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Vendor Liability Insurance: Cost & Quotes From $5

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The appeal of being a vendor is obvious. Whether you’re selling food via food truck, restaurant, coffee shop or bakery, selling t-shirts at an event, re-selling used goods at the flea market, selling handcraft at busy streets, or selling homegrown fruits and veggies at the farmer’s market; one thing remains the same. You’re free! 

You can come and go as you please, choose when and where you want to work and go, so long as there are people to sell goods to. You’re not bound to a certain location, and you won’t be stuck paying exorbitant rents.

Even though moving from location to location all vendors, like you, need a vendor's business insurance policy. In fact, before you even start selling somewhere, a proof of insurance is sometimes required that indicates you have the necessary protection for yourself, customers, and third parties. 

In today’s discussion, we will give you a basic overview of what vendor insurance is, how much it costs, and what sellers should purchase a vendor insurance policy.

Along the way, we’ll also give you some helpful tips for getting cheap vendor insurance and show you how to get free vendor insurance quotes.

How Much Is Vendor Insurance?

As vending is a low-risk industry, insuring your small business is usually quite affordable! So, how much is vendor insurance? It costs $33 per month for a $1 million general liability coverage. This totals to $396 per year.  We will give more information about this in the later parts of our discussion. 

Do I Need Vendor Insurance? 

Vendors face a lot of risks. That’s why vendor insurance is important because it provides protection. Some of the risks it aims to guard against are:

  • Customer personal injury claims

  • Community lawsuits

  • Lawsuits from product defects

  • Business interruption due to economic or environmental crisis

Customers will be comfortable to buy if there's a vendor insurance policy. Insurance reassures that, when something goes wrong, customers can go after a vendor’s coverage and get some reimbursement. In this sense, being insured doesn’t only protect vendors but their customers as well.

As opposed to what many suggest, not having vendor’s insurance coverage doesn’t mean that a vendor will fail. There are other ways to get back on track aside from insurance. For example, one can get a loan from the bank,  borrow money from a friend, or get government subsidies. 

Nonetheless, insurance is perhaps the fastest and easiest way for vendors to get the money they need in dire times. After all, all that there is to do is choose what coverages are needed, discuss the terms of the insurance with the carrier,  get insured, and file a claim when it’s time to use the insurance policy. 

Vendor Liability Insurance

Customers can sue vendors for injuries. The probability of facing a lawsuit isn’t only possible when the vendors were really the one at fault. Lawsuits might also result from mere allegations of causing injuries to customers. 

Most of the time customers sue vendors because of slip and fall accidents, vehicle related accidents, and being hit with an object. If the lawsuit goes sideways, vendors might pay $324,000 up to $637,000 settlement fee for medical costs, lost income, pain and suffering, and punitive damages.

Vendors can avoid expensive settlement fees and legal costs by having vendor liability insurance with general liability coverage. General liability coverage applies when a customer experiences an injury and the vendor is at fault. Aside from injuries, general liability will also cover property damage. Types of property covered are phones, clothes, bags, and other personal belongings in the customer’s possession.

Liability insurance for vendors can have product liability and public liability coverage as additional options to general liability. Note that this doesn’t apply most of the time as some carriers offer general liability with no additional options. Product liability will answer personal injury and property damage lawsuits a defective product causes. 

On the other hand, public liability accounts for personal injuries and property damage caused by accidents connected with the vendors’ business operations.

Liability Insurance for Food Vendors

Liability insurance for food vendors works best if it has general liability with products liability and public liability coverage.

Common injuries that food vendors cause while working are cuts, burns, and lacerations.  This can happen due to the mishandling  of cooking equipment, poor management of cables and wires as well as business equipment, and lack of skill or experience. 

Products liability is useful when a food vendor is accused of causing foodborne illness to a customer because of poor food preparation. Understand that food poisoning lawsuits can emerge from the simple mistake of serving cold food. On average, a vendor might pay $145,000 - $346,000 direct compensation - a very expensive amount without food vendor insurance policy with products liability.  

Food vendors commonly face a lawsuit from the public after causing a fire. Lawsuits arising from fire accidents cost $56,000 for property damage and a minimum of $10,321 for personal injuries. And so, it’s important that public liability coverage is part of food vendor liability insurance. Also, aside from food vendors, public liability is also useful for food trucks

Can I Get One Day Vendor Insurance?

Some vendors have permanent business locations, others prefer selling from one location to the next, and finally, there are a few who choose to do business only on specific days. 

Vendors who do business on chosen days will find one day vendor insurance useful.  After all, who needs a policy for a whole year when you only need protection for just a day? This insurance provides basic general liability coverage plus products liability coverage which takes effect for 24 hours by default. 

But know that 24 hours isn’t the maximum duration that one-day vendor insurance policy takes effect. Carriers allow the policyholder to extend the effective period to weeks or months. By the way, some carriers call this insurance on-demand vendor insurance. And so, don’t get confused as both are the same. 

Insurance for vendors lasting for only a short period is more expensive than standard vendor insurance. On average, the cost is $178 for one day coverage regardless of policy limits and deductibles.

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Vendor Event Insurance

Special events can cause demand for specific goods to increase. And so, there are vendors that opt to do business during events only. Vendor event insurance is a type of vendors insurance coverage with terms that, as the name implies, takes effect when a vendor is involved with:

  • Trade shows and expos

  • Football and racing events

  • Charity and fundraising events

  • Live performances

  • Gaming and comic conventions

  • Other events

In addition, depending which carrier offers it,  vendor event insurance provides a certificate of insurance. A certificate of insurance is a document testifying a vendor is insured and won’t transfer any liabilities to the event organizers. Event organizers always look for certificate insurance before working with any vendor and this makes it very important. 

Food Vendor Insurance for Festivals 

Food vendor insurance for festivals that offer basic general liability and contents coverage fit festival food vendors best. General liability will take care of slips and falls, tripping, and fire breakouts festival food vendors may cause due to poor crowd and space management. On the other hand, contents coverage will provide protection against theft and stock damage. We recommend getting these during musical festivals.

Mobile Food Truck Insurance

Festival food vendors using mobile food trucks can also opt to use mobile food truck insurance. Coverages are general liability and commercial auto liability.  General liability is useful if someone trips on the cables and wires of the mobile food truck. It’s also possible for someone to slam on the food truck carelessly and get injured; general liability also provides coverage if this happens. On the other hand, commercial auto liability will be handy if the mobile food truck rams into another mobile food truck, a random person’s car, or a festival facility. 

Insurance for Mobile Food Trailers

Trailers used for selling food serve as food trucks. But surprisingly enough, mobile food truck insurance doesn’t cover trailers. 

There are two ways for vendors to get their food trailer covered. The first is to get a stand alone commercial auto insurance for the food truck with comp coverage. If this is hard to do, the second option is to get insurance for mobile food trailers which provides coverage to trailers regardless of type, size, weight, and purpose. 

Hot Dog Cart Insurance

Compared to most other food vendors, hot dog concessions represent the lowest risk. However, there’s always the possibility of your cart blazing in flames and burning people and their property. And so, it’s best not to underestimate the usefulness of hot dog cart insurance. 

Another common scenario is that you could lose control of your cart, and it could crash into somebody’s car or personal property. This makes it imperative to maintain a simple hot dog cart liability insurance policy. 

Flea Market Vendor Insurance

Vendors in flea markets sell secondhand items. Unlike brand new items, no one checks antiques for quality and consumer safety except the vendors themselves. And so, flea market vendors face risks that potentially defective products bring. 

Items in flea markets such as thermometers, leathers, toys, and furniture can cause allergic reactions due to the degradation of substances used to make them. Allergic reactions can be the cause of customer personal injury claims if severe. A flea market vendor facing a lawsuit might pay $6,352 for lost compensation, hospital bills, and pain and suffering. 

False advertising and product defects are other problems flea market vendors might face. On average, settlement for this is  $3,234. However, if the customer is really set on making things hard, false advertising and product defect lawsuits can result in temporary suspension of business license. A great example is a couple who bought a dog for $400 during a flea market pet sale. The dog died a few days after the purchase. As a result, the aggrieved couple  was determined to file a lawsuit that will stop the vendor from selling.

Flea market vendor insurance provides general liability and products liability coverage. General liability coverage protects flea market vendors from false advertising and personal injury claims. On the other hand, product liability will cover any resulting costs when a customer bought a defective secondhand item.

Farmers Market Insurance for Vendors

Just like flea market vendors, farmers market vendors can easily face lawsuits. Slip and fall accidents are the most common reasons. Contributing factors are:

  • Poorly managed electrical cords of stalls or tents

  • Wet grass or ground

  • Liquid spillage (oil, gasoline, or water)

  • Potholes and cracks on the ground

Vendors’ tents also cause injuries to customers in farmers markets. Tent-related accidents happen when:

  • the tents are dislodged by strong winds

  • a customer trips on the ropes/weights of the tents

  • the tent umbrella suddenly opens and hits someone’s eye or face

Personal injury lawsuits against vendors in farmers markets can be very costly. For example, a simple elbow injury - one that didn’t even affect the victim’s quality of life in any way - amounted to $135,000 in direct compensation. In connection, farmers market insurance for vendors can shoulder such an amount as it may provide $1 million for personal injuries, $400,000 for damaged customer property, and $5,000 for damages to business personal property. 

Liability Insurance for Farmers Market Vendors

Farmers market managers can be held liable for injuries vendors caused or are accused of causing. Commonly, customers go for the farmers market managers instead if the vendors in question don't have coverage.

To make sure that this doesn’t happen, farmers market managers prohibit anyone, who doesn't have liability insurance for farmers market vendors, from selling . Liability insurance most farmers markets require vendors to get are:

  • General liability

  • Products liability

  • Premises liability

Aside from liability insurance, managers require vendors to get:

  • Property insurance

  • Workers comp (only for vendors who have employees)

  • Commercial auto

Additionally, vendors must see to it that their liability insurance allows the naming of an additional insured in their policy. It’s because most farmers market managers want to be covered by the sellers’ vendor liability insurance coverage in case a customer files a claim against more than one party.

Wedding Vendor Insurance

Wedding vendors have a lot at stake as clients want to have the best wedding. Everything must be perfect, from the invitation cards, flowers and lightings, wedding decorations, venue, up to how the wedding program is organized.

With that said, if something goes wrong, trust that things won’t only end up with  “my sincere apologies” and “it's okay". 

Breach of contract is the most common reason why couples sue a wedding vendor. However, lawsuits don't only result from something so complicated. Couples can also raise a lawsuit just because something was different from what the wedding vendor promised, there was an unexpected wedding cancellation, or a missed delivery of key items for the wedding happened.

When facing a lawsuit that takes a whole year to resolve, wedding vendors can spend more than $11,000 for attorney fees. Also, if the case is lost, wedding vendors might have to reimburse what the client paid plus the cost of punitive damages and other penalties the court might impose. For this reason, getting wedding vendor insurance with general coverage and products and completed operations coverage  is crucial. 

Some couples, because of financial constraints, rent rings, vehicles, and other equipment from wedding vendors for their wedding day. In case of damage or theft, it’s hard for wedding vendors to go after their clients. Carriers recognize this problem and make it possible for vendor insurance for wedding to reimburse, replace, and repair any stolen or damaged rented product. 

Craft Vendor Insurance

Most artisans set up at flea markets, farmer’s markets, or events. As such, craft vendor insurance is a policy designed to cover mishaps that could happen at vending locations. Carriers offer this as a short term insurance or standard policy for artisans such as sculptors, weavers, metalworkers, potters, and clock smiths. 

If availed as a short term insurance, craft vendor insurance only offers basic general liability coverage with a maximum duration of 3 months. On the other hand, if availed as a standard insurance policy lasting for a year, it offers general liability, products liability, business personal property, and false advertising coverages. 

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Vendor Insurance Cost

Wondering how much does vendor insurance cost? Your individual business insurance quotes may vary depending on the size of your business, the city you do business in, how many employees you have, gross sales, and what you sell, but this should give you a rough estimate of what to expect. In general though, the average vendor insurance cost is $33 per month or $384 per year for general liability insurance coverage.

Insurance ProviderAverage Monthly RateAverage Annual Rate
Nationwide$60$720
Geico$32$383
Allstate$41$485
Actinsurance$49$588

How To Get Cheap Vendor Insurance?

There are a number of factors that determine your insurance rates. However, here are a few tips if you want to make sure that you get cheap vendor insurance:

  • Pay your full year of insurance upfront. 

  • Enroll in automated billing. 

  • Ask for a policy with a higher deductible. 

  • Bundle your vendor insurance with other policies through the same provider. 

  • Increase your credit score. 

Ultimately, the best way to get a great deal and cheap vendor insurance is to compare quotes from different insurance providers. To make it easy for you, we’ve partnered with some of the nation’s top insurers. Simply click the ‘Get Quotes’ button below, enter some preliminary information about your vendor business along with your email address, and you will receive cheap vendor insurance quotes online from some of the best vendor insurance companies in the market. Then, you can compare quotes and coverage options and decide which one is best for your vendor business! 

Best Vendor Insurance Companies

One of the best all-around vendor insurance providers we’ve found in our research is Geico. Here’s our brief and to-the-point review on Allstate, Nationwide, Geico vendor service, and Act Insurance

All State Vendor Insurance

All state’s vendor insurance is composed of general liability coverage , product liability coverage, and commercial auto coverage. With that said, this is perfect if you’re a vendor selling numerous goods using customized trucks or vans. In addition, the company even has an online tool on it’s website to hasten claims filing and processing. 

Pros

  • Easy claims filing and processing

  • Has three options for its vendor insurance

Cons

  • Doesn’t offer commercial property as an option

Average cost: $41/month for vendor general liability coverage. 

Best for: Vendors with growing business

Our rating: 5/5

Nationwide Vendor Insurance

Nationwide’s vendor insurance is offered in partnership with K&K insurance. Coverage extends to bodily injuries and property damage, premises, products and  completed operations, and false advertising. Additional options also allow you to avail short term policies, decide on the depth and duration of coverage,  negate deductibles, and cover  loss to property, stock or inventory.

Pros

  • Can be availed without deductibles

  • Works in the event of theft

Cons

  • Expensive rates

Average cost: $60

Best for: vendor insurance with no deductible

Our rating: 5/5

Geico Vendor Insurance

Geico is the second-largest insurance provider in the United States, and they offer customized policies for vendors so you’ll pay for exactly what you need and nothing more. So, whether you’re looking for Geico B2B vendor insurance, mobile food cart coverage, or flea/farmer’s market liability insurance, a Geico agent can hook you up with a comprehensive policy designed to cover all of your needs. 

Additionally, Geico also offers great rates on commercial auto policies . So, if you have a food truck or mobile food trailer, then this presents a great opportunity to bundle a commercial auto policy with your vendor liability insurance policy and save money! 

Pros

  • Offices nationwide and agents available 24/7. 

  • Easy-to-use Geico app. 

  • Geico vendor insurance can be bundled with other policies for better rates. 

  • Build the policy that’s best for you.

Cons

  • Premiums may increase without warning from one year to the next. 

Best For: Food trucks and mobile food vendors who need to bundle commercial auto and vendor liability insurance.

Average Cost: $32/month for vendor general liability coverage. 

Rating: 4.5/5

Actinsurance Vendor Insurance

Last but not the least is Actinsurance. The vendor insurance from this company is highly tailored to the needs of small businesses. Coverage isn't that hefty. However, the pricing is one of the fairest in the market. Actinsurance covers all types of vendors but mainly focuses on the needs of the ones selling arts and crafts. 

Pros

  • Policies tailored to vendors selling handicraft and art

  • Cheap rates

Cons

  • Slow to respond to claims

Average cost: $49

Best for: Arts and crafts vendors

Our rating: 4/5

Compare Vendor Insurance Quotes Online

Get all the best quotes from leading providers in a click of a button!

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In partnership with:

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