It is possible to be proactive about insurance without being foolhardy or putting your company in jeopardy. The best tactic is to question every expense rather than accepting the premium as given.

The principle of insurance is to protect the business from catastrophic expenses. Most auto insurance policies offer $300, $500, and $1,000 deductibles in return for a lower premium. Saving 30% on your premiums in exchange for paying the first $1,000 of payouts could be a great way to save money if your crew uses safe work practices and does not have a history of accidents. If one of your employees is involved in an accident, you could split the cost and ask the employee to pay $500 toward the deductible.

Curt Ziegler |

Another approach is to give all your insurance business to one agency — business, home, health, life — in return for a discounted price.

A third strategy is to question your need for certain types of insurance. For example, disability income insurance might be unnecessary if your needs can be met with input of other earnings.

Health insurance is another area for potential savings. You could offer your staff catastrophic health insurance to provide cost-savings on their and your contributions. A high deductible of up to $10,000 per year, per individual, might be a good fit for healthy families.

—Howard Scott is a business writer and small-business tax preparer in Pembroke, Mass.