Residents Community Insurance

The Importance of Public Liability Insurance

The main reason that every voluntary group needs to have Public Liability insurance is to protect the committee and members from claims made against the organisation!

Why would the committee and members need such protection?

Because legally the committee and members would be personally liable for any damages awarded against the association for injury to the public or property damage caused by the “negligence” of the association.

What does “negligence” mean?

It is a complex legal concept but essentially it means that as a result of the failure to take reasonable care in the running of some activity people were injured or property was damaged. Whether or not there has been negligence often has to be left to a court to decide.

What does your association do which could possibly cause a claim?

Accidents occur in the most simple of circumstances. A person, perhaps child, is scalded by tea or injured by a stone from a lawnmower or strimmer or any number of unexpected causes.

Hopefully no claim will ever be made against your residents association but it could and does happen that claims are made against voluntary organisations. The prospect of your residents association having to deal with an uninsured claim is just too dreadful to contemplate. Whereas the association, which has Public Liability insurance, can just pass the matter to it’s insurance company to handle.

Remember also that the insurance of the hall or hotel where your association organise meetings / events will not cover claims arising out of the negligence of the association. The same goes for the bouncing castle hire company who claim, “they are fully insured”.

Usually the residents association is responsible for the supervision of the bouncing castle while children are using it and the hire company insurance would not cover the liability of the association.

Should people be afraid to join residents association or other voluntary groups because of this?

Absolutely not but they need to satisfy themselves that the association has adequate Public Liability insurance and that it is renewed without fail and on time year in year out.