Personal liability cover is the sort of thing you might never need, but if you do, you’ll be extremely grateful you have it.
Basically it’s the cover you require against someone suing you, in your personal capacity, for accidental death, injury, damage or loss of another person’s property.
Without the proper personal liability insurance, you could end paying millions if you get sued.
Do I need a personal liability insurance policy?
In South Africa the standard personal liability is usually included in the cover for your household contents (householder’s insurance) and/or your house structure (homeowner’s insurance).
The policy covers you for much more than just what happens in and around your house.
It also covers you anywhere in South Africa and abroad.
Not everyone owns a house or have householder’s insurance though.
What happens if your dog bites a cyclist or someone drowns in your pool or your fence falls on the neighbour’s car?
How much personal liability cover do you need?
The standard policies cover anywhere between R2 million and R5 million. There is also a personal extended legal responsibilities cover for up to R10 million or so.
The premiums for this cover as part of the household insurance cover are very low and all policyholders should check with their broker to ensure this is included in their policy.
Motor vehicle insurance and personal liability
Motor vehicle insurance also includes personal liability cover for you the motor owner in the event of an accident that leads to damager to property, injury or death of people or animals.
Most people work through the Road Accident Fund (RAF) if they were injured in a road accident and want to claim for third-party compensation. There are instances though where the RAF does not pay out or the event might have occurred overseas.
It is essential to notify your broker or insurer as soon as possible after an event you think may lead to a claim.
Do not make any promises of payment or admit liability related to an event without the written consent of your insurer.
If the case against you is not clearcut, the insurer might decide not to settle, it is then up to the injured party to take the matter to court.
All legal fees and possible damages will be covered by the insurer.
For the injured party to be successful against you in a civil case, they must prove you were to blame for injury or loss for which compensation is claimed.
If the insurer agrees to a settlement it may include compensation for:
- Medical costs
- Replacing or repairing damaged property
- Loss of income
- Legal costs and expenses
If you do not have homeowners insurance or are unsure if your current policy provides sufficient cover, a call to your broker must be your next step.
* This article is informational and educational and should not be used or relied on as financial or professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss from reliance upon any information herein.