October 25, 2019
For the most part, a security guard can perform his/her duties in a safe and normal manner every day without incident. But there’s always the possibility of having to do something beyond the everyday experience while protecting premises and people from criminal acts or violence. This is why security guard insurance is a must for the guards themselves, the company they work for, and the company being protected. Below you will find some relevant information on what’s involved with security guard insurance and how it works to protect all these groups from financial harm.
How Security Guard Insurance Works
When assessing the true cost of a security guard, you need to consider insurance. Generally speaking, insurance for security guards covers all the possible liabilities that any security company might normally encounter during the protection of premises and people. In most cases, security guards are hired to protect against fire, vandalism, theft, and any other type of illegal acts. Most security companies today offer services that provide neighborhood patrol, personal bodyguard service, or protection from a static position, such as in a shopping mall.
If any violent acts occur at one of these locations, it’s entirely possible that damage might occur to the premises, or that people might be injured as a result. Liability insurance and worker’s compensation insurance are explicitly written to cover these types of situations so that everyone involved can be protected to some extent.
Who Security Guard Insurance Protects
A security company must protect its employees as well as its clients in order to be protected itself against any potential liabilities which may occur. It can be a fine line to walk, protecting clients from harm while also protecting employees from any type of harm. After all, clients would potentially have the option of suing a security company if they felt that security guards failed to provide adequate protection. The security guard company also requires protection, because any litigation efforts against it could cost so much money as to bankrupt the organization.
In addition to the security company itself and the client who has hired the company, security guards themselves are always at an increased risk of physical injury in the event of any violent acts committed by criminals. It’s possible that a security guard could sustain a knife wound, gunshot wound or even suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of the performance of duties.
Because of the potential risk posed to security companies, the clients who hire them, and the guards themselves, all three of these groups must be adequately protected by security guard insurance since all three are at risk. This being so, security guard insurance is written in such a manner that it protects all those involved in any kind of violent or illegal activity.
Types of Security Guard Insurance
Independent security contractors or freelancers will generally have to find their own insurance so they can be fully protected in the performance of their duties. For the majority of security guard personnel, there are certain types of insurance available that provide most of the protection necessary, these being property insurance and general liability insurance. Any security guard who is charged with protecting some kind of business could find that the premises are at risk from either burglary or vandalism, and this would be covered by property insurance.
On the other hand, professional liability insurance or general liability insurance would provide a measure of protection for security guards when they encounter events that result in injury or damage. Even if they have no control over events like these, it’s necessary to be protected against the results, because otherwise it would be possible for a property owner to litigate against them.
Here are the main types of insurance available to the majority of security guard personnel:
Provides protection for a property when a security guard is unable to prevent some act which causes damage
Professional Liability Insurance
This type of insurance offers coverage for when a guard may have been negligent, what a situation might have been misrepresented, or where inaccurate information was provided
General Liability Insurance
This insurance covers most situations that may arise during the performance of the security guard’s duties. Guards are generally requested to provide reports of what they observed and did during their shifts, and these may contradict eyewitness accounts of events that occurred during those times.
Workmen’s Compensation Insurance
This type of insurance covers any type of injury a security guard sustains while on the job, possibly including post-traumatic stress disorder.
What Can You Expect to Pay for Security Guard Insurance?
Security guard insurance is based on the contract risk taken by any security company, and one of the most important factors for the cost of insurance is the location of any business being guarded. For a $1 million general liability insurance policy, there would typically be a $1,000 deductible, for which the premium would be $2,500 annually.
For professional liability insurance, coverage of up to $1 million would generally have no deductible at all, and the premium would be included with the company’s general liability policy. Workmen’s Compensation insurance in an amount of $1 million will usually carry a deductible of $1,000 and have an annual premium of $2,500. Some security guards are obliged to obtain a surety bond as a condition of employment, and in such situations, $10,000 of coverage would be payable as a premium of $250 annually.
Insurance Cost of Armed vs. Unarmed
Contracts for security companies are considered low-risk contracts when a security guard is not in contact with the public for a majority of the time. These kinds of contracts are written for security companies who handle parking lots, industrial locations, and construction sites. By contrast, high-risk contracts are written when security work involves constant interaction with the public. In settings such as these, there is the potential for targeted attacks, alcohol abuse, and crowd control, all of which may come into play.
These kinds of situations are particular to concerts, events, bars, and celebrity security. High-risk contracts often require armed guards to carry out the necessary protection, whereas low-risk contracts are generally written for unarmed guards. The cost of insurance for armed guards is substantially higher than it would be for unarmed guards, and the annual premiums can run to amounts which are between 50% and 100% higher than those for unarmed guards.