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Business Finance

What are the forms of insurance is use in the United States?

Several forms of insurance are required to operate in the United States. It is advisable to take out many of the policies described on this page even if they are not compulsory insurance

ExportUSA works with several American insurance brokers who specialize in corporate insurance. We are able to quickly get the best quotes for all forms of insurance needed to operate in the United States

For Italian companies that are considering the idea of ​​selling in the United States, or for companies that are about to open a branch in America, we recommend that you think ahead of time about the insurance policies necessary to operate and sell on the US market. To facilitate entry into the American market, we publish a guide to insurance in America where we have enclosed all the necessary insurance solutions for companies that want to export and work in America.

This is a complete and exhaustive list, which is proposed as  a guide  in the wide spectrum of alternatives available: for each item, you will find a complete description of the insurance policy and of the damages and liabilities covered by it.

It is useful to remember that an insurance is a contract by which a party (the insurer) replaces another party (the insured) in civil liability towards third parties deriving from cases specifically described in the contract itself (example damage from defective product) and up to an agreed ceiling.

In exchange for this coverage, the insured periodically pays a premium to the insurer, ie a sum of money that is a function of the probability of the occurrence and the maximum amount covered by the insurer. It is important to remember that criminal liability , by personal law, cannot be covered with any insurance, which instead focuses only on the patrimonial aspect.

We also remind you of the importance of checking the exact terms of the insurance policy stipulated in America with the insurance company several times, both in terms of equity areas and cases covered as well as in terms of the diligence required for the purposes of the legitimacy of the replacement in the liability relationship.


General Liability Insurance – The General Liability Insurance in America

The “ General Liability Insurance ” policy guarantees basic coverage of all the main property risks that a company faces when it starts exporting to the United States, and is consequently mandatory also for those companies based in Italy. As also suggested by the name, the policy is of a general nature , and will be complemented with other more targeted ones if there are specific risks relevant to probability or impact on the business. Specifically, General Liability Insurance protects a company from compensation claimsoriginating from third parties, individuals or companies as a result of damage to person, reputation or property occurring on the company’s premises or resulting from non-voluntary actions by the insured company or its representatives. The related insolvency expenses falling into this category are also covered by the policy. 


Product Liabilty Insurance for the United States – Product Liabilty Insurance [Product Liability Policy]

Product Liability in the United States covers damage caused by the use of a product by the consumer / user. It affects both the producer and those who deal with its distribution, even in the absence of a profit, along the whole “chain of commerce”.

There is no federal law governing product damage liability in the United States. The specific product damage liability regulations in America differ by state .

Under American law, the three causes of liability are negligence, own liability, and breach of warrantyand refer to a malfunctioning product in terms of design, manufacturing defects or failure to warn in the instructions for use.

A manufacturer or distributor who wants to protect themselves from the risk of financial liability for damages caused by defective products in America can take out Product Liability Insurance , although this does not cover the product’s design defect or incorrect instructions for use. Over these areas, however, it is also true that the manufacturer has a considerable degree of control. The premium for this policy depends on the type of product and the expected sales volume.


United States Fire and Theft Insurance – Property insurance

Property Insurance is a type of insurance policy that business owners who have physical property in America, such as a building, office furniture and equipment, computers, and supplies, must take into account to protect themselves from damage to these properties. .

We therefore speak of environmental damage, from fire, vandalism or theft. An expense that, if not from an accounting point of view at least from a strategic point of view, appears as a key investment since it allows to eliminate the uncertainty deriving from events largely beyond the control of the entrepreneur operating in the United States.

And precisely in response to the many forms of business and their needs, this insurance pIt can be configured to cover most of the risks associated with different types of property . Finally, you can consider adding an additional policy to protect yourself from the interruption of activities and for the cessation of profitability.


Auto TPL Insurance United States – Commercial auto insurance

Commercial Auto Insurance protects corporate vehicles in the United States from damage and accidents with the option to extend coverage to vehicles that carry employees, products or equipment. If employees use their vehicles for activities related to the company exporting to the United States, these should also be insured if the employee has not already done so; however, there are general and comprehensive policies that also include this latter need. An extension of Commercial Auto Insurance can overlap areas covered by General Liability and thus ensure a higher level of protection.


Worker’s compensation (only if there are employees in America)

Worker’s Compensation is a type of policy that many states in America , including New York, have made mandatory to operate a business in their territory where it includes employees. The insurance company takes over from the entrepreneur in the statutory obligation to pay the amounts provided for by law in the event of medical treatment for accidents at work or illness, compensation for temporary and permanent disability and death of the worker.

In this case, the prizeto be paid to the insurer reflects the entrepreneur’s potential liability as determined by personal experience, salary paid to employees and industry to which the business belongs. It also includes coverage of the costs of proceedings for disputes related to the issues covered by the policy itself.


Insurance against damages deriving from management errors and omissions – Professional liability insurance (also known as “Errors and omissions insurance”)

This policy provides coverage on legal fees and any compensation for disputes arising from the inability or inadequacy of your employees to provide professional services. It is a policy that mainly affects individuals or companies working in the United States operating in the services or professional consultancy sector, and allows coverage of damages that are too indirect to be considered by a more general type of policy such as General Insurance Liability.  

With the option of also compensating the court costs, Professional Liability Insurance therefore covers damages deriving from the lack of having provided the necessary advice and from incorrect or incomplete advice.

It covers financial losses and errors or omissions generated by a company product or service. The need to take out a policy of this type lies in the protection against causes of negligence, “false representation” and bad faith in cases where, even if there is no direct damage, there are grounds for proceeding with a legal action.


United States Directors and Officers Insurance Policy

Insurance policy that protects directors and officers of a company operating in the United States against court costs and damages when directors and officers are sued for activities performed in the exercise of their corporate functions.

The reasons for this policy lie in the growing tendency to hold directors and managers personally responsible for the causes and the consequent need for these figures to feel safer.

Directors and managersthey can in fact receive subpoenas and complaints from a wide range of public and their decisions affect the lives of many individuals, so it is reasonable to think of a protection mechanism that allows people in these key roles to act without worries outside of pursuing the good for the company.


Data breach insurance

Recommended policy for entrepreneurs who, in the course of their business, find themselves storing sensitive or otherwise non-public data on their customers, suppliers or third parties resident in the United States.

The Data Breach Insurance Policy provides financial coverage (court costs and damages) in legal cases in which the privacy of such data is violated by external parties, as well as often offering an optional consultancy service on current regulations and on the best IT architecture for protect this information given the technical complexity of the subject.

We remind you that they are sensitive dataall those data that allow the identification of belonging to categories that could cause discriminatory feelings towards the individual: examples are information on gender, religious belief, skin color and the like.


Personal automobile insurance

Finally, Personal Automobile Insurance covers the issues that may arise regarding the insured’s personal vehicle , of whatever type it is (car, motorbike, truck, etc.) and located in the United States. As usual, most insurances cover two types of damage, both damage to the vehicle itself and physical injury to the person caused by the accident and the costs of prosecution and compensation for damages resulting from an investigation of liability in the accident.


Insurance Packages for the United States

We report in the appendix two types of insurance that are characterized by being packages that the entrepreneur can buy to guarantee himself an overall protection against the most frequent risks concerning his own business. Basically, they group together many of the policies already mentioned above , and allow you to guarantee a discreet coverage in a very short time.

The obvious downside lies in the poor protection afforded for risks considered minor or unlikely and in the lack of flexibility of the package.


Other – Business owner’s policy (bundle of the previous ones)

Policy that combines protection from all major property and liability risks in one package, offered to owners of small and medium-sized businesses exporting to or operating in the United States.

They are created for companies that usually deal with similar types and levels of risk and the coverage they guarantee is very uniform. Mainly includes property

insurance for buildings and objects owned by the company, business interruption insurance , which covers loss of income due to fire or other catastrophe, and liability protectionlaw that the company may cause to third parties as a result of the works or omissions of the owner of the company or employees or malfunction of the products offered.


Other – Personal umbrella insurance

It is a type of insurance policy that provides coverage for, and in addition to, the areas covered by Personal Automobile and Homeowner Insurance. Basically, it represents extra liability insurance.

It is specifically designed to help protect against increased claims and related processes to preserve property and capital over time.

This happens in two ways:

  • through additional coverage beyond the limits of traditional policies, coming into play when the limit of the latter is reached,
  • and through coverage for areas of responsibility that are excluded from other previously stipulated policies.


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