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Public Liability Insurance

Public liability insurance, protecting you and your business should a member of the public sue after an injury due to your negligence.

  • Public liability cover for a huge range of professions from tradesmen to dog walkers
  • Choose from £1m, £2m, £5m or £10m cover limits to suit your business needs
  • Option to add more than one trade/profession to your public liability insurance cover policy

Get a public liability insurance quote online and buy today

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What's included in our public liability cover?

What is public liability insurance?

It’s fair to say that if you interact with the public on a daily basis or your business activities are performed in a public area, you’ll need this cover - but what is public liability insurance? This means different things for different businesses. It could mean protecting your business against a potential claim from a client, a customer or another member of the public in the wrong place at the wrong time. We provide cover for a range of business types including: tradesmen, shops, mobile businesses, health and beauty professionals, those who work with animals, delivery and removals - and many more. Unfortunately, even we have our limits and there are some businesses we can’t cover. Tell us all about your business and we’ll do our best to find you suitable cover.

Do I need public liability insurance?

Each business is different, but for many, public liability insurance cover is essential. For smaller businesses who work on smaller projects or with less interaction with the public, we can offer lower, more suitable levels of cover for a lower premium. However, if your circumstances merit higher limits, then ask us. Typically our clients request business public liability insurance from between £1m and £10m for any one event, but higher limits are available if required. If you’re unsure about how much cover you need, tell one of our knowledgeable advisers about your situation and they’ll be able to help you get the right level of business insurance public liability. For more information, see our article on who needs public liability insurance?

Add trades to your policy

If you offer a range of trade skills, you can add your multiple business activities or services to a single policy. If your different trades are under the same business name, you can tailor your public liability insurance policy to cover you for any work you do for your customers. However if you think one of your services may not be included on your policy, give us a call and we’ll see if we can add it.

Optional liability cover

Public liability insurance is not generally brought in isolation. This is because most businesses require some other cover including employers' liability, product liability or contents cover. We offer a range of business insurance covers so can tailor your policy to suit your business' requirements.

Examples of when you need public liability insurance

  • You accidentally cause property damage while working, such as damaging a pipe while installing flooring, resulting in flooding and significant property damage.

  • Disrepair as a result of defective workmanship becomes evident during or after work completion, such as a skylight pane crashing to the ground during installation and injuring a visitor.

  • Your work results in slips or trips, such as spills that aren't cleaned up or that don't have proper warning signs placed, that then lead to customer injury.

Public Liability Insurance Claims

From small business public liability insurance, through to incidents involving large corporations and members of the public, Towergate can offer peace of mind. If and when you need to make a claim, we'll send the details to the insurer to get your claim resolved as quickly as possible.

If there are any complications with your claim, we’ll follow this up with the insurer and keep you updated.

Need to make a claim?

Give us a call and we’ll help settle your claim

0344 892 1384

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Public Liability Insurance FAQs

How much public liability cover do I need?

Towergate can offer public liability insurance policies with cover from £1 million up to £10 million or higher. The amount you need will depend on several aspects:

  • Your business activities
  • The type of locations and environments you are working in
  • The processes involved, particularly if these are of a high risk nature involving any application of heat-work

When you are contracting with companies, please check with them to find out if there is a minimum amount of public liability insurance required.

What businesses should buy public liability insurance cover?

Public liability insurance for small businesses can be just as important as cover for larger organisations. Most if not all businesses and trades should have it, including but not limited to;

  • Tradesmen
  • Shops
  • Mobile Businesses
  • Health and beauty professionals
  • Delivery and removal services

Is public liability insurance a legal requirement in the UK?

Public liability insurance is a legal requirement in the UK if you employ staff.

How much does business public liability insurance cost?

The cost of your public liability insurance cover will depend on what your business is and therefore how much cover you require. This will determine the level of risk for the insurer.

Factors that affect public liability insurance cost

Your public liability insurance cost will depend on a number of factors, including:

  • Your trade or profession and the hazards associated with your activities – e.g. work at height, depth, use of heat (blow lamps, welding equipment)
  • Whether you are you working on new or existing properties, domestic or commercial
  • The type of locations worked at, any hazardous locations such as ports, airports, tunnels, gas/oil works etc
  • Where in the world you work and the activities carried out - e.g UK-only and/or Europe, or worldwide – including or excluding USA/Canada
  • Number of employees, clerical or manual, and if you have any sub-contractors
  • The limit of indemnity you require - £1 million, £2 million, £3 million, £5 million, £10 million or higher
  • What is included in your public liability insurance quote (standard level or extra covers)
  • Your past claims history
  • For larger businesses, estimated annual payments to direct employees - clerical/manual, labour-only and/or bona-fide sub-contractors
  • The size of your business e.g. turnover (the more work you do, the greater the risk exposure and the higher the premium)
  • Your risk management and health and safety record

How much does Towergate public liability insurance cost?

Towergate offer a range of public liability insurance policies with cover starting from as little as £8.19 per month*. We offer a range of levels of cover up to £10 million to suit all sizes of businesses – whether large or small - and budgets that are high or cheap.

Get a public liability insurance quote today to see how much your policy would be.

Is public liability insurance required by law?

Public liability insurance is not usually a legal requirement like employer’s liability insurance, but there aren’t many businesses that can safely operate without this protection. Despite all the precautions under the sun, accidents can and will happen, and being vulnerable to a law suit can spell disaster for a growing business. As our public liability insurance can cover up to £10 million, the importance of having this protection is clear.

Given this, it is likely other organisations will not work with you unless you have public liability insurance, and local authorities often require businesses in their area to have the cover in place before trading.

While public liability insurance is therefore not required by law, it is likely to be necessary for your business to operate successfully.

Is public liability insurance tax deductible for business insurance?

Yes, public liability insurance is tax deductible when calculating taxable profit, as an 'allowable expense' (an expense you can deduct when calculating taxable profit for your tax return). It is included in HMRC’s definition of allowable expenses.

When you buy your public liability insurance, be sure to keep your receipt and your policy documents safe so that you can show your tax calculations if your business is checked by HMRC. Also, if you have an accountant that does your tax return, you will need these documents to show them the cost of your cover so they can calculate it correctly and ensure your public liability insurance is tax deductible.

What's the difference between public liability and professional indemnity cover?

Read our guide on 'What is the difference between professional indemnity and public liability insurance?'.

What's the difference between public liability and employers' liability?

While public liability insurance provides cover against claims from members of the public, employers' liability insurance protects against claims from employees. Businesses will typically have bother covers.

I have heard that someone wants to make a claim against me - what do I do now?

As soon as you become aware of a claim or potential claim being made against you for injury or damage:

  • Notify us so that we may alert your insurers
  • Do not ignore or dispose of any letters from any representative of or anyone making a claim against you. The claim is unlikely to go away and the situation will only get worse if not attended to promptly
  • Pass all correspondence on to us unanswered

One of my employees had just had an accident at work, what should I do?

We recommend that you:

  • Report all accidents to your insurers
  • Meet your legal obligation to record accidents in your accident book
  • Do not accept responsibility or agree to pay compensation even if you think it is obvious that it is your fault
  • Allow your insurers to investigate and advise you of the best course of action to be taken

If you accept liability before referral to your insurers then you could prejudice your and your insurers' ability to deal with any claim made against you.

Why choose Towergate for your public liability insurance cover?

Towergate Insurance is a UK-based service provider with a wealth of knowledge and experience in the industry. We can tailor you a PL policy which includes the right levels of all types of liability and business insurance protection.

Can I pay in instalments?

To help you spread the cost of your public liability cover insurance premiums, we offer a quick and easy direct debit scheme for spreading payment over ten months. Please visit our dedicated Direct Debit page to find out more.

*10 monthly instalments, includes 12% additional interest and 12% Insurance Premium Tax. Cover includes £1 million public liability, one manual principle partner proprietor or director, and no claims. Covers subject to underwriter acceptance; exclude Northern Ireland. Price from as little as £81.90 a year applies to carpenter work only working on on residential and small commercial properties excluding the use of fixed woodworking machinery. Details correct as of 1 June 2020

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