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How much is general liability insurance?

Making sure you get a good deal on your insurance is important. However, insurance costs are not always straightforward to understand, and can vary.

In this video, part of our Public Liability FAQ series, we answer the question ‘How much is general liability insurance?’.

What is general liability insurance?

‘General liability’ is typically an American term used to describe what we in the UK call either business liability insurance or public and product liability insurance.

Public liability insurance protects you and your business from claims for damage or injury caused by something your business did or failed to do. The affected parties will either be clients or members of the public.

Product liability relates to damage or harm caused as a result of a product you have installed or supplied.

Business liability is often used to mean the same as ‘public liability’. However, it can include other types of insurance such as employer's liability and professional indemnity insurance.

Do I need general liability insurance?

It is not a legal requirement to have public or product liability insurance, but it is often a contractual requirement. It also provides essential protection for your business if something goes wrong.

Even small accidents on site can result in a claim against your business for thousands of pounds. Without insurance, you will have to pay.

Employers’ liability insurance is a legal requirement if you employ anyone, even if they are a trainee. You can be fined £2,500 for every day you don’t have it.

How much does general liability insurance cost?

This will depend on a few factors. First, when getting a quote, you need to check what types of insurance it will include.

Ask yourself: does this general liability policy only include public and product liability insurance or does it also include employers’ liability insurance, professional indemnity, and others?

If it includes multiple types of insurance, the premium will likely be higher than a simple public liability policy, but the package may be more cost-effective than buying several individual policies.

What other factors affect the cost of general liability cover?

The level of cover you require will have an influence. Standard levels of cover for public liability insurance range between £1 million and £10 million. In addition, you must have a minimum £5 million employers’ liability cover.

Other factors include:

  • the size of your business
  • how many employees you have
  • whether you are a limited company, partnership or are self-employed
  • the size and type of projects you carry out
  • where you work
  • your claims history

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