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Insurance for individual employers and PAs

Jack Kemp from discusses the importance of insurance for individual employers and PAs.  

Individual employers need to have employer’s liability insurance to make sure that they and their PAs are protected if an accident or incident happens. 

If you directly employ a personal assistant (PA), the government regards you as an employer, and you’re legally required to have this type of insurance policy.

There are different scenarios that might result in your PA(s) or a member of the public making a claim against you or your PA(s), and the right insurance will protect you both in this event.

What’s covered?

The specific details of your insurance policy can differ between companies, but they typically include three key elements:

▪          employers liability

▪          public liability

▪          legal expenses.

Employer’s liability covers you if your PA(s) make a compensation claim because they’ve been injured or fall ill as a result of their work.

This means that if, for example, your PA seriously injures themselves while supporting you and they intend to make a claim, your policy will protect you from being personally liable for these costs.

Public liability covers you if anyone else makes a compensation claim because they’ve been injured or if their property gets damaged, by you or your PAs.

This means that if, for example, if your PA causes accidental damage to yours or someone else’s property, your policy will protect you and your PA from being personally liable for these costs.

Legal expenses cover the potential legal costs that you might need to pay as a result of a compensation claim. Lots of insurers also offer legal support and advice, for example through a 24 hour phone line.

This type of insurance policy covers a wide range of potential scenarios, and it’s usually the smaller things that make a big difference.

Arran Gray, Director at ethical underwriter, SAGIC, provided some insightful examples into how these policies help individual employers and PAs. 

“A policyholder who is hard of hearing was left without their hearing aid after their PA had accidentally stepped on it. Fortunately, they had ‘accidental damage to property’ included in their policy, and so the cost of £250 for a replacement was covered, with no additional costs incurred to them or their PA.

“A similar recent example is of a PA causing damage to their employer’s sink. The total cost for replacement, repair and labour was around £500, and this was all covered by their policy.”

What should you look out for?

The most important part of the policy is the ‘employer's liability’. You must ensure that your policy covers you for claims and expenses up to a minimum of £5million to meet the legal requirement.

We also recommended that your policy includes a minimum of £1million public liability cover and some form of legal support.

Some insurance providers might also offer other benefits such as:

  • cover for emergency recruitment costs if your PA leaves at short notice,
  • cover for redundancy or notice payments if you need to make your PA(s) redundant
  • emergency dental cover
  • overseas cover up to 90 days
  • protection against fraudulent activity such as identity fraud or credit card fraud
  • accidental damage to property protects everyday items as well as property that is designed to improve quality of      life, such as hearing aids, stairlifts and wheelchairs. 

Find out more

Please note, this article has been written by Skills for Care does not endorse or any of their products.

If you’re an individual employer, it’s your responsibility to ensure that you have the right insurance cover, and find the right provider for this.