Employers’ Liability Insurance for PA Employers

What is Employers’ Liability Insurance?

Employers’ liability insurance covers the cost of compensating employees who are injured at work or become ill through their work. If you are a PA employer, this would include people you employ as your Personal Assistant.

If I employ a PA do I need to have Employers’ Liability Insurance?

If you are an employer of a Personal Assistant you are legally obliged to have employers’ liability insurance. You can be fined up to £2,500 for every day you do not have appropriate insurance.

Employers’ liability insurance usually covers:

  • the cost of compensation
  • any associated legal fees.

However, you need to check to see exactly what any policy covers.

Buying employers’ liability insurance

You can buy employers’ liability insurance directly from an insurer or from a specialist broker through the British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) (see the resource at the end).

There are often different levels of insurance cover available. A typical insurance policy will cost anywhere between £59 a year to £95 a year. However, there is a lot of variation in what is covered by different policies and this will affect the final cost of the insurance. You are obliged to have cover for compensation of at least £5 million, but most policies offer cover for at least £10 million.

A typical policy might provide cover for:

  • Employer Liability
  • Public liability
  • Legal expenses
  • Personal accidents
  • Redundancy cover
  • Financial loss

If you want to discuss what level of Insurance might be right for you, you can contact your local Independent SDS Information and Support Service, or local payroll provider. You can find their details by doing a Search in the Find Help tool in this Handbook.


Some businesses and PA Employers are not required to have employers’ liability insurance, including:

  • PA employers with no employees
  • PA employers where the people employed are only family members.

To check if your business is exempt from employers liability insurance see the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) website (see resource below).

What insurance does my PA need if they’re self-employed?

If your PA is self-employed (they pay their own tax and national insurance) and if you are contracting with them for their support, you do not need to have Employers’ Liability Insurance. However, you may still wish to be covered for Public Liability. Public Liability Insurance provides cover against accidental injury and property damage claims.

The cost of Insurance for self-employed PAs can also vary, depending on the level of cover needed. Costs can range between £75 – £115 a year with a policy typically providing cover for:

  • Public Liability
  • Personal Accident
  • Personal Possessions
  • Legal Expenses

If a PA Employee claims for injury or illness

If you are a Personal Assistant and have suffered an injury at work or become ill as a result of your job, you should speak to your employer first. They will contact their insurer to ask about making a claim.

What happens if I need to make a claim and my employer stops being a PA employer?

It is possible that your Employer has stopped employing people to provide the support they need, because:

  • they have changed their SDS Option and no longer receive a direct payment under Option 1
  • are planning or have moved into residential care
  • are no longer eligible for funding from their Local Authority.

If this is the case, you may still be able to make a claim for compensation directly through your ex-employer’s insurer. You can trace your former employer’s insurance provider through the Employers’ Liability Tracing Office (ELTO) (see resource below).

Next steps

Find more information by looking at the resources below.

Part of
Last Updated
18 May 2023
First Published
15 May 2023
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Please note that the information contained in this Handbook is provided for guidance purposes only. Every reasonable effort is made to make the information accurate and up to date, but no responsibility for its accuracy and correctness, or for any consequences of relying on it, is assumed by Self Directed Support Scotland or any other contributing party.

The information does not, and is not intended to, amount to legal advice. You are strongly advised to obtain specific, personal and professional advice from a lawyer about employment law matters, or an accountant/ tax specialist about taxation matters, and from HMRC and your insurers. You should not rely solely on the information in this Handbook. Support organisations listed in this Handbook can help you find appropriate sources of advice.