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Maintaining your tradesman insurance during lockdown

August 19, 2020

The UK lockdown to slow the spread of COVID-19 has left many tradespeople facing disruption and uncertainty. You may have seen your workload reduce, or you may have been forced to stop work entirely.

Reducing your workload or stopping work will mean your income has reduced, so you may be thinking about reassessing your outgoings. This may mean looking at your tradesman insurance and asking, “Why do I need insurance if my business isn’t running?” But whether you are able to continue working or not, maintaining your tradesman insurance is as important as ever. Otherwise, you risk leaving yourself and your business exposed.

Five reasons to maintain tradesman insurance

Protect your property, tools, and vehicles

If you’re working less, or not at all, you may think you can cut out some of the insurance you have in place, but it is still essential to maintain them. If you lost your tools, vehicle, stock or premises, could you manage the cost without insurance? If an incident, like a theft, were to happen now, it could take you longer to get back to normal once restrictions are eased if you don’t have these insurances in place:

  • Tool insurance
  • Business premises insurance
  • Stock insurance
  • Commercial vehicle insurance

Even if your premises are unattended, or your vehicle is not being used, they’ll still be covered as long as you follow any recommendations from your insurer. 

Protect against public liability claims

Public liability insurance is there to protect you if a customer or member of the public makes a claim against your business, like claiming an injury has been caused by a fault with something you installed. If you are still providing emergency services during the COVID-19 outbreak, your public liability insurance with NICEIC Insurance will still be valid as long as you are following the latest government advice:

  • social distancing
  • wearing a mask and gloves
  • disinfecting surfaces

Remember that your continued NICEIC membership also requires that you have public liability insurance in place.

Employers’ liability insurance is a legal requirement

Even if you only have part-time employees, you still need to have employers’ liability insurance. This applies even if they are not currently working every day. This cover can help with legal defence costs and compensation payments if an employee gets hurt or falls ill at work. You could face fines of up to £2,500 per day if you don’t have cover in place. Could you afford this cost without insurance?

Historical professional indemnity claims

You won’t be covered for historical professional indemnity claims if you don’t have cover in place. Professional indemnity can protect you if a customer make a claim that there was an error or omission in your professional advice or service. Even if you aren’t currently working, a customer can put a claim in for work you have done in the past. Regardless of when you actually did the work, if you don’t have insurance when the claim comes in, you won’t be covered. So you could be facing legal fees and compensation costs that could significantly damage your ability to work.

Cost doesn’t have to be a barrier

There are ways to cut or even spread the cost of insurance. At NICEIC Insurance, we offer NICEIC registered contractors a 10% discount on the cost of tradesman insurance. We can also offer a monthly payment plan to spread the cost, thanks to our relationship with finance provider, Close Brothers. 

If you are about to take out new cover or renew, get in touch with us to see if the reduced risk you may be facing could affect your premium. Once things start to return to normal, it is vital that you revisit your cover again, to make sure you are properly protected. If you are underinsured, this could lead to a claim not being paid out in part or full.

If you need to speak with us, please call the NICEIC Insurance team on 0333 015 6629.

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