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Ontario Contractor Insurance

Being a contractor is no small feat – it requires skill, dedication, and a strong foundation of experience. That's where Humberview Insurance comes in. Think of us as more than just an insurance provider; we're your partner, dedicated to helping your business thrive and grow. We understand the intricacies of contractor insurance and offer tailored solutions to protect your business. With Humberview Insurance by your side, you can focus on what you do best, knowing that we're here to support every step of your journey. Get in touch with us today – let's discuss how we can contribute to your success and keep your business secure. Simple, straightforward, and always there for you – that's our promise at Humberview Insurance.

Contractor Insurance by Trade

This content is for general informational purposes regarding Ontario contractor insurance and should not be considered professional advice. Always consult with an insurance advisor for specific guidance.

Standard Insurance Coverage for a Contractor

Contractor Liability Insurance

Contractor liability insurance in Ontario is a crucial form of protection that needs to be specifically tailored for contractors' operations. It serves as a safeguard against various legal claims and financial losses arising from bodily injuries and property damage to third parties. Ontario contractor insurance policies need to be customized for your specific trade.

Additional Insurance for Contractors in Ontario, Coverages You Should Consider

Tools & Equipment Insurance

This coverage is crucial for contractors as it protects against the loss, theft, or damage of tools and equipment. Since contractors rely heavily on their tools and machinery to perform their work, this insurance helps to ensure that they can replace or repair their essential equipment quickly in case of unexpected incidents.

Employee Dishonesty/Crime Insurance

This type of insurance provides protection against financial losses due to the fraudulent or dishonest acts of employees. This can include theft of money, securities, or property. For contractors, where employees might have access to various resources or sites, this insurance is beneficial to mitigate risks associated with employee misconduct.

Installation Floater

An installation floater is a type of insurance that covers materials from the moment they are loaded onto a transport vehicle until they are installed and accepted by the purchaser. For contractors, this is particularly important as it covers the materials in transit, onsite, and during the course of installation. It's a crucial coverage considering the potential risks associated with transporting and installing valuable materials.

Pollution Liability Insurance

This insurance provides coverage for third-party claims for damages caused by hazardous waste materials or pollutants that are released due to negligence of the contractor. Given the nature of some contracting work, there's a risk of accidental pollution, such as spills or contamination. Pollution liability insurance helps protect against the legal and cleanup costs associated with such incidents.

Common Exclusions under Contractor Liability Insurance

Injury to owners and employees

Contractor liability policies primarily cover third-party liabilities, excluding injuries to owners and employees as these are typically covered under workers' compensation insurance. This separation ensures that the policy focuses on external risks while workers' compensation addresses job-related injuries and illnesses of employees. Owners, likewise, are excluded as they should rely on personal or health insurance for their injury protection.

Poor or faulty workmanship

Contractor liability policies typically exclude damages resulting from poor or faulty workmanship, as these are considered preventable issues arising from the contractor's own professional shortcomings or negligence.

Events that give rise to pollution

This clause typically excludes coverage for any damage or injury resulting from the release, escape, or dispersal of pollutants. Pollutants can include substances like chemicals, waste materials, and other hazardous materials that can contaminate the environment (air, water, soil). Contractors with an exposure to hazards where pollution can occur should look at taking out a separate policy designed for pollution liability.

Design work or advice

Contractor liability policies generally exclude coverage for issues arising from design work, planning, or professional advice. Contractors offering these services should consider Professional Liability Insurance to protect against related errors and omissions.

Among Others

This serves as a reminder that insurance policies can have numerous specific conditions and limitations, which may not be immediately apparent. Due to the complexity and diversity of these exclusions, it's highly recommended for contractors to consult with a licensed insurance broker. A broker can provide detailed explanations, help in understanding the full scope of the policy's coverage, and assist in identifying any additional insurance needs that might be necessary for comprehensive risk management

Ways to Save on Contractor Insurance in Ontario

Shop Around

don’t settle just for one contractor insurance quote. Compare quotes from multiple insurance providers including insurance agents and companies directly. Ensure you’re getting the best contractor insurance coverage at a fair price.


Some insurance companies may give discounts if you bundle your commercial auto insurance with the same company – ask.

Understand Your Needs

make sure you understand exactly what coverage you need. Over-insuring can lead to unnecessary costs, while under-insuring can leave you vulnerable should a claim occur. Tailor your policy to your specific risks.

Risk Management

implement effective strategies such as safety training, maintain a safe worksite and asking important questions before work begins.

Pay Annually

some insures charge for paying monthly, paying annually can sometimes save you some money which adds up over the years.

Ask for Discounts

Don’t hesitate to ask your contractor insurance company or broker about any discounts that may apply to you such as being claims free.

Review Regularly

As your business changes, so do your insurance needs. Review your policy frequently to make sure it still fits your business and always reflect your business operations accurately.

Higher deductibles

Opting for a higher deductible can lower your premium costs. However, ensure that you can afford the deductible in case of a claim.

Tips for Contractors

Collect Certificates of Insurance

Ensure that all subcontractors you work with have valid insurance coverage, protecting you and your clients from potential liabilities.

Focus on Safety

Prioritize safety measures at job sites to protect your team and prevent accidents, reducing both financial and human costs.

Vet Sub-contractors Carefully

Thoroughly screen and choose subcontractors who meet your standards for quality work and professionalism.

Stay on Top of Paperwork and Bookkeeping

Maintain accurate records, invoices, and financial documents to track expenses, income, and taxes efficiently.

Focus on Client Satisfaction

Deliver exceptional service, address client concerns promptly, and prioritize customer satisfaction to build a positive reputation and generate referrals.

Don't Sell Yourself Short

Set competitive but fair pricing for your services to ensure you're adequately compensated for your work, expertise and the use of your tools and equipment

Ask for Feedback

Regularly seek feedback from clients and colleagues to identify areas for improvement and ensure you meet or exceed expectations.

Stay Organized

Keep your projects, schedules, and materials organized to prevent delays, reduce waste, and improve efficiency.

Invest in Quality Tools

Purchase and maintain high-quality tools to enhance productivity, ensure safety, and deliver superior workmanship.

Continuously Improve Skills

Stay updated with industry trends and technology, attend training programs, and strive for ongoing skill development to remain competitive and provide top-notch services.

These are tips most businesses in Ontario, Canada should follow. By building a reputable business with solid client satisfaction and safety records you are building a strong business that will get referrals for years to come. The above is just general info it shouldn’t be relied upon as advice.

Contractor Insurance Claim – A Real World Example

A contractor was hired to install an Ethernet internet cable in a senior’s residence. When drilling through a wall, the contractor accidently hit a main water supply pipe. This caused damage to the floor and walls below.

  • The Amount Paid By the Insurance Company $82,500
  • The Amount Paid by Our Contractor $1,000

As you can see our contractor was responsible for paying their $1,000 deductible and the rest was paid by the insurer. The contractor’s insurance policy only cost $1,500 annually.

Following the incident, the contractor has implemented proactive measures to enhance safety and reduce risks in future projects. These measures include thorough verification of utility blueprints before beginning any work, engaging a specialized third-party service to accurately mark utility lines in the work area, and adopting additional risk management strategies to prevent similar occurrences

Disclaimer: This example is for illustrative purposes only and should not be interpreted as insurance advice or reflective of specific policy coverage. Insurance terms vary significantly, and the details of each claim are unique. This scenario is not indicative of all situations and should not be relied upon for personal insurance decisions. Consult a qualified insurance professional for advice tailored to your specific circumstances.

Contractors in Ontario

Ontario, Canada's diverse contracting and construction industry is thriving, fueled by a consistent demand for skilled labor. Across cities and regions, opportunities abound in residential and commercial construction, renovations, and infrastructure projects. The industry, while grappling with a shortage of skilled professionals, offers a unique chance for dedicated contractors to excel. From the bustling Greater Toronto Area to projects across various specialties in Ottawa, each region in Ontario presents distinct contracting opportunities, making it an exciting and rewarding market for skilled and hardworking contractors.

Secure Your Business on the Road: Contractor Commercial Auto Insurance

  • Humberview Insurance Brokers, a trusted name in Ontario for over 40 years, specializing in commercial auto insurance for contractors.

  • Offering comprehensive insurance solutions tailored for vehicles used by contractors.

  • Competitive rates, expert advice, and personalized service for contractors' vehicle insurance needs

  • Ideal for contractors with single vehicles or those with multiple vehicles and fleets.

  • Streamlined insurance process tailored to the unique needs of contractors

  • Easy online quote comparison for contractors seeking the best coverage for their business vehicles.

  • Dedicated Commercial Auto Insurance Quotes for contractors.


  • Does a contractor need liability insurance in Ontario?

    Contractors need insurance for several reasons. Depending on your specific requirements, contractors generally need liability insurance for the following reasons:

    • Protection from legal claims: if a contractor accidentally damages a client’s property or if a third party is injured as result of their work, they could face a lawsuit. Insurance can cover legal fees and any resulting settlements or judgments. It is important though, that your contractor insurance policy is tailored to cover all aspects of your business’ operations. Speak with a qualified business insurance broker to find out more.
    • Contract requirements: Many contracts will require proof of liability insurance prior to performing a job or getting paid.
    • Peace of mind: Having the proper third party liability insurance in place for your business provides owners peace of mind that they are protected against certain risks.
    • Professional image and credibility: Having liability insurance can enhance an independent contractor's reputation, showing potential clients that they are professional and prepared to take responsibility for their work.

    Other reasons can exist and its important to speak to a business insurance broker regarding your exposures, risks and concerns

  • How much is contractors insurance in Ontario?

    If we are speaking strictly about contractor’s liability insurance, the price varies significantly. For instance, if you a tiling contractor working in residential homes, who needs $2 million third party liability insurance, the cost for coverage is generally $60-70 per month. But this can vary depending on what projects you take on, the size of the business, other coverages, your claims history and other factors. If you are a bigger contractor, require coverage for tools and equipment or other coverages the cost would be more.

  • Why do independent contractors need insurance?

    In short, you as a contractor can be sued because of your business operations. Liability insurance protects you not only the settlement or judgments amounts against you but also the legal costs associated with defending against a covered claim.

  • What Type of Insurance Does a Contractor in Ontario Need?

    There are various types of insurance that a contractor may need in Ontario, which can include any, all or even more then the following:

    • Liability Insurance: This is crucial for any contractor. Liability insurance protects against claims arising from injuries or damage to other people or property. If a contractor or their employees accidentally cause damage to a client's property or injure a third party while working, this insurance can cover the costs.
    • Commercial Auto Insurance: If a contractor uses vehicles for work, commercial auto insurance is necessary. This covers vehicles that are used for business purposes, providing protection against liability, collision, and other vehicular risks.
    • Workers' Compensation Insurance: In Ontario, the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) requires most businesses with employees to have workers' compensation insurance. This covers medical expenses and lost wages for employees injured on the job.
    • Tools and Equipment Insurance: This covers the cost of repairing or replacing tools and equipment that are lost, stolen, or damaged.
    • Builder’s Risk or Course of Construction Insurance: This is often required for construction projects. It covers buildings and materials during the construction phase.
    • Professional Liability Insurance: Also known as Errors and Omissions (E&O) Insurance, this is relevant for contractors who provide design or consulting services. It protects against claims of negligence or failure to perform professional duties.

    Other types of coverages may be required or necessary and it is always best to speak with a business insurance agent or broker regarding specific coverages you may need.

  • What is a Certificate of Insurance?

    A certificate of insurance or “COI” is a document issued by an insurance company or broker that verifies the existence of an insurance policy. It summarizes the key aspects and conditions of the policy, providing proof of insurance coverage. This document is particularly important in business transactions, as it offers assurance to clients, partners, or other parties that appropriate insurance is in place.

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