Are you a small, independent retailer? Or, do you perhaps own a manufacturing concern that supplies hand-made products to the retail industry? If so, is your business covered for the possibility of any personal injury lawsuits being filed against you or your business?
If not, the question that begs is: Why do you need to take out third-party personal injury insurance cover?
What is a personal injury or tort?
Before we look at the fundamental reason why it is vital to take out personal injury insurance cover, let’s consider a succinct definition of a personal injury or tort.
According to Findlaw.com, and echoed by the legal experts at Richmond Vona, LLC, a personal injury or tort is an injury that is caused by a third-party action that was either intentional or unintentional.
Several examples of valid personal injury claims arising from motor vehicle accident injuries, slip and fall injuries, medical malpractice injuries, injuries caused by assault, wrongful death, as well as the invasion of privacy.
At this juncture, it is vital to note that unintentional actions are the cause of most personal injuries. Although, as described above, there are cases when intent is the rationale behind injury or damage caused by a third party.
The personal injury or tort law
Now that we have an understanding of what a personal injury is, it is equally important to understand how personal injury claims are governed by the personal injury or tort law.
Concisely stated the personal injury law is a subset of the US Constitution. It is part of civil law and not criminal law. It provides the mechanism for “an injured person to go to civil court and get a legal remedy (damages) for all losses stemming from an accident or other incident.”
Additionally, the primary purpose and function of this law are to provide the injured party with the opportunity “to be compensated financially or “made whole” after he or she has suffered harm due to someone else’s carelessness or intentional conduct.”
Although criminal actions like drunk driving are likely to result in third-party injuries and personal injury claims against the drunk driver. These claims do not influence the concurrent criminal proceedings. And, they have no bearing on the outcome of the criminal court proceedings.
The primary reason to take out personal injury liability insurance
The arguments presented above provide the raison d’etre for taking out third-party claim insurance. The fact of the matter is, that no matter how careful you are, accidents can happen. The famous statement, “These things do happen,” by Carlotta in The Phantom of the Opera rings true here.
Therefore, to protect your business from potential financial ruin, it is essential to consider personal injury liability insurance. Otherwise, should an incident like a slip and fall accident happen in your shop, and the plaintiff proves that you or your business is responsible for the accident, you could end up paying hundreds of thousands of dollars in financial damages or restitution.
And, there is very little chance that this money will just be sitting in your bank account. Thus, you will more than likely have to liquidate your business and sell off all your assets to pay the damages.