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You do special and varied work and as such need specialist cover, including cover for your volunteers and making sure your Trustees are properly protected. Your insurance needs to be fluid to reflect the fact that you fulfil your charitable purpose, and this can mean varied work including fundraising events. There are many different types of insurance available to charities, faith care and social organisations and we will be able to talk you through where your risks are and how to protect against them with insurance, however here are a few key areas to consider:
If your organisation interacts with the public, Public Liability insurance will cover the cost of compensation to third parties for death, injury or damage to property caused by the negligence of your staff, volunteers or members. The cover would pay for the cost of defending a claim and any damages that become due if found against you, subject to any policy terms and conditions. Without Public Liability insurance your organisation would have to fund this cost directly. Even if the claim is unfounded you may have to defend allegations made against you and if you didn’t have Public Liability cover you would have to pay for this defence cost from your own funds.
Do I really need Public Liability Cover?
While Public Liability insurance is not a legal requirement, in an increasingly litigious society people are encouraged to seek compensation. A law suit can be stressful and expensive even if you are found not to have been negligent in the end. The cost of defence and subsequent damages awarded could seriously hamper an organisation’s finances.
We therefore recommend every organisation whether a charity, social enterprise or community interest group has this cover. In many situations you may be required to have it to qualify for grants, funding or where you are providing public services, or even just wanting to lease, hire or use the premises or facilities of another organisation for your charity work.
You may need to consider abuse cover: Check your policy includes cover for allegations of abuse, as this can be excluded under some covers we would strongly advise you have suitable abuse cover if you are working with children or vulnerable adults.
If you employ anyone in any capacity even temporary, part time or seasonal including students or others on work placements it is a legal requirement to have Employers’ Liability Insurance. This covers your legal liability for any injury, disease or fatality to employees which may occur through work or as a result of workplace conditions. Employees injured due to your negligence can seek compensation even if your organisation goes into liquidation or receivership. Failing to have this insurance can lead to fines of £2,500 per day for not having it and £1,000 per day if you don’t display your certificate. You employ someone if any of these apply:
Volunteers do not have employment status and so you are not legally required to have Employers’ Liability insurance for them, however it is good practice to offer the same duty of care to volunteers as employees and it is advisable for you take out Employers’ Liability cover for your volunteers even if you only have volunteers and no employees as the damages and legal costs of defending a claim can be hefty. Most insurance companies include volunteers however you must tell your insurer you have volunteers, or they may assume you do not and not cover them in the event of a claim.
What does it pay for?
The cover would pay for the cost of defending a claim and any damages that become due if found against you subject to any policy terms and conditions. Without the insurance your organisation would have to fund this cost directly even if the claim was unfounded as you may have to defend the allegations made against you.
Personal Accident insurance pays a regular benefit in cash to a person who cannot work because they have had an accident. This cover can be put in place to include staff, volunteers members trustees and anyone else working with your organisation if they become injured while undertaking activities for you. The cover would pay out a defined amount to the injured person on a regular basis, normally every week, up to a maximum number of weeks, usually 52 or 104. It can also pay a lump sum for death or a specific injury, such as loss of an arm, leg or eye. Personal Accident insurance is not to be confused with Public Liability and Employers’ Liability. Many people often confuse Personal Accident Insurance with Public Liability and Employers’ Liability insurances as these also pay out to an injured party however this is only where the organisation is negligent and liable for the accident or incident. A payment given under a Personal Accident insurance policy is a straight ‘no blame’ payment, where the policy pays out a defined benefit irrespective of whether there was any negligence. You should also make sure your cover provides entity de-fence, in case an action is brought against the board as a whole rather than an individual trustee.
Professional Indemnity (PI) insurance, sometimes also referred to as Professional Liability insurance provides protection for the policyholder against a claim by another individual or organisation for a breech or alleged breach, error or omission of your professional duty. Even if unfounded and you wish to challenge it, the PI insurance will pay for the legal cost of defending the allegations and if a court subsequently finds against you then damages and awards are also covered.
Many voluntary organisations think that Professional Indemnity cover is only needed if involved with providing professional services such as legal, technical, financial etc advice. However, a charity giving advice or providing training, particularly if you charge a fee for the services, should consider Professional Indemnity cover, as this would protect you if someone alleges that you have advised them incorrectly causing them a financial loss.
If your activities involve any sort of physical treatment you can include a treatment extension in the policy to cover physical harm caused from your professional negligence.
Trustees are ultimately responsible for a charity’s management and decisions therefore any financial losses incurred arising from any wrongful act e.g. where the trustees failed to discharge their duties, may result in them being personally liable to make good the charity’s losses.
The Trustees Indemnity cover can provide protection to Trustees where they may be held personally liable. The allegation could come from either the charity itself for losses incurred by the charity due to a Trustee’s actions e.g. inappropriate use of charity funds or entering into contracts not in the interest of the organisation. Or it may be an allegation from a third party where that party has suffered a financial loss due to any actual or alleged actions by the charity and/or its Trustees.
If your charity or group is organising an event you may not be covered under your annual insurance policy for the event and may need to protect your costs and risk associated with the event by taking out Event cover.
Working alongside One-Direct is a real joy. They are very helpful to us at Care after Combat in providing insurance solutions and advice that meet our needs. As a charity, we find their products reliable and more importantly they deliver… they do what is says on the tin!