What is employers' liability insurance?

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    Chris Godfrey

    Page written by Chris Godfrey. Last reviewed on January 4, 2024. Next review due April 6, 2025.

    Employer’s liability (EL) insurance is a type of business insurance that protects you and your employees, (including those who no longer work for you and some contract workers), should they be injured or become unwell as a result of working for your business. 

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      Do I need employers' liability insurance?

      If your business employs workers other than yourself, then in most cases yes, you do. However, you may not need employer’s liability insurance if you only employ your spouse, family members, or someone who is based abroad (not a resident of Great Britain). 

      Is employers' liability insurance compulsory?

      Under the Employers Liability Act of 1969, employers’ liability insurance is a mandatory legal requirement for most UK employers. Your policy must cover you for at least £5 million and come from an authorised insurer. Your business can be fined up to £2,500 for every day you are not properly insured. You can also be fined £1,000 if you do not display your EL certificate or refuse to make it available to inspectors when they ask. Sole traders and self-employed who work for themselves and on their own do not usually need employers’ liability insurance.

      How much employers' liability insurance do I need?

      You need at least £5 million in cover, as this is the minimum legal requirement. However, depending on the nature of the work your business does and the type of risks it presents to your employees, you may need more protection. If you are not sure how much cover you need, simply contact Swoop today to speak to an expert EL adviser.

      What does employers' liability cover?

      Employers’ liability covers the associated legal and compensation costs if one or more of your employees are injured or made sick due to working for your business. It can also cover accidental injury caused by an employee to a third party, such as your customers.

      Examples of employers’ liability insurance claims:

      • An employee catches their hand in a machine tool in your factory. They claim for personal injury, loss of income, and long-term disability. Employers’ liability insurance will cover these claims and the legal costs.
      • An employee accidentally backs a forklift truck into a customer who is visiting your premises. EL will cover the cost of the injured party’s medical bill, any compensation claims and legal expenses.

      Who does employers' liability insurance cover?

      Employers’ liability insurance covers full-time and part-time employees, any self-employed contractors you hire, temporary staff, interns, apprentices, volunteers, and people taking part in work experience or training schemes. It can also cover your employees if they are working for you remotely or working from their home.

      How Swoop can help

      All business involves risk, but that doesn’t mean you have to suffer the consequences if things go wrong. Don’t let an accident or oversight become a catastrophe for your business. Contact Swoop today to compare top-quality employers’ liability cover from different providers and to discuss all your business insurance needs. 

      Written by

      Chris Godfrey

      Chris is a freelance copywriter and content creator. He has been active in the marketing, advertising, and publishing industries for more than twenty-five years. Writing for Barclays Bank, Metro Bank, Wells Fargo, ABN Amro, Quidco, Legal and General, Inshur Zego, AIG, Met Life, State Farm, Direct Line, insurers and pension funds, his words have appeared online and in print to inform, entertain and explain the complex world of consumer and business finance and insurance.

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