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All business types face various risks when it comes to personal injury, but those operating retail stores are generally at more risk than most. Slip and fall injuries have always been a concern for retail businesses, and despite their best efforts to reduce risk there are still many claims being made against Australian retailers. Thankfully this is one of many risks which can be protected against using public liability insurance. A public liability insurance policy is an absolute must for anyone operating a retail store in Australia, and in this guide we’ll take a look at what you need to know about it.
What Is Public Liability Insurance?
Public liability is a form of insurance designed for retailers and other business types which face the risk of causing property damage or personal injury to customers and members of the public. If your business activities result in property damage or personal injury to another person and you are found liable, a public liability policy can cover the costs of a claim against you. Anyone managing a retail shop will be all too familiar with the risk of slip and fall claims and the resulting financial consequences. With public liability available in amounts up to $20 million it is certainly a good way of enjoying some peace of mind.
Whilst no insurance policy will cover every conceivable risk within a retail business, a decent public liability policy will cover many of the risks that shopkeepers face on a daily basis.
Product Liability Insurance
Most public liability policies for retailers will also include cover for product liability. This cover also provides protection again property damage and personal injury, but relates to the products you sell rather than incidents which occur on the shop floor. Product liability can become quite a complex area due to the involvement of manufacturers, wholesalers and importers etc. Whilst you may consider that the manufacturer is liable for their products, there is always the risk that a court may have a different opinion.
Many public liability policies will include product liability cover at no extra cost, and if someone does try to take action against you for a product you have provided you will have the insurance company in your corner rather than being left to fend for yourself. Due to product liability being a complex area it is important to speak with your insurance broker or adviser about your specific needs before choosing a policy.
Public Liability for Shop Owners
As shopkeepers and retailers face some fairly unique risks in their business, a number of Australian insurance companies have put together policies specifically designed for the needs of retail businesses. In addition to covering public liability, such policies can also cover additional risks such as theft of stock or cash, damage to stock and other property and even employee dishonesty. When bundled into a single package, these forms of insurance can provide great protection for shop owners at a cost which is far from prohibitive.
It’s not just the ‘bricks and mortar’ retailers who need business insurance. We can also assist online retailers with all of their insurance needs, regardless of whether you’re a small home based business or a large operator with your own premises. Follow the link above to visit our dedicated section for online retail businesses.
Public Liability Cost
The cost of public liability insurance will vary for different types of retail businesses, and generally the premiums are linked directly to the perceived risk of your business. Your public liability insurance cost will be based on a range of different factors including the type and size of shop that you operate, the number of staff you employee, whether or not you import or manufacture your own products and a range of other factors which may affect your risk. The only way to find out the cost of public liability for your shop is to request a quote. Some insurance companies will provide direct quotes, but generally a better option is to use an insurance broker or adviser who is familiar with the retail sector.
Quotes for Public Liability Insurance
We have access to a network on insurance brokers and advisers around Australia who have experience in insuring retail shops and associated businesses. To request a quote simply complete our public liability online quote request and one of our network members will contact you with a quote, as well as being able to answer your insurance questions. Due to the diversity and complexity of risks that retail businesses face it is important to speak with a qualified insurance broker or adviser before proceeding with any quote or policy.