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All businesses face legal obligations and it’s vital that they adhere to them. Failure to do so can result in a company being closed down, managers being fined and, in some cases, owners can even face criminal charges.
In order to operate, businesses must identify their insurance requirements before trading. Whilst you may be keen to get your business up and running as quickly as possible, overlooking your insurance liabilities could be a costly mistake.
Employers’ Liability Insurance
Any business which employs staff is required to have an employers’ liability insurance policy. Should an accident occur at work or if an employee falls ill due to their working environment, they may be eligible to make a compensation claim.
Without a valid liability insurance policy, employers could face a compensation pay-out of millions of pounds, as well as sanctions for not having insurance in place. This requirement applies to businesses of all sizes so, even if you only employ one or two members of staff, you’ll still need to have an appropriate policy.
Although the law requires you to have employers’ liability cover, it also demands that your policy provides a minimum level of coverage. Whilst this is set at a relatively low standard of £5 million, most businesses opt for a policy which provides coverage of at least £10 million.
To the uninitiated, this level of cover may sound excessive but it certainly isn’t. A serious workplace accident could result in a fatality or someone sustaining life-changing injuries. In addition to paying compensation for the pain and suffering they’ve been through, your business could also be liable for their future loss of earnings, necessary adaptations to their house and any other expenses they’ve incurred as a result of the incident.
By obtaining comprehensive employers’ liability insurance, you can be sure that your business is operating legally and that you’re fully covered if an accident at work affects one of your employees.
Professional Indemnity Insurance
Although not every business will require this type of cover, it may be applicable to your industry. Professional indemnity insurance provides cover if a client or customer claims that you’ve carried out work incorrectly and this has resulted in them suffering damage.
Often applicable to law firms, accountants and financial advisors, this type of insurance will ensure that clients can access compensation without it having a direct financial impact on your business. In addition to this, many professional bodies require companies to have professional indemnity insurance in place so this is something that you may need to purchase in order to retain your professional standing.
Whilst no one wants to make a mistake at work or lose clients’ money, sometimes human error can result in something going wrong. By having professional indemnity insurance, you can rest assured that you, and your clients, are covered.
Public Liability Insurance
If your business needs your workers to interact with members of the public, you should have public liability insurance in place. If a member of the public is hurt because of your staff or your business, they could take legal action against the company. Similarly, if their property is damaged as a result of your work, they could claim compensation from you.
Clearly, any business which invites potential customers onto its premises will benefit from this type of insurance coverage. Shops, supermarkets and restaurants, for example, rely on patrons entering their premises and they need to ensure that they can do so safely. If an accident does occur and the business is found to be at fault, the potential compensation payout could be crippling if an appropriate liability insurance policy isn’t in place.
If your company doesn’t interact with members of the public directly, however, you should still consider purchasing a public liability insurance policy. If you carry out construction work, for example, you may be working on building sites and members of the public could pass by. If building materials fall or equipment is left unattended, someone could easily be hurt and you may be held liable.
Fortunately, public liability insurance cost isn’t excessive and it’s attainable for most businesses. By obtaining a public liability insurance quote, you can determine what level of coverage you need and how much you will need to budget when it comes to public liability insurance cost.
Getting a public liability insurance quote is much easier when you compare the most appropriate insurers for your requirements. There may be specific needs that your individual business has, and when you compare quotes this can be easily incorporated in a public liability insurance quote provided on our site.
Product Liability Insurance
If your company manufactures products, you should already be adhering to strict laws and guidelines. Similarly, if you import products, you may take on the product liability so you’ll need to ensure that every product is produced according to UK safety standards.
Whilst most companies take this responsibility very seriously, even the most vigilant of firms can experience problems within the manufacturing process. If an error is made and a potentially dangerous product makes it to the market, it could cause serious harm.
If someone is hurt due to a faulty or defective product, it’s likely that they’ll take legal action against the company. Having product liability insurance in place ensures that your business is covered if someone makes a compensation claim against you.
Do Small Businesses Need To Be Insured?
Small and medium businesses should certainly be insured and it’s advisable for them to have a range of policies in place. Whilst they will be required to have Employers’ Liability Insurance if they employ staff, they should also consider purchasing various other policies, depending on their industry.
Whilst larger companies may be able to survive making a large compensation payout, it’s unlikely that small businesses could. In fact, just one successful compensation claim could have a catastrophic effect on a small or medium enterprise.
In addition to this, small business operators may face personal liability, in some cases. Whilst directors of a limited company are afforded some protection from liability, sole traders or self-employed business owners could take on liability in a personal capacity if a claim is made, so it is important that you not only arrange this type of insurance, but you consider public liability cost also.
Due to this, it’s vital that small businesses have appropriate business insurance cover, regardless of the industry in which they operate.
Fortunately, small business insurance needn’t be burdensome. There are many insurers and brokers who specialise in insurance for smaller businesses and you needn’t pay over the odds for the appropriate cover.
How Much Is Business Insurance?
Business insurance policies vary considerably, depending on the level of cover you require. As some industries are more hazardous than others, you may face higher premiums if you operate in a potentially dangerous sector, espeically if you are searching for small business insurance.
However, business insurance cost shouldn’t be excessive and many companies can purchase policies for a relatively low cost. Indeed, when compared to the cost of a potential compensation payout, the cost of business insurance is minimal.
Of course, businesses should aim to reduce costs wherever possible and you’ll want to access the best insurance policies at a reasonable rate. Generally, you’ll want to compare insurance quotes prior to purchasing a policy, whether you’re searching for small business insurance or larger business insurance.
Comparing Business Insurance Quotes
It’s important to remember, however, that business insurance cost shouldn’t be your only concern when purchasing policies. Business insurance comparison should include the level of cover, as well as the cost of the policy itself, and the best insurance policies will include all of this.
Whilst the best insurance policies will cover any legal costs you accumulate as a result of a compensation claim, not all of them will. Similarly, some policies may exclude certain types of claims and this could leave your business facing liability, so it is important to compare insurance quotes prior to choosing one.
Although it may be tempting to go straight to the top insurance companies, it is worth obtaining a business insurance quote from multiple firms before you commit to moving forward. Certain insurers provide cover to specific industries so this may be something you want to explore, so ensuring you compare insurance quotes is imperative.
If you work in a niche sector, such as the sale of luxury vehicles or oil production, for example, you may need to work with an insurer who is familiar with the potential pitfalls of your industry.
Once you’ve had a chance to compare various forms of business insurance, you’ll be able to select the right policy for you and your business. Of course, you’ll need to renew your coverage on a regular basis so you may need to access updated quotes when the time comes to do so. Rather than simply continuing with your existing policy, you may be able to make savings by switching to a different provider or amending your existing policy. Using a business insurance comparison like ours is certain to get you the best price as well as provide you with a range of options for the top insurance companies on the market.
Although it doesn’t take long to compare business insurance quotes, it’s important that you take your business insurance obligations seriously. Whilst no one wants to cause someone harm or loss of property, accidents can occur at any time.
By having a range of valid business insurance policies in place, you can be sure that you’re covered for every eventuality.
Whilst genuine claimants are able to access an appropriate amount of compensation if you’ve inadvertently caused them harm, the relevant insurance policies can also ensure that your business can continue to trade, even if a claim is made against you.
At Cost Compare Limited, we can help provide you with an effective business insurance comparison and a business insurance quote to suit your requirements. Use our comparison tool today to get a suitable public liability quote, or other insurance options, from top insurance companies.