As a restaurant owner, you certainly know the basic insurance coverage your business needs - like protecting the building, your property in the building, and workers' compensation. In the marketplace today, however, there are many additional risks that could financially threaten your restaurant that you may have not considered or are even aware of.
1. Theft and Employee Dishonesty - Most Business Owner Policies provide coverage for Burglary in your restaurant. However, a burglary incurs when there is evidence of breaking and entering, but a theft does not. Many policies will exclude coverage for theft even when an alarm system is present. The restaurateur should always inquire if theft is a covered peril, and if not, ask for an endorsement to add it to the policy. On the other hand, many theft claims end up being perpetrated by one or more employees in the restaurant. In the event of a theft by an employee, the restaurant's Business Owners Policy will need an endorsement for Employee Dishonesty to make sure there is coverage in place in the event of a loss.
2. Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI) - Most Business Owners Policies include coverage for EPLI, but typically for a lower amount than the General Liability limit. Any business who has employees, former employees, or people that have been interviewed, but not hired, is at risk of being sued for discrimination, sexual harassment, unpaid or underpaid wages, or mishandling employee retirement benefits. Terminated employees are usually quick to bring actions for wrongful termination and people you interviewed but didn't hire may accuse you of discrimination rather that admit they were unsuitable for the job. Your EPLI policy will provide coverage for the costs of defending you in a lawsuit, settlement fees, or judgments awarded by the court.
Even though the majority of discrimination and sexual harassment cases are found to be without merit, an action must still be responded to by an experienced attorney, which can certainly be a drain on the resources of the restaurant.
3. Cyber Liability - In today's marketplace, every restaurant is connected to the internet either by wire or wireless. It takes about a second to get hacked and before you know it, countless credit card transactions can become the property of the hacker. Most jurisdictions provide that your restaurant must provide notice to all customers at risk as well as paying for the cost of credit monitoring service if you are found to be liable. Your hacker isn't necessarily working from his parent's basement in a house down the street; in most cases the hacker is part of a sophisticated syndicate in another country, working diligently to steal sensitive information from U.S. businesses. Your hacker may also be a terminated employee looking for revenge. In any case, having Cyber Liability Insurance will provide the protection needed when your files are hacked and the expenses begin to accumulate.
Often times, especially in the scenarios previously mentioned, you don't find out that your insurance isn't comprehensive until it's too late. Isn't it time to review your coverage with an experienced professional to make certain your insurance gaps are filled with the proper coverage? Give us a call and we'll be glad to review your current policies and help you make certain that you have transferred your everyday risks to a highly-rated insurance company at an affordable price.