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Freelance groom liability insurance


Public Liability insurance provides cover against claims made by a third party who has suffered an injury or property damage due to your negligence.

It is not a personal accident insurance, that is a separate type of cover that protects you if you were to have an accident at work.  

what does Liability insurance cover?

All grooming activities, including clipping and exercising horses are covered by the policy, if required, an extension for teaching can be included, though this will incur an additional premium. 

Read the FAQs below to discover if you might need it.

As well as Public Liability, the policy also automatically includes cover for Custodial Liability (Care, Custody & Control).

This provides cover should a horse sustain an injury or die as a result of your negligence

The policy will cover veterinary fees, and/or the current market value of the horse in the event of its death, up to £10,000 per horse with an annual policy limit of £100,000.

This policy is designed specifically for grooms, by KBIS British Equestrian Insurance, so you can rest assured that you will be fully covered in your line of work.

How do I get it?

This insurance cover is set at preferential rates for BGA members, allowing you to make a 10%* saving. 

You need to be a BGA member to gain access to the BGA Freelance Groom Liability policy. So if you are not yet a member, join up on the level of membership that is right for you. 
The policy is purchased directly from KBIS insurance and not via the BGA. The reason for this is that everyone requires something a little different. 
However, a quote can be achieved via the BGA website. (grooms are often working during KBIS office hours and so you can visit the MY INSURANCE page in your account area at anytime, submit your details online, and KBIS will contact you directly with your policy price). 
Alternatively you can call KBIS Insurance on: 0345 230 2323 (but ensure you highlight that you a BGA member to get the right price.)  





*The discount can be applied to new business or at renewal but cannot be added to a policy mid-term. To apply the policyholder must be an active member of the BGA. Discounts are valid for one policy year only but may be reapplied for at renewal is the discount is still valid and membership is renewed. If you have been subject to a claim then KBIS reserved the right to remove/refuse your discount. All policies are subject to our normal underwriting criteria, terms and conditions. All BGA membership numbers are checked.

What is Public Liability (PL)insurance?

Public Liability insurance covers you for any claims made against you in respect of third party property damage or third party injury.

Should a claim be filed against you then your insurer will act in one of two ways; in the event that you are not liable, the insurer will defend your position and cover any legal costs incurred.

If liability is admitted then the insurer will settle any claims up to your limit of indemnity.

Do I need to have my own Public Liability policy in place?

If you are employed then speak to your employer. They should have a public liability policy in place covering the business activities and you should be covered under this.

If you are covered and do not carry out work for anyone else then you shouldn’t need to take out your own Public Liability policy.

If you are self-employed or a freelance worker you may need to have your own policy. You can check with the people who contract your services to see whether any policy they have extends to cover you but, you must bear in mind that their policy will not cover you if a claim is made against you by any of your clients. 

As such, having a policy in place which covers as many eventualities as possible is preferable and should be considered as part of your business’s running costs.

Why do I need Public Liability?

Having a Public Liability policy in place means that if something goes wrong and someone claims against you that you’ll be fully supported through the claims process. This means that:

  • The insurer will act on your behalf in the handling and assessing of the claim against you. 
  • Any correspondence that you receive from the claimant or their representatives can be passed on to the insurer, who will respond on your behalf.
  • You won’t incur any legal costs unless you choose not to use the insurer or their representatives to deal with your claim
  • Any settlement will be paid by the insurer (up to your limit of indemnity, less any excess payable) 

It is voluntary coverage, meaning that you are not required to have a policy covering this risk because of a law or statutory act.

However, you should still consider carefully whether you have Public Liability insurance as with it you could be liable for any claims against you.

How do I get a quotation and how much will it cost?

To receive a quotation you will need to be a BGA member, and complete a simple online proposal form in the Members Account area.

This form will be submitted to KBIS who will provide you with a quotation within one working day of receipt. Details of how to proceed with cover will be provided with your quotation which will be emailed to you.

The cost of the policy depends upon the level of cover you purchase. There is a choice of four different levels for the Public Liability cover; £1,000,000, £2,000,000, £5,000,000 and £10,000,000.

  A Groom’s Public Liability insurance policy starts at £269.50 including Insurance Premium Tax. 
This £269.50 premium provides  a policy covering Public Liability (£1,000,000 Limit of Indemnity, £500 Third Party Property Damage Excess) and Care, Custody and Control (£10,000 per animal, £100,000 in the policy year, £500/£1,000 Excess each and every loss).

This premium does not include extensions to the Law and Jurisdiction (for working abroad) or additional coverage such as Employers’ Liability. 

The premium quoted is subject to standard underwriting criteria and the Terms, Conditions, Exclusions and Limitations of the Policy.

  The quoted price is not available to any customer who has been the subject of a claim in the last 5 years or for any individual who have had a policy terminated or quotation/renewal declined by the insurer. This offer is only available to members of the British Grooms Association.

You have the option to pay for the policy in full by credit or debit card or by monthly direct debit. Monthly direct debit payments are facilitated by Premium Credit Ltd and are subject to an 8% interest charge. You can view the full Terms and Conditions of cover here

If I am employed do I need to have a PL policy? 

If you are working on a full or part time basis then you should speak to your Employer to ensure that they are providing Public Liability insurance covering your activities.

I am a freelanceR. Am i covered by my clients policy?

Even if, for example, you work in a large riding school, a racing yard and a big dressage yard, if you are working as a groom on a freelance basis for a number of businesses you may find that the people employing you consider you to be a contractor and as such would not include you within their Liability Insurance policy.

Speak to each business for clarification on whether or not you are covered under their insurance policies and make sure you understand any gaps in cover which may exist.

What is Employers Liability?   

Employer’s Liability is a type of insurance cover purchased by employers. The policy covers the employer for injury claims made against them by an employee.

Employers are only required to have it if they employ one or more members of staff. 

As an employee you don’t need to purchase this cover.

I simply muck out, there is no public interaction?

Even if you are not actively interacting with the public as part of your job, you are unlikely to be in an environment where there is no public property nearby, roads, pavements or footpaths in the vicinity. For instance, is there the possibility a horse could escape?

Even if it’s accidental there are a number of ways in which you could be held liable for Third Party Property Damage or Bodily Injury without coming in to direct contact with the public yourself.

I work at multiple yards and go hacking?

If you are working freelance for multiple different people you are unlikely to fall under their insurance as an employee so it would be strongly advisable to have your own public liability policy in place.

The Public Liability policy offered through the BGA policy covers you for all grooming activities, including when at an event, and also when exercising horses i.e. hacking out.

I occasionally teach as well?

Do you teach only a couple of lessons a month to a friend? Worried it is going to increase the price of your policy and wondering if you have to include this in the insurance policy?

  The Public Liability provided under the Freelance Grooms policy covers you to groom and exercise horses only

It is up to you if you would like to extend this to include teaching as well but if you don’t you must be prepared to deal with and finance any potential claims that may arise.

Premiums for Instructors policies depend on your level of experience and qualifications but discount are available, you can find out more about the cover provided and request a quote from KBIS for Freelance Instructors here 

What about the Animals Act 1971?

I have been told that means that the responsibility falls with the owner of the horse. Why do I need Public Liability if this is the case? 

The Animal Act sets out when an individual is strictly liable and there are certain conditions which must be met. Liability claims are very complex, even if you are not liable a claim could still be filed against you and legal costs incurred.

MY BD/BE/BS/BHS membership includes PL?

I am a member of BD or BS, for example, and they say that my membership includes Public Liability Insurance. Why doesn't the BGA and what is the difference with those policies - they must be very cheap?

  It is important to remember that the BGA is a professional trade association.

Associations which are providing Public Liability cover as part of their membership package are usually doing so for consumers not commercial activities.

Association policies can often provide cheaper cover because there tend to be a large number of people being covered under one policy. They might also be more restrictive in their coverage so it is very important to check the terms of the policy carefully.

What is Custodial Liability (Care, Custody or Control)?  

Care, Custody and Control insurance provides cover should a horse in your care sustain an injury or die as a result of your negligence.

Benefits are usually paid for veterinary fees and in the event of the horse’s death, the current market value of the horse up to the incident limit but depending on the circumstances it might also include reinbursemnt for other costs, such as entry fees lost.

The BGA Grooms Liability policy includes cover for Custodial Liability, up to £10,000 per horse, limited to £100,000 in the policy period.

Can I get PL without the Care, Custody and Control?  

The Care, Custody and Control section of the policy is included without charge so doesn't affect the premium for the policy.

scenarios where grooms might have to use their PL?  

Examples could include

  • A horse escaping causing third party property damage,
  • If you do not adhere to an owner’s instructions or acting in a negligent manner causing injury to a horse ,
  • If you are wrongfully held liable for injury or damage and your Insurer’s are required to provide a defence on your behalf.

if something happened and I didn’t have PL insurance?  

The process of any claim, as outlined below, would not change but instead of an insurer managing the process and paying any settlement due, you would have to handle the claim and cover any settlement yourself.

  1. You will likely receive a notification of the claim from either the injured party or the injured party’s solicitor. 
2. You’ll be asked to respond. We would recommend you discussed this with a solicitor or appointed one to represent you. 
3. Either an agreement for charges will be reached or it will proceed to court. In any situation it is vital that you don’t ignore any claim made against you.


Does the policy cover me when on my own horse?  

Yes the policy contains a personal liability extension which would cover the insured on their own horse.




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