlook the importance of protecting themselves from these types of accidents, but that is incredibly dangerous. It is important that you consider the following points to ensure your business thrives.
Know Your Responsibilities
You should know what you are responsible for. Steinberg Goodman & Kalish says that:
slip-and-fall accidents occur because of dangerous or defective conditions on the premises.
You are responsible for providing reasonably well-kept premises for those who come to your place of business.
According to Steinberg Goodman & Kalish, you should worry about the following:
- Accumulation of too much snow and ice
- Poorly designed parking lots
- Too many holes
- Defective walking surfaces
- Dangerous handrails or stairways
- Loose Steps
- Loose Carpeting
- Slippery or loose flooring
Things You Can do to Prevent These Claims
As mentioned earlier, you are definitely responsible for a lot, but you can take preventative steps like the following:
Maintenance is Vital
One of the most effective steps you can take is to simply maintain your property by sticking to routine checkups. The checkups are meant to help you highlight any issues on your property like cracks on the sidewalk or floors within the building. You might also discover other issues like loose tiles, bunched carpeting, or any other similar hazards. Keep in mind that several states require some of these steps, so you’ll just be doing your duty as a business owner. Another thing to point out is that it is wise to keep proof of maintenance, just in case you ever need it.
Always be Aware
Being aware of what is happening inside your premises at all times allows you to take more effective preventative steps. For example, those who know you are receiving a delivery should clear the hallways and pathways that are going to be used just in case. Those with a kitchen or eating area should check for spills or debris on the floor that could cause a slip and fall incident.
Insurance is a Biggie
It is important that you pay attention to the kind of business insurance you are going to get. The right insurance cannot only help deal with the claim promptly, but it also earns you a positive reputation because you seem like a responsible business owner. You have to remember that, no matter how many preventative steps you take, an accident can happen anyway, so being prepared is just smart.
Make sure you understand how general liability can help protect your small business. The following are two ways this type of insurance can protect you:
- The insurance company can provide you with the means of hiring a defense lawyer that you feel comfortable with.
- The insurance company should be able to settle and pay damages should there be any.
There are a few things you have to consider like making sure the insurance you take out comes with enough coverage to deal with claims. Try to see how much these types of claims can end up costing on average to get an idea of what type of coverage you need.
Of course, those who have additional questions about these types of claims can talk to an experienced lawyer for these types of cases or an insurance representative.
Ryan Yarbrough is a small business consultant, speaker, and the manager at Davis Financial Services, a small business consulting firm.