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Public Liability Insurance for Retailers

Public liability is when your shop is held accountable for any injuries caused to members of the public who enter your shop and are injured through your business activities or negligence, as well as if you or one of your employees is responsible for damage to somebody else's property. Public liability insurance protects you in instances such as these and can cover the costs of any cases brought against you.

Protecting Your Retail Business against Liability Claims

The most popular cause of injury within the retail industry is those caused by slips, trips and falls. Although the name sounds quite trivial, some serious injuries can be sustained from this sort of injury resulting in large amounts of compensation.

Then there are the concerns of damage to vehicles if you have a car park, so it is important to consider whether the access provided is in good condition and sufficiently lit. Are there any floor surfaces in need of attention or hazards on the way? Other points for consideration are whether there are effective procedures in place for dealing with spillages, if you have the cleaning materials required to sort out a spillage and also something to close off the area with while you're doing so.

Risk assessments can be invaluable as they arm you with the information needed to address any issues and tackle them straightaway, reducing the risk of accidents in the process. Seemingly innocent things such as displays can be potentially hazardous to children or adults, if placed awkwardly, though it is not immediately apparent without taking the time to assess.

Employees and vicarious liability

Vicarious liability is where you are liable for your employees' actions. Any action or omission by them could potentially put you in hot water, which is why it is so important to make sure all of your staff are well trained and understand the risks involved in retail and how to avoid them.

If work is being carried out away from the premises, whether it be on a delivery or installation, it is vital to be aware of preventing damage to other people's property. Even if you're not there, your employees could make you liable. It is therefore imperative to make sure all staff are well trained and it is communicated to your insurer that you carry out this kind of work. It is also a good idea to have employer's liability insurance to protect your business against such risks.

In the Unfortunate Event of an Accident

If something does occur on your premises, it is important to take the appropriate steps in order to limit the damage. Apologising and reassurance are both effective ways of communicating your great regret and concern over the incident. Make sure a first aider or ambulance is contacted and family or friends of the injured party, in case they want to leave the scene that way instead. Also take contact details and if you do receive any correspondence from the customer or somebody acting on their behalf, be sure to send it on to your representative immediately.

Contractors liability

If getting maintenance work carried out on your building, this can increase the amount of risks surrounding customers as well disrupting normal work activities. It is therefore very important to make sure you hire a reputable company who have adequate contractors insurance and if possible, have the work carried out when the premises are shut. If not put some distance between the work being carried out and the customers.

How Liability Insurance Can Help

Public Liability is not a legal requirement, but without it you risk massive dangers on your premises and therefore a substantial claim which could even put you out of business. It can be obtained for a broker, who will advise on which type of insurance is best and will need you to explain to them all of the risks involved in your place of work so that you are covered. However, it is important not to become complacent and always take care to reduce the risk of injury in your business.

Get a Quote for Public Liability Insurance »

For a full and free assessment of your business Insurance requirements call our commercial Insurance specialists on 0800 021 4504. We cover most trades and professions, get a high risk liability insurance quote »Flint Insurance Partners

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