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Guide to Insurance For Builders

Published: 7 August 2020

When you’re building your business, comprehensive insurance is one of the key foundations. If you hire subcontractors, contractor insurance can help to keep you safe, protected and keep your company ticking over smoothly.

Not sure what type of insurance you need? We’ve laid it all out in our guide.

What type of insurance is available?

Insurance isn’t a one size fits all. Depending on your circumstances and the sort of work which you do, there are a few options available. Some are optional and some mandatory if you’re a contractor. Below is a list of the options you’ll probably need to consider if you’re a construction worker.

Professional Indemnity Insurance

Professional Indemnity Insurance covers your business in the event that a client makes a claim against you. This will cover any legal costs in your defence as well as any costs that may be awarded to you. Although this isn’t a legal requirement, if you work in a field where you provide your professional advice, it’s good to have.

No matter how much experience you have, professional indemnity insurance will give you peace of mind that if there’s ever a mistake made down the line, you’ll be covered.

Public Liability Insurance

Public Liability Insurance isn’t required by law, but it’s essential for many builders. This protects third parties against injuries, death and accidental damage to third-party equipment as a result of your work. For example, if a car was damaged by falling debris from your building site, you may be held responsible for any compensation.

In addition to compensating any financial losses, public liability can also account for medical bills, repair and replacement costs in the event of damage and legal expenses if you’re defending a claim.

Financial loss insurance is sometimes offered in addition to public liability insurance, so it’s worth checking with your policy.

Employers’ Liability Insurance

If you employ a subcontractor who works under your direction and uses your tools and equipment, you’ll be legally required to provide insurance. This covers illness or injury which may be sustained as a result of their work. Most policies will also include cover for any temporary workers in your employment.

The legal requirement is £5 million, but most policies will generally provide upwards of £10 million. If you’re not insured and you have employees working for you, you could face a hefty fine.

Contractor All Risk Insurance

All risk insurance provides a comprehensive level of cover which protects you from physical damage to sites and materials which you were contracted to undertake for in the event of both negligence and damage from fire, flood and storm. This is designed to protect builders against a range of hazards which can often occur.

Tools and Equipment Insurance

This covers your tools and equipment if they’re ever lost, stolen or damaged. Some policies will also cover office equipment such as phones and laptops. If you’re working outside the UK, it’s worth checking whether your policy covers you overseas.

Vehicle Insurance

Any vans or cars used to transport your tools and equipment will need to be insured with commercial vehicle insurance, even if they’re also used for personal use.

Do I need business insurance if I’m a subcontractor?

If you work for a contractor, you should be covered by their insurance. However, if you’re working unsupervised for a period, you might need to be covered by your own policy.

Need to know more?

The good news is, no matter what insurance you need for your business, it’s more than likely you can claim the cost as part of your tax rebate.

For more information and to learn more about what you can and can’t claim, give us a call on 0800 464 0355 or fill in the contact form and we’ll be in touch.

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We look after limited companies, sole traders, freelancers, contractors and CIS workers.

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