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Pest Control Liability Insurance
Certain kinds of businesses, like pest control businesses, have a higher than average risk of liability. Pest control businesses routinely apply toxic chemicals, sometimes in large quantities through crop dusting and crop spraying. These techniques are often used in farming. Similarly, applying pesticides to forest or wilderness preserves is done to curb or prevent infestations in certain kinds of plants. Companies that apply pesticides in people’s homes also need pest control liability insurance.
XINSURANCE may be able to help any business with pest control liability insurance needs.
Problems with Pesticide Application
Large-scale application of pesticides is not an exact science. Pesticide drift, for instance, is the movement of pesticides from where they are applied to an area for which they were not intended. If a farmer hires a crop-duster to spray crops and the pesticides drift to a neighboring farm, the pesticide business involved may have a problem. They may face charges of negligence and the possibility of paying for damages the herbicides caused to crops.
You don’t have to be a large pest control business to face similar problems. If you are a residential pest control business owner, pesticide drift is still a problem. If one of your employees sprays a house, for example, and the chemicals drift next door, you could have a legal issue on your hands.
Not keeping current with laws regarding pesticides may also result in litigation and potentially expensive judgments. Pesticides usually have clear guidelines about their use, including where and how they may be used. It’s important to keep current with laws regarding outlawed pesticides, including those recently banned, such as neonicotinoids, formerly used for spraying cotton and soybeans.
Pest control liability insurance can provide protection against such potential pitfalls and many others.
Legal Considerations and Pest Control Liability Insurance
Whether your pest control business is involved in large-scale crop spraying or pest control in homes and business properties, there is potential for lawsuits from customers who can claim harmful exposure to the chemicals you use.
Damage to customer property arising from the misuse of power equipment may also result in a claim. Following industry guidelines and training your staff in proper techniques can help avoid such issues arising, but the risk remains. In such circumstances, pest control liability insurance can help provide peace of mind should the worst happen.
What Kind of Insurance Should Your Pest Control Business Carry?
First, the coverage provided by a general business owner’s policy is needed. That generally includes property insurance, building and contents insurance, general liability (limited coverage), and business interruption insurance. You’ll also need additional, specialized coverage, however, designed for the pest control business.
- Professional liability – Professional liability insurance is also referred to as errors and omissions. This kind of insurance defrays some of the cost of defending against claims in court regarding errors in service that caused damage. The coverage may include actions caused by breach-of-duty or negligence.
- Umbrella or excess liability coverage – this is insurance that covers you after any other liability coverage you have is exhausted. This kind of insurance is one of the most essential for a pest control business.
- Equipment coverage – this insures against losses for equipment that you own, as well as equipment that was rented or leased.
- Pollution and fumigation liability – this provides coverage for your business if applying chemicals leads to pollution.
- Business auto insurance – if you own a pest control business, much of the work typically involves using company vehicles to drive to places to apply pesticides. Since vehicles are an integral part of the business, you need coverage for your vehicles, employees, and your business.
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