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Mistakes Independent Schools Make During the Policy Year

Once your school’s got cover, it’s easy to forget about your policy altogether – until it’s time to make a claim. But this is potentially a costly mistake.

On The Safer Schools Podcast, Pearson Webb Consulting and Emma Butcher, Head of Education at Towergate, discuss the key mistakes schools have made in failing to prepare for an incident, in turn jeopardising their position further down the line.

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1. Not keeping a record of all information (even if it doesn’t lead to a claim)

You should record and retain details of all incidents that involve your school, even if they don’t immediately result in a claim.

Adam Webb of Pearson Webb Consulting said, “In the instance the pupil is under the age of 18, they could potentially still raise a claim against you until the date of their 21st birthday, this is because the limitation period does not start until someone reaches their 18th birthday, therefore they are not subject to the three year deadline until they are 18 and have three years from the age of 18 in which to make [a claim].”

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2. Not getting the facts straight

Recounting a case where a client had a liability injury claim filed against them, Adam said, “[The client’s accident report] was filled in almost verbatim as to what the injured party had said. [The client] had effectively written down all the points that help the injured person’s solicitors to prove that case against them.”

That’s why it’s so important to take charge straight away if an incident has occurred. Make a detailed account, and take any relevant pictures, to help your case later on. Importantly, this should not replace making a RIDDOR report.

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3. Lean hard on your broker

There’s no denying that it can be a long and tedious process to get all the information right when making or defending a claim, but that doesn’t make it any less necessary.

Emma and Adam talk about the importance of leaning on your broker during such times. Adam stresses that your broker is there to do the leg work for you – after all, they are insurance specialists and why you have one – Emma recommends maintaining a dialogue with your broker throughout the year, not just as a one-off when something’s happened to benefit from their guidance, knowledge and support throughout the policy period really get the most value from them.

Listen to the full episode of The Safer Schools Podcast here. The Safe Schools Podcast - The Link Between Health & Safety Compliance and Insurance

Our partners at Pearson Webb Consulting Ltd are experts in the provision of risk assessments and health and safety assessments and training. Simply call 01438 739626 or email to find out more.

Services provided by Pearson Webb Consulting are non-regulated.

Towergate Insurance is a trading name of Advisory Insurance Brokers Limited. Registered in England Company No. 4043759, Registered Office: 2 Minster Court, Mincing Lane, London, EC3R 7PD. Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. This can be checked on the FCA’s register by checking the FCA website at or by contacting them on 0800 111 6768.