Personal liability insurance in the UK

A gavel on a table

We hope that you never end up in court, but if you do, the costs involved can be astronomical.

Personal liability insurance protects you in the eventuality that you end up on the wrong side of the jury box, or are held responsible for an accident resulting in a hefty bill.

What is personal liability insurance?

Personal liability insurance is rarely purchased alone in the UK, as it is often included with other relevant insurance packages like home and travel insurance.

What does personal liability insurance cover?

  • Claims for compensation
  • Legal expenses
  • Medical fees
  • Cost of repairs

When purchasing travel insurance, your provider may include personal liability insurance as part of the policy as it would protect you against the costs of legal action and eventual compensation should you accidentally cause damage to the property that you are staying in. It would also cover you for any expenses due to an injury suffered by a 3rd party where you were at fault.

Personal liability insurance can also be seen in many home insurance policies, where cover is provided for legal expenses and/or compensation in the event that somebody is injured in your home and you are held responsible. It also covers you against accidents which occur in the surrounding areas of your property, such as if your child kicks their ball over the fence and breaks a window, or they ruin an expensive piece of art.

What doesn’t personal liability insurance cover?

  • Liability as a result of a vehicle accident
  • Injury or damage caused intentionally
  • Injury sustained or damage caused by you or a family member
  • Claims related to your business or professional activity

Your personal liability insurance will not cover you in the event that you are held accountable for a motoring accident because this should be covered by your vehicle’s insurance. It will also fail to pay out if an injury or damage to a property or possessions was caused intentionally, in which case you would have to cover the costs yourself.

Personal liability insurance also does not cover any injuries sustained by yourself or a member of your family in your home as it is only in place to cover accidents suffered by third parties – the same applies for any damage caused.

Any claims made against you as a result of your business or professional activity will also not be covered by personal liability insurance. If you have any specific questions about your coverage – particularly if you work from home – then be sure to discuss them with your insurer, who will be able to offer you the adequate level of cover.

Do I need personal liability insurance at work?

So you’re covered both at home and on your holidays, but what about while you’re at work?

If you are an employee then your employer should have public liability insurance, which is designed to protect the business against claims made by a third-party in relation to injury or damage caused by a member of staff.

If you are self-employed then public liability insurance is highly recommended and, in some cases, will help you get more work – some clients may not want to work with you if you don’t have adequate protection.

For more information, read Bobatoo’s guide to public liability insurance.

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