Whether you describe yourself a self employed gas engineer, heating contractor or sole trader, you'll want a comprehensive insurance policy to cover potentially damaging claims against your business.
You can buy tradesman insurance tailored to the specific risks of your trade including:
- Public/product liability
- Employers liability
- Tools & equipment
- Contracts insurance
- Business premises and contents
- Business interruption
- Van insurance
- Personal accident
The two main types of cover are Employers Liability Insurance and Public Liability Insurance.
Public Liability Insurance
If you’re wondering whether you need Public Liability Insurance (PLI), imagine the worst case scenario. A badly fitted and poorly serviced appliance - boiler, cooker or fire – causes a gas leak, explosion or carbon monoxide poisoning.
Any resulting claim against you could run into thousands, possibly millions, of pounds. PLI covers your legal liability to pay compensation for accidental damage or injury to people and property, and legal costs if you’re to blame.
Although not required by law, reputable companies and many customers won’t allow a gas engineer on their premises without it.
The minimum public liability for Gas Safe registered engineers is £1 million, but higher levels - £2 million, £3 million and more - are available, depending on the size of contracts you carry out.
Employers Liability Insurance
If you have employees and apprentices, even a casual labourer or part-time bookkeeper, then you need employers liability insurance (ELI).
A legal requirement, ELI ensures your businesses can meet compensation and legal costs and fees for employees injured or made ill through work. The legal minimum required is £5 million.
Gas Safe Register
Gas Safe Register is the official body for gas safety in United Kingdom, Isle of Man and Guernsey. It replaced CORGI registration.
Gas engineers who carry out work on a property by law must be on the Gas Safe Register and registered to work on the particular appliance they are installing or maintaining.
Asbestos Insulation Board
As a gas engineer or heating contractor, you run a real risk of coming across asbestos in your everyday work, so be aware of the health hazards, the law, and your public liability cover requirements.
Your insurance will contain clauses about working with asbestos products.
Visit the Health & Safety Executive website for advice on working with asbestos.