Why do you need Insurance?
To protect yourself
However careful you are accidents can always occur!
It may be a requirement of hire agreements
If you hire a village hall or community centre it may be a requirement of the hire that the hirer has Public Liability Insurance. Some hirers may offer this insurance at an additional cost but it will only be in place whilst you are using the hired premises.
It provides reassurance
Volunteers or visitors may be reassured if they know the group has insurance, it will also show that the group has a professional approach.
What type of insurance do you need?
Depending on your activity, you may find you are covered for certain tasks under your personal car or home insurance policies. If you are using your car to shop for an elderly neighbour for instance your car insurance may already cover you under social and domestic use. If your gardening tools were stolen while you were tending to a community green space, would you be covered under your home contents insurance? As a rule, check with your insurance provider first. Tell them of your plans and they will advise whether you are covered or whether you will need additional cover.
Another important consideration is public liability insurance. It protects you for your legal liability to meet claims for accidental injury to third parties and/or damage to their property where you are at fault.
Again, as a group you should consider Public Liability insurance. This will cover your group organisers and your volunteers for your legal liability to meet claims for accidental injury to your own volunteers and any third parties and their property where you, your group or your volunteers are at fault.
It is a legal requirement to have motor insurance if your group uses vehicles as part of its activities for example if you transport people around on an outing. This may be outside the cover of your personal motor policy so check with your insurance provider first. If relevant you should also check whether other group members can be insured under the policy, how many passengers you are allowed to carry and whether this includes caravans and trailers (should your activity require them). Again, tell them of your plans and they should be able to arrange suitable cover.
The risks you are likely to face when organising or running a community event tend to be quite low. However, things can, and do, go wrong. With careful planning, your event is likely to be trouble free and if you have public liability insurance in place, you have that added reassurance.
Whilst not required by law, some councils may insist that you have a minimum level of public liability insurance in place.
What is Public Liability Insurance?
Most Public Liability Insurance policies will cover you and any volunteers helping you in respect of your legal liability for damages and claimants costs and expenses arising from:
• Accidental bodily injury including death, illness and disease.
• Accidental damage to third party property as a result of a negligent act or accidental error or accidental omission.
Exclusions or Limitations
Most policies will have a number of exclusions or limitations, examples of these are:
Policy excludes injury or damage directly or indirectly caused by or contributed to from:
• Alcohol or drugs
• Inflatables eg bouncy castles
• Fireworks and bonfires
• Medical treatment or assistance
• Hazardous contact sports
Other exclusions are likely to apply and the policy should be carefully checked.
Some policies may have limitations on the numbers of people involved, an example of this is the Zurich group policy which limits any event or activity to 50 people. Another example is the specific street event cover offered by Zurich which limits the number of attendees to 200.
Other limitations are likely to apply and the policy should be carfeully checked
A great website to look at is called my community starter, My Community Starter is a FREE information resource for people who want to get involved in organising smaller, straightforward community activities.
What Level of Cover do I need?
The cover required will depend on the type of group or event and the associated risks, a typical Public Liability Indemnity Limit will be set at £5 million.
What is the Cost of Insurance?
The community starter website provides details of insurance costs that are underwitten by Zurich*.
Individual Cover – £25.44 for a year including IPT**
Group Cover – £79.50 for a year including IPT**
Street Event Insurance – £63.60 per event including IPT**
* Other insurance providers are avaialble, these figures are used to provide an illustrative example.
** Current as at September 2012