Hello all, I have a question relating to insurance for a website service I have created and was hoping you could help with some advice.
I have a price comparison website, the visitor chooses the products to compare, is then presented with a list of prices and can then click through to the supplier (most likely the best price).
My business advisor has asked me to look into Public Liability Insurance and Professional Indemnity Insurance but the amount of time it takes to get a quote (no online or phone quotes as it's a website business seemingly) I wonder if it is even necessary?
For the Public Liability Insurance, surely it's not necessary to protect against "Cover if you are blamed for an injury to a member of the public or damage to their property."
At a stretch maybe some malware being distributed from my website that damages their computer but how likely is that likely to end up in court? (or likely that malware would be distributed from a site with no third party advertising or flash)
For the Professional Indemnity Insurance again I doubt it's necessary for "Cover if you make a mistake in your work that damages your customer's business."
I've got the disclaimer about prices can change quickly and that the visitor should always confirm purchases and prices at the checkout of the supplier.
As this is my business advisor it would be handy if I you could post some links I can give her to help convince that the insurance is not necessary, or failing that, why they are.
Any thoughts/help appreciated.
I agree, public liability insurance is irrelevant unless you have customers/clients visiting your premises. Professional Indemnity insurance is really there to cover you in professional business relationships with clients, I don't see how that would be extended to cover a consumer based web service.
There will no doubt be some kind of insurance you can take out, but it's most likely to be a customised policy written specifically for you and unlikely to be cheap. You'd be far better off talking to an insurance broker for further advice - no quick fix though, be prepared to spend a some time on this.
Ultimately you'll need to assess the realistic risks involved in this business model and weigh up the potential legal costs against the costs of your policy - in terms of your site visitors it doesn't sound like you realistically have much to worry about regarding mistakes in pricing, but again, you should perhaps seek professional guidance on that - i.e. talk to a lawyer - you may have other issues to deal with though, for example ensuring you have permission to include all these various businesses and products in your comparisons etc, trademark and copyright concerns, liabilities regarding customer reviews that you might post, etc, I'm sure it's a minefield.
Remember a business advisor is not a lawyer, nor are they an insurance expert
Thank you for your reply.
The real issue is time, with my own investment dried up I need to get funding and having this unnecessary custom insurance policy written up will take too long (even just the week or two).
Thanks again for your detailed response.
You provide a service for which people pay. Insurance is to protect you from people not receiving said service, for a variety of reasons, or your service somehow harming them. You need something to protect you (outage insurance at a minimum), but there's very little need for custom insurance. Any business insurer/bank worth their salt will be able to get you a quote quickly if you walk in and ask. As far as investment, nobody is going to invest if you aren't protected...
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