What is Personal Trainer’s Public Liability Insurance & what does it cover?

By Darragh Timlin on January 1st, 2021

More and more people are deciding that they need to concentrate on their fitness levels. This is why there are nearly 14,000 personal trainers in the UK currently, and the sector is still growing. The vast majority of those personal trainers work on a freelance basis. All of these personal trainers, whether they work on a freelance basis or are employed by someone, need to make sure they are covered by personal trainer insurance with public liability. But what exactly does this type of insurance cover?  

What personal trainer’s public liability insurance covers

In many ways, a personal trainer’s public liability insurance policy covers the same risks that a standard business public liability insurance policy covers. It covers compensation awarded against you if someone alleges that something you have done or failed to do has injured them or damaged their property. It also covers the claimant’s associated expenses and any loss of earnings as a result of the injury or damage. The legal fees incurred in handling the claim are covered as well. Products liability insurance should also be included in the insurance package. This is similar to public liability insurance but covers compensation awarded against you as a result of a defect in a product that you have sold or supplied, such as a dietary supplement or a piece of exercise equipment. Such claims can be made against you even if you are only the supplier of the products and someone else manufactured them.  

Why do you need personal trainer’s public liability insurance?

Compensation claims can be extremely costly. A relatively minor injury can result in a five-figure settlement once the expenses and legal fees have been added to the compensation amount. A serious injury can easily end up costing in excess of £250,000. It is important to remember that the type of person that uses a personal trainer is often a fairly high earner, so the loss of earnings component of any claim can be significant even if the injury itself is relatively minor. These claims can often be difficult to handle as well, because they can involve complex legal arguments. A personal trainer’s public liability insurer will have a legally-trained team that specialises in the sort of claims that are made against personal trainers, so they will be able to help you deal with these legal arguments. Although a standard public liability insurance policy will cover many of these claims, due to the unique nature of the personal training profession, there would be gaps in cover which could leave you uninsured in the event of a compensation claim being made against you. A personal trainer’s public liability insurance policy should include malpractice cover, which addresses this issue.  

Malpractice cover

Although standard public liability insurance policies cover compensation claims that are made against you due to something you have done or failed to do, they exclude claims that arise out of any advice that has been given. This is a major problem for personal trainers because most of what they do is giving advice. Personal trainer’s public liability insurance policies include an extension called malpractice cover. This covers compensation claims that arise out of any bodily injury, mental and psychological damage from both physical procedures and from advice, or a combination of the two. As an example, if someone claims compensation from you because they allege that they have been injured as a result of an exercise plan that you have prepared for them, that compensation claim would not be covered under a standard public liability insurance policy, because the exercise plan would be classed as advice that had been given. However, it would be covered under the medical malpractice cover in a personal trainer’s public liability policy.

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