Cannabis Insurance Renewal Process

Ready, Set, Renew! Master Your Cannabis Insurance Renewal Process

The cannabis insurance renewal process isn’t rocket science, but it does entail a few must-knows. Let’s discuss what all canna-business leaders should understand.

Renewing your cannabis insurance isn’t the most exciting task a cannabis business owner has. In fact, it probably ranks on the list of the most dreaded tasks. 

We get it — risk management is rarely exciting but it is always necessary. Having a comprehensive umbrella of cannabis coverage is vital for canna-businesses of any size. So without further ado (or dressing it up) here’s what you need to know to quickly and easily get through your cannabis insurance renewal process.

Understanding Your Current Insurance Coverage

Alright, we admit it — reading insurance policies isn’t very fun. But like an annual checkup at the dentist, it is necessary to understand your existing policy details in order to set yourself up for success. Scrape the plaque off your policies and dive in to understand exactly what your current umbrella of coverage looks like — and if there are any gaps.

Even if you reviewed your policy last year, cannabis is an industry in flux and businesses grow and shrink quickly. What covered your business last year may leave you woefully exposed this year — or over-covered with policy overlaps. You also need to check the expiration date on your policies — not every policy renews every year.

Preparing for Renewal

The most important thing to know during the cannabis insurance renewal process is when your deadline is. You have to know when your current coverage expires so you can plan your timeline appropriately to ensure there are no gaps in your coverage. Typically, you’ll want to start 1 – 3 months in advance of a policy expiring.

Your insurance broker should bring you multiple options for potential coverage, but to do that, there are certain documents they need. Once you know your timeline, you can start to get your ducks in a row with the necessary paperwork and records. If you don’t know what your broker needs, the next step is to ask.

You’ll want to loop your broker into the process early to ensure they have everything they need. You’ll also need to communicate any changes in your business: if you’ve scaled operations up or down, grown your profit or your workforce significantly, or taken on more risk. Don’t assume the information your broker had last year is still accurate — give them what they need to help you.

Evaluating Your Insurance Needs

Every business in cannabis has unique needs, and these needs can change from year to year. As you grow in business, your risk may change.

Every time you have to renew your insurance policies you’ll want to perform a new risk assessment. This helps you understand any new or evolving risks for your business in the cannabis industry. Based on these results, you can determine if you need additional coverage, less coverage, or simply different policies.

A regular risk assessment helps you keep your risk management plan up-to-date and ensures you’re covered in any scenario. However, conducting a risk assessment can feel confusing and overwhelming, especially if your plate is already full of business tasks. Seeking expert advice can be crucial here, and your broker or an insurance agent may be able to help.

Working with Your Insurance Broker

The cannabis insurance renewal process is the perfect time to lean on your insurance broker.


A cannabis broker is someone who is authorized to sell and negotiate with insurance companies without being exclusively tied to a single company. Brokers can act as facilitators between business owners and insurance agents who represent a single insurance company, meaning the burden of communication and seeking quotes is not on your plate.

A good broker will deliver several quotes for you to review; if your broker only gave you one option last time you renewed, it may be time to shop around for a new broker.

In order for a broker to do their job, they need to know about your business. The more informed a broker is on your company, the more accurate and tailored quotes they can provide you with come renewal time.

Understand too that the quotes your broker provides you may be subject to expiration. Many insurance companies will put an expiration date on policy quotes and are not required to re-quote you, should it expire. Timing is everything here.

Now is a good time to differentiate between an insurance broker and a broker of record. A cannabis insurance broker helps you with the research necessary to create a comprehensive insurance umbrella, including getting quotes from insurance companies. A broker of record is the designated person who represents you and manages your insurance policy. A broker of record is responsible for all of the communication between you and your insurance company even after the renewal process.

Renewal Strategies for Cannabis Businesses

Just because it’s time to renew your insurance policies doesn’t mean you have to stay with the same company. Renewal is a great time to explore your options and get an understanding of what policies and premiums you have access to. Believe it or not, it’s actually beneficial for you to shop around when it comes to cannabis insurance. You may be surprised by some of the price discrepancies and your ability to negotiate.

For the best options, it helps to work with an established insurance broker. Good brokers have relationships with multiple insurers and can leverage those to get you better terms or premium prices.

It also helps to have a pulse on the insurance industry. Insurance trends are not as volatile as cannabis, but they do have a direct impact on policy prices and coverage limits. Knowing what’s going on can save you from sticker shock if a policy premium has changed significantly.

Common Pitfalls in the Renewal Process

The cannabis insurance renewal process doesn’t have to be an Olympian task — but the more you procrastinate, the more challenging it becomes. Working on your insurance renewals last minute is a recipe for stress and taking the easiest option.

If you’re not prepared to renew or informed on the state of the insurance industry, you may overlook relevant changes in regulations at a local or state level, or miss an important change in your business operations. If you don’t plan in advance for insurance renewal you may forget a key detail or a big change in your business that affects your risk and not give all of the information needed to your broker or insurer.

We know that between product launches, events, and new recreational markets, there are a thousand things more exciting about working in cannabis than dealing with insurance. But there’s not much that’s more essential to your long-term business success than having a financial safety net and a robust risk management plan. You don’t need insurance until the minute you need it — and by then it’s too late to get it.

After Renewal: Continuous Risk Management

Once you’ve navigated the cannabis insurance renewal process, you’re done — right?

Well, mostly.

You don’t need to monitor your policies or risk every day, but you should implement regular checkpoints (monthly, quarterly, or bi-annually) to review your insurance coverage and risk management plan. You need to understand the breadth of your current coverage umbrella and implement any changes necessary to remain in compliance with your policies.

You also need to understand if your policies are unwritten by a single insurance carrier or multiple, what your deductible is, and of course, what your premium is (and when it’s due.)

You should also stay proactive with your risk management and follow safety best practices to reduce your risk.

Protecting your cannabis company can seem confusing; however, we’re a full-service insurance brokerage working with carriers worldwide to offer you the best coverage possible. We’re here to help! Please reach out to us today by emailing [email protected] or calling 646-854-1093 for a customized letter of commitment or learning more about your cannabis insurance options.

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