What is Builders Liability Insurance?
No matter how good a builder is, there will be times that accidents, injury or losses occur in connection with constructions projects. Liability insurance is used to protect a builder from the financial losses and legal expenses associated with certain claims. As prices can vary, it is wise to check a number of builders insurance quotes.
Building projects, renovations, constructions sites and building works are fraught with possible risks; liability insurance provides protection against claims that clients bring, employees, or other people in connection with the work being performed.
Along with injuries that may happen, there are also risks of damage to things like equipment, vehicles and property. Having the correct liability insurance will ensure that personal liability is limited should any of these events occur.
Some liability insurance is required by law, and some are optional, though most reputable businesses will seek to acquire the appropriate coverage.
What is public liability insurance for builders?
A building site carries a substantially higher level of risk than normal. This is because construction work can involve the use of equipment like generators or power tools, leaving cables strewn across the work area.
This can mean that the instance of accidents from slips, trips, and falls is high; if the person falling happens to be the client of another public member, then the builder can be on the hook for a claim.
A third party brings public liability claims for accidents, injuries, or losses that are the builder’s responsibility. The cost of defending public liability claims can be expensive as charges rack up quickly for:
- Legal fees
- Medical appointments
- Transportation costs
- Settlement or compensation payments
Having an adequate public liability insurance policy in place will insure builders against claims and cover many of the costs. The policy will cover the expenses associated with such claims like legal fees and settlement payments. Public liability insurance is not required by law, but the builder’s personal finances, assets, and property can be at risk without it.
Public liability claims can be things like:
- Damage caused to a person, property, or vehicle due to mishandling of tools.
- Injuries caused by falling debris
- Exposure to chemicals or harmful material
- Accidents caused by faulty equipment
As builders often work in places accessible to the general public, like building sites or a client’s property, it makes sense to have the correct levels of protection in place with a public liability insurance policy to defend against any claims made.
What is employers’ liability for builders?
Any company that engages the services of employees to perform work will require employers liability insurance. This applies even if workers are hired temporarily or for a one-off job. This type of insurance is required by law and protects the policyholders against claims brought by employees.
Employers have a legal responsibility to provide a safe and healthy working environment for employees, but the builder may be responsible if an employee is injured or becomes sick. Unfortunately, accidents in the workplace are relatively common, and most business owners will be on the end of a claim at some point.
Many claims arise from workplace accidents, and the most commonly seen are:
- Slips, trips, and falls
- Electric shocks
- Chemical burns
- Industrial diseases
- Lifting and handling injuries
- Injuries from a falling object
Employers can reduce the number of workplace accidents by implementing correct training, performing risk assessments, and providing protective equipment. If reasonable steps are not followed to maintain the correct levels of safety, an employee can claim against the company for any injuries caused.
Construction can be a dangerous business, and accidents frequently occur that are serious or result in a fatality. In fact, the statistics show that the construction industry has the highest instance of fatal injuries to workers when compared to other industries.
For this reason and the protection of employees, the law requires that employers liability insurance is obtained. This rule does not apply to businesses that operate as sole traders or have no employees. There are also some exceptions for businesses that only employ family members. The requirement for having employers liability insurance is strictly enforced, and companies that do not have the appropriate coverage can be fined up to £2500 per day.
To ensure the correct protection, an employers’ liability claims should cover claims that are brought by all employees, permanent, temporary, or seasonal. It should also provide protection in the event that claims are brought by volunteer workers, students, or interns. Policy premiums will be impacted by the number of employees working for the company.
Insurance costs can also fluctuate based on the kind of construction projects being performed. For example, a company with 2 employees that primarily remodel homes will need much less insurance than a large organization with a full crew and temporary workers that handle large scale construction projects.