Why Buy Subcontractor Insurance?

General contractors purchase liability insurance to protect themselves financially from claims of personal injury or property damage.

A subcontractor hired to perform certain tasks should also be insured with liability insurance, for the same reason as the main contractor.

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Subcontractor Insurance Requirements in LA

Like most other jurisdictions, Los Angeles County requires that subcontractors on jobs carry liability insurance just like the primary contractors.  Contractors and subcontractors often perform similar functions on job sites, and operate under similar sets of risks.  The main difference between the two is who they are hired and directed by.  Thus, the main contractor is responsible for ensuring that their subcontractors are properly insured.

The County’s document on General Insurance Requirements for contractors contains the following final clause regarding subs:

Insurance Coverage Requirements for Subcontractors: The Contractor shall ensure any and all subcontractors performing services under this Contract meet the insurance requirements of this Contract by either:

  •  The Contractor providing evidence of insurance covering the activities of subcontractors, or
  • The Contractor providing evidence submitted by subcontractors evidencing that subcontractors maintain the required insurance coverage. The County retains the right to obtain copies of evidence of  subcontractor insurance coverage at any time.

This guideline makes it quite clear that subcontractors must adhere to all of the same liability requirements as the foreman who hired them.  Furthermore, the main contractor is responsible for proof that this is the case.

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