Working from home? You may need to boost homeowner’s insurance
With more and more people working from home because of the pandemic, experts caution that this could affect their home insurance.
Homeowners insurance is not the same as business insurance, said Christine O'Brien, president of The New Jersey Insurance Council. Some home insurance policies may already have certain endorsements that provide liability protections for working from home but others don't.
She suggested purchasing what is called an incidental office occupancy endorsement. This will provide more liability coverage for personal electronics that are being used for business.
O'Brien suggests checking with your employer or human resources department to find out what new work-from-home guidelines they have implemented. Then get out the homeowners policy and speak to an agent. Let them know your circumstances changed and you're predominantly working from home.
O'Brien said if office property is being brought to your home for work purposes, that will most likely be covered by the employer. But if someone is using personal equipment to do their work, then O'Brien said you'll have to boost the home insurance to cover that property.
If New Jerseyans find themselves self-employed during the pandemic, O'Brien said they should be looking to buy general liability insurance, professional liability insurance and a business owner's policy.
What happens if an employee falls in their home or if a client falls on their property? O'Brien said if someone falls on a person's property, homeowners insurance covers it. But if it is work related, a worker's compensation claim is different because one would have to prove that the injury happened while he or she was physically working.
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