There are many facets of a business that an owner will want to protect, such as property, stock, and employee’s wellbeing. However, protecting yourself against claims by members of the public against your product or service is also coverage you should seriously consider.
What is Public Liability Insurance?
This insurance covers you should you become liable to a member of the public for death, injury or disease, damage to property, or expenses and costs following an accident that is connected to your business. The ways a member of the public could be harmed on your premises are myriad – a slip or fall, exposure to toxic chemicals, or injury sustained by falling or faulty machinery are just a few examples. Claims for this type of injury could run into the millions of euro, which could ruin a business.
Is it mandatory?
Public Liability Insurance is not compulsory in Ireland. Unlike vehicle insurance, for example, a business is not generally required by law to take out Public Liability Insurance. But as the costs could be crippling it is an important addition to consider when assessing your overall business insurance coverage.
Who should get it?
As a business owner, you face the risk of a member of the general public suing you for damage or injury caused to them while carrying out your business activities. If they sue you for damage or injury, or if they allege that you caused them damage or injury while conducting your business activities, then it could prove to be very costly for your business. With a public liability policy, you will have the ability to defend any claims made against you or your business and the cover will allow you to provide compensation to the plaintiff, if you’re found to have been negligent. Shops, salons, farms – if you come into contact with the public, you should seriously consider Public Liability Insurance.
How much does it cost?
As with all insurances, coverage is calculated on the individual circumstances so it is hard to generalise. However, when calculating the cost there are a few factors that influence the price. These include:
- The type of business you are in.
- The industry you are in.
- Your annual turnover
- Whether you work from home, your own premises or abroad.
What situations increase the need for Public Liability Insurance?
While Public Liability Insurance is a good idea generally, there are a number of situations where it is particularly advisable.
EVENTS If you regularly attend or host conferences, exhibitions or seminars to promote your business, then you may become liable if an attendee at the event sustains damages/injuries as a result of your action (for instance, if they slip and fall at your trade stand).
NEW STAFF When you take on new employees, they will increase your company’s exposure to potential public liability claims.
PREMISES Having clients, customers and members of the general public calling to your business premises exposes you to the possibility of potential claims against you and your business. Should they fall and injure themselves, then you may be held liable.
REQUIREMENT Some organisations may require that their vendors have public liability cover. This business insurance policy will protect you if you inadvertently damage the client’s property during a visit to their plant or factory.
Who can help?
Speaking to a broker and explaining your situation is a great way to get the right coverage at the right price. Britton Insurance is a leading insurance broker in Ireland with a vast understanding of the business insurance market. We can help you find the correct public liability insurance policy for your specific needs. Give us a call today if you would like to request a free quote.