26 May 2021 by Olga Brighton
Personal liability insurance may not be the first thing you think about when buying Travel Insurance, however, consumer experts such as Which? and the Money Advice Service agree that personal liability coverage, sometimes known as private liability insurance, is an important, must-have feature of Travel Insurance.
Here we will look to answer key questions such as do I need personal liability insurance and what is personal insurance coverage and what you can gain from having basic liability insurance as part of your travel insurance coverage.
This covers you if you become liable to pay damages to a third party if you are found liable for accidentally injuring someone else, or damaging their property, in certain instances, while you are abroad. It is for those unexpected, unwanted incidents and accidents where you are found financially responsible.
There are often important exclusions that apply to personal liability meanings and definitions in travel insurance, so always check – for example accidents involving any motorised vehicle, or your work/business are usually excluded.
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It’s usual to think of travel insurance protecting against high medical bills, or the risk of Cancellation or Curtailment of your trip. But what if you have a fall whilst heading for the beach. or visiting a historic site and accidently pull someone else down with you seriously injuring them? Or if you inadvertently cause serious damage to your holiday accommodation? This could cost you thousands in legal fees and damages if you are found liable. Buying travel insurance that includes personal liability could save you stress and money. Plus you will have the benefit of an insurance company to take over dealing with a foreign legal system too. Especially as you probably wont be familiar with all the laws and regulations of your chosen holiday destination and you could end up in a situation which needs professional intervention.
All travel insurance policies are different and the cheapest may not be the best. Look beyond the headlines, or you may end up paying more than you need to once you’ve added all the necessary ‘extras’. Many travel insurance providers do not provide personal liability coverage as standard. All Globelink travel insurance options include Personal Liability Cover for free. The only exceptions you need to check is if you are planning to participate in an Adventure Activity that may exclude personal liability while you partake in that activity.
The recommended cover limits vary but you should aim for at least £1 Million, preferably
£2 Million in coverage. It is usual for a lower inner limit to apply to holiday property damage – say £50,000 to £100,000 and there is usually a higher excess for this part of the policy too.
What is and isn’t covered depends on the coverage within your chosen insurance, so check the terms that apply. However, here are some typically excluded items under personal liability coverage: incidents involving being in control of a motorised, mechanical or jet propelled vehicle/watercraft; any business or trade you operate; firearms or weapons; incidents where you are in control or possession of an animal; transmission of any contagious or infectious disease or virus. Other exclusions include claims that may arise against you after you commit an illegal act, damage caused by wilful negligence.
You must always contact the travel insurance claims team asap before you admit any liability, or before you try to negotiate any settlement. The insurer of your policy will usually reserve the right to take over dealing with the third party and any legal proceedings on your behalf. You will need to give consent for them to do this. They will likely be in a much stronger place than you to defend your position.
Wherever you plan to travel, it’s a wise choice to ensure you get Personal Liability cover as part of your travel insurance. Give yourself peace of mind and opt for a company like Globelink who provide it as standard.
Always ensure that you follow your government advice on any travel restrictions and do not travel during a mandatory travel ban.