What is professional indemnity insurance?

Professional indemnity insurance protects your business if you’re found to have provided poor services, bad advice or dodgy design, which has resulted in your clients or others losing money.

Although professional indemnity insurance isn’t a legal requirement, not having it could mean that if something does go wrong for a client following your advice, your business could be responsible for the legal fees, expenses, compensation costs or other costs incurred in your defence.

What’s covered by professional indemnity insurance?

Here’s what you’ll get with AXA’s professional indemnity insurance:

  • Choice of cover levels (up to £5 million)
  • Paid defence costs – including solicitors’ fees and expert counsel
  • Paid compensation bills
  • Claims that arise due to advice, designs, specifications or mistakes your business has made, that result in financial loss to your clients
  • Up to £250 compensation per day for directors / partners / employed persons to attend court
  • Tailored policies to fit your IT, accountancy or recruitment business
  • Specialist policies available – for accountants and many more

Who needs professional indemnity insurance?

Many small businesses take out professional indemnity. If you provide professional services or consultancy, or handle client data and intellectual property, it’s a very useful protection to have – covering legal fees and compensation costs if you lose a claim that a client brings against you. 

You need professional indemnity insurance if: 

  • You provide advice and consultancy
    Clients can claim compensation if there’s a mistake in the advice you’ve given.
  • You provide an expert service
    In case you make a mistake in designs, plans or calculations.
  • You handle people’s information
    You could face claims if you accidentally disclose data or infringe on a client’s legal rights.
  • A client insists you have it
    Many clients will require that you have professional indemnity insurance in place before you can start working for them.
  • Your professional body requires it
    You might belong to a professional body or industry association where professional indemnity insurance is compulsory.

You can also give us a call on contact us and one of our advisors can help.

Types of businesses that may need professional indemnity insurance:

How much professional indemnity insurance do I need?

When you’re considering buying professional indemnity insurance, take into account the type of work that you do and the projects you work on. Think about the sort of risks you face, the kind of customer information you deal with, and whether you provide consultancy or advice. Do your clients require you to have a particular type of cover before they’ll work with you? If you aren’t sure, it’s best to check with them in advance.

Is professional indemnity insurance required by law?

Unlike employers’ liability insurance, professional indemnity insurance isn’t a legal requirement. However, many clients will prefer to deal with businesses that are protected by professional indemnity insurance, and may not work with you if you don’t have it.

Plus, if you wish to join a professional body, it’s likely they’ll require you to you have a certain level of insurance before you’re able to become a member.

Is professional indemnity insurance tax deductible?

Yes, professional indemnity insurance is a tax-deductible allowable expense.

As a business owner, you’ll know that certain ‘allowable expenses’ can be deducted when you’re calculating your taxable profit. Business insurance is considered one of these allowable expenses, meaning that you can deduct the cost of professional indemnity insurance when you’re making your calculations.

What is a typical example of a professional indemnity claim?

Depending on the line of work you’re in, there’s a whole host of potential situations that may create a need for professional indemnity insurance. It’ll cover you for claims related to advice, recommendations or designs that you provide. 

For example, if you’re an architect who makes an incorrect measurement – a small but significant mistake, that causes a client to make a claim against you – this type of insurance can cover any associated legal costs or compensation claims that may arise as a consequence. 

What does professional indemnity insurance cover?

Professional indemnity insurance can cover you in the event that a client loses money as a result of negligence in your advice, services or designs. It can cover legal fees and compensation payments, with the compensation often taking into account the financial loss that the client has suffered. More specifically, professional indemnity insurance covers you for mistakes such as breach of confidentiality, defamation, loss of documents and dishonesty of employees. All of these claims can be costly and disruptive regardless of whether they're fair or not. Find out more about what’s covered here.

What additional cover can I add to my professional indemnity policy?

You can add various optional extras to your professional indemnity policy, including cover for:

  • Data protection and copyright breaches
  • Defamation
  • Breach of confidentiality
  • Business equipment
  • Loss of documents
  • Bodily injury (from breach of professional duty)
  • Dishonesty of employees
  • Court attendance costs
  • Public liability
  • Employers’ liability


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How much is professional indemnity insurance?

Having professional indemnity could save you a tidy sum, and is quick and easy to arrange online or over the phone. There are several things to consider, like the level of cover you choose and the type of work you do. As a rule of thumb, businesses that face higher levels of risk will pay more. So, for the best way to find out, give us a call on 0330 159 1520 and get a quote from one of our friendly, experienced advisors who’ll give you the price that’s just right for your business.

Is AXA professional indemnity insurance right for you?

Most professionals and small businesses can get a professional indemnity quote quickly and easily online. But for some people with more complex needs, we may need to speak to you to make sure we’ve got you properly protected.

We won’t be able to cover you online if your business:

• Has more than eight people

• Has previously had any professional indemnity claims

• Is based outside the UK, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man

If your business is or has any of these things, we’ll need to get some more details from you to make sure we can give you a quote that meets your needs.


Why choose AXA Professional Indemnity Insurance?

There are lots of reasons to choose AXA Professional Indemnity Insurance. Here are eight for starters:

Eight great reasons to choose AXA Professional Indemnity Insurance

  1. 10% off when you buy online
    When you buy professional indemnity insurance online, you’ll get 10% off. It’s the protection you’d expect from AXA – for less.
  2. You get the protection that's right for you, not someone else
    You can choose the level of professional indemnity cover you need, and any optional extras you need too. And you can take professional indemnity on its own or as a package with employers’ liability and public liability insurance. That way, you’re in control.
  3. Cover your previous work
    With us, you get the option to purchase cover for previous work you carried out before your insurance with AXA started. And if you’re retiring or shutting up shop, we can also cover the work you carried out in the past after your business stops trading.
  4. Specialist policies for your profession
    For members of selected professional bodies, we can provide professional indemnity insurance that’s compliant with their requirements.
  5. Get a quick and easy online quote
    We know you’re busy. And we know you’d rather not spend too much time looking for insurance. That’s why you can get professional indemnity insurance in minutes at any time, anywhere, using any device.
  6. Cover you can rely on
    We’ve got a 92% customer satisfaction rate on independent review system, Feefo.3 Now that’s cover you can rely on.
  7. No limit to the claims you can make
    We know mistakes can happen at any time. So with AXA Professional Indemnity Insurance, there’s no limit to the number of claims you can make. Now that’s one less thing to worry about.
  8. Track your PI claim online
    Once you’ve made your professional indemnity claim, you’ll be able to track the whole thing from start to finish online.

Self-employed insurance

Whether you’re just starting up or you’ve been self-employed for a number of years, make sure you’re properly protected with self-employed insurance from AXA.

Professional services insurance

You can choose the insurance that's right for you in minutes – and you’ll also get a 10% online discount.

What’s covered?

Find out what’s covered by AXA Professional Indemnity Insurance, so you get the protection that’s right for you.

Policy details

Find out more about our professional indemnity insurance cover in our policy summaries and policy wordings.

About us

Keep your company up-and-running no matter what with AXA’s business insurance. We offer flexible, tailored cover to help sole traders, self-employed people and small and medium-sized businesses grow.

Landlord? We’ll protect your commercial or residential property. Use a van? Stay on the road with our comprehensive van insurance.

Running a business is hard work. That’s why we keep insuring one simple.

* 10% of our customers paid this or less between April and June 2022.

1 The survey of 300 small business owners was carried out for AXA Business Insurance by Taylor McKenzie Research and Marketing Ltd in April 2015.

2 AXA Business Insurance and Enterprise Nation Home Insight Report among nearly 800 home based business in March 2014.

3 Based on 14,903 reviews. Accurate as of 28 Apr 2022.

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