It can be tempting to wonder if you actually need insurance if you’re a mobile hairdresser. You probably don’t have a lot in the way of business assets and you’re only a small business, so what can go wrong?
The problem is that there’s quite a lot that can go wrong, and unlike a large business, smaller businesses aren’t as able to absorb unexpected costs. For a small business, insurance is vital.
So, what insurance does a mobile hairdresser need?
Public liability insurance for mobile hairdressers
Public liability insurance is one of the more well-known covers that most small businesses will know they need. It covers injury or damage to a third-party or their property and acts as the backbone of any mobile hairdressing insurance policy. It can cover things like spilling hair dye on a client’s expensive rug or a client tripping over the cable of the blowdryer you were using.
But public liability is more than just a tool for keeping yourself safe from these accidents. As part of buying a specialist insurance policy, if faced with a claim, you’ll also gain access to a highly-trained legal team who will be well versed in dealing with claims in your industry, which saves you the legwork of having to find someone suitable with experience in dealing with claims like these. It also means that, should compensation be awarded to the claimant, your insurance company will cover the costs for you – which means you won’t suffer a huge hit to your profits should the worst happen, and you don’t have to worry about potentially having to shut down your business as a result. It really is a key tool that every mobile hairdresser should seriously consider before starting out.
Products liability insurance & treatment risk
This is a vital type of insurance for mobile hairdressers. It covers you if a compensation claim is made against you by someone who alleges that you, or a defect in a product that you have sold or supplied, are responsible for them being injured or their property being damaged. Compensation claims can cost hundreds of thousands of pounds so operating without public and products liability insurance isn’t wise.
However, due to the nature of hairdressing a standard public liability insurance policy leaves gaps in cover and it’s important that you make sure you get public and products liability insurance that includes a treatment risk cover This extends the cover so that it operates if a claim is made against you due to a treatment you have provided.
It’s also important that you make sure your public and products liability insurance contains a financial loss extension. This extends the cover so that it operates if a claim for a pure economic loss is made against you. Standard public and products liability insurance only covers claims where there is an injury or damage.
Personal accident & sickness insurance
In the same way that you couldn’t work if you couldn’t use your car, it’s possible that an injury or an illness could leave you unable to work and, if you’re self-employed, you won’t have access to sick pay to help you pay your bills while you recover.
Personal accident & sickness insurance pays you a weekly benefit if you can’t work because you’ve been injured or you’re sick. It also pays you a lump sum if your injury or illness means you won’t be able to work again.
Other types of insurance
Although personal accident, public and products liability and treatment risk insurance are the three main types of insurance that a mobile hairdresser needs, there are other types of insurance that a mobile hairdresser should consider.
You might not think that your business equipment and stock is worth much, but by the time you add up the value of it all, particularly if you include the computer you use to manage your accounts and bookings, the total value can be surprising. It’s worth considering insuring this against accidental damage or loss due to theft.
It is also worth considering insuring yourself against the legal costs you would incur if you ended up involved in legal action, such as having to defend yourself if criminal charges had been brought against you, having become involved in a dispute with a client or becoming the subject of a tax/VAT inspection.
You’re also going to need some sort of transport to get you to and from your clients and if it’s your car you’re using, you’ll definitely need motor insurance as it’s a legal requirement. If you’re using your private car, rather a car specifically for business, you should make sure your personal insurance policy doesn’t exclude claims arising from business use.
But other than the legal side of things, if your car is off the road because it’s been damaged in an accident or been stolen so you can’t use it, you can’t get to your clients and as a result, you can’t earn money.
Making sure you have motor insurance doesn’t only save your driving licence. It could also save your business.