Best Small Business Insurance in Ohio

The State of Ohio currently mandates that every company operating inside its borders that employs one or more people in either a full-time or part-time capacity must carry workers' compensation insurance. In addition, commercial auto insurance is mandatory for any company whose employees use company vehicles as any part of their job.

Regardless of the state’s requirements for insurance, it’s important that you secure business insurance that fits your business’s needs.

In this review, we’ll explore the best small business insurance in Ohio and share what makes them the right choice.

Recommended: Next Insurance offers dedicated small business insurance to Ohio small businesses.


Next Insurance

four point seventy five out of five stars



  • Work directly with an insurance provider
  • Specialized in small business insurance coverage
  • Get a quote in under five minutes


Four point five out of five stars



  • Get connected to the best provider for your business
  • Get a quote on the phone between 8 a.m.–8 p.m. (Monday–Friday)
  • Coverage for a large variety of small businesses

The Hartford

four out of five stars


  • Direct insurance provider, not a marketplace
  • Offers niche and specialized insurance policies
  • Get an online quote within minutes


four point twenty five out of five stars


  • Insures micro-businesses and startups
  • Coverage for 180+ professional services
  • Offers short-term insurance policies


three point seventy five out of five stars


  • Optimum Insurance provider for online businesses
  • Extensive cyber risk solutions
  • 24-hour claims assistance hotline

We narrowed our search down to our top 5 insurance carriers in Ohio and then closely analyzed coverage offered, policy details, pricing, and other aspects to determine which type of business each provider would be most suited to.

We also identified competitive selling points like excellent customer service and niche industry offerings that make each business insurance company unique.

Our Best Ohio Business Insurance Providers for 2023:

  1. Next Insurance: Best online business insurance with fast and simple sign-up.
  2. Tivly: Best small business insurance marketplace.
  3. The Hartford: Offers specialized coverage and custom packages.
  4. Hiscox: Good for micro businesses.
  5. CNA: Great for tech companies.

1. Next Insurance: Best Insurance for Small Business

Next Insurance has streamlined the process of getting business insurance coverage completely online and in just a few minutes. Named one of the “Top 50 Disruptors of 2022” by CNBC, Next Insurance uses AI and machine learning to provide the best small business liability insurance options catered to unique business needs.

We consider Next to be the best business insurance company for business owners looking to get fast, affordable, quality coverage without walking into an agency or sifting through aggressive sales pitches. Next Insurance not only offers the most common types of small business insurance but also offers specific insurance products by industry in each state, instant digital certificates of insurance (COI) downloads, and more to make the process easier than ever. Using their user-friendly mobile app, you can easily pay premiums, access policy documents, and even file liability claims on the go with rapid response times. 

Due to their focus on small businesses exclusively, we found their rates to be slightly lower on average than larger insurance providers.

Next Insurance Featured Coverages

  • General Liability Insurance
  • Business Owner’s Policies (BOPs)
  • Commercial Auto Insurance
  • Commercial Property Insurance
  • Professional Liability Coverage (Errors and Omissions Insurance)
  • Hired & Non-Owned Auto Insurance
  • Liquor Liability Insurance
  • Tools & Equipment Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation Insurance


  • Same-day insurance coverage
  • iOS/Android app for easy access to your COI, to file claims, and to change policy type
  • Get a quote and purchase a policy in less than 10 minutes
  • Easy-to-use scheduler so your insurance can start on a precise date
  • Competitive premiums designed for small businesses
  • Customizable policies
  • Convenient online chat support


  • No brick-and-mortar locations/branches for in-person transactions
  • Some specialized types of insurance coverage, like key person insurance, are not available

Find the Right Coverage for Your Business

Next Insurance is a fully online provider dedicated to low-cost, high-protection coverage for small businesses. Get a quote instantly.


2. Tivly: Best Business Insurance Marketplace

If you’re looking for a marketplace with the best quotes for business insurance, Tivly takes the gold. Tivly has gathered a wide range of small business insurance companies in one place to help you narrow down the search for a policy that meets your business's unique needs. Small business owners that may be considered high risk can find what they are looking for with Tivly.

It's important to note that Tivly is an insurance marketplace instead of an individual provider. The goal of this company is to make your search more simple by showing you the top business insurance policies for your situation and streamlining the signup process. By submitting one online form, you'll receive multiple quotes for commercial insurance products from several competitors, most of whom are on this list. You'll also get a quick rundown of each policy so that you know exactly what you're signing up for.

Tivly Featured Coverages

  • General Liability Insurance
  • Lost Income Insurance (Business Interruption Insurance)
  • Business Hazard Insurance
  • Commercial Property Insurance
  • Business Owner’s Policy
  • Commercial Auto Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation Insurance
  • Commercial Umbrella Insurance
  • Professional Liability Insurance


  • Great customer service
  • Live and rapid phone support from 8:00 a.m.–8:00 p.m. Monday to Saturday
  • Easy-to-navigate website
  • Offers a lot of information about their different insurance options
  • Works with numerous partners to provide coverage for various types of businesses
  • Great pricing options


  • Policies are issued by other insurance providers, not Tivly.

Your Business Needs Insurance

Find out which policies your business needs and how much it will cost by getting a free quote.

CALL: 833-536-1478

3. The Hartford: Good for Specialized Insurance

The Hartford is a great insurance solution for businesses that need specialized insurance coverage. Though the insurance may not cover every type, as services like Tivly do, The Hartford offers customized insurance packages with only the coverage you need, which can save you hundreds long-term. The Hartford has served millions of small businesses for over 200 years while maintaining a great reputation for delivering some of the best specialized commercial insurance coverages and rates. 

The Hartford Featured Coverages

  • Business Owner’s Policy
  • Commercial Auto Insurance
  • General Liability Insurance
  • Commercial Property Insurance
  • Lost Business Income Insurance
  • Business Interruption Insurance
  • Professional Liability Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation Insurance
  • Cyber Insurance
  • Commercial Umbrella Insurance
  • Employment Practices Liability Insurance


  • Long history with an A+ financial strength rating through A.M. Best
  • Many small business insurance types
  • Named "World’s Most Ethical Company" by Ethisphere Institute
  • BOP insurance combines general liability and business property insurance together
  • Easy online quotes


  • Not a good option if you prefer an industry-specific insurer
  • Poor J.D. Power's "Small Commercial Insurance Study" reviews
  • Complaints through the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

4. Hiscox: Great for Micro-Businesses

Hiscox is the best small business insurer for micro-businesses since they have helped thousands of small and micro-businesses get insured. Hiscox has a dedicated team of small business professionals who focus only on helping small businesses get the right types of coverage at the best prices. 

Hiscox Featured Coverages

  • General Liability Coverage
  • Professional Liability Coverage
  • Business Owner’s Policy
  • Short-Term Insurance Policies
  • Cyber Insurance
  • Workers' Compensation Insurance
  • Coverage for 180+ professional services


  • User-friendly online quote generator
  • Insures businesses only
  • Serves businesses of all sizes
  • High ratings by major rating firms
  • Educational website and podcast
  • Over 10,000 positive customer reviews


  • Most customer reviews are found on the company’s website.

5. CNA: Good for Tech Companies

CNA offers the best insurance for online businesses, offering cyber risk insurance solutions. If your company deals in personal or financial information or may be at risk of data breaches or online attacks, CNA offers comprehensive cyber liability policies at the best prices. We like CNA because they offer three cyber risk insurance options, as well as other niche insurance products not found with other providers. 

CNA Featured Coverages

  • Cyber Risk Policies
  • Commercial Auto Insurance
  • General Liability Policies
  • Equipment Breakdown Insurance
  • Inland Marine Policies
  • Professional Liability and Management Insurance
  • Ocean Marine Insurance
  • Business Property Coverage
  • Surety Insurance
  • Umbrella and Excess Casualty Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation Coverage


  • Specializes in business insurance
  • Covers small-, mid-, and large-sized businesses
  • Covers over 180 niche businesses
  • Eighth largest business insurance provider in the US
  • High ratings from all major insurance rating agencies
  • 24-hour claims assistance


  • The online quote generator doesn’t always work
  • A small number of customer reviews

Small Business Insurance Review Methodology

Choosing the best business insurance comes down to five things:

  1. The type of business you have
  2. The type of coverage you need
  3. Which provider offers the best value
  4. Easy-to-navigate simple claims process
  5. Great customer service

First, we narrowed it down to the five best small business insurance providers, most of whom offer online quotes so that you can get coverage and a certificate of insurance for your business today. 

Then, we analyzed coverage offered, policy details, pricing, and other aspects to determine which type of business each provider would be most suited for small business owners. 

Finally, we've identified competitive selling points like excellent customer service and niche industry offerings that make each business insurance company unique.

Ohio Business Insurance Requirements and Resources

Ohio Insurance Requirements

The State of Ohio requires that every business operating within the state that employs one or more full-time or part-time employees must carry workers' compensation insurance. 

Commercial auto insurance is also required by law for any business whose employees use corporate vehicles as part of their jobs.

Workers’ Compensation Insurance

Workers’ compensation in Ohio is managed by the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC). Ohio is one of only four states where the state manages workers’ compensation insurance rather than private insurance agencies.

Ohio law governing workers’ compensation can be found in Chapter 4123 of the Ohio Revised Code. Ohio Revised Code Section 4123.35 requires that all employers with one or more full- or part-time employees provide worker’s compensation insurance:

ORC 4123.35

(A) Except as otherwise provided in this section, for a policy year commencing on or after July 1, 2015, every private employer and every publicly owned utility shall pay annually in the month of June immediately preceding the policy year into the state insurance fund the amount of estimated annual premium the administrator fixes for the employment or occupation of the employer, the amount of which estimated premium to be paid by each employer to be determined by the classifications, rules, and rates made and published by the administrator. The employer shall pay a further sum of money into the state insurance fund as may be ascertained to be due from the employer by applying the rules of the administrator. Upon receipt of the payroll report required by division (B) of section 4123.26 of the Revised Code, the administrator shall adjust the premium and assessments charged to each employer for the difference between estimated gross payrolls and actual gross payrolls, and any balance due to the administrator shall be immediately paid by the employer. Any balance due the employer shall be credited to the employer's account.

For a policy year commencing on or after July 1, 2015, each employer that is recognized by the administrator as a professional employer organization or alternate employer organization shall pay monthly into the state insurance fund the amount of premium the administrator fixes for the employer for the prior month based on the actual payroll of the employer reported pursuant to division (C) of section 4123.26 of the Revised Code.

ORC 4123.01

Ohio law also requires that employers post notice of their workers’ compensation insurance according to Section 4123.83:

ORC 4123.83 

Each employer paying premiums into the state insurance fund or electing directly to pay compensation to the employer's injured employees or the dependents of the employer's killed employees as provided in section 4123.35 of the Revised Code, shall post conspicuously in the employer's place or places of employment notices, which shall be furnished at least annually by the bureau of workers' compensation.  The notice shall state that it is proof of workers' compensation coverage, or that the employer has complied with section 4123.35 of the Revised Code and has been authorized by the administrator of workers' compensation directly to compensate employees or dependents, and the date of the authorization.  The notice shall indicate that coverage is contingent on continued payment of premiums and assessments due.  The notice, when posted, constitutes sufficient notice to the employer's employees of the fact that the employer carries workers' compensation coverage or that the employer has complied with the elective provisions of section 4123.35 of the Revised Code.

In addition, the law sets provisions for penalties and fines by businesses that fail to pay into the workers’ compensation program:

ORC 4123.50 

(A) Each member of a firm, and the president, secretary, general manager, or managing agent of each private corporation, including any public service corporation mentioned in section 4123.01 of the Revised Code or publicly owned utility, shall cause the firm or corporation to comply with section 4123.35 of the Revised Code and, for self-insuring employers, to comply with the assessment based upon paid compensation provisions of this chapter and Chapter 4121. of the Revised Code. No person mentioned in section 4123.01 of the Revised Code and no member of the firms and no officer of the corporations or publicly owned utilities referred to in this section shall fail to comply with section 4123.35 of the Revised Code and, for self-insuring employers, to comply with the assessment based upon paid compensation provisions of this chapter and Chapter 4121. of the Revised Code. All fines collected for a violation of this section shall be paid to the general fund of the political subdivision where the case is prosecuted.

(B) The administrator of workers' compensation, with the advice and consent of the bureau of workers' compensation board of directors, shall adopt rules governing treatment of employers found in violation of division (A) of this section. The rules shall cover enforcement and prosecution procedures and methods and grounds for settlement of liability of a noncomplying employer.

Commercial Auto Insurance

The State of Ohio also requires any business whose employees use corporate vehicles as part of their jobs to carry commercial auto insurance. According to the Ohio Department of Insurance, it is against the law to drive a car without insurance or other proof of financial responsibility. It is also against the law for a car owner to permit a driver to use their vehicle without proof of financial responsibility.

Section 4709 of the Ohio Revised Code governs the financial responsibility of owning and operating an automobile and sets penalties for failure to maintain proof of financial responsibility. This is laid out in ORC Section 4709:101.

ORC 4709:101 

(A)(1) No person shall operate, or permit the operation of, a motor vehicle in this state, unless proof of financial responsibility is maintained continuously throughout the registration period with respect to that vehicle, or, in the case of a driver who is not the owner, with respect to that driver's operation of that vehicle. 

According to Ohio Administrative Code Rule 4501:1, proof of financial responsibility may be provided in one of the following ways:

OAC 4501:1 

(A) Except as provided in paragraph (C) of this rule, proof of financial responsibility may be shown by any of the following:

(1) A policy of liability insurance, the declaration page of a policy of liability insurance, or a liability bond, if the policy or bond complies with section 4509.20 or sections 4509.49 to 4509.61 of the Revised Code;

(2) A financial responsibility identification card issued in compliance with rule 4501:1-2-02 of the Administrative Code;

(B) In all instances, proof of financial responsibility may be shown by:

(1) A bond issued in compliance with section 4509.59 of the Revised Code and rule 4501:1-2-03 of the Administrative Code;

(2) A certificate issued by the registrar of motor vehicles for the deposit of money or securities in compliance with section 4509.62 of the Revised Code and rule 4501:1-2-04 of the Administrative Code.

(3) A certificate of self-insurance issued by the registrar pursuant to section 4509.72 of the Revised Code and rule 4501:1-2-05 of the Administrative Code; or

(4) A uniform financial responsibility form, SR-22.

Data Breach Insurance

Ohio’s Data Breach Notification Statute places a duty on businesses to notify residents if their personal information has been compromised. This is laid out in Section 1349.19 of the Ohio Revised Code:

ORC 1349.19

Any person that owns or licenses computerized data that includes personal information shall disclose any breach of the security of the system, following its discovery or notification of the breach of the security of the system, to any resident of this state whose personal information was, or reasonably is believed to have been, accessed and acquired by an unauthorized person if the access and acquisition by the unauthorized person causes or reasonably is believed will cause a material risk of identity theft or other fraud to the resident.

The obligation to notify affected residents in the event of a data breach raises the possibility that they may take legal action against the business whose systems were breached. Accordingly, Ohio businesses should consider taking out data breach insurance to cushion the effects of being sued if that eventuality transpires.  

Types of Ohio Business Insurance

General Liability Insurance

The vast majority of Ohio companies purchase general liability insurance from an insurance company even though it is not legally required. This type of business liability insurance covers third-party bodily injury, third-party property damage, advertising liability, libel, slander, copyright issue, and other common claims faced by companies across various industries. 

General liability insurance is one of the most important types of business insurance your company can purchase.

Business Owner’s Policy

A business owner’s policy (BOP) is an affordable way to bundle business insurance coverages. This type of policy includes commercial general liability insurance with commercial business property insurance. Many small business owners with a physical business space opt for this coverage.

Commercial Auto Insurance

You need to carry commercial auto insurance if your company uses vehicles to transport people or goods. This type of insurance is very similar to personal auto insurance and covers liability, medical costs, collisions, and uninsured/underinsured motorists. A commercial auto policy also covers vehicles rented or owned by your company and employees who use their own vehicles for company business.

Workers’ Compensation Insurance

Ohio requires businesses with any full-time or part-time employees to carry workers’ compensation insurance. Taking out workers' compensation insurance puts a limit on the amount and type of compensation that an injured employee may receive. The limits are set by law.

Employee Health/Life/Disability Insurance

Companies that provide health, life, and/or disability insurance as a fringe benefit will need appropriate Ohio insurance. Under the Affordable Care Act, firms with more than 50 full-time employees must offer health insurance or pay an expensive penalty.

Professional Liability Insurance

Professional liability insurance covers financial risks to attorneys, accountants, and other people who provide professional services or expertise. Professional liability coverage varies depending on the industry but usually includes negligence, legal defense, slander or libel, and copyright and trademark disputes. 

Professional liability insurance includes errors and omissions (E&O) insurance.

Data Breach Insurance

If your company hosts customers’ personal information on its servers and those servers are hacked, lawsuits and damages can result. Data breach insurance protects you in these cases. 

Cyber Liability Insurance

Similar to but more comprehensive than data breach insurance, cyber liability insurance may pay for legal expenses related to a data breach or set up a call center for individuals affected by a breach. It also may pay for active protection against cyberattacks.

Commercial Crime Insurance

Crimes like extortion, forgery, burglary, computer fraud, and embezzlement are covered by commercial crime insurance. Situations in which this type of insurance is particularly useful include dishonest or libelous acts by employees.

Fiduciary Liability Insurance

Fiduciaries, who are legally required to act in plan participants’ best interests rather than the company’s when choosing advisors and investments, should consider this type of insurance coverage. It covers them if they are sued for allegedly providing negligent investment advice or administering plans or benefits incorrectly. 

Third parties like out-of-company consultants and benefit plan administrators are usually not protected.

Directors and Officers Insurance

Any company with directors and officers should consider directors and officers (D&O) insurance coverage, a type of liability insurance that reimburses directors and officers for claims made against them regarding harm allegedly caused by their management decisions.

Executive Risk Coverage

Executive risk insurance is business liability insurance that provides coverage for fraud, D&O, employment practices, initial public offerings, pension funds, extortion, and professional negligence.


Do I need business insurance in Ohio?

Yes, you need business insurance in Ohio. Ohio requires all businesses with any full-time or part-time employees to carry workers’ compensation insurance or to self-insure against liability for workers getting injured on the job. Also, if your business owns any vehicles or if you use your personal vehicle for your business, you must carry commercial auto insurance.

In order to protect your Ohio business, you may also need other types of insurance coverage, such as general liability insurance, professional liability insurance, commercial property insurance, or a business owner’s policy.

How much does business insurance cost in Ohio?

The cost of business insurance in Ohio is determined by a variety of factors, but the three that are most important are the kind of company being insured, the type of protection, and the level of protection required.

Workers’ compensation in Ohio is approximately 0.67% of payroll or $0.67 per $100.

The cost of commercial auto insurance will depend on how many and what types of vehicles need coverage and how many business miles they will be driven each year.

The average national cost for some of the other types of insurance your business may need are:

  • General Liability: $65/month
  • Business Owner’s Policy: $99/month
  • Professional Liability (E&O): $97/month

In general, getting a quote is the best way to find out how much Ohio business insurance will cost you.

Why do I need small business insurance?

Some professions or business contracts require that you have business insurance. If this doesn’t apply to you, insurance is still a critical component of your business portfolio. Your policy is there to protect your company and its assets from unexpected lawsuits and claims.

What kind of business insurance do I need?

The type of business insurance you need depends upon the products or services you offer and how your business is structured. Every business should have a general liability policy. If you have business tools, equipment, or vehicles, you’ll want to consider covering those assets as well.

Do I need insurance for my LLC in Ohio?

In short, yes. While incorporating as an LLC in Ohio protects your personal assets, your business assets are still at risk in the event of a claim or lawsuit.

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