Guide to Public Liability Insurance

Simply an Online Guide to Public Liability Insurance cover

This guide gives you sufficient information on employers and public liability insurance and explains the importance of obtaining adequate cover.

Running any business successfully demands the ability to manage a multitude of different things at any given time. If you are in the same position that every business owner has been in at some point, whereby you have recently made the transition from direct employment, to setting up on your own, you are undoubtedly learning new things every day. As exciting as this is, it can also be stressful and you need business insurance to ease this stress.

It is during this transition that you realise certain aspects of running a business are not as straightforward as you originally assumed. You are likely to be dealing with issues that you never knew existed, prior to becoming a business proprietor. One such issue that you are likely to have considered is business-specific insurance, and more specifically, for example business plumbers public liability insurance. Decisive action to secure protection for your business is essential – without appropriate cover, your business is vulnerable and you have not fulfilled your business needs.

One factor remains the same, irrespective of the line of business you are in – it is impossible to predict accidents. You cannot predict when an accident will occur and unfortunately, on times, the blame for an accident is apportioned to your business. This is when public liability insurance becomes invaluable and this business insurance cover will cover your needs. You still have to decide on the amount of cover you require be it £1,000,000 or £2,000,000 and this depends on the jobs that you will be taking on.

Having appropriate cover is part of the pragmatic attitude that separates successful businesses from unsuccessful businesses. There is no benefit to being wise after the event, and a public liability claim made against your business can have huge financial implications leading you to close your business. Public liability cover is therefore essential to your business needs and peace of mind as a business owner.

Whilst public liability insurance is not a legal obligation it is an essential part of the obligation you have to maintain the reputation of your business, along with its financial security – the security of your employees. Remember, you also have an unofficial, unwritten obligation towards the public you serve. To neglect this is reckless, unethical and can lose you a lot of money

What is Public Liability Insurance

Public liability insurance is a type of insurance policy that is specific to businesses, and provides protection against any claims for damage, loss or injury that are made against your business. Claims of this nature arise from situations whereby the actions of your business cause injury to a customer or a member of the public, or cause that person’s property to be damaged or lost.

Public liability insurance provides protection for your business whether an incident occurs on your business premises, or the premises of a customer for whom work is being carried out. It also covers self-employed people who work from home.

Do You Need Public Liability Insurance

In terms of being legally required to have public liability insurance, your circumstances will depend on the capacity in which you function and the sector within which your business operates.

If, as a business, you are self-employed, supplying members of the public with products and/or services, then there is no law that says you have to have cover; however, this is not a reflection of your necessity to have adequate insurance in place. If your business is liable to cover the costs of any claims brought against you, then as a self-employed interest it is down to you personally to meet the costs of such a claim.

There can often be a misunderstanding when it comes to employers’ liability insurance. This is something that a business is required by law to have in place. It is important to understand that whilst this type of cover protects you against any incident that occurs in relation to your staff, it provides no protection for your business against any claim that is made by a customer or a member of the public.

If you are an events organiser and obtain events insurance then it is possible to obtain a policy that provides public liability cover. Events organising is a line of business that is susceptible to many unpredictabilities such as cancellations, equipment damage, bad weather, problems with travel and technical issues.

Tradesmen also function within an industry that makes them vulnerable to public liability claims. Carrying out a trade involves working among members of the public and their property, which presents a heightened risk of damage and injury. Also, tradesmen work with hazardous equipment. Given the level of vulnerability that businesses within the building sector face, it is highly advisable to have appropriate cover in place.

It is important to be fully protected against any claim that is brought against your business, whether directly by a customer, a member of the public or other business that you are working alongside. Within the building trade it is common for customers to ask for proof of insurance before awarding work to a business, so failing to have cover not only causes you to lose out on work, it also makes your business look unprofessional.

How Much Does Public Liability Insurance Cost

The amount that your business pays in public liability insurance premiums is dictated by the nature of your business and how vulnerable you are to public liability claims. During the process of obtaining insurance, a provider will assess the limit of indemnity that is applicable to your business. This means that the provider will work out the level of cover that you need to be fully protected against the type of claims that are most likely to be brought against your business.

Average policies for public liability insurance work incrementally, with indemnity limits typically being set at £1 million, £2 million, £5 million and £10 million.

What Does Public Liability Insurance Cover You For

A public liability insurance policy will cover your business against any claims for injuries or damages that occur whether at the premises of your business, the premises of a customer or anywhere else where your business is carrying out work.

With public liability insurance, your business is also covered against a variety of other situations. You will be covered for the damage or loss of any equipment that you have hired for business purposes, as well as being covered for anything that gets lost or damaged whilst being transported.

Getting a Quote

The internet makes it easy to compare and contrast what various insurance companies have to offer, with online quotes available from all reputable providers. It is good practice to obtain as many quotes as possible before deciding upon which company to get insurance with.

Some prefer to take a more traditional approach to obtaining cover by speaking to an insurance broker one-to-one. A good broker, whose specific area is public liability insurance, will be able to use their knowledge of various insurers, the policies that they offer, and apply this to the level of cover that your business needs. For many people, receiving tailored advice in a face-to-face capacity can provide a heightened sense of clarity and reassurance.

If you choose to bypass the broker aspect of the process, preferring to go straight to the insurance company, then it is essential that you make sure the provider is a registered member of the Association of British Insurers. This is your guarantee that the company you have chosen is legitimate, and that you are appropriately covered.

Tradesman insurance policy

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