Landscaping companies need a variety of business insurance policies because they're exposed to multiple risks. If you mow lawns, plant trees or otherwise perform landscaping services, carefully consider whether your business needs the following two types of insurance coverage.
Selling Landscaping Products: Product Liability Insurance
Businesses that sell products to customers can be held financially liable if those products cause property damage or personal injury after the sale. Even if a business is found faultless in a liability lawsuit, merely defending a business against allegations is frequently an expensive process.
Product liability insurance provides protection against product-related injuries and damage caused by products that a business sells. For a landscaping business, these products include fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, and even plants. Should a child become ill after eating something that's sold to a customer or a self-application fertilizer cause extensive damage to a yard, this insurance may cover the claim.
If a landscaping business faces a covered product liability lawsuit, product liability insurance will cover legal fees and any settlement — and the insurance will offer protection regardless of the outcome of the lawsuit.
Applying Landscaping Products: Pollution Liability Insurance
If a product that's applied to a property leeches into nearby water or land, any damage that's caused would be considered environmental damage. This is distinct from damage that a customer's yard sustains, and this type of damage isn't covered by product liability insurance. Instead, pollution liability insurance is necessary to protect against environmental harm.
There are many situations where a landscaping company may need pollution liability insurance. For example, an employee might apply too much pesticide to a customer's yard. If the excess amount leaks into a nearby stream, it could harm the wildlife in that stream and any animals that drink from the stream. Moreover, the effects could extend downstream from the initial point of the leak for quite a ways. Pollution liability insurance may cover this type of incident.
Additionally, a landscaping truck could spill fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, and other chemicals if the truck is in a major car accident and overturned. This type of incident could result in significant environmental harm, and the resulting claim could devastate a company if no pollution liability insurance is in place.
Finally, landscaping companies that have major facilities ought to consider what would happen if containers of fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides at their facility leaked into the ground. Even if this environmental contamination wasn't known for many years, the landscaping company might still be held liable. A robust pollution liability policy might cover such an incident.