May 4, 2021

Essential insurances for a freelancer

Written by Martin Baxter

Buying business insurance as a freelancer can be overwhelming and confusing. There are so many different types of insurance that it can be hard to know what you need. You don’t want to be paying for cover that will never apply to you, but equally you want peace of mind to know that the most common risks are covered.

At Dinghy, our insurance package is specially curated to meet the needs of freelancers – all the cover you need, with none of the extra stuff that you don’t. When you get a quote, we’ll ask about your occupation, location, number of clients and turnover to give us an idea of the appropriate level of cover. In this article, we take a look at the essential insurances relevant for freelancers, and what they will cover you for.

Professional Indemnity

Professional indemnity insurance for freelancers is there to protect your work and your reputation. Sometimes, no matter how diligent or careful we are in the course of our freelancer work, mistakes can happen. A typo slips through, an angle is off on a design, a photograph is posted to the web without attribution. If a client feels that they have incurred cost or damage from something you’ve done, they might try to bring a claim against you, leaving you liable for costs, compensation and legal fees. Mistakes might not always be spotted straight away – in fact, a client typically has up to 7 years to make a claim against you. Even if you think you’ve done nothing wrong, the cost and stress of defending yourself against a claim can be quite considerable. As the nature of freelance work can be so varied, there are a huge number of things that can bring about a professional indemnity claim:

  • Negligence: when you make a mistake or don’t use reasonable duty of care
  • Bad advice: if a client took your recommendation and it turned out to be a bad call
  • Defamation: if you accidentally besmirch someone’s reputation in a way that causes them damage or distress
  • Copyright breach: if your work appears too similar to someone else’s
  • Breach of confidentiality: if you accidentally share protected information, such as emailing a document to the wrong client.

Professional indemnity claims can be costly to put right. Dinghy’s professional indemnity cover includes legal representation, covering fees, costs and compensation owed to the other side. Your level of protection depend on what you do and where you do it. £100,000 of cover is our minimum, but most clients choose £1M. If you feel like you couldn’t afford to pay that amount out of pocket – you need professional indemnity insurance!

Public Liability

Public liability insurance is to protect the people you work and interact with. If someone is injured or their property damaged in the course of your work, public liability insurance covers the costs of compensation and legal fees. If you’re a freelancer out-and-about – visiting clients on their premises, working in a co-working space, or bashing out emails in a cafe – public liability insurance should be a priority purchase. Or even if you host clients or other people in your workspace – basically any situation where there’s danger of an accident happening to other people or their belongings. There are two main occurrences that can give rise to a public liability claim:

  • Injury to people: if someone hurts themselves and it’s your fault: e.g. another freelancer trips over the strap of your bag in a co-working space.
  • Damage to property: if your actions break or wreck someone else’s things: e.g. you spill your coffee all over your client’s computer.

Business Equipment

Laptop, mobile, tablet, camera: you can’t do your job without them, and you’d be totally adrift if something happened to them. Business equipment insurance will cover the cost of replacing any of the essential tools of your trade that are owned by your company. Dinghy’s business equipment insurance goes the extra mile, not just covering your gadgets if they are lost, stolen or damaged anywhere in the world, but also guaranteeing a replacement or cash for you to buy a new one within 24 hours of you lodging the claim.

Help with chasing accounts

Unpaid and overdue invoices are an unfortunate part of freelancer life – but we don’t think that’s fair. Many freelancers find there are times when they have gone as far as they can trying to recover the debt themselves, and look to call in some legal support. All Dinghy insurance packages come with our Freelancer Assist service included, which as well as providing tax, legal and counselling helplines, gives freelancers access to a dedicated team who will handle the recovery of your unpaid accounts.

Put all of those types of insurance together, and we think you’ve got a pretty perfect package of cover for freelancers and self-employed professionals. That’s why you can get all of these insurances from Dinghy – selecting the ones you need, with levels of cover tailored to your profession, business size, and location. Dinghy freelancer insurance offers flexible cover that can be switched on and off at the click of a button, because we understand the realities of freelance life and workflow. You can get a quick quote from our website – it only takes a few minutes to get all your essential cover in place, so you can get on with doing what you do best.

About Martin Baxter

Read more blog posts by Martin Baxter


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