Archive for Liability insurance

Builders Insurance Anyone? White Van Man Is Taking Over

Is it just Insurance Blog or has the whole country gone mad building things?

From the amount of adverts for insurance for builders and tradesman that flood the TV intervals and blast across the radio airwaves during events like football, one could be easily mistaken to believe that the UK was in the midst of some great housing and construction boom where everyone has suddenly put on a yellow plastic hat, white overalls and bought a white van!

“Don’t forget your public liability!” is the battle cry to the Sun reading hoards.

Now don’t start on me, the latest Direct Line advert for combined Builders Liability and Van insurance has employed what would only have been described in the 17th Century as the Village Idiot in the starring role.

Stereotypes such as those used by Aviva in its regional ads featuring Paul Whitehouse were bad enough! Every village has an idiot and these days lots of cowboy builders< do exist - we all at some time have met, or to our detriment employed a builder called Steve, but even in the 17th century Builders (Masons) were far from idiots!

So why the sudden rush and millions of pounds spend in advertising builders insurance, to build up a book of insurance in a sector that is actually shrinking in size and contributing to the 8.7 milion pool of unemployed!

The housing market is stagnant, the shelves of the big out of town DIY centres are full and everything is on offer, planning applications now only fill a small space in the local paper, land with agreed planning permission for building is standing idle as set aside full of pretty spring wildflowers, its very difficult to get a home improvement loan and the UK’s credit rating has just been downgraded.

So why are all the big insurers after this market? Perhaps because they have learnt to their cost that managing a business liability book and a motor book at the same time is much more costly and uncertain than they had anticipated!
Was it not Liability claims losses that were recently blamed by everyone for the rising cost of car insurance?

“Higher Car Insurance Premiums Anyone?”

Small Business Insurance For Motor Trades and Traders

Motor Trade Insurance For Small Business Explained

Thousands of people are employed in motor trades in the UK from car washers to mechanics, used car dealers to mobile car tuners, garage owners to coachbuilders, and the list goes on…

The number of motor trades is expanding as fast as the technology. Insurers now have to cope with motor trades as diverse as ‘telematics black box fitters’ to ‘remote crypton tuners’. However complex it may seem to a new mobile mechanic looking for cover, commercial motor trades insurance is actually a straightforward and optional component based risk as Dave Healey explains……………….

If you work in trades associated with cars or the automotive industry there will likely be times when you will need to drive cars that don’t belong to you. For example moving new stock around in a car dealership or test driving a customers vehicle after you have carried out some service or maintenance on it.

Driving cars in this manner for business purposes clearly cannot be allowed under a normal private motor insurance policy, however it would be impractical if not impossible to add named vehicles onto any type of policy in the course of your normal days work.

Road Risks Insurance

For this reason a special class of commercial motor insurance exists called motor trade road risks insurance. The cover this policy provides satisfies the Road Traffic Act to enable the policyholder to ‘drive any vehicle’ in the course of their business, and if they choose for social, domestic and pleasure purposes as well.

A motor trade policy offers the most flexible driving cover available and nearly every scheme can be tailored to a particular motor trade’s road risks.

Road risks insurance is calculated differently from private motor premiums where the declared value of a car is used for rating. In a road risks policy the trader sets a level of indemnity or amount that he wishes to cover himself for driving other vehicles. This could be as little as five thousand for a part-time used car dealer or mechanic up to a hundred thousand for a valet in a Ferrari Dealership for example.

A new car dealership of prestige cars would need a policy that not only covered the cost of replacing a new car should it be written off but also an extension to cover members of the public test driving the car accompanied by a named driver. However a used car dealer working from home or a mobile mechanic would only need basic road risks cover with perhaps a tools cover extension. Many road risk policies vary in what is considered basic cover and motor traders should be aware of extra covers such as legal protection and windscreen covers, as they would with a normal motor insurance policy.

Motor Traders with premises such as forecourts or shops will require what is known as a combined motor trader policy. This is simply a basic road risks policy allowing employees and named drivers to drive any vehicle combined with other risks that a motor trader might face, such as liability and property damage.

Motor Traders Liability Insurance & Combined Covers

Liability insurance forms the basis of a combined motor traders policy, in particular product and public liability which covers your business against claims from members of the public to who you have supplied services or parts or who have suffered injury whilst visiting your premises.

If you employ any staff in either workshops, garages offices or out on the road in commercial vehicles or vans, you are required by law to have employers liability insurance cover in force. This cover protects your motor trade business against claims from employees and staff who might suffer an accident at work and claim against you in the courts.

Full combined motor trade insurance policies offer motor traders buildings and contents commercial property insurance cover for garages, workshops, office contents, machinery such as car lifts and compressors and tools, shop cover and stock.

Additional options such as business interruption insurance is available to cover catastrophe situations such as a fire where you may lose all your stock, or group personal accident which will cover members of staff against accident and sickness.

Anyone who works in the motor industry can apply for a motor trade insurance policy. Policies are available for car dealers, car valets, parking attendants, mechanics, body repair shops, service garages and motor parts shops, to name but a few trades eligible.

Motor trade cover is available to all small businesses including sole traders without premises and people working from home and on a part-time basis.

Compare quotes from a few companies before you buy a motor trader insurance policy. Premiums vary widely however the best UK commercial insurance brokers have access to a wide range of specialist motor trades schemes and Lloyds underwriters, which are invariably much cheaper.

Originally published by: for Insurance Blog

Sports Insurance Explained

Britain is one of the World’s leading sporting nations with millions taking part in all sorts of events up and down the length and breadth of the country every day of the year. Surprisingly though many of us take part in sports without knowing the potential risks and possibly life changing consequences that can occur on the local park, playing field or fun run marathon, as easily as they could at Twickenham or Wembley, for example.

All sports involve risks of varying degrees both to those involved in organisation, participation or merely spectating. So in this year of the London Olympics, Insurance Blog takes a look at the different types of risks that players, clubs and coaches may face both on and off the field and the various covers and policies that are available to protect both individuals and businesses involved in sport.

Sports injury and accident insurance is perhaps the most widely sort after personal protection cover by sportsmen and women who wish to indulge in the favourite pastimes without fear that an injury will financially hurt themselves or others. Sports accident and liability insurance policies can be bought by individuals, coaches and sports clubs and is available to adults and children both amateur and professional.

Individual cover
Sports Accident Insurance policies offer a range of protection for loss of earnings or income, personal liability to others you may injure in the course of the sporting activity, physiotherapy for recovery, legal expenses against being sued and various levels of personal accident and injury rehabilitation cover, the cost often dependent upon the type of sport in which the policyholder is engaged. Cover can be purchased for a single day, multiple day event or on an annual basis.
Typically sports liability insurance will cover you against claims of up to £2 million although higher limits of public liability indemnity are available.
Personal Accident cover is available to both adults and children involved in sports and the levels of cover and benefits paid are usually comensurate with the premium charged. If you are injured playing sports you will receive payouts for your injury as defined in the policy.
The cost of sports injury insurance is dependent on a number of factors such as what you do for a living and how much income protection you need, if any. Many policies are flexible and allow you to add additional covers or raise limits, usually for a price.

Sports Team Insurance
This offers exactly the same types of liability, accident and income protection cover as for individuals, however on a team basis with the number of players or squad covered defined by the team sport. Additional covers can include travel insurance for away fixtures, property insurance, and ground cover for clubs. The sports team insurance cover is available for both children and amateur or semi-pro adults teams and premiums vary depending upon the type of sports activity engaged in and the occupations of the players.

Sports Coaches, Instructors and Personal Trainers
If you are involved in sports coaching or training as a business then it is essential that you cover yourself against claims or loss of earnings and if you employ staff to assist, then employers liability insurance is a legal requirement.
Coaches and trainers can purchase annual packages and schemes that are particularly designed with their activities in mind. As with individual sports accident policies, Coaches insurance includes income protection covers, personal accident covers and public liability as standard, which can be extended to cover employees and products where necessary.
A feature of Sports Coach, Fitness Instructors and Sports Trainers package cover that is unique to this insurance is that of advice inclusion which is effectively professional indemnity insurance.
As a coach you are in a position of trust giving advice to those around you who expect the advice and knowledge you pass on to them to be correct and safe. If the advice you give proves to be negligent you could find yourself facing expensive legal action if one of your ‘students’ decides to claim. This advice inclusion protects you against such eventualities.

Sports Business Insurance
If you are in a sports based business you will need a specialist sports business insurance policy. These annual commercial packages offer employers liability usually up to £10 million to protect you against negligence claims from your employees, public liability with varying amounts up to £5 million to proctect your business against claims from the public and product liability if you supply sporting goods or apparatus.
Sports business insurance packages also offer buildings and contents insurance for offices, clubs and sports grounds as optional covers. This type of business insurance is open to sole traders, partnerships, sports clubs and charities and limited companies engaged in sports activities.

Sporting Event Insurance
If you are organising a one off sporting event such as a marathon or kids football match or a five day event of sport such as a surfing or skateboard festival, you will need sporting event insurance. The policies offer basic public liability insurance determined by the number of spectators, which could be fifty or fifty thousand for example. In addition employers liability cover is a must for staff and is usually available as an additional option. Most policies also offer cancellation and pluvial insurance covers, although these can significantly add to the cost of organising the event. Cover is available for single events and is often charged by the day.

Nightclub Insurance Risks – Remembering Summerland

Times have changed, fashions have changed, the music has changed and the dances have changed, even Insurance Blog has changed; but the risks to nightclubs remain as powerful as ever since Britain’s worst ever nightclub disaster, which killed more than 50 clubbers and seriously injured over 80 others, 38 years ago at the Summerland Resort Complex on the Isle of Man in August 1973.

The Summerland complex was opened 40 years ago in May 1971 in Douglas on the Isle of Man in the Irish Sea.
The 3.5 acre resort was cut into the cliff on the promenade and claimed to be the biggest and most innovative indoor entertainment centre in the World, providing artificial sunshine all year round for the holiday resort. The Summerland complex

The aim was to attract British holidaymakers to the Island to compete with the threat posed by the rapid development of package holidays to Spain, that were becoming ever popular with the public.

The Summerland Resort was a spectacular success…..until it’s destruction by fire.

The Resort which was built in modern materials of concrete, steel and plastics, boasted continuous live entertainment, a plethora of restaurants and bars, an Olympic sized indoor heated swimming pool, saunas, massages and Turkish baths, artificial sunshine, a children’s entertainment and theatre,  cascading waterfalls and…… underground disco and nightclub.

The fire is believed to have been started outside by some smokers next to a plastic kiosk adjoining the main complex building which housed the nightclub. The building was packed with holidaymakers relaxing at the time and the disco was full.

The melting plastic kiosk collapsed against the side of the main complex and rapidly ignited the building that was covered in a damp proofing bitumous material called Galbestos. The fire spread extremely rapidly through the wall cavities which contained flammable materials and quickly engulfed the flammable acrylic see through roof, which came crashing down on the 3000 people inside who were trying to escape the flames.
Many were crushed to death in the ensuing panic or injured by falling flammable debris, however the biggest amount of casualties were in the underground nightclub where the majority of bodies dead through asphixiation were piled against locked security doors.

Following the tragedy Business Insurance Companies tightened up their cover offerings for nightclub insurance, specialist insurance providers emerged and many new building regulations were put into law. Specifically, building materials of flammable quality were forbidden in construction and many health and safety regulations for nightclubs were introduced. The industry is now very well regulated and the covers offered under a nightclub insurance policy sit well with the establishments legal responsibilities of risk management.
Fortunately the measures have worked in the UK to date which has avoided such a similar nightclub disaster although that cannot be said for other places around the world……

* Rhythm Nightclub fire 23 April 1940; Natchez, Mississippi; 209 dead
* Cocoanut Grove fire 28 November 1942; Boston, Massachusetts; 492 dead
* Club Cinq-Sept fire 1 November 1970; Saint-Laurent-du-Pont, France; 146 dead
* Beverly Hills Supper Club fire 28 May 1977; Southgate, Kentucky; 165 dead
* Stardust fire 14 February 1981; Dublin, Ireland; 48 dead
* Alcalá 20 Nightclub fire 17 December 1983; Madrid, Spain; 82 dead
* HappyLand fire 25 March 1990; New York City, New York; 87 dead
* Kheyvis Nightclub fire 20 December 1993; Olivos, Buenos Aires, Argentina; 17 dead
* Ozone Disco Club fire 18 March 1996; Quezon City, Philippines; 162 dead
* Gothenburg Nightclub fire 29 October 1998; Gothenburg, Sweden; 63 dead
* Luoyang Christmas fire 25 December 2000; Luoyang, People’s Republic of China; 309 dead
* E2 Nightclub stampede 17 February 2003; Chicago, Illinois; 21 dead
* The Station Nightclub fire 20 February 2003; West Warwick, Rhode Island; 100 dead
* Cro-magnon Republic Nightclub fire 30 December 2004; Buenos Aires, Argentina; 194 dead
* Wuwang Club fire 21 September 2008; Shenzhen, People’s Republic of China; 43 dead
* Bangkok Nightclub fire 1 January 2009; Watthana, Bangkok, Thailand; 61 dead
* Lame Horse club fire 5 December 2009; Perm, Russian Federation; 149 dead

Insurance Blog thinks it is rather ironic that the Summerland fire was started by smokers outside the building, when the current policy of most nightclubs is to force smokers to outside areas.

Making Business Insurance Decisions Easy for Business Owners

Decisions, Decisions, Decisions. If you are starting out in business or reviewing your initial company procedures and processes you will be faced by an endless choice of decisions to make.

Whilst the potential rewards of running a successful business drive them onwards, there are many challenges faced by small business owners, especially during the initial outset of the business when methods and procedures are being put in place. None more so when trying to navigate through the vagaries of business insurance risks and covers, which vary widely depending upon the type of business you engage in.

So where do you start to try to understand the risks that your business might face and the types of insurance that are available to protect your business from these risks?

Fortunately this has been recognised by specialist small business insurer, Hiscox who understands that business owners want to focus on what they do best – running their business.

So they have created a Business Insurance Decision Tree in the form of an infographic to help steer small business owners through the different types of insurance available to them.

The Hiscox Business Insurance Decision Tree looks at variables such as whether you work from home or in an office, how many employees you have and what type of property you own, suggesting applicable cover which best suits an SME’s (Small to Medium Sized Enterprises) needs.

So whether it is office contents insurance for damage to property, employers’ liability for those with employees, professional indemnity insurance when offering advice, or public liability insurance, the Business Insurance Decision Tree can help clarify which insurance is suitable.

The Business Insurance decision tree

The Business Insurance decision tree makes getting the right cover easy! Click to view

Hiscox SME Underwriting Manager, Deepak Soni, comments: “SMEs are experts in their area, but we don’t expect them to be experts in insurance, that’s what we are here for. No two businesses are the same, so the Business Insurance Decision Tree is a useful tool to help SMEs understand the risks they face and get the right cover in place.”