It gives financial protection to your business if you are sued by a member of the public or a third party. It covers claims for:

  • Injury, e.g. a third party trips over your business equipment

  • Illness, e.g. a customer gets food poisoning from your restaurant

  • Death, e.g. you install faulty electrics which cause a fatal house fire

  • Property damage, e.g. your tools fall and smash a car windscreen

Do you need it?

You do not legally have to take out public liability insurance, but your business could be at serious financial risk without it.

Personal injury claims can cost millions of pounds, which could leave your business bankrupt if you do not have the right cover in place.

Your clients may also ask for a copy of your public liability insurance before they do business with you. It gives them peace of mind that you are covered if anything goes wrong.

How to find the right policy

Use this comparison to get as many quotes online as possible. Then you can compare:

  • Liability limits: This is how much your insurer will pay if you claim. You can choose a maximum limit between 1 million and 5 million, based on the type of business you run. E.g. a construction company may need a higher level of cover than a tutor.

  • Other cover options: Most insurers offer public liability as part of a business insurance policy. You can cover stock and equipment, business interruption, and employers' liability. Here is how to choose what business insurance you need.

  • Cost: Compare quotes from different insurers before you take out cover, to get the cover you need at the cheapest price. You can save money on your premium by choosing a high voluntary excess, or paying up front in full.

If you are unsure what cover your business needs, speak to an insurance broker who can offer you advice on finding the best insurance.

Public liability FAQs

Q

Do I legally need to have public liability insurance?

A

No, but it provides essential cover if your business is sued for causing injury, illness or death to a third party.

Q

Can I get public liability cover if I am self employed?

A

Yes, you can get cover if you are a sole trader or run a small business. Here is how to get business insurance if you are self employed.

Q

Will it cover injuries to employees?

A

No, you will need employers' liability insurance if you have anyone other than family members working for you. You can compare employers' liability here.

Q

Does it cost to claim on public liability insurance?

A

Yes, you will need to pay an excess for any claim made on your public liability policy. This is usually around 250 per claim.

Q

What limit of cover does my business need?

A

It depends on the nature of your business, and how often you visit clients or have them visit you. Speak to a broker who can advise what you need.

Q

Will it cover me if I need to visit a client?

A

Yes, public liability insurance covers you both on site and when you visit other premises in your business capacity.