To those unaware of the ins and outs of professional insurance products, dangers in the workplace and of course the many legal loopholes within our busy business world, never fear, as you are certainly not alone.
In everyday life, insurance exists as a means in which individuals can protect themselves against most of life's misfortunes. This is of course, what insurance companies and money lenders tell people, and although rightly so, often falls on unwanted ears. To most of us, insurance is a word that is met with a sigh, our minds conjuring up pictures of faceless men in suits, with outstretched arms and briefcases of bad news. This is of course a natural reaction, but in reality, insurers do, and insurance does work in our best interests... In a roundabout way.
Contracting is a popular profession in the 21st century, contractors working alongside employees as if they were the same, but in reality (concerning tax, status and of course insurance) they are quite different. Contractors are not employed by the companies that are hiring them, instead they work for their own limited companies, and it is these companies that are hired by firms who require the contractor to work. This is an overtly confusing concept to those who are not directly involved in contracting, but it is a professional way of life that exists and works well.
Contracting brings with it a number of perks to the contractor, their hours are versatile and they are beneficial to a lower tax bracket than the average employee. This being said however, as technically self-employed professionals, contractors are required to take out a number of specifically designed contractor insurance policies, each tailored to the professional risks of contracting.
Contractor insurance is so important, as being self-employed sole traders; contractors are 100% liable to any mistake or misfortune that may occur within the workplace, making the financial risk a potentially huge overhead. The policies themselves that are available to contractors range from cover designed to protect professional indemnity, to accident and sickness insurance should a contractor fall ill.
What makes contractor insurances unique however are its relevance to contractors and its advantages to limited company professionals. Each policy is designed to cover an eventuality that concerns contractors specifically, and each insurance cover aids contractors in different ways. Take PI insurance for example, which is a contractor policy that may not be required by an average employee. It would cover a contractor in a case of professional negligence that would result in financial loss. This would not be necessary for an employee to have for example, as their employing company would most probably have a policy similar to employer's liability that covers any employee's mistakes.
If you are a contractor, then insurance I'm afraid to say, is a necessary and advantageous commodity to have within your arsenal of professional weapons. Acting as a shield to protect your limited company assets and finances, contractor cover still remains a must-have form of protection, and its importance should never be overlooked.
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