South Carolina Small Business Insurance

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Protecting small businesses in the Palmetto State

Small businesses are doing big business in South Carolina, where more than 400,000 small businesses make up 99.4% of all businesses in the state. This may be due, in part, to South Carolina's uniquely welcoming economic climate for businesses. South Carolina offers no state property tax, no local income tax, no inventory tax, no sales tax on manufacturing machinery, no wholesale tax and a favorable corporate income tax structure—all benefits that work together to reduce a small business's start-up and operating costs.

With all of these incentives, it's no wonder that South Carolina's small businesses employ more than 777,000 people—or nearly half of South Carolina's entire private workforce—and that number keeps growing every year. In 2015, small businesses created nearly 30,000 net jobs. But with complex workers compensation regulations and a coastal location that brings the risk of hurricane season every year, it's wise for small business owners in South Carolina to take steps to protect their investments.

Top covered industries in South Carolina

Small businesses throughout South Carolina's richly diverse industries can find insurance coverage with Hiscox, which tailors each insurance plan to each small business's specific risks and needs. Small business owners who insure with Hiscox include those who work in the insurance, cleaning services, information technology, lawn care and home repair industries.

More professions we insure in South Carolina

South Carolina Small Business Insurance

If you have a professional services business in South Carolina, you’ve come to the right place. We currently offer a range of small business insurance coverage, which includes professional liability insurance and general liability insurance.

Did you know?

South Carolina offers the same labor laws that the federal government guarantees across the United States. For example, any business with more than 15 employees may not discriminate against employees based on race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, genetic information or disability. Like most states, South Carolina is an "at-will" employment state, meaning that employers can fire employees at any time for any reason, but employees can still sue for breach of contract if they believe the terms of their employment contract have been violated. Employees in South Carolina are also entitled to the federal minimum wage, federal overtime regulations and federal break time regulations.

Careful business practices can, of course, mitigate the risk of wrongful-termination and discrimination lawsuits. However, all South Carolina small business owners face the natural risks associated with a coastal location, including the tropical storms, wind damage and heavy rains that come along with hurricane season. For example, Gov. Henry McMaster reported that Hurricane Florence caused $607 million in damages in South Carolina in September 2018 when it brought more than 20 inches of rain in parts of South Carolina over four days—an estimate that includes $111 million in flood insurance-related claims.

And although it doesn't lay on a fault line, South Carolina also experiences its share of earthquakes—between 10 and 20 each year, two to five of which are felt. In 2014, a 4.1 magnitude earthquake shook the Edgefield area, causing visible damage to several buildings. In 1886, a 7.3 magnitude earthquake killed 60 people and caused damage that, in today's dollars, would amount to tens of millions of dollars.

Small business owners can help mitigate some of these risks through custom small business insurance, including a business owner's policy that protects against property damage.


South Carolina workers compensation laws

According to the National Federation of Independent Businesses, any South Carolina business with four or more employees—including full- and part-time workers, seasonal employees, and both adults and minors, but excluding volunteers—is required to carry workers compensation insurance.

However, there are exceptions: Agricultural employees, railroad or railway employees, textile hall corporations, and realtors who are paid on commission are exempt from workers compensation requirements. While business owners such as sole proprietors, partners and LLC members aren't automatically covered in workers compensation insurance coverage, they may choose to include themselves in their company’s coverage. And if a company hires a subcontractor who is not insured, any of the subcontractor's injured employees would be covered under the hiring company's workers compensation insurance, so even a business with fewer than four employees should consider workers compensation insurance if it hires any contract workers.

There's another excellent reason for small businesses to obtain workers compensation insurance, even when not required by law. If an injured employee makes a workers compensation claim against an uninsured business, the cost of that employee's medical care and missed work—as well as any litigation costs—would be covered by the state-created-and-maintained South Carolina Workers Compensation Uninsured Employers' fund. This fund can, in turn, take the business's assets to cover the costs of the claim, and even if the business declares bankruptcy, the state can still have a lien on its assets. 

How can Hiscox help your South Carolina business?

At Hiscox, there's no such thing as a one-size-fits-all insurance policy. Our expertise across a variety of industries helps ensure that each client's coverage—from liability insurance to a business owner's policy to workers compensation and beyond—meets their particular needs. We offer a range of benefits:

  • Flexible payment options: Our monthly payment schedule, which comes with no added fees, can help you manage your cash flow.
  • Tailored insurance: With Hiscox, you'll only pay for the coverage you need.
  • Claims responsiveness: When a covered claim is reported, Hiscox will immediately assign a dedicated claims representative to assist you.
  • Worldwide coverage: A South Carolina business insured through Hiscox is covered for work done anywhere in the world, as long as the claim is filed in the U.S., a U.S. Territory or Canada.

Get a fast, free quote now and get that Hiscox confidence behind your South Carolina business. If you prefer, you can call us at 1-866-283-7545 and speak with a Hiscox licensed agent, Monday – Friday, 7am – 10pm ET.

Hiscox Customer Reviews

Hiscox rated 4.7/5
Rated 4.7/5

5 Stars

Samantha, South Carolina

"Excellent Understandable"

Very convenient and easy to purchase just what I needed for my business


5 Stars

Jong, South California

"Liability insurance premium is affordable. I will keep this insurance policy until I am working my business operation. Thanks Hiscox's insurance service."


5 Stars

Richard, South Carolina

"Excellent experience. Website information was clear and easy to understand. Selecting the right product and getting immediate feedback was great."


4 Stars

Oliver, Hemingway, SC

"Great price."


5 Stars

Hands Up, llc, Academy and West Colorado office

"customer service was great"

met our business needs

See More Reviews

This information is provided to assist you in understanding the coverage we offer and does not modify the terms and conditions of any insurance policy, nor does it imply that any claim is covered. Coverage is subject to underwriting and may not be available in all states.

Administered by Hiscox Inc., a Delaware corporation that is a licensed insurance producer in all states and Washington, D.C. 5 Concourse Parkway, 21st Floor, Atlanta, GA 30328.