Is Your Organization Protected from Lawsuits Overseas with Foreign General Liability Insurance?
In today’s global business environment, it’s important for companies to protect themselves and their employees. While most organizations understand the legal exposures they face in their homeland, when companies venture to other countries to do business, often they can encounter a myriad of unfamiliar laws, languages and customs.
A general policy may not provide worldwide coverage unless the lawsuits brought in the U.S. Most lawsuits are filed in the country where the event occurs, so if something were to happen in a subsidiary in Vietnam or while an employee is traveling in Turkey, that’s where the lawsuit would take place, and the domestic policy would not provide coverage.
Any company that regularly does business away from its homeland—whether that entails travelling to visit clients, manufacturing goods or providing services overseas, including humanitarian aid or school services, or renting a building in a foreign land—will have general liability exposure.
Any business is susceptible to the high cost of liability from simple slip and fall accidents to personal injury and reputation damage claims, but general liability insurance can help all global companies mitigate risk.
If your company is involved in doing business in a foreign country, it’s vital that you understand the scope of insurance available to protect your company’s assets.
Types of Coverage that General Liability Insurance Provides
The amount of coverage your company will need depends on a number of factors, including the type of business you run as well as the places you will be conducting business.
Depending on the extent of the foreign business being conducted, typical General Liability insurance includes Third-Party Bodily Injury and Third-Party Property Damage, which provide coverage for suits arising out of the operations or the premises of an organization.
A comprehensive general liability policy will also include:
- Personal and Advertising Injury – Protects against lawsuits arising out of slander, libel, wrongful eviction, or malicious prosecution
- Products and Completed Operations – Protects against liability for loss or damage as the result of a defect in a product manufactured or installed
- Damage to Rented Premises – Coverage provided to a property owner in the event of destruction to the actual space where business is being conducted
- Medical expenses – Coverage provided in the event of a third-party bodily injury that occurs on the insured’s premises, without admittance of negligence or liability. This can help a company protect itself and its employees without opening itself up to lawsuits.
The Benefits of an International General Liability Policy
You also have to consider the possibility of risks with travelling employees. If an employee is working in another country, their actions could create liability for your organization. A general liability policy may not cover actions or trouble that employees may get into while abroad that results in third-party bodily damage or property damage and potential litigation, which can arise for even a seemingly innocuous accident. Check to see if the general liability policy is international and can be applied to lawsuits overseas.
A general liability policy will typically exclude professional liability, meaning any negligence in performing professional duties. If your employees are engineers, a faulty design could result in a professional liability case or if you operate a security firm, and a protected client is hurt as a result of employee negligence. Many organizations which perform services will choose to get professional liability coverage in conjunction with their general liability to protect the organization from these types of lawsuits.
To safeguard against lawsuits, Clement offers international general liability coverage provided to indemnify the business for third-party liability claims. Protect your employees with proper foreign general liability coverage and guard against costly legal actions arising from events occurring outside your country’s headquarters.
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