Commercial Real Estate companies are increasingly be hired by corporate clients to coordinate logistics of a move either of an entire company, division or subsidiary. This service is becoming more common and offered as part of being a full service brokerage in competing for large corporate clients. Commercial Real Estate Firms (CRE’s) enter into these contracts with the full intention of subcontracting the work to other firms such as movers, telecommunication specialists, architects, contractors and others. Although, the fees for such services are good and help support other lines of business which are not thriving in this environment, they can lead to big trouble for a commercial real estate firm that is not appropriately insured. I have highlighted below some of the more common insurance issues:
1. General Liability- Most CRE’s have some type of business office policy which is designed to cover general slips and falls, but not designed to cover faulty workmanship or oversight of others work. This can cause a significant gap in coverage since the type of general liability insurance required for this type of service is significantly more than a standard office policy. The CRE stands at risk to have an uncovered claim.
2. Workers compensation insurance- Workers compensation premiums are typically charged based on the type of service provided. Frequently, such premiums are charged at the highest rate of the underlying services being provided. So for example a CRE that is paying 30 cents per hundred of payroll, could wind up paying $30.00 per hundred of payroll. More significantly, coverage could be voided if it were determined that the carrier did not have the correct information in underwriting the policy.
3. Errors and Omissions Insurance- Gaps in E&O coverage can be significant as Commercial Real Estate errors and omissions insurance policies have a very specific definition of services provided and also many exclusions that would not provide coverage for such services. Common exclusions in the policy will include faulty workmanship, bodily injury or property damage claims.
Our advice is to speak to a licensed professional regarding your coverages and make sure that you are adequately covered prior to undertaking a new professional service. Please feel free to contact one of our licensed professionals at Axis Insurance Services LLC to discuss your needs.