If you are setting up a business, or looking to move from a sole trader to a limited company, then you should spend some time reading up on the legal requirements so that you don’t come unstuck a short way into your journey. There will be tonnes to get your head around in terms of tax, premises fees, expenses and VAT, but one thing you mustn’t forget is insurance for your business. Without adequate insurance your business bubble could burst in no time at all. Claims against businesses are often reported on the news, and unless you’re a multi national corporation with a huge turnover, the figures involved would ruin any company without insurance. So what do you need? Here a few of the biggest types of business insurance for starters:
In order to have a business you will have customers who pay you to deliver a product or a service to them. As such, you will have dealings with these people, either on your own premises or when you visit them on theirs. Whenever anyone sets foot in your business premises you are liable for their safety, and should they have an accident you are responsible for any compensation. This is even the case if your premises are your home, but you are conducting business at the time of an accident. Similarly, if you break a client’s property when on a business visit, you are responsible for paying the damages. Public liability insurance covers against all these things.
You might need professional indemnity insurance if you run a business that offers advice or a similar service, rather than a physical product or solution. This insurance protects you against claims should you give bad advice to a customer, or they experience hardship as a direct result of your information. This is also an important insurance for those that deal with client’s intellectual property, or have to handle sensitive, personal or financial information that needs to be kept safe.
Employee liability is a must for anyone who has one or more staff members in order to give them peace of mind about any accidents or illness that may befall them at work, and will help you rest in the knowledge that any claims of this sort would be paid for. Obviously, as a boss, you do all you can to prevent any mishaps or danger in the workplace, but accidents happen and not everything can be pre-empted.
You can find out more about public liability, professional indemnity and employee liability insurance at hiscox.co.uk, where there are many other business insurances detailed too. What cover you need very much depends on the type of business you are running and your day-to-day activities. If in doubt it is best to speak to a specialist in business law, as you don’t want to be caught short in the case of a claim, unable to pay the court fees or compensation. Err on the side of caution for ultimate business peace of mind.