If a sub-contractor plumber wanted to get work from our plumbing business, they had to provide two certificates. One to say they had workers compensation insurance and the other public liability.
While tradies are expected to work safely and provide a safe environment for others to work in, sometimes their work can tragically cause injury to others due to negligence.
All tradespeople that work as sub-contractors need public liability insurance. A lot of businesses and tradies see this as an ‘optional’ insurance. But in this day and age you can be sued at the drop of a hat for something that would have been passed over as a simple accident a couple of decades ago.
If the work you do can cause death, injury, loss or damage to a property or loss of income resulting from your negligence, public liability insurance is a must because it will protect you from the financial risk if you are found to be liable.
Plumbers make mistakes. Or they can cut corners which can have drastic consequences. That is why plumbers need public liability insurance.
If you’re a home owner, it’s reassuring to know that your plumber has public liability insurance.
Compensation may be claimed for the following incidents
- Burn injuries from a hot water unit – by law plumbers MUST install a tempering valve on hot water units and have them set to 50 degrees Celsius, negligence to do this can not only incur plumbing fines but also compensation claims from the victim
- Illnesses and injuries caused by drinking the wrong water supply. There was the true story of a plumber on the Gold Coast who hooked up the sewer line to the water supply.
- Illness or death caused from not having the right valves on water lines to prevent contamination. For example all hose taps should have a vacuum breaker to avoid sprinklers siphoning contaminated water (from fertlisers) back into drinking water supply
- Installing a non-approved fitting to cause water damage or flood to a property
- Incorrect gas appliance installations or not enough ventilation causing occupants in a home to suffocate
I’m sure plumbers can think of plenty more scenarios that deem public liability insurance a must as part of their business expenses.
The third party involved in the incident will need to make a claim using a lawyer like Patinos Personal Lawyers who have experience with public liability claims.
While Public Liability Insurance is another business expense for a plumber, it also provides peace of mind for customers and is a form of protection from large financial loss for the plumber.
Do you have public liability insurance if you have your own business? Ever had to make a public liability claim?
This post has been written in accordance to my disclosure policy.
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