Why do private investigators need insurance?
Drawing the wrong conclusion
Whether you investigate tax fraud, employee dishonesty or help to gather evidence for divorce cases, the conclusions you draw as a private investigator can have far-reaching consequences. Paint the wrong picture with the information you collect, and your client might be unable to take action – leaving them facing a financial loss. If your client decides to take you to court, professional indemnity insurance can help a private investigator to offset court costs and can even cover compensation demands.
An accident at work
As part of your investigations into a corporate dispute, you might need to interview several people. Fortunately, you have junior investigators to delegate to – but this doesn’t come without risk. If one of your firm’s employees is injured as they carry a box of recording equipment up several flights of stairs, there’s a chance you could be deemed responsible. Employers’ liability insurance helps protect you from the financial impact of legal cases and helps to compensate investigatory staff if necessary.
A damaged device
Your work as a private investigator might mean you need to use a security client’s tablet to run advanced background checks on a prospective employee. Firms come to you for your technical knowledge, razor-sharp judgements and ability to dig deep – but if you damage the device beyond repair, the client’s attention may shift. When public liability insurance is built into your business insurance policy, there’s financial support if the client decides to claim for the cost of a replacement.
What insurance is available for private investigators?
Building tailored cover allows private investigators to create an insurance policy that works for them. Personal accident insurance could provide income backing if you’re put out of action. There’s also portable equipment insurance, which can be useful if you travel, and employers’ liability insurance – a legal requirement (external link) in some cases.
These are just some of the business insurance types we can offer private investigators. We can build cover into a policy that’s tailored to the requirements of your business.Get your quote
Insurance for private investigators: FAQs
What type of insurance should a private investigator have?
The best combination of insurance types will vary between private investigator businesses. However, there are some cover types many private investigators add to their business insurance policy, such as professional indemnity to protect against the financial impact of service complaints. In such a sensitive field, the stakes can be high when investigations go wrong.
Other insurance types to consider might include public liability insurance and personal accident insurance if you travel or work around people from outside your business. If you work digitally, then cyber and data insurance could provide invaluable backing against hacking and the risk of data breaches.
How much does insurance for a private investigator typically cost?
The costs of private investigator insurance depend on the combination of business insurance covers you add to your policy and the limits you set for each. However, business insurance starts from £9.80 per month with Hiscox, according to policies from at least 10% of our customer base between October 2020 and October 2021.
The more insurance types you add and the higher the value of cover you set for each, the higher costs can be. Avoiding underinsurance can be worthwhile, since having insufficient cover can impact our ability to pay out in the event of a claim.
Learn more about the cost of business insurance in our FAQ guide.
What licence do you need to work as a private investigator in the UK?
To work as a professional private investigator in the UK, you might need to meet certain regulatory requirements (external link), such as completing a government-approved training programme. Meeting these criteria and security checks makes you eligible to apply for a licence from the Security Industry Authority (external link). Although not a current legal requirement, a licence, along with regulation and eligibility checks, may well become mandatory.
You may also be a member of the Institute of Professional Investigators (external link) (IPI) or the Association of British Investigators (external link) (ABI). In the event of a claim, we might ask for evidence you tick these boxes to verify your status as a private investigator.
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