The USA is a country where people are thoroughly protected by the law in case there is an injury due to the neglect or fault of a property owner. You can rest relatively easy knowing that, if someone does neglect their property and you are injured because of it, you will be compensated for that injury. However, this reliability of our lawsuits may look different to someone who owns property or a business. With some people looking to earn money by filing silly lawsuits, property and business owners need to be very careful in case something ridiculous (and expensive) happens.
The problem is, even if the lawsuit is exposed as phony and you win, you still will need to pay the legal bills that come with being in a lawsuit. For that reason, you should plan accordingly for how to protect yourself from any silly lawsuits that might come your way.
The first and most effective thing you can do to protect yourself against phony lawsuits is to buy liability insurance. Make sure you are including excess or umbrella insurance, as it will cover not just injuries, but also the invasion of privacy, false arrest, or defamation. Don’t be too cheap to pay for the insurance, because the risk is simply too high to make it worth saving that bit of money up front. A good idea with your liability insurance is also to raise your property deductible so you can be covered for more catastrophic liability.
Plan for the worst
Think about if the worst did happen, and you were sued. What if the lawsuit somehow didn’t go your way? It’s happened before, of course, so it’s a good idea to plan for the worst just in case anything were to ever happen. Write down everything that you would lose if you were to lose a lawsuit, and use that to plan your asset protection. Gain a thorough understanding of your insurance policies, and meet with an expert (such as an adviser or insurance broker) to verify that you are truly prepared for the worst.
Business owners, beware
If you are the owner of your own business, it might be time to consider making a C or S corporation subchapter or else an LLC (limited liability company) to keep your own personal assets protected. That way, your business assets (and losses) can remain separate from your personal assets.
Be a reliable business owner
In general, the best way to protect yourself from any lawsuits is to simply do good business — if you give your word, keep it! Don’t say anything that might offend people — stay positive. Lawsuits can emerge from disagreements of all sorts. Choose your business associates carefully and keep everything official and on paper so you can always prove your side. Keep a camera with you just in case there’s some sort of staged accident so you can document what actually happened to prove it later.