What is professional indemnity insurance?

Professional indemnity insurance can help businesses cover the cost of compensation claims and legal action should a client sue for negligence. If there is a mistake in any professional service you provide, indemnity cover will prevent you from suffering a financial loss when defending or settling the claim.

For businesses and professionals providing advice or direct services to clients, there is always the risk that your work could be challenged. Professional indemnity insurance (also known as professional liability insurance) will protect against those risks; so if your client loses money or sees damage caused to their reputation as a result of your business activities, you'll be covered.

If you want to get more information before you buy, read more on the definition and purpose of indemnity insurance in our dedicated FAQs.

How does Hiscox indemnity insurance compare to other policies?

Whether you're looking to take out a lone professional indemnity policy or are investing in combined business insurance, you'll be comparing policies to find the one that offers the best protection for the risks in your field.

When your comparing professional indemnity quotes and claim services, make sure you know exactly what to look out for. Not all insurance comparisons highlight the policy information which is most crucial to you, so it's important that the research you conduct before applying for a quote is comprehensive. Visit our guide on how to compare insurance for more information.

When you take out a policy with us, you'll be covered against:

  • Negligence or breach of duty: should you fail in a duty of care to your client, perhaps giving incorrect advice or making a mistake in your work
  • Infringement of intellectual property rights like copyright, trademarks or moral rights, for example if your business uses content from a website or publication without permission.
  • Defamation: producing or supporting libel or slanderous statements about a person or organisation.
  • Breach of Confidence: sharing confidential or sensitive client information without consent
  • Court attendance: the costs to you of your directors or employees attending court in relation to a covered claim
  • Advertising: mistakes such as inadvertently making a misstatement that you cannot substantiate
  • Sub-contractors and outsourcers: work undertaken on your behalf is treated as if it was done by you – however, we will reserve the right to recover losses from your subcontractors or outsourcers
  • Dishonesty of your partners, directors, employees, sub-contractors and outsourcers – claims made against you and your own direct financial losses

Our indemnity insurance also includes any other civil liability which we haven't specifically excluded. If a claim or loss occurs because of your business activities and it’s not a criminal prosecution, it’s covered.

We pride ourselves on our specialist knowledge of the risks unique to a huge range of industries. Get a professional indemity insurance quote today in minutes.

Call on 0800 2800 351 Mon - Fri, 8am to 7pm, Sat, 9am to 2pm excluding bank holidays.

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Need more help? Speak to our UK-based experts. Call us on 0800 2800 351

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You’re good at what you do and have confidence in the quality of your work. So why do you need professional indemnity insurance?

You may need professional indemnity insurance if you:

  • provide expertise, skills or advice to clients

  • have access to clients' confidential information

  • produce materials that could infringe intellectual property rights
  • provide a professional service and could be challenged on your work.

The reality is that any small business providing a professional service that can be challenged is vulnerable to a claim of negligence when the advice or service fails to meet a client’s expectations. From allegations of a breach of copyright to accusations of defamation, these kinds of claims can be costly and disruptive regardless of whether they’re fair or not.

For some businesses, there is an expectation that you are protected with professional indemnity. It’s required by external organisations, such as clients, chartered groups and other authorities. Hiscox provide tailored PI cover to such businesses, covering a number of trades and professions, including:

Get a PI insurance quote by selecting for your profession from the menu below. If you don’t find your business listed, it doesn’t mean we can’t protect you. Simply enter your business details into our quote application and check what’s available for your profession.

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How does professional indemnity protect your business?

Here are some examples of the type of claim your business could face and how your insurance can cover you::

  • A client made some business changes based on advice you gave them. The changes didn’t bring the benefits they expected and cost them money. So they make a claim against you for compensation.
    Professional indemnity insurance would cover the claim for compensation plus the costs of defending or settling the claim.

  • You included a case study about a former client in a presentation at a conference. Afterwards that former client makes a claim against you for defamation, alleging that you made a false statement about them, and demands you pay compensation.
    Professional indemnity insurance would cover the compensation payable plus your legal defence costs.

The amount paid out by Hiscox will be dependent on the level of cover you select.
If you want to see more real life examples of indemnity insurance protecting business owners, read our indemnity Claims Stories. These examples may help you get a better idea of the level of cover appropriate for your business.

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Our guide to professional indemnity insurance

What is professional indemnity insurance?


If you haven't found the information you need, see if we've caught your query in our FAQ section below, or visit our professional indemnity insurance FAQ hub to find answers to questions on policies, quotes, and payments.

Professional indemnity insurance, also known as PI insurance, helps protect your business if a client claims their reputation has been damaged or they’ve lost money as result of work you’ve done for them. If you or your business provides advice or direct services, there’s always the risk your work could be challenged. PI helps to cover the costs of defending a claim and paying compensation.

At Hiscox we have created over 20 specialist versions of professional indemnity to better cover the claims our customers face. We can offer you cover tailor made for businesses in your industry, including cover for negligence, breach of contract, infringement of intellectual property or defamation.

Find out more on the type of cover provided by professional indemnity in our FAQ guide.

It’s not a legal requirement for businesses to hold professional indemnity insurance but it is advisable if you or your business involves any of the following:

  • Providing professional services or advice
  • Dealing with personal data
  • Producing original materials which could infringe intellectual property rights

Indemnity cover is an expectation in certain professions and is often required by clients, authorities and professional bodies. Hiscox can help you understand your business needs, visit our product information page for more.

Find out if indemnity cover is mandatory in your field

Every business is unique and faces different risks. That’s why we tailor all our policies to your business. Hiscox PI insurance quotes start from £100 a year, though the cost of cover will depend on the type of work you do and the size of your business.

To get a more accurate price, apply for a professional indemnity quote online in minutes.

Read more on the key factors that inform the cost of cover in our professional indemnity cost guide.

The level of cover you choose for professional indemnity should be high enough to cover the cost of defending or settling any claims you might face. If you don’t have enough cover for legal defence and compensation, you could find yourself having to take financial responsibility. To calculate the right level of indemnity cover, ensure that you Check your contracts, Check the value of your projects and contracts, as well as Checking with your peers or a professional body.

  • Check your contracts - If you have been asked to purchase insurance as part of a contract, this will often specify the minimum level of cover you need.
  • Check the value of your project and contract you are working on. The amount a client is paying you, and the total value of the work you are contributing towards can give you an indication an indication of the potential size of a professional indemnity claim against you should something go wrong.
  • Check with your peers or a professional body - this can give you guidance to the levels of cover expected in your sector.

Read our guide to get a better understanding of the level of PI cover you need or get in touch with our UK-based experts. Call us on 0800 2800 351.


It doesn't matter if you work from an office or your own home, unfortunately it is always possible that a client could be dissatisfied with your work and want to make a claim against you. Professional indemnity insurance covers you wherever you do your work, to ensure you are properly protected. If your business is vulnerable to any of the types of indemnity claim listed on our policy information page, then you should be considering taking out Professional Indemnity Insurance.

Examples of professional indemnity claims can include:

When working to produce a product brochure, a graphic designer client of ours made a mistake in a client’s design work. The mistake was only discovered after the brochure went to print. Fortunately, Hiscox were able to help the graphic designer deal with the client and paid to reprint the brochures in time for the promotion, protecting the reputation of both parties. If you want to know more about common claim scenarios, you can read the real-life claims stories which Hiscox have compiled. We’ve helped thousands of UK business defend indemnity claims.

Read more real life examples of the indemnity insurance claims Hiscox has defened in our Claims Stories hub.

Call on 0800 2800 351 Mon - Fri, 8am to 7pm, Sat, 9am to 2pm excluding bank holidays.

What is your profession?

Find out more about the professional indemnity insurance covers we offer to a wide range of professions in the list below. If your profession is not listed, please see our professional indemnity insurance policy for other professionals.

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Professional Indemnity Guides, Articles & Answers