Product Liability Insurance in Massachusetts

What is Product Liability Coverage?

Businesses that manufacture and/or sell products are exposed to risks long after they sell their wares. Should a product ever cause physical harm or property damage, the maker or seller may be sued. Product liability insurance can help protect Massachusetts businesses that manufacture or sell products from potential lawsuits over malfunctioning products.

Product liability coverage is a type of liability insurance that specifically protects businesses from covered incidents that involve products. 

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Often, a business may be held financially responsible if a product it makes or sells causes physical harm or property damage, and the cause is traced back to one of these things:

  • A manufacturing or production flaw
  • A design defect
  • Insufficient instructions or warnings

Product liability policies will normally cover legal fees and settlements associated with covered lawsuits that make one of these allegations.

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What Massachusetts Businesses Should Consider Getting Product Liability Insurance?

Most Massachusetts businesses that manufacture or sell physical products ought to consider getting product liability insurance.

Manufacturers, of course, can be sued for the above-mentioned reasons and, therefore, should have product liability coverage. They aren’t the only businesses that may be sued over these issues, though. Other businesses that may be at risk of a product liability lawsuit and want the protections that this type of insurance provides include (but isn't limited to):

  • Businesses that fix products, as they may be sued if a product they repaired malfunctions
  • Businesses that transport products, as they may be sued if a malfunction is traced back to damage sustained while a product was in transit
  • Wholesalers and retailers, as lawyers sometimes sue every business they can when there’s an incident involving a malfunctioning product

Even if the likelihood of a business being found guilty of alleged charges related to a product’s performance is low, the business may still want to procure coverage. For, most product liability policies don’t require businesses to be found guilty before they begin providing coverage. As soon as a business is named in a covered suit, a product liability policy will usually begin providing financial resources for mounting a legal defense.

What Types of Products Do Product Liability Policies Cover?

Massachusetts businesses manufacture and sell all different kinds of products, and insurers have policies to cover almost every type of product. Most product liability policies will cover all of the products that a business makes or sells, but a few items may be excluded from typical policies and require more specialized coverage.

Insurance agents can help a business review the exact coverages that its policy provides to make sure the policy covers all of the businesses’ products.

How Can Businesses Obtain Product Liability Insurance?

A few general liability insurance policies may include product liability coverage. Most general liability policies, however, don’t include this coverage, and those that do frequently only offer minimal product liability protections.

Therefore, many businesses elect to purchase separate product liability coverage. Coverage can often be purchased as an add-on to a general liability policy, through a commercial package policy or as a standalone policy.

Businesses that would like assistance evaluating their product liability insurance options should contact an independent insurance agent. There are independent agents who specialize in commercial insurance located throughout Massachusetts, from Pittsfield, MA to Boston, MA. They’ll be able to compare all of the options that are available to a business and help with choosing the right one.

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