Does My Business need Foreign Coverage?

Business TravelIf you are selling products and/or traveling to foreign lands here is a short list of Foreign Insurance coverage that you may consider. Each of these coverage parts are normally bundled by insurance carriers and called an “exporters package”

 Foreign Liability (including Product Liability) – If your company is selling products outside of the US and Canada, you have a product liability exposure that is not covered under your standard Commercial General Liability policy.  If a lawsuit or claim is brought in the US, you would likely have coverage. For claims that are brought outside the US, you are taking a risk. By buying a foreign liability policy you can fill this gap and likely save premium dollars. The sales exposure can be “carved out” of your total domestic sales estimate, which can often times reduce rates/cost.

 Foreign Voluntary Workers’ Compensation (WC) – Most domestic workers’ compensation will actually provide coverage for employees temporarily traveling outside of the country. However the definition of temporary is often vague. If this uncertainty is not enough, another reason to buy it is to control your critical experience modification (mod). If a domestic client has large WC payrolls and premiums stateside, they are of course working to keep their mod well under 1.00 to avoid paying a debit on their policy.  A broken arm in a foreign country may carry a substantially higher cost due to variables including language barriers and a substandard healthcare system. These increased costs can certainly drive up claim costs leading to an increased mod.

 Foreign Auto Liability – When in doubt, buy this coverage from your commercial agent. Your agent can steer you away from spending the dollars domestically when renting vehicles, but when it comes to foreign auto liability it can mean the difference between being held for hours at a rental counter, or having this optional first party coverage respond and allow you to continue on your way.

 Cargo – Shipping goods outside of your domestic coverage territory either by land, sea or air need to be covered. Often clients buy this cargo insurance from a freight forwarder, or buy individual trip policies. The more economical method is purchasing an annual policy with a set rate. This policy usually comes with a minimum premium and will be audited at the end of the coverage period.

 Travel Assistance – Coverage included in this section can include 24/7 medical assistance services, repatriation expenses and general travel assistance. A toll-free number plugging you into an operator that speaks your preferred language can help a business traveler tremendously. This service is a commonly included.

 Property – Are you carrying sales samples, computer equipment or general equipment? Most domestic insurance policies exclude property coverage outside of the US. Transit coverage is also available.

If your business has Bricks and Mortar in foreign countries, or is permanently located there, you likely need a foreign domiciled agent that can place mandatory coverage. Kapnick Insurance Group can help in this area too, as we are a proud member of Assurex Global with partner agents all over the world.

 Thanks again for your continued emails. I can’t always answer your questions, but promise to consult with someone at Kapnick who can – and get back to you quickly with the answer.

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1 reply
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