Insurance Woes

When you are a freelancer working from home, you are supposed to advise your insurance company that you work from home (In Québec anyway). Obviously, they’ll adjust your contract but at least that way they wont try to sneak out of paying if something happens and they didn’t know you were using your apartment for an office.

So I did that last year. Problem is, they don’t insure web developers! No, really, they’re all super afraid of the millions upon millions I could get sued for if I don’t deliver a site!!! My laptop is leased and I’ve got an insurance with that so even though it’s too expensive, I wasn’t in a super big hurry to find something else. I did however find out that the insurers you can do business directly with (Desjardins, La Capitale, etc.) don’t insure freelancers, period. You have to use a broker (courtier) and the first few brokers I spoke to were charging me double my current policy just to switch the same equipment from “personal belonging” to “stuff I work with from home” and most couldn’t simply option the responsibility part of it out of the policy.

This morning I finally found one who offers a “floating” addon to a home insurance policy and covers all my equipement, at home and anywhere I might use it. The replacement of my home policy plus the floating part comes out to only 30$ more than I was paying.

Anyway, I know a good number of freelancers so I posted this in case it can help but mosty I wanted to mention that I found out why they wouldn’t cover a web developer; the Y2K bug!! You know, the thing that didn’t happen? When they realized that potentially computer bugs could cost them a lot, they hiked the restrictions to insane levels and pretty much priced out anyone too small to pay. Nice. Fucking nice.

One last thing; I HATE having to almost torture people to explain their goddamed service. The guy where I finally got the info and a good price initially said “we don’t cover web developers” and I could “hear” the phone pulling away from is hear to hang up. I had to tweak the first bits of information out of him until he finally realised that I wasn’t asking for much and he had the perfect product.


cfd June 20, 2006

Il faut faire la différence (et les vendeurs ne la font parfois pas) entre l’assurance biens et meubles, l’assurance responsabilité civile et l’assurance responsabilité professionnelle.

Les deux premières sont simples à trouver et coûtent généralement pas tellement plus cher que l’assurance de maison, elle t’assure contre le feu, le vol, les bris accidentels et la responsabilité civile (si ton appartement brûle et que le voisin y passe, ou si quelqu’un s’électrocute chez vous genre).

La responsabilité professionnelle (contre les poursuites reliés à ton travail, les accidents que pourraient causer ton travail, etc.) est beaucoup plus difficile à trouver et surtout TRES coûteuse tant pour les particuliers que pour les entreprises. Le seul problème est que certains contrats (gouvernements, grandes entreprises) exigent que l’on soit couvert contre ces risques pour 1 ou 2M$. (Naturellement, comme le risque est très difficile à évaluer, le questionnaire d’adhésion est très long, et comporte de multiples options pour tous les rouages de notre industrie… Il y a aussi des risques qui ne sont pas couvrables (du moins dans les contrats que j’ai vu), tel les données appartenant à un client.)

Patrick June 20, 2006

Moi je fait la différence et je ne veux pas d’assurance responsabilité mais la plupart des morons à qui j’ai parlé ne prennent pas le temps de penser à ce que je demande; “web? onfaitpascamercibonjour”.

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