Professional indemnity insurance

Specialist professional indemnity insurance from £8 a month*

  • Fast, easy online quote in just 90 seconds

  • 24hr legal advice helpline included

  • No hidden fees or cancellation charges

Professional indemnity insurance pays your legal costs, as well as any compensation payments that you might be liable for, if your client takes legal action against you. This could be for a mistake you made when providing professional services, advice or designs to them.

We know that everyone strives to provide their clients with the best service possible.
But sometimes, no matter what, things go wrong. So, it pays to be properly insured.

Without professional indemnity cover in place, you'd have to defend any allegations of mistakes out of your own finances. It could prove very damaging and costly, which is why it's typically regarded as a vital piece of business insurance.

Our specialist cover has been expertly designed from over 25 years experience offering professional indemnity insurance to contractors, consultants and small businesses. It exists to provide you with comprehensive protection against claims – so if a piece of work for a client doesn't go to plan, you'll have the peace of mind that you're covered by an industry expert.

What is professional indemnity insurance?

Professional indemnity insurance (also known as PI insurance or professional liability insurance) is designed to protect you if you make a mistake in a piece of work for a client that causes them a financial loss. Examples include providing incorrect advice, sub-standard services or incorrect designs.

These mistakes can cost clients time and money, and they may choose to take legal action against you to recover their costs. Professional indemnity insurance pays the legal costs in defending you, as well as any compensation payments that may be due to your client as a result of your mistake.

It’s worth bearing in mind that even if you’ve done nothing wrong and a client makes an unfounded or spurious claim against you, it can cost significant sums of money to defend yourself. Professional indemnity insurance can cover you against such scenarios.

For more detail, read our article: Professional indemnity insurance explained.

What's covered by professional indemnity insurance?

Our professional indemnity insurance covers your legal costs and expenses in defending a claim, and any compensation or costs that may subsequently be awarded, following:

  • Professional negligence - such as making a mistake in a piece of work for a client or giving them poor advice

  • Unintentional breach of confidentiality - such as sharing sensitive client information without permission

  • Unintentional breach of copyright - such as using an image on your website without permission

  • Defamation and libel - such as making false comments about a competitor or client that damages their reputation

  • Loss of documents or data

  • Loss of money or goods (for which you are responsible)

Who needs professional indemnity insurance?

You should consider arranging professional indemnity insurance if:

  • You provide advice, designs or professional services to your clients
  • Your client requires you to have professional indemnity cover to begin a contract
  • Your industry body requires you to have professional indemnity cover to operate

Do I need professional indemnity insurance cover?

Professional indemnity insurance should be given serious consideration if you provide advice, designs or any other professional service to your clients. This includes a wide range of occupations such as:

  • Business and management consultants
  • IT contractors and consultants
  • Technical and engineering contractors and architects
  • Creative and marketing professionals, including web designers, graphic designers, marketing consultants and photographers/videographers design engineers
  • Teachers, tutors, instructors and trainers
  • Accountants, surveyors, architects and more

Without it, you could be liable for thousands of pounds worth of legal fees and compensation payments payable to your client if you are found to have been negligent in your services to them.

For more information and access to insurance guides, visit our insurance help and guidance hub here.

Why choose Markel professional indemnity insurance?

  • Cover from £8 a month
  • Fast, easy quote in 90 seconds
  • 24 hour access to a legal advice helpline and legal document hub to help with any legal issues relating to your business
  • Trusted by over 200,000 businesses
  • Established for over 25 years

*Price based on an IT contractor requiring £50,000 of professional indemnity insurance.

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Cover starting at £8 a month

Frequently asked questions

  • What kind of claims does professional indemnity insurance cover against?

    Professional indemnity insurance claims can be wide-ranging, but some examples are given below:

    Management consultant - a business plan provided to a client doesn't deliver the expected results. They claim against you for their financial loss.

    IT contractor - a website, application or software provided to your client isn't fit for purpose. They claim against you for the cost of putting the mistake right.

    Engineering contractor - some CAD work you undertake for a client contains the wrong measurements and causes long delays to your client's project. They claim against you for the cost of putting the mistake right.

    Fitness professionals - a client injures themselves during a session. They make a claim against you alleging that you failed to properly explain how to perform the exercise.

    Photographers - a client alleges that the photographs taken aren't suitable for use, or a memory card corrupts and you lose all the day's shots. They claim against you for the cost of re-organising the shoot.

    Teacher/tutor - a client doesn't achieve the necessary grades to pass their exams. They claim against you for the financial losses suffered.

  • How much does it cost for professional indemnity insurance?

    Our professional indemnity insurance is available from £74 a year (based on a £50,000 cover limit). You can choose from a range of different cover levels to suit your individual requirements and buy your policy online in a matter of minutes.

  • What level of professional indemnity cover should I choose?

    If you're arranging professional indemnity insurance to meet the requirements of a client contract or regulated industry body, it's worth checking with them if they expect a minimum level of cover in order for you to start work.

    If your client/industry body does not have minimum requirements, give some thought to a worst-case scenario and the likely costs involved in putting your mistake right. We offer professional indemnity insurance for over 200 professions and have levels of cover ranging from £50,000 to £5m, so you are guaranteed to find the right cover for your business.

  • I need professional indemnity insurance to secure a contract - do you provide proof of cover?

    Yes. When you purchase professional indemnity insurance with Markel, a proof of insurance document is emailed to you instantly detailing the cover you hold with us. Many of our customers arrange cover with us in order to meet the insurance requirements of clients, agencies and other parties. This document will help you show that you have the appropriate cover in place to start work.

  • Do I need professional indemnity cover if I work from home?

    If you work from home and provide advice, services or designs to your clients, you should consider arranging professional indemnity insurance. It is highly unlikely that you will be covered under your home insurance policy, so buying a specialist professional indemnity insurance policy will ensure you’re protected in the event of a claim.

  • I only need cover for a few months - do you offer short-term policies?

    No. All our policies last for 12 months, and there is a reason for this.

    Professional indemnity insurance is underwritten throughout the industry on what's known as a 'claims made' basis. This means that the policy must be live at the time the alleged negligence took place and also when we are notified of the claim by you.

    In effect, it means that if you cancel your professional indemnity insurance and a claim is brought against you by a client from a previous contract, you won't be covered.

    If, however, you maintain continuous cover between contracts, you will have the peace of mind that if a claim is brought against you relating to work previously carried out, you'll be covered.

Cover starting at £8 a month

Cover starting at £8 a month

More specialist cover

  • Public liability insurance

    Public and product liability insurance covers the cost of defending your business (including damages awarded against you if unsuccessful) if someone is injured, or their property damaged, which arises from you going about your business or supplying products. The legal fees alone could cost your business thousands of pounds. If you regularly visit client premises as part of your consulting activities, you may need this cover. Limits range from £1m to £5m.

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