10 important insurance policies for starters

As an entrepreneur, you run different risks than people who are employed. You can cover yourself against these entrepreneurial risks. Learn more about insurance for your business and yourself.

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By taking out insurance, you limit your risks. Insurances you have taken out privately usually do not reimburse in case of business problems. 

Mandatory insurance

Most insurances are not mandatory, except health insurance. And do you have a company car? If so, third-party car insurance is mandatory. Other insurances are required for some professions. Check this with, for example, your sector association.

Insurance for your company

With these insurances, you avoid having to pay for claims yourself:

Business liability insurance

You have opened a beautiful shop, but a customer trips over your rug. Or you are an adviser and during your presentation, you knock over a cup of tea onto a laptop that is not yours. With business liability insurance you are covered for  the damage you cause to others while you are working. This includes damage to other people’s property as well as if you cause an injury to someone else.

Professional indemnity insurance

You are an accountant and you make an error in a client’s tax return. Or you are an architect and you make a mistake when taking measurements. To protect yourself and your business from the financial consequences of such mistakes, you can take out professional indemnity insurance (BAV). This covers damages caused by professional errors made by yourself or your staff. BAV is mandatory for certain professional groups, such as lawyers, doctors, architects, and accountants. 

Video: On top of business risks

Vinsent Hooimeijer, account manager at Interpolis insurance company, explains how to limit your liability as a self-employed person. 

On top of business risks (Bedrijfsrisico’s de baas)

Legal assistance insurance

You have a conflict with the landlord of your business premises. Or a client refuses to pay. Legal assistance insurance offers professional legal support in case of such conflicts. It covers, for example, the costs for legal advice, costs of litigation and court costs, and attorney's fees. Often conflicts have to do with unpaid bills. So, make sure that collection assistance is also included in your legal assistance insurance.

Cyber insurance

Cyber insurance protects you against costs you incur if you become a victim of cybercrime. Think of a virus, hack, or ransomware. When you take out cyber insurance, check you are also insured for third-party damage. That is the damage incurred, for example, by a customer or business partner due to cybercrime at your company. Also check if it covers any legal help you might need.

Buildings, goods, and inventory insurance

Are you renting an office space, commercial space or retail premises? Or do you own business premises yourself? Then fire or a burglary can cause damage. You might lose your stock, for example. You can insure your business premises via a building insurance policy.

The belongings and equipment for your business are insured via inventory insurance or business contents insurance. You are then covered for damage to items such as tools, machines, computers, and electronics. For example, if damage is caused by fire, storm, water or theft.

You insure your trading stock with goods insurance. Some insurers offer inventory and goods insurance as a single product. Do you work from home? Then ordinary contents insurance is usually sufficient. Check with your insurer.

Business interruption insurance

Suppose your company comes to a standstill due to fire or another cause. Your turnover will then come to a halt, but your personnel costs and rent will continue. Business interruption insurance covers the fixed costs so that you can continue your business. Check if it also covers the profit you lose because you are making less revenue.

Business partner insurance

Do you work together with partners in a vof, bv, or in another legal form? If your business partner dies, their heirs can claim part of the company. Business partner insurance pays out a sum of money so that you can, for example, buy out your partner’s heirs. .

Insurance for yourself

Disability insurance

If you work as a self-employed person, you will not receive any benefits in case of illness or an accident. A few days or weeks of not working due to illness may be something you can make up for with savings. But what if you are sick for a longer period of time or even become incapacitated?

With disability insurance (AOV), you ensure that you still have income in such cases. But many self-employed people find an AOV too expensive. Did you know that there are more options to insure yourself of an income? Apart from taking out an AOV, you can:

Video: On top of business risks

Risk specialist Norbert Bakker of the B2Bsure insurance company explains how to ensure income as an entrepreneur in case of illness or disability.

Arbeidsongeschiktheid | Bedrijfsrisico's de baas


Everyone in the Netherlands is entitled to a national old age pension (AOW) from a certain age. Usually an AOW pension will be much less than you earned with your company. Do you want to  build up extra pension as an entrepreneur? One way to do this is through paying into a pension fund. Arrange this as early as possible in your career, because the earlier you start, the more pension you can accrue. Do you still have a salaried job or benefits? Then check with your pension fund whether you can continue to accrue a pension with them when you start a business.

Mandatory pensions apply to a limited number of sectors and professional groups. For example, if you are a painter, you are obliged to pay pension premiums to the pension fund for painting businesses (Bedrijfspensioenfonds Schilderbedrijven).

Term life insurance

When you die, the financial consequences can be significant for those left behind. If you work as an employee, your partner and children will receive a survivor's pension in the event of your death. Entrepreneurs are not entitled to this scheme. A term life insurance policy ensures that your partner and children receive benefits for a certain period of time.

To insure or not to insure?

Make a good assessment of the risks you face as an entrepreneur. Which insurances are really necessary?

Use the KVK Insurance Check to find out which insurances are useful for your business.

Banks, insurance companies, and trade associations often offer 'business packages' that include the most common business insurances. Compare premiums and insurance coverage and, if necessary, seek advice from an independent adviser.