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Contractors Insurance

Does Your Insurance Work as Hard as You Do?
Insurance for Contractors

The Burns Agency represents companies that can offer a number of insurance options for contractors.  Do you want a “basic” policy that actually covers the basics?  Or do you need some of the extra coverages that are available?

Our base policy does not need to exclude explosion, collapse, underground, and roofing as some companies do. You have the option to include these important coverages.

The better policy is for contractors who have more equipment, or more employees, or wish to have coverage that is more broad. You can add coverage for faulty workmanship, pollution coverage regarding pollutants at the job site, tool coverage at replacement cost, ID theft & security breach, or limited coverage for employee tools.

So, whether you want a stripped down, inexpensive policy, or a broadened policy with many bells & whistles, The Burns Agency can help find a policy that works for you.

Some coverage tips for contractors:

  • Tools are usually covered at their current value, if so, you can reduce the limits as they age, in order to save premium.
  • Tools are often under a co-insurance clause, meaning that you should include all of your tools when determining a value, so the claim payment won’t be limited to the percentage of coverage.
  • “Your work” done incorrectly is not covered unless by a specific additional endorsement.
  • Auto insurance is usually more expensive on commercial vehicles – possibly offsetting the tax benefits. There are also some coverage reductions on commercial insurance versus personal insurance.
  • You can insure commercial vehicles on personal auto policies sometimes.  The exceptions are: corporate or LLC-owned vehicles, when employees drive, when multiple job site visits per day, or on a non-private-passenger type vehicle – for example: regular pickups and vans are ok but box vans and stake rack trucks are not.
  • Be sure to itemize vehicle accessories for coverage to apply. (truck caps, bedliners, plows, etc)
  • Outbuildings used (in any way, even a small amount of storage) for business purposes may be excluded from coverage on your homeowners policy – add them to your commercial policy if you care about damage to the building.
  • Materials on the job site are not automatically covered – but you can add coverage.
  • Explosion, Collapse, Underground, Snow Removal and Roofing coverages may be excluded from your policy, but you can buy the coverage back in some companies.
  • Business Personal Property coverage is for building contents on your listed premises only – you will need to add Inland Marine for tool and materials coverage at jobsites and in-transit.
  • Environmental and Pollution Liability coverage is not automatically included. Some coverage may be available by endorsement, or you may need to purchase a separate policy.
  • Lead paint tips for contractors at
  • Workers Compensation Board’s Employers’ Handbook – rules on who will be considered an employee, at
  • NY State Labor Law information at  Take a moment to read this one. It is important and pertinent to the construction industry.

If you have any questions, or if you would like to review your policy or get a quote, please contact Wendy Lawlor or David Burns at The Burns Agency. We look forward to hearing from you. Contact us »

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NYSIF contractors insurancePAYGO

NYSIF policyholders can pay their workers' compensation premium with NYSIF PAYGO. This is a convenient way for eligible policyholders to pay their premium through approved payroll processors. Through PAYGO, premiums are calculated based on actual payroll, which can result in more accurate premium calculations and smaller adjustments at the end of the policy period. To learn more about NYSIF PAYGO contact us or visit



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Going to Canada?

Ask us for a Canadian ID card. "A U.S. traveler in Canada is required to carry a motor vehicle liability card, plus vehicle ownership papers. A copy of the automobile policy is recommended to be carried. And a Canadian Non-Resident Inter-provincial Motor Vehicle Liability Card is strongly recommended. U.S. travelers who do not carry a Canadian Non-Resident Inter-provincial Motor Vehicle Liability Card and are stopped by Canadian police or are in an accident while driving in Canada risk being fined or having their vehicle impounded until proof of proper coverage is obtained."