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Freelance Public Liability Insurance – Compare Cheap Quotes

Self-employed freelancers have the freedom to set their own schedules, work where and when they want, decide how much to charge for their services and decide which customers or clients to work with. But if a freelance ever faces a public liability claim they’ll need to go it alone on that front too, covering the cost of legal fees and compensation pay-outs themselves… unless they have freelance liability insurance in place.

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What is freelance liability insurance?

Freelance liability insurance is designed to protect self-employed freelancers against the risk of liability claims brought by members of the public.

While some people might assume that all freelancers work alone, and are therefore unlikely to face this type of liability claim, the truth is that many freelance professionals come into contact with members of the public on a daily basis.

For instance, freelance teachers may teach their pupils on a one-to-one basis or as part of a larger class, but either way if one of their students is injured and the freelance teacher is held liable they could face a liability claim.

Similarly, freelance musicians could face public liability claims from fans attending their gigs or from people in recording studios, a freelance photographer could be hit with a similar liability claim if an accident occurs during a photoshoot, while even freelance writers could be sued for compensation if someone is injured at a book signing or book reading.

Freelance liability insurance can cover the cost of legal fees and compensation claims if a freelance professional is sued by a member of the public and the court determines that the incident occurred due to some sort of negligence on the freelancer’s part.

Does freelance insurance cover damage to other people’s belongings too?

Yes, freelance liability insurance doesn’t just cover you against liability claims when someone is physically injured, it can also cover you against claims for damage to a third party’s valuables or belongings.

For instance, if a freelance videographer was held liable when their equipment fell and damaged someone’s car during a video shoot they could be covered for any resulting legal fees, court costs and compensations pay-out if they had freelance liability insurance in place at the time of the incident.

How much does freelance public liability insurance cost?

Many freelance professionals are less likely to face a public liability claim than people in some other professions might be (builders or event organisers, for instance, both of which have a higher risk of being sued by a member of the public than a freelance journalist or freelance designer) and that will often be reflected in cheaper public liability insurance for freelancers.

However, exactly how much a freelancer will pay will depend on a wide range of variables, including their location, the type of work they do, how often they come into contact with members of the public during the course of that work, the level of coverage they would like to take out and whether they have claimed on a public liability insurance policy in the last five years.

The best plan is to use Quotezone.co.uk’s freelance insurance comparison service to compare quotes from a range of different providers, and then go with the one that offers the best policy at the most competitive price.

Is freelance public liability insurance a legal requirement in the UK?

No, public liability insurance isn’t legally required in the UK, but it’s worth bearing in mind that some venues may require it before you can rent out their space or hold an event there.

What optional extras can I bundle with my freelance public liability insurance?

As the name suggests, the ‘public liability insurance’ component of your freelance insurance policy is only intended to protect you from liability claims brought by members of the public, but it is possible to bundle other types of insurance with your public liability cover in order to ensure you have a well-rounded freelance insurance policy.

Some of the add-ons you can bundle with your liability cover include:

  • Professional indemnity insurance: This is quite an important add-on for freelance consultants, web developers, graphic designers, journalists, market researchers and marketers, because it can cover them if they are held liable because advice or expertise they provided resulted in some kind of loss for their customer.
  • Product liability insurance: Whether it’s musicians selling digital downloads, event organisers selling products at events, or wedding photographers selling prints, if you sell any kind of physical or digital product as part of your freelance business there is the risk you might face a product liability claim if a customer sued you because you provided faulty goods. If you bundle product liability insurance with your freelancer liability insurance policy there’s a good chance you’ll be covered if you ever face this type of claim.
  • Employers’ liability insurance: Most self-employed freelancers don’t have staff, but if you do employ anyone (even on a part time basis) it’s a legal requirement that you have employer’s liability insurance.
Why might a freelancer need freelance public liability insurance? 

Freelance public liability insurance (PLI) is an excellent insurance cover to have for those who work for themselves and come in contact with members of the public. Whether you’re a graphic designer, photographer, or a consultant meeting someone at their home, you are at risk of being held liable for injury or damage to property caused by your work activities. 

No one plans for this to happen, but mishaps occur when you least expect them. Freelance public liability insurance gives you peace of mind knowing that in the event of injury or property damage while on the job, you’re financially covered. 

It also gives you credibility as a professional. Clients like to feel secure when engaging with a freelancer. Freelance public liability insurance takes care of your professional image and your financial security when it comes to liability all in one go. 

Do clients often insist that their freelancers have freelance PLI? 

Yes, clients may very well insist that their freelancers have freelance liability insurance. This makes it safer for all parties involved in the business deal. Clients may insist on having it in the contract before proceeding with business. 

PLI communicates trust. It assures your clients that any unforeseen damages or injuries that arise during work won’t lead to lengthy legal battles and extra costs. 

It is highly recommended that freelancers take out the extra freelance liability insurance that is designed to cater to the specific risks involved in their business activities. It’s always better to be safe than sorry. 

Should I get an annual freelancing PLI policy or short-term PLI insurance? 

As a freelancer, you’ll have a choice between annual public liability insurance for a freelancer or short-term public liability insurance that focuses on a specific contract. It depends on the volume and variety of your work. 

If you consistently have the same type of work it may be worth your while to take out annual insurance. On the other hand, if your contracts are more sporadic and the type of work you do varies, you may benefit from individualised short-term insurance that covers a specific contract.

There may be cost implications so make sure to ask your insurance provider about your options. Taking out annual insurance may end up costing you less in the long run. Regardless of whether you take annual or short-term insurance, the important thing is that you have the necessary cover for any potential liabilities that may arise during your work. 

How much does freelance liability insurance cost, on average? 

Freelance PLI can vary in cost. It all depends on things like the nature of your profession, your turnover, and the general risks involved in doing your work. 

An interior decorator may face more risks by going to a client’s house and working with ladders, paint, and power tools than a dress designer who works from home. The costs will be calculated by looking at the risks involved in doing your job.

Some freelancers may pay a modest annual fee while others will have a more substantial premium. Make sure to compare multiple quotes so that you can make an informed decision about freelance liability insurance for your business. 

What does public liability insurance for a freelancer protect me against? 

Freelancing PLI typically covers you for the following types of claims: 

  1. Third-party injuries – A client may trip and fall over your equipment while you’re working in their house. You could be held liable for their injury.
  2. Third-party property damage – If your work causes damage to your client’s property you could be held responsible.
  3. Legal fees and compensation costs – You’ll typically need a lawyer to iron out the legal issues and there may be compensation costs that need to be paid. 
What are the typical policy exclusions with freelancing PLI? 

Public liability insurance for freelancing usually has specific exclusions. These may vary from policy to policy, so be sure to read the small print of your insurance. The following are exclusions that you typically might find in a freelancer liability insurance policy: 

  • Deliberate acts that lead to injury or property damage 
  • Contractual liabilities 
  • Incorrect professional advice or negligence. You will need to take out extra indemnity insurance if you are in the business of giving advice. 
How can I find cheap freelance liability insurance?

The best way to go about finding freelance liability insurance to suit your budget is to compare quotes from multiple insurance providers from across the UK. This lets you choose a policy with peace of mind knowing that you’re not paying above the market rate. 

A useful comparison site like Quotezone.co.uk can help with your search. This type of tool is unbiased and simply searches for the cheapest quotes available from many insurance providers in the UK. It’s a good way to help keep your costs as low as possible.