Surveyors make their bread and butter by making assessments and offering advice. But in some cases, the assessment and advice you provide could land you in trouble. Imprecise measurements, complicated projects, and off-the-mark angles could throw a project into disarray and put you in the crosshairs with your clients.
Although survey isn't considered a typical high-risk job, the need for insurance is just as critical. As a surveyor, it doesn't matter why you are wrong. Whether the mistake was yours, faulty equipment, or an honest oversight, a mistake in a survey can get expensive because errors in this field mean more money for your clients, which could run into thousands of dollars.
Having adequate professional indemnity insurance and other coverages can protect you from direct risk should your clients sue. Here is a breakdown of the types of surveyor insurance you need.
Professional indemnity insurance, also known as the errors and omissions insurance, is the first type of business insurance that surveyors should get. Professional indemnity for surveyors protects you if the client claims you've made a mistake, offered poor service, or were negligent in your assessment and measurements.
Surveyor professional indemnity insurance helps in situations that might bring financial loss or reputation damage for your client, like:
Professional negligence – This might occur when your advice negatively impacts your clients. This is also called a breach of a duty of care
Negligent misstatement or misrepresentation - If the other party of the other client claims you made a false or misleading statement about their business, professional indemnity insurance for surveyors and valuers can help cover the cost of litigation and settlement, if any
Defamation – Clients may claim that a statement you made might be untrue and damaging to their reputation and consequently make a claim against you. The professional liability insurance for surveyors policy can pay for the legal fees and pay for settlements awarded by the court
Breach of confidence – Should you disclose private information without consent due to business activity, whether accidentally or intentionally, the client might seek compensation, and your indemnity insurance for surveyors can help settle the compensation and legal fees
Lost or damaged documents – If you lose or damage any documents, surveyors indemnity insurance can cover the cost of recovering those documents.
Building surveyors are tasked with identifying and explaining any issues they find in a property. Regardless of how many years of building surveyor business has been in existence, there's always a chance that someone in your team could make a mistake. That is why you need adequate surveyor insurance, which comes in the form of professional indemnity insurance for building surveyors.
As a building surveyor, you need to consider the exposures that come from your advice. These exposures vary from failure to inadequately considering specific building regulations, planning requirements, or environmental legislation and regulations.
Considering the size of the project, claims against building surveyors can be substantial, and the cost of defending a claim can go through the roof. This is why professional indemnity insurance for building surveyors is necessary. The policy will cover attorney fees, court payment orders, and other legal cost when a client files a claim for:
Negligent act, error, or omission
Unintentional breach of confidentiality
Negligence of sub-contractors
Violation of good faith
Violation of fair dealing
Land surveyors need to have a risk management strategy like other survey fields. If this is what you do, then there’s tailored business insurance for surveyors of a land, which offer the best protection. Its primary inclusion is professional liability insurance.
Errors or omissions in your work can lead to problems for your clients, leading to claims and lawsuits. A land surveyor professional liability insurance can protect you and your firm from potential client lawsuits that stem from the performance of your duties.
Errors and omissions insurance for land surveyors is unique in that it also covers third-party bodily injury and property damage. Land surveyors professional indemnity insurance will also protect you from indemnity claims arising from:
Giving incorrect advice
Miscalculations in your work.
Loss of documentation
Failing to meet a deadline
Not meeting client expectations
An act, omission, or breach of duty
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As a land surveyor or building surveyor, professional liability insurance isn’t the only coverage useful in your line of work. General liability insurance is equally handy. In fact, insurance products for surveyors doesn’t only include professional liability insurance but general liability insurance too. So what does general liability insurance do? This insurance covers the following exposures:
Third-party personal injuries - A client or other third parties will slip and fall or experience other kinds of accidents within the premises of your office and sustain injuries. If a claim is filed against your business, general liability insurance will pay the injured party’s medical expenses
Third-party property damage - It’s possible for you to cause property damage while inspecting someone’s building or land. The terms of general liability insurance also covers this peril. In practice, general liability insurance will reimburse the losses of the property owner
Legal defense costs - Upon causing property damage or personal injuries, you might be sued by a third-party. General liability insurance sees to it that you don’t incur losses in such a situation by taking care of attorney fees, court payment orders, administrative costs, and other legal expenses
General liability insurance covers a wide range of risks. That said, it primarily takes care of personal injury claims and property damage claims. However, the protection it provides doesn’t end with this. The policy also has advertising injury, rented premises, and products and completed operations coverage:
Advertising injury coverage - A client might file a claim because the features of the surveyor services you’re providing don't match to what was advertised. Another surveyor might also accuse you of harming his or her reputation by copying a slogan, logo, or trademark. Advertising injury coverage in general liability insurance will take care of these as it covers legal costs if someone sues you for false advertising, copyright infringement, slander, libel, and other related causes
Products and completed operations coverage - A survey service you completed might have incurred property damage or personal injuries. This is why it’s possible for you to face a claim from a past client. Products and completed operations coverage in general liability insurance takes care of this by giving you money to pay for attorney fees, administrative costs, court payment orders, and other legal costs
Rented premises liability coverage - Do you rent or lease a commercial space and use it as an office? If so, you’ll find rented premises liability coverage useful. This inclusion in general liability insurance will reimburse the landlord if his or her commercial space is damaged by fire because of your fault
Your personal car insurance might be inadequate if you’re using a vehicle to meet clients and survey their properties. This is why it’s better if you decide to get commercial auto insurance for land surveyors and building surveyors. Commercial auto insurance provides comprehensive coverage for your liability for vehicular accidents, physical damage to the car you’re driving, and other exposures.
Auto liability coverage - Surveying buildings and property is a demanding and tiring job. You might cause a vehicular accident and injure third parties or destroy property by simply falling asleep or failing to pay enough attention to the road due to tiredness. Commercial auto insurance has auto liability coverage. This will cover the medical expenses of people you injured and reimburse the owners of the property you damaged in a vehicular accident
Physical damage coverage - Physical damage coverage will cover your vehicle’s parts repair or replacement. This has two types - collision and comprehensive. When your car collides with a vehicle or object on the road and incurred damage as you’re on the way to meet a client, collision physical damage coverage will take care of parts repair or replacement. On the other hand, comprehensive physical damage coverage will take care of parts repair or replacement if the vehicle you’re using for work-related purposes becomes damaged due to malicious mischief, fire, extreme weather, and other covered perils
Emergency roadside assistance - Emergency roadside assistance functions to cover what you spend on battery jump start, tire delivery, gas delivery, and other related services. This is useful because your car will experience issues while you’re on the way to a project site
Medical payments/personal injury protection - Suppose you and a client are using your vehicle to go to his building or land to be surveyed. However, an accident happened resulting in you and the client becoming injured. In such a situation, medical payments/personal injury protection becomes very useful. MePay/personal injury protection are inclusions in commercial auto insurance that will cover the driver’s and the passenger’s medical expenses when their vehicle causes an accident and gets involved in an accident
If you’re running a land or building surveying business having two or more vehicles that employees use to meet clients, go to sites, and haul equipment, then purchasing commercial fleet insurance is better than purchasing commercial auto insurance.
In essence, commercial fleet insurance is a variation of commercial auto insurance. It has the coverages discussed in the table above. But unlike commercial auto insurance, commercial fleet insurance can insure 2 - 15 vehicles under one insurance policy.
Commercial Property Insurance for Land Surveyors and Building Surveyors
Insurance companies protect the building you’re using as an office through commercial property insurance. Commercial property insurance is included in tailored surveyor insurance or sold as a stand-alone policy. It provides coverage against the following perils:
Building destruction - Commercial property insurance reimburses losses based on the actual cash value or replacement cost of your office that got damaged in a fire caused by an arsonist or faulty wiring. It will also help if winds and other related perils destroy your office space
Building damage - Fire, extreme weather, and other covered perils will also damage your office. Commercial property insurance helps with this by reimbursing your losses based on the actual cash value or replacement cost of damaged structures such as window panels, signages, roofing, and more
Commercial property insurance doesn’t only protect your office building. It has add-ons that will protect your survey equipment, office furniture, and important documents. Specifically, these are:
Stocks and contents coverage - Stocks and contents coverage will reimburse your financial losses if office furniture and important documents such as blueprints, client records, and others become lost or damaged to fire, theft, vandalism, extreme weather, and other covered perils
Business equipment and tools coverage - Inside your office is expensive survey equipment. When this becomes damaged or lost due to vandalism, fire, theft, and other covered perils, business and tools coverage in commercial property insurance will reimburse losses or provide replacement pieces
You’re required to get workers' compensation insurance as soon as one or more employees are working in your building or land surveying business. But note that depending on where you’re working, authorities might require you to get workers’ compensation insurance for yourself. The function of workers' compensation insurance is explained briefly below:
Medical treatment/procedure - When surveying a building, you or an employee might fall from a height. On the other hand, you or an employee might experience heat exhaustion when surveying land. If any of these happens and medical treatment/procedure is needed, workers' compensation insurance will cover all of the cost
Hospitalization - After getting rushed to the hospital, you or an employee might need to stay for days, weeks, or months for monitoring or undergoing other medical treatment/procedure. Workers' insurance will help in such a situation by taking care of hospital bills
Medication - Workers' compensation insurance also provides money if the attending physician requests you or an employee to buy specific medicines
Rehabilitation - After experiencing heat exhaustion, falling from a height, or any other work-related incidents, you or an employee might sustain injuries that cause impairment and need rehab. Workers' compensation insurance caters to this and will pay the fee for the rehab center, attending therapist, and other related expenses
Lost income compensation - Workers' compensation insurance covers lost income if you or an employee can’t come to work after sustaining injuries. Specifically, workers comp provides a weekly allowance equal to two-thirds or 67% of the average weekly wage. So if you or an employee earns $1,933 per week on average, weekly lost income compensation will be $1,295.11
Death benefits - If you or an employee dies because of a work-related accident, workers' compensation insurance will pay for funeral expenses and provide financial aid to dependents
Most surveyors consider inland marine insurance adequate for their survey equipment. However, survey equipment can be difficult to insure because of the risk of having high-value portable equipment. It's best to find an insurer that specializes in survey equipment insurance.
Most insurance will find the cost of insuring Total Stations, Multi Stations, Laser Scanners, Theodolites, and GPS under inland marine insurance counterproductive. Therefore, it's imperative to find an insurer that understands survey equipment and can insure them against risks like damage in and out of the office and theft.
Some insurance companies might also extend you a business personal property insurance that will cover equipment like laptops and mobiles to the site against damage or loss. However, you would have to enquire if this is something that your insurer offers.
Asbestos surveyors insurance offers professional liability insurance as primary coverage. It will help pay for claims resulting from breach of contract, oversights, missed deadlines, and other acts constituting errors and omissions. Other insurances you can include are general liability insurance and workers' compensation insurance.
Professional indemnity insurance for quantity surveyors provides protection against claims filed due to failure in design, failure to provide authentic work, failure to provide accurate information, providing work or output that breaches guidelines and legal regulations.
The cost of survey insurance depends on the policies you select and your field of specialization. The insurer will also consider the location and size of the business.
For professional indemnity insurance, a small surveyor business may pay an average of $84 per month or $1,008 per year. On the other hand, a $1 million general liability insurance costs $60 per month or $720 per year.
You can compare surveyor insurance quotes using the "Get Quotes" button at the top of our page for more accurate estimates.
|Cost per Month||Cost per Year||Best for|
|CoverWallet||$70||$840||Land surveyor insurance quotes comparison online|
|Thimble||$75||$900||Short-term surveyor insurance|
|NEXT||$81||$972||Independent land surveyors|
Survey businesses can save on their insurance premiums by buying a Business Owner's Policy (BOP). A BOP combines several types of policies like general liability insurance and commercial property insurance into one more affordable policy compared to purchasing the policies separately.
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There are plenty of underwriters waiting to take up your business. Undeniably, some are better than others. You can also find some that specialize in insurance for survey businesses which makes them more suitable to cover your company because they understand your needs and risks better than general underwriters.
If you're looking for the best survey and PI survey insurance providers, here are some of the best carriers. Read to know their pros, cons, and monthly pricing for a $1 million general liability coverage.
Compare quotes and find the best coverage online
Has tailored land surveyor insurance offering four coverage options
Not an insurance company but an insurance broker
CoverWallet’s land surveyor insurance is available as general liability only policy, general liability and professional liability insurance policy, tailored insurance policy that includes general liability, professional liability, and commercial property insurance, and a custom plan. Choose to work with CoverWallet because it ensures you within minutes, and you’ll enjoy stable rates and policy cancellation with no hidden fees. Also, this insurance broker has an online quotes comparison platform you can use to find carriers underwriting tailored insurance for land surveyors
Best for: Land surveyor insurance quotes comparison online
Average cost: $70 per month
Our rating: 10/10
Short-term and on-demand surveyor insurance
Resolving issues on your insurance takes time
Thimble’s surveyor insurance is available as an on-demand policy offering general liability coverage only. Work with Thimble because it provides an instant ACORD 25 certificate of insurance and allows you to not have a deductible.
Best for: Short-term surveyor insurance
Average cost: $75 per month
Our rating: 9/10
Buy more than one insurance coverage and get a 15% discount
Might increase rates without prior notice
NEXT’s land surveyor insurance has general liability, workers compensation, commercial auto, and commercial property insurance. This company caters to the needs of independent land surveyors running their own office.
Best for: Independent land surveyors
Average cost: $81 per month
Our rating: 10/10
You can get quotes and purchase insurance online
There's a 14-day money-back guarantee
You get a discount when you purchase more than two policies
The PI insurance meets the requirements set by the professional survey body, ensuring comprehensive coverage.
The BOP policy is only available to businesses with more than ten employees
Some areas like Alaska are not covered
Hiscox is one of the best insurance underwriters for small businesses. With many firsts, Hiscox provides various insurance policies for companies and professionals, including professional indemnity insurance for surveyors. Hiscox also covers other professionals like consultants, contractors, freelancers, IT consultants, and tradesmen.
With the sheer volume of policies that Hiscox offers, the company can accommodate your needs as your business grows, making it an excellent partner for fast-growing survey businesses.
Best for: Building surveyors
Average cost: $85 per month
Our rating: 8/10
Finding a reliable insurance company to cover your survey firm adequately can be a challenge. We provide you with all the information you need to make the process as easy and as fruitful as possible. We also help you get competitive quotes from leading insurers on survey insurance and professional indemnity survey insurance.
Lonnie Bell Insuranker
Policy Type: Business Insurance
Company name: Employers Insurance
Use anyone except Employers. Period. They are non-transparent and shameful. After I complained long enough to warrant a call from a supervisor, the supervisor called back from a PRIVATE NUMBER (no caller ID), left a message that they are not reversing their decision (without any communication with me), and failed to leave a phone number for me to call back. She was hiding! They also fact find via email and phone calls, which is terrific for speed and communication. However, after setting a precedence of email or phone calls, they send time sensitive information via email, without any heads up... they are hoping you miss it and forfeit via expiration. Evil policies. Go elsewhere.
This place is an absolute joke of a company and should be ashamed of the way they conduct business. I was hurt on the job at the end of July and it took them just shy of 7 weeks to issue out a paycheck to me. Yes the amount was back dated but still. Not many have the luxury of not receiving a paycheck for almost 2 months. To top it all off, the original adjuster marked me down for the wrong state which caused a problem from the get go, I've had 3 different adjusters now since each one can't seem to figure out the simplicity of my claim. All my paperwork which includes, my job, house, and drs visits all are from the same state and city but yet some how I have been filed under a completely different state 1500 miles away. They do not answer your phone calls or emails no matter how many you leave. I've had to escalate my frustrations to the supervisors of each of these individuals in order to even get some kind of response. I've had more communication and information given to me about my claim from the customer service representatives then the actual adjusters.......... please tell me how that works?! A serious overhaul needs to happen here in order to serve your clients the way they deserve to be taken care of. 10/10 do not recommend this company to a single soul on earth
I have never had the displeasure of working with a more incompetent and disrespectful person in my life. I’m an injured worker and the adjuster that was assigned to my case was named Carrie Furgeson. In the past 6 weeks that I’ve been injured and out of work I have only been able to get ahold of her twice, not for lack of trying. I have left countless voicemails, countless emails, and she ignores them all. When I am finally able to get ahold of her I’m greeted with terrible customer service. She is rude, she talks over me and I’m hardly able to get a word in edgewise. She spelled my name wrong on my documents even after I spelled it for her properly countless times, this caused a whole new issue with my bank. I have bill collectors from the hospital calling me demanding payment and Carrie Furgeson won’t do a single thing to help, or to get them paid. All of my documentation is in Colorado, my job is in Colorado, my address is in Colorado, all my Dr offices and appointments have been in Colorado and Carrie still managed to hold my claim because she wasn’t sure what state she needed to file it under. It’s been 6 weeks since my Injury and my company still hasn’t received the wage paperwork to fill out so they can get me my correct wages. When she’s not ignoring me she’s answering my questions with “I don’t know” well I don’t know how she got this job, because apparently she doesn’t know anything about it. She is a disgusting morose individual inside and out and I genuinely wish her the worst in all of her future endeavors. I highly recommend you don’t use this company. Please if you are a business owner and your looking into this company please don’t use them. I’m sure they have the cheapest payment and that’s why companies use them in the first place, but you will be doing your employees a grave disservice by forcing them to venture into this absolute dumpster fire of a company. I would rate 0/5 if possible but 1 was the lowest I was allowed.
Their general liability insurance purchase process is simply the best online experience I've ever had in my life!
As long as they cover your line of business, you're literally covered! best rates, best coverage, best online experience, best professionals, can't be happier that I chose them!