Painting contractors and other types of painting codes that may apply to this: Painting – metal structures – over two stories in height; Painting – exterior – buildings or structures – three stories or less in height; Painting – interior – buildings or structures; Painting – oil or gasoline tanks; Painting ship hulls; Painting – automobile or carriage bodies; Painting shop only; Painting – steel structures or bridges.
Common Insurance Terms
Description of operations: Painting contractors do interior and exterior painting of residential or commercial buildings, other structures, such as ships or bridges, street or parking lot striping, and signs. Equipment and supplies may include paints, stains, enamels, varnishes, special soundproof or waterproof substances, and insulation. Painters may perform work on new construction, in connection with ongoing maintenance, or during renovation. Typically the work involves surface preparation (including removal of old wall coverings), application of the paint, finish work, and cleanup. The removal and disposal of lead-based paints from older buildings and structures presents a lead contamination exposure affecting liability, environmental, and workers compensation.
Property exposures are generally limited to an office and storage for supplies, tools and vehicles. If there are shop operations, fire or explosion can result from the flammability of paints, varnishes and thinners or the use of dip tanks and/or spray booths. Spray booths should have explosion resistant lighting and be separated from combustibles. Poor housekeeping or improper storage or labeling of flammable, hazardous, or reactive substances significantly increases the inherent hazards.
Crime exposures are from employee dishonesty. Background checks, including criminal history, should be performed on all employees providing services to customers or handling money. All ordering, billing and disbursement should be handled as separate duties with reconciliations occurring regularly.
Inland marine exposures include accounts receivable if the painter offers credit to customers, contractors’ equipment and tools, goods in transit, installation floater, and valuable papers and records for customers’ and suppliers’ information. The equipment may be limited to brushes, rollers and other hand tools, or there may be sprayers, ladders, scaffolding, cherry pickers, and similar equipment. There may be rental, leasing or borrowing of specialized equipment. The transport of barrels of paint and other materials and equipment can be difficult; training in proper handling is essential. During installation, the materials are subject to loss or damage by fire, theft, contamination, damage by employees of other contractors, vandalism, and weather-related perils.
Premises liability exposures at the contractor’s office are generally limited due to lack of public access. If there is a storage yard or shop operation, a fire can spread to neighboring businesses or homes. Controls in waste handling and fire control are important. Outdoor storage may create vandalism and attractive nuisance hazards. Off-site exposures are extensive. Jobsite operations include the potential for bodily injury to members of the household, the public, or employees of other contractors, or damage to their property or completed work. Tools, power cords, painting materials and scrap all pose trip hazards even when not in use. If there is work at heights, falling tools or supplies may cause bodily injury or property damage if dropped from ladders and scaffolding. Removal of old paint or wall coverings may involve scraping, chemical applications, or sandblasting which can damage other property of the client. The job may require the removal of old lead-based paint. All exterior painting presents an over spray exposure which may damage surrounding premises, vehicles, or structures. All exterior spray painting or sandblasting operations need to be handled with great care. When interior work is done in buildings, ships, tanks, or other structures, ventilation is vital for the safety of clients, passersby, and the contractor’s workers since fumes can cause severe bodily injury.
Environmental impairment liability exposures arise from the application or removal, transport, and disposal of paints, solvents, varnishes, and other chemicals. The removal, transportation and disposal of lead paint are particularly hazardous. Although the application of lead paint is now a controlled substance, it is still available and approved for specific commercial and industrial applications. The chips and dust generated during surface preparation present a significant hazard because ingested lead is associated with severe neurological and developmental disorders, especially in young children. Transportation and disposal procedures must adhere to all EPA and other regulatory standards. Training and supervision of employees are critical.
Automobile exposures are generally limited to transporting workers, equipment, and paints and other materials to and from job sites. MVRs must be run on a regular basis. Random drug and alcohol testing should be conducted. Vehicles must be well maintained with records kept in a central location. Hazards of transport include upsets or spills while hauling heavy containers of paint. Vehicles may have special modifications or built-in equipment such as lifts and hoists.
Workers compensation exposures vary based on the size and nature of the job. Caustics, paints and thinners generate fumes that can result in irritation to the eye, nose, throat, skin and lungs. Workers may be exposed to dust and chips containing lead. Back injury, hernia, sprains and strains can result from lifting. The use of power tools can result in cuts and burns. Casual labor and high turnover may be a problem, especially in the prep and cleanup work.
When work is done on ladders and scaffolds, there is a potential for injury from falling, being struck by falling objects, or adverse weather conditions. The absence of good maintenance of scaffolds, proper use of basic safety equipment, such as properly installed guards, steel-toed shoes, and eye protection, and strict enforcement of safety practices may indicate a morale hazard. The removal of old paint presents a serious exposure. Lack of a procedure to determine if the paint to be removed is lead based, or lack of procedures for safe clean-up and disposal of chips and the solvents used to remove lead, adds significantly to the loss potential.
Minimum recommended coverage
Business Personal Property, Employee Dishonesty, Contractors’ Equipment, General Liability, Employee Benefits Liability, Umbrella Liability, Automobile Liability and Physical Damage, Hired and Nonownership Auto, Workers Compensation
Other coverages to consider
Building, Business Income with Extra Expense, Earthquake, Flood, Leasehold Interest, Real Property Legal Liability, Accounts Receivable, Computers, Goods in Transit, Installation Floater, Valuable Papers and Records, Cyberliability, Employment-related Practices, Environmental Impairment Liability, Stop Gap Liability
Reprinted with permission from the Rough Note’s Company copyrighted content.
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