Guidance

How to insure your charity

How insurance can help you protect your charity’s money, property and reputation - and when it is required by law.

When to insure your charity

By law, you have a duty of care to protect your charity’s assets and resources. Depending on what your charity does, you can buy insurance to protect its money, property and reputation. For example:

  • insurance covering loss of funds or damage to its property and possessions
  • travel insurance for staff and volunteers if your charity operates abroad
  • insurance against fraud and dishonesty (known as fidelity insurance)
  • cover for a service you provide, such as giving advice (professional indemnity insurance)

Carry out a risk assessment to decide whether you need to insure your charity.

Legal requirement: you must have insurance if your charity employs staff or operates vehicles on public roads.

Types of charity insurance

Staff and volunteer insurance

You must get employers’ liability insurance if your charity employs paid staff. This protects your charity against claims for any injuries suffered while people are working for you.

By law, you must:

  • have at least £5 million worth of cover
  • buy employers’ liability insurance from an authorised insurer
  • display your insurance certificate prominently in your charity’s premises

You can be fined £2,500 every day you need employers’ liability insurance but do not have it.

Make sure your employers’ liability insurance covers any volunteers who are working on behalf of your charity. Even if your charity doesn’t employ paid staff, you may still decide to take out employers’ liability insurance to protect your volunteers.

You can also cover your staff and volunteers by getting:

  • travel insurance if your charity operates abroad
  • insurance against fraud and dishonesty (known as fidelity insurance)
  • cover in case of problems with a service you provide, such as giving advice (professional indemnity insurance)

Property and vehicle insurance

You must insure any motor vehicles your charity operates on public roads.

If your charity owns or occupies land or buildings, consider public liability insurance. This protects your charity against legal claims from anyone who is injured or whose personal property is lost or damaged on your charity’s premises.

You may need other forms of insurance, for example:

  • buildings insurance to cover the costs of repairing damaged property
  • contents insurance to cover the costs of theft, loss or accidental damage to items like computers
  • legal expenses insurance to cover the cost of a solicitor or court action following a vehicle accident

Events insurance

Take out public liability insurance if you need it for fundraising events, such as fêtes, shows or performances. Some venues may even require you to have a certain level of cover. You may also be able to get cover for cancelling an event due to bad weather.

How to insure your charity

Search for insurance providers online. Or you can:

Published 23 May 2013