General Contractors manage building projects through the daily oversight of construction activities, vendors, and subcontractors. They make sure that building projects are completed on time, within budget, and compliant with building plans and regulations. Some of these regulations include building regulations, safety regulations, and environmental regulations.
A construction project does not have to involve building on contaminated land in order to be subjected to potential environmental claims. Most environmental exposures stem from routine construction activities and often are not visible until they become costly problems. It is the responsibility of the general contractor to have an all-inclusive vision of the entire building project and prepare for any environmental concerns that could affect their employees, the public, and the environment.
General contractors often try to shift their environmental liabilities onto their subcontractors by ensuring that they are added onto their subcontractors’ insurance policies as additional insureds. In the case of environmental claims, subcontractor General Liability policies can have sublimits for environmental incidents or time element restrictions, which means that if there is a pollution event at a construction site, it must be discovered within a certain time period (ex. 7 days) and reported to the insurance carrier within a certain time period (ex. 30 days).
Because many environmental incidents at construction sites take place below ground and are not visible until they impact off-site properties, or may not be discovered until workers have completed work at the job site (as in the case of mold, for example), time element restrictions may hinder an insured’s ability to access coverage for pollution events. In the worst case scenarios, subcontractors may not have any pollution coverage at all.
Environmental concerns for General Contractors
- Job site: clearing/site grading/excavation activities
- Job Site: releasing contaminants at a job site or brought to a job
- Transportation of waste or materials to or from a job site
- Disposal of waste at non-owned facilities
- Insured’s owned premises
Environmental insurance products for General Contractors
Get claim scenarios for general contractors.