The Public Liability Insurance Blog

Do I really need business insurance?


But then, we would say that wouldn’t we?

The honest answer which we shall attempt to give you now is a little bit more complicated than a simple yes or no, owing to the fact that business insurance is a little more nuanced than something like car insurance.

Instead of sitting here and barking that you need to buy insurance and you need to buy it from us right now (which is of course an option), let’s instead break down the answer into three separate parts, listing what is needed, what is good to have and what we would consider extra bonus bits.

The compulsory

If you employ people, then employers’ liability insurance is compulsory. If you are caught without this form of cover whilst employing people, then you can land a hefty four-figure fine for each day that you don’t have the cover in place.

This is not the case if those that you employ are close family members, but it’s a fairly narrow exception. It is also worth noting that you still need employers’ liability insurance if your employees are essentially volunteers or unpaid interns of some description.

The good-to-have

The form of business insurance that we hawk on about here is public liability insurance. We’ve got a bit more of an in depth guide to public liability insurance here but generally speaking, this pays out if a member of the public or third party not employed by you takes you to court for negligence.

We have focused this very blog around public liability insurance because it is a type of cover that is not terribly well understood, not always taken out and overall rather useful to pretty much any business that has interaction with the public.

Whilst not compulsory, facing a public liability lawsuit without cover can quickly bankrupt you if you’re unlucky and considering it is uncomplicated and mostly inexpensive for most trades, it is a daft risk to take in the interest of saving a few pounds.

The extras

coffee accidentIf your business has something that you’re worried about failing, breaking or otherwise costing you money to somehow fix, there’s a strong chance that you can add something to your business insurance policy to specifically cover it.

This can include cover to help you out in the case of you losing your licence if you run a pub, cover for computer equipment, cover to help replace street facing windows if you have a business property on the high street, cover for stock that you need to store to run your business, or special cover for items like drugs if you run a surgery.

These are all also non-compulsory and aren’t necessarily something we will suggest as much as public liability insurance itself, but they could be exactly what you need to put your mind at rest and give you that added security of knowing you are accident resistant if not entirely accident proof.


In an ideal world we would never need insurance for anything. In this ideal world we would always have control over every given situation and never make mistakes ourselves and therefore never find ourselves in the circumstances to claim on insurance.

Unfortunately, this is not the world we live in, so the answer to “do I really need business insurance” is, with the exception of employers’ liability, unfortunately one that you have to answer for yourself.

YOUR Insurance specialises in public liability insurance for small businesses.