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What is Public Liability Insurance?

Public liability insurance protects you and your business and employees against any legal liability to third parties. That could mean legal responsibility for injury or any damage to property that was a result of work carried out by your business.

Many businesses and trade associations require evidence of this cover when applying for membership – it is also something that many customers look for when deciding which tradesman to hire.

How much does public liability insurance cost?

The cost of liability protection for your business depends on the occupation as some trades simply have greater interaction with the general public than others. In essence your premiums will reflect the level of risk you pose.

Our online quote form allows you to tailor make a policy for your requirements which will subsequently adjust the overall cost of your policy. For example, you can choose between coverage of £1-5 million. Other factors that will determine the cost of your insurance and if you’ve had any recent claims. Ultimately, the best way to find out how much it costs for your business is to enter your details into our quick and easy quote form and let our brokers find the best deal for you!

About Premier PLI

Shopping for any type of insurance can be a headache – especially if it’s the type of policy you’ve never needed before.

Here at Premier PLI our goal is make it easy for you to find the best public liability policy both in terms of policy price and features. Our quick and easy quote form will search leading UK insurers and brokers to find you the best deal on the market.

Whether you’re an established small business or brand new sole trader, we’re here to help.

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More information about public liability insurance…

Research is key when looking for any financial product. Some of our guides below range from very general guides on public liability cover and all that entails right through to more job and policy specific topics – for example cover help for the self employed and specifically tradesmen insurance.

For self employed

Help to protect your livelihood by having the correct liability backups in place.

For small business

As a small business you have a duty of care to your business and your customers.

For employers

If you have employee’s, making sure you have the liability cover in place is a must.

What our customers say

Sally J
Nottingham

When i started my mobile cleaning business the thing I was most nervous about was what if i accidentally damaged something in a clients home? Dusting a shelf and knocking an expensive vase on to the floor?

Turns out I was worrying over nothing, the guys at Premier PLI helped me find a business insurance policy that had the exact level of liability cover I needed, so should the worst happen, myself and my customers will be looked after!

Carl Moon
Essex

Premier PLI made it very easy for me to compare liability quotes and find the insurance policy that was best tailored to my needs.

Their simple online form gave me all the policy options I needed including the option for added employers liability insurance which is very important for my business.

If you're a tradesman looking for some proper cover you can't go wrong with Premier PLI.

Looking for more information on public liability cover?

Research is key when looking for any financial product. Some of our guides below range from very general guides on public liability cover and all that entails right through to more job and policy specific topics – for example cover help for the self employed and specifically tradesmen insurance.

Public liability insurance explained

Still not sure if your really need public liability cover for your business or new venture? Hopefully our beginner’s guide will help you make your mind up.

How much does public liability insurance cost?

So many factors go into how much a policy might cost – let’s have a closer look at what determines the cost and how you can find the cheapest policy.

How do I get a public liability insurance quote?

Once you’ve decided what type of cover you need, now’s the time to start finding insurance providers to get a quote – but what’s the best way to make sure you find the best policy?

Public Liability Insurance FAQ

Last Updated on

After years of customer questions and emails we’ve managed to put together a handy list of some our customer’s most frequently asked public liability questions.

What does public liability insurance cover mean?

In a nutshell, public liability insurance will cover the cost of any claims made against you and/or your business by members of the public for any incidents that occur in relation to your business.

The most common types on compensation that public liability insurance covers are for any loss of or damage to property, any personal injuries and/or death.

The specifics of each policy do vary depending on your exact requirements but most public liability policies usually provide protection for any incidents that occour at you business premises alongside off-site locations and at any evens or activities that may be either organised or hosted by your business.

How much does public liability insurance cost?

The cost of public liability insurance is dependent on many factors including the level of cover you want and your type of business. Unfortunately, like most financial products there’s no “one size fits all” policy, and therefore no set price.

The more cover you need, the more you’ll pay. Likewise, if your business is perceived to be of higher risk then you will likely pay a higher premium than one that is not.

The best way to find the most competitive quote is to compare policies from a wide range of insurers. That way you can be sure that you’re getting the best price possible for the exact type of cover you require.

Like all types of insurance, insurers are calculating how likely you are to make a claim, and ultimately how much it would cost them if you do. The cost of your public liability insurance will be a reflection of this. So businesses that are perceived to be more likely to face higher compensation claims will be required to pay more for their public liability insurance.

If you think your quotes might be on the more expensive side, try a comparison of as many insurers as possible, and be sure to answer any and all policy questions honestly and accurately. As failing to do so may mean you aren’t correctly covered should the worst happen and you need to make a claim.

Things that may cause your public liability insurance cost to be higher:

  • Is your business open to members of the public?
  • Does your business regularly operate a large amount of equipment?
  • Does your business operate dangerous machinery?
  • Does your business have a high turnover?

Things that an insurer may use to calculate your premiums:

  • The turnover of your business
  • The nature and type of your business
  • Where your business is located
  • The size of your business
  • The industry that your business operates in
  • The health and safety record of your business
  • The level of cover you have chosen
  • Any policy extras or items excluded when formulating your insurance quote

The easiest way to calculate the cost of your public liability insurance is to compare quotes online.

Why do I need public liability insurance?

If your business deals with or interacts with members of the public then having public liability insurance in place is just a really good idea – and often a good business move as it can inspire confidence in your customers if they know your are fully insured whilst working in their homes.

Let’s say for example you’re a tradesman, a plumber. You’ve gotten a call from a homeowner about an emergency leak. You arrive at the address of your customer and get to work on fixing the leak.

Despite everyone’s best efforts and best intentions, accidents still can and do happen. Now should you happen to damage an ornament, furniture or anything in your customers home while performing your job then you would be liable to cover the costs of repair or replacement – and that’s where pubic liability insurance comes in. It isn’t cover for you, it’s cover to protect you and your business from any claims by members of the public made against your business. Whether at your business premises or off-site.

If you think your business doesn’t need public liability insurance then it may be worth thinking about your day-to-day business operations. What kind of contact do you have with members of the public, customers, suppliers, or even passers-by. All those interactions may have the potential to result in a claim should they be injured or property damaged as a result of your business.

If your business has a high level of interaction with members of the public then public liability insurance should be of a high importance. Some professions and businesses, due their very nature have a higher level of exposure to the public – for example if you own a local shop, pub, beauty salon, nail bar or are a self employed builder, plumber or tradesman.

Let’s say a customer slips on a wet floor at your hairdressing salon, or skids on a scone at your coffee shop and injures themselves. Your public liability policy will be there to cover any legal fees and/or compensation costs that may arise should the injured party decide to sue your business.

Aside from the obvious benefits of having liability protection when dealing with the public, if you’re still unsure about it, you might be surprised to find that your clients may also require proof of your public liability policy before they’ll work with you, and in some cases they may even contractual require that a certain level of cover be applied.

It’s quite common for public sector (government and local authority) contracts to require a certain level of public liability cover.

So when it comes to deciding whether your business really needs public liability cover it’s important to weight up both your risk in regards to members of the public and also the expectations of your clients both currently and any future partnerships as to the level of cover you need.

If you can imagine a situation in your current business setup and dealings where a member of the public could have the potential to sue your business – then public liability cover would be a necessity.

Is public liability insurance compulsory?

Public liability insurance is not compulsory in the legal sense as there is no legal requirement to have public liability cover. But that’s not to say it isn’t to be seriously considered as it can be of great benefit to many business owners. You may even find that the majority of events or companies will even require you to have it before they are willing to work with you.

Having the type of financial protection for your business should the worst happen and a member of the public is injured as a result of your business or their property is damaged as a result of your work or your premises – then having public liability cover will be worth its weight in gold. Like the vast majority of insurance products, you hope you’ll never need them, but if/when you do need to make a claim you’ll be relieved you have one.

Public liability cover is available for all manner of businesses from self employed cleaners to big business. Please note that while public liability insurance may not be a legal requirement, if your business has any employees then employers’ liability cover will be required and is a legal requirement.

Do I need public liability insurance for a private party?

When organising your own private party or event it will likely be a requirement by the venue that you have in place your own public liability cover.

The venue will have their own liability cover which will protect themselves should any accidental injury befall any members of the public due to the venues own negligence. But this policy won’t ofcourse cover any negligence on the part of you, the event organiser. So should a guest at your party injure themselves due to negligence on your part – you’ll be left to foot the bll for any compensation claim.

Whether it’s a private party or any type of formal or informal gathering, public liability insurance is always a useful addition for any venue.

Public liability insurance is a safety net to help cover any legal, medical or compensation fees should a guest sustain any injury at your party or hosted event.

If you’re hosting a private party or function at an external venue then a public liability policy will help protect your liability with the venue – say for example one of your invited guests injures a waitress or host at the event, or causes damage to the venue.

What happens if you have no public liability insurance?

If you don’t have public liability cover and a member of the public injures themselves or there is damage to their property as a result of your business operations, then you could be faced with a hefty bill and compensation claim.

In the event that a claim of compensation is filed against your business, you will be duly notified by the courts. You will then need to hire a solicitor in order to collate evidence of the incident and form a defence against the claimant and their claim.

If the claimant is successful, you will have to pay all court fees, medical fees, legal costs and ofcourse any costs associated with the claimant’s injuries and losses.

Should the claim be unsuccessful, then you may be able to recover some of your expenses from the claimant.

This whole situation would be easily avoidable and far less costly if you had a public liability policy in place, however. In the event of a potential claim, all you’d need to do is notify your insurer – simple. You can even continue to trade while the claim is ongoing.

The policy will cover many of the fees associated with a claim, such as court fees, medical expense and compensation. The end result being very little financial suffering on your part.

Whilst for many businesses public liability is not a legal requirement, many see it as still an essential piece of protection for their business and livelihood.

Do I need public liability insurance if I work from home?

If you work from home and people regularly visit you at home for business purposes, then public liability cover should be seriously considered. It doesn’t matter whether they stay all day or just visit briefly, accidents can happen in a heartbeat.

Having a public liability policy in place will protect your and your business should a customer or member of the public decide to sue you due injury to themselves or damage to their property as a result of your business. So if a customer enters your home pick up their ironing and slips, trips or falls in your kitchen, public liability will cover any such legal or compensation fees that may be brought against you and your business.

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