The role of a professional health and safety consultant is an increasingly important one in the world of working Britain. Companies big and small regularly seek advice to protect workers’ safety and to safeguard their own security against possible court action which results from poor practice. Therefore they turn to professionals for advice who in turn bear a high level of responsibility. But no-one is perfect and the chance of giving the wrong advice or making a similar mistake means health and safety consultant professional indemnity insurance should be considered carefully.
Professional indemnity insurance protects a sole trader or business with regard to any legal liability which arises out of the exercise and conduct of the business, ie making a serious professional mistake which leads to a person suffering an injury which could’ve been avoided had better health and safety advice been provided. Cover will also usually be provided against loss of or damage to work-related documents, the infringement of any copyright, the arrival of a defamation, libel or slander accusation against the company or individual, and will also cover against any dishonest actions of any employees of a company.
Health and safety is a sometimes emotive issue and can often go beyond making sure trip hazards are properly marked in an office. Health and safety consultants working in the engineering, rail, construction and local government industries often opt for health & safety consultant professional indemnity insurance.
Failure to give proper advice in these or other industries could lead to an injury claim against the consultant or company – and remember legal representation in such cases is not cheap. Defending such cases can be long, laborious, stressful and produce final bills of thousands of pounds or more. Professional indemnity insurance protects a person against the financial hardship and associated worry in that it will pay legal defence bills up to certain limits. This is worth bearing in mind, particularly given the high cost of cases even when they are defended successfully and with comparative ease in legal terms.
The law does not always run quickly – therefore an individual or company should consider the value of policies which cover for any case resulting from a past event from before a policy started, and also the possibility of retroactive cover for actions which may arise after a person or company finishes trading.
Although professional indemnity insurance may come low on the list when starting up a new business, health & safety consultants could find an appropriate health and safety consultant professional indemnity insurance policy is just as important for them as a similar policy is for a doctor or counselling professional. Although it may at first feel like an inconvenient extra expense, it could save thousands of pounds in the long run.