About this group
Insurance for people who are self-employed and SMEs
Business insurance is designed to protect companies from legal claims against them and unexpected events that could harm them, such as damage to their stock.
Public liability is at the heart of most insurance for small businesses. It can pay out if a member of the public is injured or harmed by your business activity. It tends to cover £1m to £5m of claims but you should be able to choose an appropriate level of cover for your business.
It's best to discuss your needs with potential insurers to work out how much cover you need. Some regulatory bodies or councils may require you to have certain levels of insurance.
Many business policies include products liability cover, which is designed to help with legal costs if your products harm a member of the public, or damage their property.
Be aware that business insurance can come with exceptions for certain activities or you may need to buy additional cover to do them. These could relate to serving food, invasive beauty treatments, building work involving certain materials or above certain heights. Make sure you read policy documents carefully or check with your insurer.
Business insurance add-ons
Most policies offer add-ons that may be worth considering if they're relevant to your business.
- Employers' liability - this is a legal requirement if you have employess, volunteers or interns. It can cover legal costs if an employee sustains an injury at work and sues for compensation.
- Business tools and equipment - can cover tools for damage, loss or theft. Some policies may include tools that are left in unattended vehicles but you'll need to check.
- Personal accident - this can pay out if you injure yourself.
Why does a small business need insurance?
Many local authorities require you to have insurance in place before you start trading. Furthermore, if you have employees, you are legally obliged to have employers' liability insurance.
Our liability and product insurance for small business is designed to cover legal costs if a client or a member of the public suffers an injury or property damage as a result of your business.
If you sell goods, we can cover most of them, the main exclusions are children's toys, second hand or reconditioned products and motor safety equipment
What insurance do I need for a small business?
The cover you need will depend on your business activities and the size of your company but these features may be worth considering:
Small business public and product liability insruance is designed to cover legal costs if any of your products or business activities harm a client or a member of the public or damage their property.
Employers' liability is a legal requirement if you have any employees, including volunteers or people doing work experience.
Personal accident cover offers a payout if a director or employee is injured as a result of your business.
Help for small businesses
Learn more about the costs of business liability insurance.
Compare our small business insurance for market traders and stallholders to that offered by trade associations.
Find out about liability insurance for hairdressers and beauticians.