If your business interacts with the public in any way, then you need to make sure your public liability insurance is in order. While public liability insurance may not be a legal requirement in every case, it would normally be foolish not to have any. In many cases, you will find your business activities severely restricted if you do not carry the correct insurance.
Why does public liability insurance matter?
Quite often, you will find yourself working with clients who require a certain level of insurance cover before they will agree to do business with you. This can particularly be the case with public sector contracts, such as those with local and national government authorities. You may also discover that you agreed to maintain a certain level of public liability insurance when you joined your professional trade body or organisation. It's important to check your paperwork so that you make sure you have the right level of cover and do not unintentionally void any contract you may have signed.
Who could make a claim against you?
The greater your interaction with the public, the greater the risk your business could incur. If you have clients who visit your premises, if you visit clients in their homes or if you work anywhere that the public has access, then you could find that someone makes a claim against you for loss, damage, or injury. Perhaps you may have failed to ensure that the premises were sufficiently safe. Maybe you were working at height and dropped something that hit someone passing by. There are lots of reasons that someone could have a claim against you, so you must have an adequate level of public liability insurance to cover any compensation claims.
How much cover do you need?
The amount of public liability insurance that you need will largely depend on the amount of interaction you have with the public and what effect you could potentially have on anyone with whom you interact. With any insurance policy, the 'cover level' describes the maximum amount that your insurer will pay if you need to make a claim. If you are sued because your business has caused injury or loss, the compensation claim will take into account medical costs, loss of earnings, and any ongoing care costs, as well as the cost of restoring any property that may have been damaged. They may also cover all the associated legal fees. These claims could potentially run into the millions of dollars, and without public liability insurance, these claims could quickly bankrupt your company. Speak to your insurer today and arrange the cover you need to protect your business.