We are here to help you get the best value from your insurance
0121 321 4600
Newsletter Signup
twitter Social Icon linkedin Social Icon
Skilled trades cover a wide range of professions and include many self-employed jobs. According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) the number of self-employed increased from 3.3 million in 2001 to 4.8 million in 2017, now representing 15.1% of the labour force.

Trade sectors include:
  • Construction and building (bricklayers, roofers, plumbers)
  • Metal and electrical (Vehicle technician, aircraft engineer, welders, CNC machinists)
  • Agriculture (Farmers, gardeners, groundsmen)
  • Textile/printing and other skilled trades (Tailors, butchers, bakers, chefs).
Each of these sectors have their own range of risks when it comes to insurance and it is important to tailor policies to meet each individual sector’s requirement.

This is where an Insurance Broker can help and advise you on risks you may not have even thought about or claims trends that are on the rise. For example:
 

1. Van insurance for trades

Electricial taking tools from vanTheft of tools or equipment from vehicles has risen dramatically over the last few years. Some insurance providers impose conditions or exclusions in their insurance policies. Many insurers are now limiting their tool cover to working hours only and will not cover tools left in vehicles overnight. Insurers will ask you for a value of the tools you want to insure and will apply an excess on any claim.
You may be able to take precautions to protect your vehicle contents from theft and reduce your insurance premium by installing an alarm, immobiliser or tracker. However, if there are times when tools have to be left overnight, you could increase security by using additional door locks or tool vault boxes. Modern CCTV cameras can also act as a deterrent. This is when the advice of a broker is invaluable to help you get the most suitable cover for your particular business risks.
 

2. Farming insurance

Theft of farm machinery has been on the increase over recent years. Farmers insurance policies often cover a range of services that are needed to cover the entire farming operation including:
  • Buildings
  • Livestock
  • Accident
  • Vehicles
  • Diseases such as foot and mouth
  • Money
  • Deterioration of stock.
Farming is undergoing constant change, never more so than now, with farmers being forced to diversify, tackle livestock diseases, and cope with flood risk. An insurance broker can offer advice on insurance cover required if you are considering a new venture or change to use of your land.


2. Liability insurance

Most trades have to deal with the general public and in our increasingly claim aware culture and the growth of no win no fee lawyers, individuals and businesses cannot afford to overlook this insurance cover:
  • Employers liability insurance is a legal requirement if you own premises or employ staff.
  • Public liability insurance will cover you if a client, customer or member of the public makes a claim against your business for injury (or death), medical fees or damage to their property or possessions.
  • Product liability insurance provides cover for any products that you supply or fit that are faulty or defective and result in a claim for damages.
  • Professional indemnity insurance is available for consultants and professionals providing advice to their clients. Claims for incorrect advice or mistakes are covered together with legal costs for defending you case.
Consulting an insurance broker such as CLA to provide advice will ensure you have the right amount of cover for your individual circumstances. Call one of our team on 0121 321 4600.
HSE (Health and Safety Executive) has had to bear its fair share of cuts since 2009/10 and has seen a 46% reduction in central Government funding.

Though there have been serious cuts to HSE by the Government over the last few years resulting in a drop in enforcement activity, individual fines are increasing. The average fine per conviction now stands at £149,661.

The manufacturing sector was again the most heavily fined contributing nearly 40% to the total fines imposed.  Whilst that figure was a 15% reduction on the previous year, the fine per conviction went up by 8% to £210,058.  

The construction sector followed with total fines of £15.7m (down 12%) but with an increased fine per conviction of £107,794 (up 14%).

Utility supply was the sector with the highest average fine per conviction (standing at £605,000).

Transportation and storage followed at £243,731, the latter industry having a 100% conviction rate.

Health-and-safety-insuranceIndustries with statistically significantly higher injury rates include:
  • agriculture, forestry and fishing
  • construction
  • public administration/defence
  • wholesale/retail; repair of motor vehicles
  • accommodation/food service activities
  • manufacturing.

Managing health and safety

Your employers’ liability insurance will protect you if one of your employees is injured or becomes ill as a result of a workplace incident and makes a claim for compensation from you. However, if you are subsequently found to have breached health and safety legislation, any fines and other expenses cannot be claimed under your employers’ liability insurance policy.

The implications of an investigation can have serious consequences on the financial viability of a business and its officers. Fines and investigation expenses can lead to insolvency for the company and in the worst cases imprisonment for its Directors.
 

Directors and Officers insurance

You may be able to make a claim on your insurance policy if you have Directors and Officers insurance. This covers a variety of claims; for more information visit our webpage insurance/liability/directors-and-officers or call 0121 321 4600 to discuss in more detail.

However, prevention is always better than trying to close the barn door after the horse has bolted and implementing an effective health and safety plan and management process will help to reduce accidents and minimise the risk of an investigation in the first place.
 

Health and Safety Assist

At CLA we like to offer a holistic solution to our clients’ insurance needs. As an insurance broker, we can advise you on the best insurance policy to provide cover for your individual business. We have also teamed up with partners who can provide additional services to manage and mitigate your risks.

One of our partners specialises in providing support by way of an online safety management hub to help you to simplify and manage your health and safety responsibilities all in one place.

To find out what the service includes and how the portal works, visit our webpage health-and-safety-assist
Or call one of our team to find out what you can do to reduce your exposure to health and safety risks and help to reduce your insurance premiums at the same time.
Tradesman-standing-by-his-vanTradesmen face many risks while carrying out their work for the public and other clients.

Like any other insurance policy, making sure it is suitable for your own unique circumstances needs to be calculated carefully. A one size fits all is not going to be suitable for the wide variety of trades and professions.

Building trades such as electricians and plumbers instantly come to mind when we think of a tradesman; however, fitness instructors, hair dressers and dog walkers will all need insurance to cover them if they are injured at work, sued by a member of the public or a claim is made by a member of their own staff.

Tradesman insurance covers a range of risks that could stop you working or lead to a claim that may have a devastating impact on your business.

What to check on your tradesman insurance policy
Flexibility of your insurance policy is going to help you to tailor cover to meet your individual needs. An insurance broker such a CLA (Risk Solutions) will be able to advise you on what basic and optional cover is available and what risks you are likely to face. For example, basic cover should include:

Contractors all risks insurance
This covers you for loss or damage to work you have carried out for the client and any tools, equipment and machinery while onsite. The cover also includes:
  • Hired equipment*.
  • Cover for contractual obligations after completion.
  • Damage to materials while onsite and in transit.
  • Business equipment in your offices.
*If you are hiring plant regularly, it can be more cost effective to add it to your annual insurance policy rather than pay every time you hire.

Employers’ liability insurance
For tradesmen and contractors that have employees on a permanent or contracted basis, there is a legal requirement to include this insurance cover.
If an employee is injured or suffers illness as a result of their work, they can make a claim against their employer.

Public and product liability insurance
Covers you for claims made against you for:
  • Damage to property or injury to clients or public while you are onsite.
  • Third party claims for compensation for financial loss from work you have done or products you have installed.
  • Loss of keys to clients’ property or failing to keep the property secure.
Most tradesmen will want to include the above as minimum protection for their business. However, there are a range of other risks that you may want to consider.

Personal accident insurance
Running your own business means that if you cannot work, you do not get paid. Covering sickness and injury, personal accident insurance will help support you and your family while you recover.

Professional indemnity insurance
If you are providing information based on your knowledge and skills that could lead to a claim for compensation if you provided incorrect advice, professional indemnity insurance will cover any legal costs to defend the claim and compensation to the claimant.

Other tradesman insurance cover
Due to the wide range of jobs covered by individual tradesmen and contractors, you may decide additional cover is needed for your specific trade or circumstances. Our team of specialists will be able to suggest solutions that will protect your income from a variety of risks. These could include jury service, legal claims, and JCT insurance for joint contracts work.

Call 0121 321 4600 to discuss your business needs.
Contractors_hard_hats_insuranceWhen looking for contractor’s insurance, one size does not fit all contracting businesses.

The contracting sector is coming under increasing pressure from rising material costs and a reduction in access to affordable skills. This may lead firms to look for cost-saving measures in other areas such as insurance and opt for a generic policy that may not cover all the risks they face in their day to day work.

Contractors risk underinsurance and higher costs in the long run and should check the terms and conditions and any exclusions before buying insurance cover.

Consequently, contractors are strongly encouraged to work with their insurance broker to seek out specialist cover for their respective trade.

This will help protect against the risk of an insurance claim not being paid as well as protect them adequately should a claim be made against their business.

The key restrictions in insurance cover that contractors need to check are as follows:
  • Height and depth limits
  • Activity restrictions
  • Premises restrictions
  • Hot work exclusions
  • Activity exclusions
  • Subcontractors not being covered
The process of arranging insurance cover shouldn’t be rushed, particularly if the type of contractor work being covered entails a variety of risks such as working at height or with hot materials.

While there are specialist covers available online to purchase direct from an insurer, it makes better sense to use an insurance broker who will seek out the cover that’s right for your business and the specific risks you face.

Other cover you may need
Whilst remembering to insure your equipment, materials and a variety of activities, you may also need professional indemnity insurance if you provide advice to other businesses or one of your customers makes a complaint for negligence or financial loss against you.

You will also need employers’ liability insurance if you employ contractors, staff or part time workers.
In some cases, a contractors’ all risk insurance policy will be the most suitable for your requirements; for other businesses a more tailored solution may be needed.

As your broker, we ask the right questions to ensure we secure the correct levels of protection. Most importantly, we will know the claims record for the insurers we work with. This is one area where contractors should use expert help and find specialist cover – the risks of not doing so can be far reaching.

For more information about insuring your contracting business, call us on 0121 321 4600 or email us at info@clarisksolutions.co.uk
Asbestos_insuranceIf you are a consultant, surveyor or contractor working in the asbestos removal industry, you will need a range of insurance to protect your business from the risks involved with handling the material.

If you have been working in the industry for some time, you will be aware of your insurance requirements and of the different policies available to you.

You have probably found that with some policies you must declare the number of contracts you expect to carry out in a year.  On an adjustable policy, this could lead to additional insurance costs at the end of the year if you go over the specified number or value.

CLA (Risk Solutions) contract works insurance
Our specialist asbestos contractors’ insurance is available as a non-declaration fixed policy. You can work on any number of jobs throughout the year and not declare them on your policy, so you know exactly what your insurance premium will be without any surprise costs at the year-end.

Furthermore, if your current insurer is asking you for an additional premium to cover your previous 12 month’s contracts/work, we may be able to cover some of these costs within your new policy when you transfer to us.

We can provide all the other insurance cover you are likely to need such as:
  • Employers liability insurance
  • Public liability insurance
  • Fleet vehicles
  • Legal expenses
Our broking team can source the most suitable and cost-effective insurance products for your business, so you will have all the advice and support you need under one roof to give you the best protection.

The hidden dangers of asbestos
It is a well-known fact that exposure to asbestos is harmful to health. Even low exposure can risk lung damage resulting in cancer or asbestosis, sometimes up to 10 to 20 years later.

Due to the nature of the product, the fibres are only released when the material is disturbed. Asbestos was a popular building product in homes, schools, factories and other premises built before the year 2000. Therefore, contractors working in the building industry are particularly vulnerable when working on properties found to have asbestos used in their construction.

The fibres are invisible to the human eye and, if released into the air, are breathed into the lungs causing long-term damage.

A specialist contractor, licensed or un-licensed (depending on the work involved), can deal with the problems of removing, cleaning up and disposing of asbestos safely.

Asbestos removal contractors, inspectors and analysts offer a professional service to businesses, local authorities and householders to assess and deal with the material when it is discovered. You can find out more on the Asbestos Removal Contractors Association website.