How to Get Public Liability Insurance for the Self Employed

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Self-employed people who work in contact with members of the public, such as clients, may need public liability insurance. It’s relatively easy to find and compare prices for self employed public liability insurance, and in some cases, policies can be purchased on the Internet in a matter of minutes.

A few options are available for buying a policy, and public liability isn’t an overly complicated form of coverage provided your industry is not niche or particularly dangerous. In addition, the information a potential insurer requires should be fairly easy to gather, and could include things such as rough estimates of your turnover in the past 12 months and the location your business operates from.

Self-employed workers have many different options of where to go searching for quotes. Using aggregator websites has become extremely popular in recent years, allowing customers to compare multiple quotes from different providers quickly. With only one form to fill out, comparison sites can be a great choice for anyone short on time who’d like to be certain they’re getting a decent deal.

Several specialist brokers exist on the market, too. Brokers act as a middleman between the insurance industry and its potential customers, providing expert advice and access to deals or products that insurers keep exclusive for their partnered brokers. In addition, brokers can be a great option for anybody looking for a more personal touch to their insurance coverage, providing the opportunity to ask questions about what other self-employed professionals tend to go for and how much they usually pay.

Finally, self-employed workers can also go directly to an insurer for a quote. Not all insurers work directly with their policyholders (some require a broker); however, this method can be time-consuming for getting multiple quotes. However, cheap deals can sometimes be found this way, as selling directly means an insurer doesn’t need to pay fees to an aggregator or broker and can pass savings down to their customers.

Public liability generally shouldn’t be an enormous annual cost for most professionals. The average cost for a self-employed worker is usually between £50-£80, according to NimbleFins, but can, of course, be more for high-risk work.

With all of these options, sorting out a policy should be fairly simple. There will be a reasonably short form to fill out to allow the insurer to evaluate the risk level and price. Sections of the form will focus on personal information (age, location), business information (industry, turnover) and legal history (prior claims/convictions). They will also ask about adding extra coverages to the public liability policy.

Extra covers are optional, of course, but are worth considering to keep your policies in one place. Employers’ liability can be added as well. It’s a legal requirement in the UK, so an absolute must-have for anyone who hires an employee.

Where to get public liability insurance quotes

There are a few options for where to get public liability insurance. A quick Google search for public liability insurance will offer you many aggregators, brokers and insurers to choose from. Most of them have fairly similar quote processes.

Before signing the dotted line of a policy, it’s worth knowing a little bit more about the insurer. Try websites like Feefo or Trustpilot to find out more about other customers’ experiences with the business. This is an easy way to learn valuable information about their customer service or claims process, helping self-employed workers make better-informed decisions (and avoid any unwanted surprises down the line).

Brokers vs direct

There is an argument to be made in favour of both shopping with brokers versus shopping direct. A brokers’ USP will include being able to add a personal touch to the insurance process, as they can provide market insight and guidance on what coverages similar professionals tend to hold and how much they usually pay. In addition, many people prefer to speak to a person who will be available throughout the year to deal with any issues or questions.

Going directly to an insurer can be cheaper. There is no middleman, and customers have a relationship directly with their insurer. While they might lack the personal touch, it can make claims processes much more simple, as only two parties are involved.

Public liability comparison sites


Public liability comparison sites are a great option for anyone looking for a great deal on their coverage. They’ll ask a few basic questions before producing a list of insurers who would be willing to cover you and the price they’d charge. They’re a great option for anyone who wants to see how one company’s prices compare to another or who would like to know roughly how much they’re likely to pay without making any commitment right there and then.

While by no means an exhaustive list, here are some of the UK’s top public liability comparison sites:

  • GoCompare
  • MoneySupermarket
  • NimbleFins
  • SimplyBusiness
  • TradesmanSaver
  • QuoteZone

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