If you own your own business, it probably comes as no surprise to hear that you have a legal responsibility to members of the public that visit your premises. In the same way, if your work requires you to visit your customer’s property, such as a gardener or an electrician, you’ll have a legal responsibility to both the customer whose place you’re visiting as well as the general public. These responsibilities are often known as public liability – the liability your business has for the effect of its actions or property on members of the public.
Whether you’re starting a business or already established, it’s important to reduce the risk of liability as much as possible. The first step in protecting yourself is to identify, manage and prevent any risks to customers and third parties that exist within your business. The second step is to take out public liability insurance.
No two businesses are alike, and each will have differing insurance needs, although in some cases, the need to purchase public liability cover won’t be optional. For example if you perform work on behalf of another company they usually will require you to hold public liability insurance. Similarly, if your business premises are located in a shopping centre or mall, centre management will request a certain level of cover.
Like the name suggests, public liability insurance can protect your business against compensation it is legally required to pay for death or injury to, or damage to property of customers or other third parties. Without public liability insurance, your business may find itself unable to afford the expense of paying damages or hiring legal assistance. In some cases, the legal fees and costs alone could exceed a million dollars.
There’s a common misconception amongst some small business owners that they don’t need insurance, or that it’s too expensive. The truth is, however, that no matter what you’re doing, you should always protect yourself from the risk of product liability claims. The minute you start selling your product you’re at risk for product liability lawsuits, which can be very expensive and time consuming.
At Regional Insurance Brokers, our business insurance team will take the time to understand how you work and the potential areas of risk that you and your business could face - and if you ever need to make a claim, we’ll take care of things quickly and painlessly. We’re open for claims 24/7 to get you back in business quickly. Get covered today!