About General Liability Insurance

All businesses, regardless of industry, face risks that should be covered by insurance. The most common and comprehensive type of policy business owners invest in is general liability insurance (or CGL).

Some of the risks CGL insurance covers are:

  • Bodily injury
  • Property damage
  • Medical payments
  • Legal defense and judgment
  • Personal and advertising injury

While businesses aren't legally required to carry general liability insurance, operating without it is extremely risky. If your business is sued, you could end up facing fees totaling hundreds of thousands of dollars (or more). Having a sufficient CGL policy in place to help compensate for these damages is the only way to prevent this type of event from devastating your business.

Learn more about the risks covered by general liability insurance.


Example 1: A shipment of tanning oils developed an unseen leak, and a customer slips and falls. Your customer sues seeking damages, including payment of their medical bills. General liability insurance would help you cover these costs.

Example 2: You sell a customer tanning aftercare products. They develop a rash and a strong allergic reaction. With a general liability policy, you should be covered for immediate medical expenses, legal fees, and resulting settlement costs.

Example 3: After operating a successful business for many years, you are sued by another business with the same name for copyright infringement. Your general liability policy should cover any associated costs related to the case.

Of course, this is not an exhaustive list of perils a general liability insurance policy will cover, and some conditions may result in a particular peril not being covered. It's always best to talk to your agent in-depth about the specifics of your policy to avoid blind spots in coverage.

Cost Of General Liability Insurance

On average, tanning salons in America spend between $350 - $750 per year for $1 million in general liability coverage.

Check out the chart below for a snapshot of average CGL expenditure across a variety of industries:

Graph showing average price of general liability insurance prices per industry

Several factors will determine the price of your policy. These include your:

  • Location
  • Deductible
  • Number of employees
  • Per-occurrence limit
  • General aggregate limit

You may be able to acquire general liability insurance at a discounted rate by purchasing it as part of a business owner's policy (BOP) rather than as a standalone policy. A BOP is a more comprehensive solution that includes multiple forms of coverage, such as business interruption and property insurance.

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Other Types Of Coverage Tanning Salons Need

While general liability is the most important type of insurance to have, there are several other forms of coverage you should be aware of. Below are some other types of insurance all tanning salons should obtain:

Commercial Property Insurance

If a fire or other covered event damages owned real estate or any business property kept on site, commercial property insurance can help cover the cost of repairing or replacing this property. When choosing the policy’s coverage limits, carefully consider the replacement cost of all business property. Limits should be enough to replace all equipment and to rebuild the building in the event of a loss.

This coverage is frequently purchased as part of a business owner’s policy (BOP).

Workers’ Compensation Insurance

Each state requires all businesses to carry a certain level of workers’ compensation insurance for each employee. This policy covers medical treatment and lost wages in the event of a work-related illness or injury.

Workers’ compensation is typically purchased as a standalone policy.

Types Of Coverage Some Tanning Salons May Need

In addition to the policies outlined above, there are a few other types of coverage your tanning salon may require depending on certain aspects of your operations. Some of these might not apply to you, so be sure to ask your agent which policies are right for your business.

Commercial Umbrella Liability Insurance

Since liability risks often exceed primary policy limits, a commercial umbrella liability policy should be considered. It adds an extra layer of protection should a large covered lawsuit occur.

Additional Steps To Protect Your Business

Although it's easy (and essential) to invest in business insurance, it should not be your frontline defense. Yes, insurance will compensate for your business' financial losses after an incident occurs, but it's much better to avoid losses altogether.

With this in mind, here are three things you can do to better protect your business:

  • Use legally robust contracts and other business documents. (We offer free templates for some of the most common legal forms.)
  • Set up a limited liability company (LLC) to protect your personal assets. (Refer to our guide for step-by-step instructions on how to form an LLC in your state.)
  • Streamline your business' internal processes. This will remove unnecessary variables from common tasks and create a safe, consistent environment for conducting business.