Are you known in your work as 'sparky'? It might be a more appropriate – but less welcome – name than you might think. When you are working away as an electrical contractor, one of the last things you want to see are the sparks flying.
They may be a reminder that working with electrical current is dangerous, even in qualified and experienced hands – and that there is always the risk of the slightest error causing serious injury to you, your customers or anyone nearby.
If your crossed wires cause a fire, for example, considerable damage is likely to be caused to your client’s property and carry with it the risk of injury to anyone nearby. If it was your work that was at fault, you are likely to be held liable and sued for compensation by those who have suffered an injury or sustained any financial loss.
The amount of compensation you might be ordered to pay depends on the extent of the damage or the injuries involved, but they may often involve very substantial sums – the type of sums that may be impossible for your small business to bear, with the result that insolvency may beckon.
Any number of different liabilities may be involved – public, professional or your liability as an employer – not to mention the adverse impact on your standing and reputation as a competent electrician.
That’s why you might want to talk to us at constructaquote.com about electricians’ insurance.
- Since 1990, we have experience helping businesses find the insurance they need
- Our service centre is based in south Wales
- Our competitively priced policies can offer you £10 million of public liability cover
Let’s take a close look at electricians’ insurance
Let’s count the ways in which electricians’ insurance may help to protect your business.
In defence of your professional liabilities
If you represent yourself as an electrician, your customers expect a degree of knowledge and competence displayed by anyone else in your profession who has similar qualifications and experience.
If the quality of your work has fallen short of those standards and your customer suffers a financial loss as a result, he or she may sue you for professional negligence, claiming a substantial sum of money by way of compensation.
Professional liability insurance not only protects you against such claims, but the very fact of your having it might give potential customers the confidence in hiring you, thanks to the professionalism and standards you strive to maintain.
You have a wider, more general, public liability too
Even if you are not held to account for your professional negligence, an error or mistake that causes injury or damage might still land you with a public liability claim.
Such claims are based on the general principle of your owing anyone else a duty of care – a duty to ensure that your actions, or failure to act, do not physically harm or damage the property of another person. Unless you take all reasonable precautions to prevent this happening, you may be held responsible and liable for the payment of compensation to any injured party of parties.
This general duty of care extends to your work as an electrical contractor and errors or mistakes on your part might land you with a public liability claim – from a customer, a visitor to their home, a neighbour or a member of the public – amounting to thousands or even hundreds of thousands of pounds.
Reflecting the potential scale of such claims, public liability insurance typically provides cover of at least £1 million.
Your liability towards any employees is underscored by the law itself
If you employ anyone else to help run your business – even an unpaid youngster on work experience, for example – you are responsible for ensuring that, as far as is reasonable, they remain safe and healthy in their work for you.
If they suffer an injury or contract an illness or other medical condition because of their work with you, you may be held liable and ordered to pay them compensation. What’s more, in this case, you are legally obliged to hold a minimum of £5 million employers’ liability insurance to make sure you are able to pay any such claim.
Don’t forget your van insurance!
Any electrician is likely to have a van in which to carry his tools and equipment and for getting from one job to another.
Don’t forget that any such transport needs to be insured for business use.
You might also want to consider goods in transit insurance to cover supplies, materials and products you may be transporting by van for customers from one project to another.