Public liability insurance protects your business against claims made by third parties. These claims can result from accidents or injuries that occur to individuals, as well as accidental damage to property, all of which takes place due to your business activities.
If during the course of operating your business you come into contact with customers, whether on your own premises, in a public place or a property owned by someone else entirely, public liability insurance will cover you for personal injury or property damage claims.
Unfortunately, not all business owners take out the right public liability cover, simply believing that it isn’t necessary in their line of work. However, anyone who has been subjected to the potentially massive costs of liability claims will certainly understand the risks that are involved when you don’t have the appropriate insurances in place.
Whilst public liability insurance isn’t compulsory in Australia, many professionals can’t renew their licences and many employers won’t take on contractors or sub-contractors without this type of cover. So why don’t all employers have public liability insurance?
- Too small to worry: Many business owners believe that it’s only the big businesses that need to worry about public liability insurance. Small businesses however, are often in greater need of this type of cover, simply because they don’t have the money to pay for expensive lawyers, on-going court cases that can last for years and huge payouts if they lose their case.
- Home-based businesses: With more and more people setting up home-based businesses, the future is set for many to be faced with expensive claims they have no hope of funding. If you have customers visiting your home-based business, public liability insurance will cover you for any personal injuries or property damage suffered by your customers whilst on your premises.
- I’m not a tradie: Just because you are an accountant running your own business from a small office and you don’t have any employees, doesn’t mean that a customer won’t trip as they enter your premises. Many small business owners believe that only trades people or manual workers need worry about public liability insurance, when in fact all business owners can be sued for personal injury or property damage.
- We have the money: It’s fair to say that the costs of contesting a liability claim can be huge, but even these can be overshadowed by the enormous costs if you lose your case. It’s not unusual for businesses to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to both lawyers and claimants; money that isn’t easy to replace, particularly for a small business.
- Breach of contract: Many businesses work to contracts, so they erroneously believe that they don’t need public liability insurance. So what happens if you are accused of breaching a contract and are taken to court? Lawyers, court costs and damage payouts can break many small businesses, which is why public liability insurance is so important.
To discuss how public liability insurance can be tailored to your exact business needs, talk to one of our insurance specialists today.
General Advice Warning
The information provided is to be regarded as general advice. Whilst we may have collected risk information, your personal objectives, needs or financial situations were not taken into account when preparing this information. We recommend that you consider the suitability of this general advice, in respect of your objectives, financial situation and needs before acting on it. You should obtain and consider the relevant product disclosure statement before making any decision to purchase this financial product.