Making Contractor Insurance Easy

Most contractors facing an uphill battle to find work within their specific industry, whether they are trawling through job vacancies or wrestling numerous application forms it is not surprising to find ‘convenience’ at the top of their list when sourcing insurance.
It is quite fair to say that insurance is not the top priority for many contractors, however, many clients or agencies will expect to see verification of not only Professional Indemnity Insurance, but also Employers and Public Liability Insurances. Furthermore, it is not uncommon for the contracts to specify minimum amounts for each policy and if you are not in immediate possession of these, there is no chance of being paid!

Also, a recent report by the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) showed the ‘engineering’ sector has been the only sector showing increase, month by month, with the chair of REC’s Engineering and Technical division, Philip Higgins stating, “the engineering sector has witnessed a health growth in demand all year and this is accelerating”, meaning that many contractors are showing more flexibility in the industries they are working in, proving further that one of the main benefits of contracting is the flexibility to work where the demand for labour is.

So, with both of these points taken into account, why aren’t insurance companies showing the same trend?

Modern freelance professionals are looking for a quick, convenient insurance package that will cover them for their role as an itinerant contractor and not be dependant on the job title and industry they work in.

With this information, Kingsbridge Contractor Insurance have designed an all-encompassing contractor insurance package, covering the main exposures that a contractor would be subject to. This isn’t a policy where premium is affected by the industry of work or job title, offering clear exclusions and restrictions, the policy eases the worry that contractors have that they may not be covered for any new roles they take on.

Personal Accident Insurance = Peace Of Mind

Personal Accident Insurance

A noteworthy report for all contractors was issued this month highlighting the importance of holding personal accident insurance.  The report confirmed that the self employed were at most risk of financial loss if hospitalised.  Of 400 contractors surveyed, an amazing 72% didn’t have any kind of insurance that would help the financial burden of being unable to work through a workplace accident.

When purchasing insurance cover such as professional indemnity and public liability for their limited company, it is obvious that some contractors neglect the significance of obtaining cover for themselves in the case of accident.

A contractors self employed status means they are likely to have no other person to hold responsible following an accident, but a simple affordable personal accident cover could protect them from the inevitable financial pitfalls.

Experts in freelance insurance, Kingsbridge Contractor Insurance offer a package of insurance which includes personal accident cover that not only insures for accidents that occur at work, but also for any accident that takes place whilst commuting. Kingsbridge offer a weekly benefit of up to £500 whilst recovering from an injury.  In addition to this, lump sum payments are payable for death or permanent disability resulting from an occupational accident.

Recent claims have seen our insurers award weekly payouts to claimants for periods of incapacity from 2 to 12 months, providing £26,000 benefit in the worst case.  Our insurance package provides contractors the peace of mind of having their own cover in the event of a mishap, regardless of the blame. Have you thought about the potential loss?

Could you afford to go for months with no income?

See the detail yourself at www.kingsbridge.co.uk

Don’t get caught out by AWR

AWR

The new Agency Workers Regulations (AWR) will come into force later this year and for those keen to be seen as outside the scope of the regulations focus will return to IR35 tests.

In the draft guidance “the definition of an agency worker excludes those who are in business on their own account”, but simply owning a Limited Company and putting your earnings through it will not be enough to put you beyond the scope of the regulations. Any dispute would require the worker to prove that their circumstances, arrangements and company set up genuinely support their self employed status.

A number of factors can be considered in this regard but it is likely that you will need to demonstrate a number of them to succeed in convincing HMRC. Contractors who take fiscal responsibility for any negligence in their advice and purchase appropriate business insurance will be seen as different to those choosing to rely on indemnity from the end client in the same way as an employee would.

Other factors which could be considered are the purchase of your own business equipment, computer hardware and software together with appropriate licences, personal protective clothing for site visits etc. In addition supporting your own professional development through training, or perhaps subscriptions for membership to a professional body in your chosen field.

All of these things are generally provided for employees but if you rely on them it could support the view that your status is only really in place for job flexibility or tax reasons and it would be likely to lead to additional scrutiny from HMRC.

IR35 Staying Put

IR35

Now it’s been decided that IR35 is here to stay, albeit with better management by HMRC, freelance contractors needs to refresh themselves with it, ensuring they are compliant.

Taking out Insurance for your limited company has always been a good indicator to HRMC of your independent status, and although you can buy the basic requirements to satisfy this element, you should also be thinking how best to cover your company for all eventualities.

Being comprehensively covered has to be the key for peace of mind, not just for you, but your client and agency as well. Kingsbridge Contractor Insurance offer a package, specifically designed for freelance contractors working through their own limited company or as a sole trader, and as experts in freelance insurance they have thought about claims coming from every angle. The package even includes a personal accident cover for occupational accidents providing you with weekly income should you be injured at work.

Richard Bell, director of Kingsbridge, says “as a freelance contractor you have to take responsibility for losses which arise from your errors, and relying on other parties to indemnify you for such loss can be seen as evidence that you are not in business in your own right. Why take this risk when affordable comprehensive cover is available, after all could you really afford the legal cost to defend a professional indemnity claim, even if the allegations are unfounded?