Public Liability Explained: what does it cover?

Public Liability Explained: what does it cover?

When planning the continuity of your business, it’s important you are aware of what your insurance policy covers. Every policy differs, but below are some typical inclusions for a Public Liability policy.

Some things you may be covered for

  • Legal costs incurred in the defence or settlement of a claim
  • Cover for others that may be acting on behalf of your business when the incident occurred
  • Loss or damage of goods – which are in your care custody or control which you do not own
  • Loss or damage of someone else’s property that occurs while performing your service
  • First aid expenses at the time of an incident
  • Injury to others who sustain injury whilst visiting your premises

What are some of the things Public Liability doesn't cover me for?

  • Employer’s responsibility for injured workers (workers compensation)
  • Aircraft products
  • Asbestos
  • Punitive damages (damages awarded where a judge believes you acted so badly that extra damages are awarded)
  • Liquidated damages
  • Gradual pollution
  • Products recall
  • Liabilities assumed under contract which you would not be liable for at common law (that is if you enter into a contract which assumes the liability of others, if the law would not consider this your liability had you not signed the contract)

Some examples of scenarios that might be covered under your public liability policy would be:

  • If someone slips and falls, injuring themselves in your premises
  • If you manufacture and sell a product that you do not realise is defective and someone is injured as a result of the defect
  • If your job is to paint houses and your ladder slips and breaks a window

If you work with clients or customers, in public spaces, visit spaces owned or controlled by others, have visitors to your premises, or manufacture products; public liability insurance is your best defence against potentially costly personal injury or property damage claims.

Click here for more information from the Australian Government relating to public liability insurance

Click here to learn more about CGU’s Public Liability insurance policies

It is important to note that all policies differ and the above is not a comprehensive list of what may or may not be covered.  Ask an insurance professional for advice specific to your circumstances.  Visit to find an adviser.