Painter and decorators public liability insurance

Painter and decorator insurance 

When you're focused on transforming your clients’ homes, it's easy to forget to protect yourself. It's important to find the right insurance to cover mishaps and accidents that might happen while you're working.

What insurance do painters and decorators need?

Some types of insurance are a legal requirement. For example, if you employ anyone who isn’t a direct family member, even if it’s only one person, you must have employers' liability insurance. Other types of business insurance, such as public liability insurance, are optional, so you'll need to decide if they’re right for you.

Business insurance often packages together different types of cover in a combination that suits you.

What is public liability cover?

Public liability insurance for painters and decorators can cover legal and compensation costs if a member of the public makes a claim against you for injury or property damage.

You might think that sounds dramatic, but if you spill paint on a designer sofa, or someone trips over a dust sheet and injures themselves, you could find yourself facing a big damages claim.

Public liability insurance isn’t a legal requirement, but most businesses that deal with the public choose to have it for peace of mind.

You’ll need to decide what level of public liability cover you want. This can range from £1 million to £10 million. It sounds a lot, but legal costs can mount up, especially when personal injury is involved. Public liability insurance can also help show your clients they’re in safe hands.

Frequently asked questions

What is employers’ liability cover?

Employers' liability insurance can cover you if an employee is hurt or becomes ill doing work for you.

If you employ other people, unless they’re direct family members, then by law you’ll need to get employers’ liability insurance. You’ll need it even if you only employ one person and they work part time. 

According to the Government’s Labour Force Survey, well over half a million Brits suffered an injury at work during the year 2018/2019. That’s why it’s worth making sure your insurance is up to scratch.

What happens if I don’t have employers’ liability insurance?

You risk being fined £2,500 for every day you don't have employers’ liability insurance. You could also be fined £1,000 for not displaying your employers’ liability insurance certificate, or for refusing to show it to’ inspectors if they happen to ask for it.

What else do I need to know?

Your insurance cover should come from an authorised insurance provider.

What if I’m a self-employed painter and decorator?

Some 20% of workers in the construction industry are self-employed. If you’re one of them, you’ll need to sort out your own insurance, as you won’t have an employer to do that on your behalf.

You may want to consider taking out these insurance options to protect your income and business, and help keep your family financially secure:

What other types of business insurance would a painter and decorator need?

You should make sure your painter and decorator insurance adequately covers your tools, and materials including paint, wallpaper liner, and paste.  

Equipment you’ve built up over the years can be stolen or damaged, so make sure you’ve got enough cover to buy replacements if need be.

And if you drive a van, it's a legal requirement to have motor insurance.  

For added protection, you might want to consider insurance that protects your painting and decorating tools in transit, along with cover for the vehicle itself.  

Read more about commercial van insurance.

Also, you might want to think about:

How do I find a good deal for painter and decorator insurance?

Getting a quote is quick and easy. Just answer a few questions about you and your business, and we’ll take it from there. Use our business insurance comparison service to find the right policy for you.

What won’t painters and decorators insurance cover?

Painter and decorators insurance can cover you for most eventualities, but not all of them. Your insurance provider is unlikely to pay out for:

  • deliberate acts that lead to illness or injury
  • injuries that happen in transit
  • employees who are working off-shore

Having said that, every policy is different. Be sure to read yours carefully.

How much does painter and decorators insurance cost?

How much your insurance premium costs you depends on several things, including:

How much cover you decide to opt for

How much excess you choose to pay

The size and location of your business

What do I need to get a quote?

When you start a painters and decorators insurance quote, you’ll need to have a few things to hand, including:

  • your business details and number of employees
  • the value of your tools and equipment
  • the level of cover you’re after
  • details of when you last claimed

Emily Kindness

Business insurance expert

What our expert says

“There’s a high level of risk attached to being a painter or decorator and accidents can easily happen. That’s why it’s important to ensure you’re properly protected.

“Having public liability insurance can help to protect you and your business, if the unexpected should happen.”

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Other business insurance that painters and decorators may be interested in…

Public liability insurance

Get cover against claims if someone is injured or property damaged as a result or your work.

Employers’ liability insurance

You are legally required to have this insurance even if you employ just one person.

Business interruption insurance

Insurance to help compensate you for loss of profits if your business is unable to operate for a period for some unexpected reason.

Business life insurance

Insurance designed to help your business carry on if something happens to you or the key people in your business.

Van insurance

A guide to LGV insurance for business.

Commercial property insurance

Protect your business premises.

Business contents insurance

Protect your business equipment.
Home office insurance

The insurance you need when you run your business from your home.