Between 2008 and 2018 the UK saw a 74% rise in the number of people working from home. Following the enforced government lockdowns of 2020 and 2021, the number will have risen even more. And even as the government lifts restrictions, many will likely continue to work remotely.
But what does this mean for things like insurance, health and safety, and employers’ duty of care?
In this blog we’ll explore some of the insurance implications of working from home – whether you’re a self-employed freelancer or a remote-working employee.
Insurance Implications for Working From Home – Guidance for Self-Employed Workers
Many self-employed freelancers or contractors work from home. And many likely do so without a second thought. But first it’s important to make sure that your home insurance covers your home for business use.
Does working from home affect your home insurance?
If it’s simply a case of working from a laptop in your spare bedroom or kitchen, then you’ll probably be OK. But if you’re using potentially-dangerous equipment, or converting part of your house for business use, then your home insurance policy may not give you the cover you need.
If you regularly drive as part of your work, you should also check that your car insurance covers you for business use.
Additional Insurance Cover for Working From Home
In any case, you should consider taking out some additional insurance to cover your business practices. For example:
- Public Liability Insurance – If clients or customers visit your home, this will cover any accidents that might take place while they’re on your premises.
- Cyber Breach Response – This will cover you for any costs involved in investigating and revering from any hacks or cyberattacks.
- Contents Insurance – This will cover any electronics or other expensive equipment you use as part of your work.
- Buildings Insurance – If your home insurance doesn’t cover your property for business use, then you may have to take out additional buildings insurance.
Head here to read our full guide to running a business from your home. As well as insurance, this blog covers things like business rates, staffing, running a business from a rented house, and many other considerations.
We also have a guide to the advantages and disadvantages of working from home.
Working From Home Insurance Advice for Employers and Employees
Whether you’re an employer with a home-based workforce, or an employee who’s recently started working from home, there are a few things you’ll have to consider when it comes to insurance:
- Make sure your home insurance policy covers you for using your home for business use. You should be fine if you’re simply working with a laptop. But if you start bringing clients to your home, or if you need to make any adjustments to your home for business use, then your cover may not apply.
- Think about security. If employees are taking sensitive data home with them, will you be covered for any theft or damage? And are their electronic devices covered for cyber breaches or data loss?
- Employers have a duty of care to their employees. Even if your employees are working from home, you must still take reasonable steps to protect your employees from foreseeable risks of harm. So you’ll still need employer’s liability insurance, and you should be prepared to support any employees who need help in, for example, setting up their workstation.
- Make sure your business contents insurance covers employees to take expensive equipment home with them.
- You’ll also have to consider the safety and security of any product samples or hazardous materials employees take home with them.
Does Your Insurance Cover You For Working From Home?
If you’ve got any questions about the insurance implications of working from home, please contact the Tapoly team at firstname.lastname@example.org, call our helpline on +44(0)2078 460 108 or try our chat on our website.