Hairdresser, and mobile? You'll need insurance!
People want to look elegant and beautiful no matter what their age or where they live. That's why the need for mobile hairdressers in the United Kingdom is growing, and many hairdressers are following suit by devoting their trade to travelling to clients to perform hair dressing and beauty procedures, rather than having the customer come to them. In some cases, the client is elderly and can't travel. In other cases, a busy young executive has little time to cater to herself, so having the luxury of a mobile hairdresser coming to her home is ideal.
As a mobile hairdresser, you are a beauty professional and have a duty to care for your clients, the public in general and your employees you might have. In any case where you have failed to fulfil this duty, a claim for compensation could be filed against you. Unfortunately, we are living in a world where legal proceedings for compensation is an everyday occurrence, and claims against hairdressers are on the rise. With large compensations claims made and steep legal fees added, minor damage compensation could end your business. Minor damages could include spilling a product on a client's carpet, injury from a product used, an employee receives an injury whilst working on a client and the list goes on and on. Liability cover will likely protect you in all of these situations and more.
You have insurance needs that you should to be aware of in order to protect yourself and your business. You are travelling and carrying your trade whilst in the home of someone else, and many insurances may come into play. We now live in a litigious society in which it is customary to sue for compensation for even the most trivial reasons and often upon the flimsiest of pretexts which means that small business owners or self employed people can face the possibility of financial ruin for making the smallest error, or even no error at all, which means that adequate insurance cover is a must - and it often costs far less than most people think.
Public Liability Insurance
As a mobile hairdresser, you own a small business or are self-employed and you and your employees (if you have any) could be held liable for an injury to a third party or damages to their property. This hold true for mobile hairdressers because they are providing service and goods to the general public. If you trade under the protection of a limited liability company then it would be likely that the company would be held responsible for any damages, but if not it is likely that you would be held liable yourself; literally down to your last penny if need be.
If you don't have Public Liability Insurance cover, you are liable for all the cost involved and will have to pay out of pocket for the civil wrong that the court has offered a remedy for. With Public Liability Cover, financial damages and legal fees as a result of injury or damage to property or death incurred by a member of the general public and caused because of your business will likely be covered. The amount of cover a mobile hairdresser needs is usually in the range of £1m – £5m.
Product Liability Insurance
You may have products that you use on a client that you sell or are produced as part of your business. Making, repairing or selling products makes you liable for any damages or injuries that arise from defects in the manufacturing or design of those products even if you were not negligent. Product Liability Insurance will likely protect you from a claim made by a person other than an employee for injury or damage to themselves or their property, which was caused by your product that you manufactured or supplied. It protects you against claims for damage or injuries that come about because of the treatment you used and the products you applied. Because the products were provided by you, you could be held liable for any damage caused by them even if you did not manufacture them but merely supplied them. Product Liability Insurance will likely cover claims made regarding the manufacturing quality or safety, of spoilage and quality of service. It should also likely cover indemnity fees, including medical bills. Product Liability Insurance may NOT cover you if you product you used was not defective but was used by you in an unsuitable manner and caused problems as a result of that: for this type of cover you would usually need a public liability policy.
It is important to remember that Product Liability is not designed to cover you if you simply make an inferior product which does not live up to a clients' expectations or supply poor quality services whilst using that product and you will not be able to claim for this. Similarly, having this insurance does not relieve you from the responsibility of taking statutory due care in your business operations, and your insurer may require you to observe certain standards such as the use of trained staff and proper equipment and so on.
When researching online for Product Liability look for a policy that protects you from safety claims, spoilage and indemnity costs and manufacturing quality. Remember, taking quality control measures and letting the insurer know the measures you have taken could bring your Product Liability premiums down a bit.
Employers' Liability Insurance
If you have a staff, it is a legal required to have Employers' Liability Insurance; you have no choice in this! It will likely cover any damage and legal fees for employees who are injured or become ill because of the business. Should this employee leave your business, he or she can still claim if it can be shown that the illness was due to employment with you. That is why it is important for you to keep detailed records of all current and former employees.
By law, you must have at least £5 million in Employers' Liability Insurance. If you check the Internet, you'll find that many insurers provide at least £10 million automatically. There are circumstances when you will not need Employers' Liability Insurance if you are the only employee or if you employee a close relative. To be on the safe side, it's best to closely read any insurance website's policy regarding Employers' Liability Insurance. A Certificate of Employer's Liability Insurance must be displayed by an employer or be available for any employee or inspector to read at request. If you do not have this certificate, you can be fined up to £2,500 for each day without it.
Other insurances a mobile hairdresser may want to investigate on insurance websites are Stock and Equipment in Transit, which will likely provide cover against any accidental loss of stock or damage to equipment anywhere in the United Kingdom, or loss of income due to an insured event, such as theft of your equipment, for example.