An Insurance Guide for Property Owners Liability Insurance


Why buy a Property Owners Liability Insurance (also called Land Insurance)?

If you own land, perhaps a development plot or a field you have purchased, it is possible that a person may enter it and hurt themselves. The law requires you, as the owner, to keep the land safe and will hold you responsible for any injuries. This applies even if the person was trespassing!

This type of insurance is called “Property Owners Liability” and is usually provided free of charge with a Buildings or Home policy. However, if you don’t have a building to insure or perhaps the land is adjacent to your home but on separate a deed, you will need to buy a “stand-alone” policy.

A frequent question we receive is, “what if the injured person was on the land illegally, then surely there wouldn’t be any negligence on the owner’s part?” Sadly, this isn’t correct and a trespasser has as much right to compensation as anybody else!

Additionally, please bear in mind that many of the claims that we receive are not where there has been any real fault at all. They are simply an alleged incident that has been exaggerated because the third party has managed to find a “no win, no fee” legal service to pursue an action for them.

Property Owners Liability insurance also covers your legal costs in defending these cases. If you didn’t buy insurance, a typical solicitor could charge you £150 per hour or more. This would mean that one hour of advice would actually exceed the typical annual cost of an insurance policy for a small piece of land!

You have to buy some insurance policies because the law says so (such as Car Insurance or Employers Liability) or sometimes because you are contractually obliged to do so (such as your house when you have a mortgage). Although there is no doubt that Property Owners Liability Insurance is not a high priority to purchase, the cost is relatively low and provides excellent peace of mind.

What does Property Owners Liability Insurance cover?

Under a Property Owners Liability insurance policy, sometimes called Public Liability for land, cover is provided for compensation to the third party. It will also protect the policyholder the for legal defence costs from solicitors and barristers.

What Type Of Land Can We Cover?

  • Disused quarries

  • Wharfs

  • Private roads

  • Bridges

  • Footpaths

  • Woodland

  • Car parks

  • Lakes

  • Ponds

  • Communal land

  • Graveyards

  • And many more!

What can a Land Insurance Broker like Versatile do for me?

We can cover land which forms part of the title of a house but the use is not covered. One example is a client who had woodland and a private road on her land, however the road also serviced her two neighbours, and this was not insured under her home policy. Also, on the land may be buildings and we can provide property owners liability cover, even it is not in a good condition.

How much does land insurance cost?

If you have a small parcel of land, perhaps used for grazing, Property Owners Liability insurance can cost as little as £71 for 12 months cover. If you are not the owner but you rent or lease the land, we can arrange Public Liability insurance for land from just £92. Employer’s Liability insurance can also be added at an extra premium.

What other insurance policies can provide indemnity for use of land?

If you are researching Property Owners Liability insurance on the internet, it can be tricky finding the right cover. For example, if you have bought a building plot to build a house, specialist developers insurance policies are available. You may require a Self Build Insurance policy which would normally include this cover. Alternatively, you may have animals grazing in a field and are considering a Smallholders Insurance. Are you siting caravans or tents or are you having a fireworks party? The possible uses of land are endless but you can call Versatile Insurance on 01837 658955 where we have expert staff that are very experienced at providing quotations for Land Liability insurance. Alternatively, you can use our easy to complete form here. Whichever way you wish to contact us, we will find and compare the best premiums and insurers for you.

Ray Colenutt Dip CII
Ray Colenutt Dip CIIManaging Director

The writer of this article, Ray Colenutt Dip CII, has over 30 years of arranging insurance in the construction industry. Ray is also the managing director of Versatile Insurance Professionals Ltd.

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