What is Professional Indemnity Insurance? – Do I Need It?

A professional is defined as anyone who gives expert advice and/or services to another person. As a professional, you’ll be expected to exercise skill at an appropriate level expected of that profession. But professionals are only human and mistakes do happen Financial loss arising from a mistake or failure by a professional may result in an award in favour of your client or another party. Under the Australian Trade Practices Act, a professional may also be held to be liable for a mistake, even if the act was not negligent.

A Professional Indemnity policy is designed to protect the personal assets of a professional against damages awarded against them. It also covers the costs and expenses of defending claims.

Why does a Historian need Professional Indemnity Insurance?

General liability policies specifically exclude claims arising from breach of professional duty, particularly where there is a fee paid for such advice or service.

As a historian, you may be exposed to being sued by third parties for many reasons. Whilst not initially apparent, this may include such things as:

  • Breach of Contract
  • Breach of Confidentiality
  • Libel and Slander
  • Breach of Intellectual Property/Copyright
  • Loss of Documents

The Professional Indemnity policy indemnifies the insured for amounts which they become legally liable to pay as a result of any actual or alleged
egligent act, error or omission in the conduct of their business or profession.

Costs and expenses incurred to investigate, defend or settle any claim are also included.

Even if you always act honestly and carefully you are not guaranteed protection from an allegation that you are forced to defend in court.

It is becoming increasingly common for clients, especially many government bodies, to insist on this cover being in place before contracts are signed. This is to provide recourse in the event of the above.

Public Liability Insurance

Public liability insurance covers your business against any claims made against you in respect to bodily injury or property damage arising out of an accident happening in connection with your business. Taking out an insurance policy can protect your business and your future by allowing you to continue operating during a potential law suit.

We are also now wanting to offer a tailored home insurance offering to prevent gaps in cover for these historians who traditionally operate from home offices

Home and Home Contents Insurance

Your Home and Home Contents Insurance needs extend to cover your home office equipment, any portable electronic equipment you may use in the provision of your services, and also the documents you might retain in your home or home office. By taking out a policy that is designed to work hand in hand with your Professional Indemnity and Public Liability Policy you ensure there are no gaps in cover. Additional benefits included are;

  • Australia Wide cover for Contents including electronic equipment
  • up to $7,500 for office equipment document restoration
  • Federal audit costs up to $5,000
  • cover for Collections (including books and/or other artefacts whether historical or not).

Professional Indemnity & Public Liability Insurance – Professional Historians Association Scheme

A combined insurance policy designed specifically for Professional Historians, covering Professional Indemnity and the option of Public/Products Liability Insurance, is available for members of the Professional Historians Association.

Cover is placed through CGU Insurance Ltd

To qualify for the program and to receive the discounted rates you must be a member of the Professional Historians Association and hold the relevant qualifications (usually a Post Grad or PHD or similar).

Program is tailored to the needs of Historians and limits of indemnity available are $1m, $2m, $5m or $10m.

The policy is designed to cover historical research and related activities for the undertaking of research eg writing, interviewing etc does not cover any teaching activities)

Common due date 30th March each year.

Key Policy Benefits

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