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Window Cleaners - Insurers and Buyers Guide. New
« on: October 05, 2007, 05:57:08 pm »
www.alexanderswan.com 0800 458 0082
www.gleaming-insurance.co.uk

The following information has been provided by Gleaming Insurance, specialists in arranging insurance for window cleaners in the UK. The schemes that Gleaming have available offer increased levels of cover at very competitive premiums. For more information visit their website by clicking here.

Q. Do I need to have public liability insurance by law?

A No, you are not required by law to take out public liability insurance, however you should consider the consequences of not having the cover carefully. You could lose everything you have worked for if you are held responsible for damage to a customers property or injury to a third party.
   
Q What does a public liability insurance policy cover? 

A That really depends on the type of policy you take out. All public liability policies provide cover for damage to property belonging to a third party and personal injury sustained by a third party following your negligence. However most policies for window cleaners exclude damage to glass or anything else you may clean. Most policies also restrict the maximum height you can work at to 15m and restrict the premises you work on to houses, office, shops and hotels. Any work you carry out at other premises will be excluded. 
   
Q How do I know if I am covered for damage to glass under my policy?

A If you only have Public Liability Insurance cover then there is a very good chance that you don't have cover for damage to glass etc as most insurers exclude this cover. Your policy will have a specific exclusion which is referred to as "damage to property worked upon". If you are covered for Public and Employers Liability Insurance then it really depends who you are insured with. Most insurers exclude this cover but there are one or two that provide it. To be sure, speak to your broker. If they don't know then its likely its excluded as they would have had to have negotiated the cover specifically. If you have bought a policy online then the cover will definitely be excluded. 
   
Q What is the exclusion to look for in your policy?

A The usual name given to this exclusion is "damage to property being worked upon", though this may vary from insurer to insurer. This may be hidden within the policy wording, but is certainly included somewhere within 95% of liability policies. If you are paying between 70 to 130 for Public Liability only insurance then you will likely have this exclusion. If you are insured for Public & Employers Liability Insurance and are paying less than 500 then you are likely to have this exclusion.
   
Q What is different about the policies Allied can provide to window cleaners?

A All of the policies we recommend include cover for damage to glass or anything you may clean including sills, fascias, carpets, upholstery etc. We believe you need this
cover to protect your business and livelihood as damage to glass for example could cost you thousands of pounds to rectify if you aren't insured correctly. 
   
Q What level of cover will the policy provide?

A The level of indemnity you choose to take for Public Liability Insurance depends on your needs and also the requirements of your customers. The basic level is 1,000,000 but some customers may ask for more, especially local authorities. We can provide cover for 1,000,000 to 10,000,000 if needed. The level of indemnity for Employers Liability is set at 10,000,000 by all insurers. 
   
Q What does "limit of indemnity" mean?

A This is the maximum amount that the insurance company will pay in damages in the event of a claim being made.
   
Q Do I need to have Employers Liability Insurance by law?

A As a very rough idea, this is the requirement for EL insurance. :-
Sole Traders with no employees or subcontractors - No
Sole Traders with employees or subcontractors - Yes
Partnerships with no employees or subcontractors- No
Partnerships with employees or subcontractors - Yes
Limited companies with one director owning 50% of shares - No
Limited companies with more than one director OR employing staff or subcontractors - Yes

There is one exemption to the law for sole traders or partnerships where the persons employed are close members of the insured's family . This being a son, daughter, husband, mother, father or wife, then EL insurance is NOT required for them. This exemption DOES NOT apply to Limited companies. As insurance brokers we can only give advice but cannot decide what cover you need. Further information can be obtained from the Health & Safety Executive (www.hse.gov.uk). You can also follow the following link to read a copy of the latest release from the HSE regarding the Employers Liability Compulsory Insurance Act 1969 
   
Q Is it more expensive to be insured for using ladders rather than pole systems?

A If you are a sole trader then you will pay the same whether you use ladders, poles or cherry pickers. If you have a business employing staff or subcontractors then the premiums are cheaper if you are working from the ground rather than at height.
   
Q Do the policies Allied recommend allow use cherry pickers, cradles or abseiling equipment?
 
A. Yes, all of our policies provide cover for all types of window cleaning.
   
Q Can cover be arranged for Water Fed Pole Systems and other equipment?

A Yes, we can arrange cover for all your tools and equipment for just 77.50 per year.
   
Q Can I pay the premiums monthly?

A. Yes, subject to a service charge that is made by our finance provider, Premium Credit Ltd. The level of charge is dependant on the premium but is between 6-8%. 
   
Q How quickly can cover be arranged?

A. We can start cover immediately upon receipt of verbal or written confirmation to proceed. 
   
Q Do I have to pay towards the cost of a claim?

A Under all liability policies there is an excess to be paid. The scheme we have has a 250 excess for all claims. 
   
Q Can I get insurance for carpet cleaning or other cleaning work? 

A Yes, we understand that some window cleaners may undertake other work rather than just window cleaning. Our policies provide cover for all types of cleaning from builders cleans, pressure washing to upholstery cleaning and more.
   
Q Is cover for treatment risks provided?

A Yes, under all of our policies. This is excluded under most standard liability policies for cleaners.
   
Q What does treatment risks mean?

A. If you were to damage a carpet or upholstery etc and the damage be as a result of the chemicals or cleaning materials you have used, then the policy would provide cover. 
   
Q What other covers are available to window cleaners?
 
A There are many insurance covers that you should consider to protect you and your business. These are Personal Accident & Sickness Insurance, Income Protection Insurance, Private Medical Insurance. Further information on all these products is available on our website, by clicking here