As an employer you are legally obliged to take out employers’ liability insurance. The cost of a failure to take out insurance is a fine of up to £2500.00 for every day that you are without insurance.
Following on from our recent article in the Lancashire Business View we want to highlight the importance of making sure you have the correct cover in place for your business, particularly in the current climate.
If you have not done so already, we would urge EVERY employer to contact their insurer or broker and review the cover you currently have in place for your employers’ liability and directors’ and officers’ insurance policies. Be wary of any bodily injury exclusion clauses within your policies and ask your insurer to explain what is covered and what isn’t. If you do not have satisfactory cover; update it.
The Coronavirus pandemic brings with it new scenarios that may not have previously applied to your business or been covered in your risk assessment, e.g. working from home, travelling on public transport to work and site visits. For instance, will you have to risk assess if you allow your employees back into working in the office and they travel to work on public transport. If your employee contracts Covid-19 on public transport, will that be considered to be ‘in the course of employment’? If your employees are required to attend other offices, sites or locations; does your risk assessment cover these locations as well as your own?
It is always important to document everything you do in terms of insurance and risk assessment, but it is even more so in the current climate. Your assessments, meetings, communications with staff and procedures should all be documented and provided to your insurer when requested. You do not want to be scrambling for documents and evidence at the last minute if faced with a claim against you.
If you have not updated or checked your policies of insurance yet, speak to your insurer or broker now and ask them to discuss your level of cover with you and specifically ask them what additional information they require to ensure that your on-risk policy is up to date. For instance, you may be required to tell your insurer about:
Your new/updated risk assessment;
Number of staff working from home;
Number of staff on or returning from furlough;
Any operational changes;
Changes to your management structure, and
Any redundancy plans.
If you are unsure as to your responsibilities as an employer or you are concerned that you have received or may receive a claims(s) from your employee(s), specialists in our Employment and Litigation teams will be happy to help you. Please call us on 0845 287 0939 or contact us via our website.