What should you do?
You should always try to limit problems in the first place. We know this sounds obvious as mistakes and accidents do happen. That said, there are some things you can do to help reduce the risk of your business facing a claim.
As part of your Health and Safety considerations you should complete Risk Assessments of all activities and processes in order to reduce accidents in the workplace. Further details can be obtained from the HSE.
As a freelancer, it makes sense for you to put in place a contract wherever possible. If you’re presented with one by a client, read every clause and make sure you’re happy with each section. Don’t sign it if you’re not. Keep copies of all your contracts.
It’s key to make sure that deliverables are clear and agreed. If the piece of work is large or is expected to go on for a period of time, it is sensible to set milestones with agreed sign offs by the client and possibly arrange stage payments too.
Make sure you confirm everything in writing even if it’s in addition to something you’ve already arranged verbally. It’s important to keep a paper trail in case things go wrong later.
Finally, make sure you take out insurance cover to ensure you and your business are protected.