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

What does public liability insurance cover?

Public liability insurance protects your business against third-party claims from the public. It’s there to protect you if someone gets accidentally injured, or their property is damaged as a result of your business activities. So, whether you’re working from your own premises, on the go, or off-site, public liability insurance from AXA has got your back.

Want to know more?

We’ve put together this handy video to give you a look into what public liability insurance is and why it’s important.

What’s covered by public liability insurance?

Life is unpredictable, and that’s why public liability insurance covers a wide range of possible circumstances that might result in a claim. There’s a few things we won’t cover you for, so please be sure to always check your policy documents and schedule to see what these are.

Settling a claim 

If someone makes a claim against you for an injury they sustained in your shop, or for damage caused to their property by your business, public liability insurance covers the cost of paying them compensation.

Legal fees

If we decide to defend your business against a claim that’s being made, your insurance will help cover the cost of any legal fees built up in this process.

Repair or replacement costs

If someone’s property gets damaged or broken beyond repair because of your business, public liability may cover the cost of repairing or replacing the property in question.

What's the difference between public liability and employers' liability?

The main difference between public liability and employers' liability is WHO is covered by these two types of insurance.

Public liabilty insurance covers claims from third parties, such as customers, clients and the general public. It protects against accidental injury or property damage.

Employer's liability insurance protects anyone your business is responsible for, such as employees (part time and full-time), volunteers and trainees. It protects employees who have been accidentally injured or fallen ill as a result of working for you.

What's the difference between public liability and professional indemnity insurance?

The main difference between public liability and professional indemnity the TYPE of situation you're covered for.

Public liabilty insurance covers you against accidental injuries caused to other people from your business/products as well as any damage caused to a third party's property.

Professional indemnity insurance covers you for the financial loss your client may have suffered as a result of your advice, poor services or inadequate designs that ended up resulting in financial loss for that client.

What other covers can I get with public liability insurance?

Every business needs something different when it comes to their insurance. That’s why we pride ourselves on offering tailored cover that puts you in the driver’s seat and lets you choose what covers you want.

Public liability insurance can be bought as a standalone cover, but if you want to combine it with any of out other covers, you can do that too. Public liability can be combined with:

  • Professional indemnity insurance which covers businesses that provide advice, services, or designs in case a client suffers a loss and claims it was due to your business.
  • Employers liability insurance that is a legal requirement for any businesses with employees, volunteers or trainees. It protects a business if someone in their care gets hurt on the job or falls ill as a result of the work they’re doing.
  • Contents insurance which is there to protect any important contents belonging to your business against theft, loss or accidental damage. It also extends to cover fixtures and fittings in your premises and any stock you have.

Does public liability insurance cover my employees?

No, public liability doesn’t cover claims made by employees. This cover is designed to cover claims made by third parties. If you’d like to cover employees, you should consider employers’ liability insurance.

How much does public liability insurance cost?

Every business is different, so what you pay will depend on the cover you need. Our cover is tailored to you and your needs, so the quickest way to find out what you’ll pay for cover is to get a quote. Get a quote online today and you can get a 10% lifetime discount on the cost of your policy.

How much cover do I need?

We have varying levels of public liability, meaning that you can choose the level of cover you need to suit your business, not someone else’s. Our cover goes up to £5 million protection - that way, you’re in control of how much you need.

What factors affect the cost of my public liability insurance?

The price of your public liability insurance is dependent on a range of factors, such as;

  • Your occupation can affect the cost of your insurance, because trades that use lots of equipment in their day-to-day operations or use or dangerous machinery are consider higher risk.

  • Where you complete your work can affect your premium because business that are in areas with heavy footfall, or who interact more consistently with members of the pubic, are at higher risk of accidents occurring.

  • How many staff you have will affect your premium as more employees opens to up to more possibilities of claims resulting in negligence or accidental injury.

  • Your turnover affects your policy price as a higher turnover suggests that you work with a large volume of clients, expensive contracts, or a combination of both. This means your risk factor for an insurer is higher.

Getting a quote - need to know

With our straightforward quote process, it’s easier than you think to get a quote online. We’ll ask you for some details about your business and the type of work you do, and within minutes you’ll have a quote built around your insurance needs.

What will we ask you when you get a quote?

With out straightforward quote process, it's easier than you think to get a quote online. We'll ask you for some details about your business and the type of work you do, and within minutes you'll have a quote built around your insurance needs.

Take a look at this handy checklist and get prepared.

  • Your business name and address
  • How many employees you have
    (both full-time and part-time staff or any other workers in your care)
  • How long you've been in business
  • Contact information
  • Details of any previous claims you've filed

Paying for public liability insurance

Everyone handles their finances differently, that’s why we’ve got a variety of different ways to pay for your insurance. You can pay for your policy in a one-off lump sum when you’re ready to buy, or via direct debit in monthly or yearly instalments.

Please note, to pay monthly you may have to meet specific eligibility criteria.

Is public liability insurance tax deductible?

Yes, public liability insurance is tax deductible, as HMRC have included insurance covers as an allowable expense. So, when you’re calculating your taxes be sure to deduct the costs of any business insurances.

When it comes to calculating your taxes, it would be wise to consult an accountant who can help you determine what is and isn’t tax deductible.

Occupations that need public liability insurance

There are a wide variety of occupations that need public liability insurance. Any business that interacts with members of the public, or any other third parties in some capacity should consider investing in public liability insurance.

Some of the most common occupations that require public liability insurance are:

Builders icon


Hairdressers icon


Retailers icon


Event managers icon

Event managers

Gardeners icon


Cafes icon

Small restaurants/cafes

Tradespeople icon


Cleaners icon


Do I need public liability insurance if I'm self-employed?

Yes, there are some self-employed people who need public liability insurance. Whether or not you need public liability insurance when you work for yourself depends on the type of work you’re doing.

Public liability provides cover against accidental injury or damage caused to a third party or their property. So, if you interact with the general public at all during your average workday, you should consider public liability insurance.

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What’s a typical example of a public liability claim?

Every industry is different, and so is every claim. So, the type of claim you might have to make very much depends on the industry you’re in. Here are a few of the most common examples of a public liability claim.

How do I make a public liability claim?

We all like to think the worst will never happen to us, but if it does, we’ve got your back. We know that making a claim can be a stressful time for any business owner, so we strive to make our claims process as straightforward as possible.

If you find yourself needing to make a claim, our dedicated business insurance claims page has all the information you need to walk through the process step by step. From that initial claim to a resolution, we’ve got your back.

What’s covered?

Get the level of cover and optional extras you want to suit your business – not someone else’s.

Making a claim

Public liability claims can happen to anyone. And when they do - we're here to help.