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Artist insurance

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What's on this page

Why do you need artists insurance?

Fine art, sculpting, painting, pottery, crafts, illustration – whichever your passion as a creator, you’ll want to protect your business against unwelcome setbacks. Concerned about spillages? Fire or theft? Mistakes and accidents? You can’t always stop these things from occurring, but with artist insurance, you can make sure you’re covered against the unexpected costs.

  • Tick iconreassurance that you’re protected against big claims due to injury or damage
  • Tick iconpeace of mind in case something happens to a valuable piece of art you’re producing
  • Tick iconcover what you need from employees to business equipment to specialist tools and materials
Start your quote

What does artists insurance cover?

We know that no two artists work the same way, so we give you the freedom to decide what to include in your insurance policy. Maybe you want to look after the equipment you rely on, or maybe you want to reduce the financial risk of clients not paying. There are lots of options available.

Public liability insurance

In case someone gets injured or their property gets damaged as a result of your business.

What’s typically covered by public liability insurance for artists?

  • Tick icondamage you cause to another person’s property while you’re working, or due to your artwork
  • Tick iconinjury you cause to another person while you’re working, or due to your artwork
  • Tick iconaccidental damage or injury caused by someone you’ve hired (remember, if you have employees, you’re legally required to have employers' liability insurance in place)

For example:

  • you’re painting a mural at a client’s property and a pot of paint leaks over their carpet, which has to be professionally cleaned
  • a client accidentally cuts their hand open on a sculpture you’ve sold to them
  • you knock over another artist’s sculpture at an exhibition
  • your assistant is trying to hang a piece of art at your client’s property, and they damage the client’s wall by mistake

What you’ll need additional cover for

  • hosting your own exhibitions or events

Read more about public liability insurance

Employers’ liability insurance

In case your employee gets sick or injured while they’re working for you.

What’s typically covered by employers’ liability insurance?

Claims against your business for:

  • Tick iconan employee falling ill or suffering an injury as a result of their work for you
  • Tick icon“employee” includes temporary staff and casual workers as well as permanent full-time members of your team

**Employers’ liability insurance is required by law if you have people working for you. Without it, you could be fined up to £2,500 a day for each employee.**

For example:

  • your apprentice trips over a floor standing easel at your studio, resulting in a sprained wrist
  • your assistant cracks a rib by falling off a step ladder while they’re trying to fetch a pot of paint from a shelf

Tools insurance

In case your tools are lost, stolen or damaged.

What’s typically covered by tools insurance?

  • Tick iconthe tools you use as an artist (especially handheld tools and portable electronic tools), whether on site or stored at your business premises
  • Tick icontheft of your tools
  • Tick iconflood, fire, or accidental damage to your tools

For example:

  • you’re working on an art installation at a public library and a fire breaks out, destroying your sculpting tools
  • your studio is burgled and your paint brushes, easel and palette are stolen

Read more about tools insurance

Stock insurance

In case your artist materials or pieces of art are lost, damaged or stolen.

What’s typically covered by stock insurance?

  • Tick iconloss, damage or theft of the materials you use to carry out your work as an artist
  • Tick iconloss, damage or theft of the artwork you’re planning to sell to customers

For example:

  • a suitcase containing your paint, clay, varnishes and screen-printing inks is stolen at an industry event
  • a pipe bursts at your business premises, leading to a flood that damages a stack of finished canvases

Read more about stock insurance

Business and office equipment insurance

In case your business and office equipment is lost, stolen, or damaged.

What’s typically covered by business and office equipment insurance?

  • Tick icon
    • the equipment you use to run your business (particularly operational equipment such as laptops, tablets or printers, rather than the tools you use to create your art) while stored at your business premises
  • Tick icontheft of your equipment
  • Tick iconflood, fire, or accidental damage to your equipment

For example:

  • you spill oils over your printer, so it stops working
  • someone breaks into your workplace and steals your business laptop

What you’ll need additional cover for

  • any items with a value that exceeds your limit for a single article – for example, your single article limit is £800, but your laptop is worth £1,500

Read more about business and office equipment insurance

Legal expenses insurance

In case you’re faced with legal costs in the running of your business.

What’s typically covered by legal expenses insurance?

  • Tick iconlegal expenses that you’re responsible for paying as the owner of your art business
  • Tick iconlegal claims related to property damage, nuisance or trespass
  • Tick iconsupport with HMRC investigations, and tax and compliance disputes
  • Tick iconhelp to protect your reputation as an artist, including a tax advice helpline, a 24/7 confidential legal helpline, and crisis PR support

For example:

  • a client is over two months late in paying you for an art production contract, so you want to take legal action against them to recover the money they owe
  • your business's tax accounts are being investigated and you need a hand dealing with HMRC’s enquiries

Read more about legal expenses insurance

Personal accident insurance

In case you or anyone you've covered has an accident

What’s typically covered by personal accident insurance?

  • Tick iconthe injury or death of anyone you've chosen to cover in your policy – either at work or outside of work
  • Tick iconlost income, hospital bills, or other medical costs associated with the accident

For example:

you break your arm by tripping over the curb on your way into work

  • your employee twists their ankle at an event over the weekend, leaving them unable to drive to your studio
  • your apprentice dislocates their shoulder on a night out

Read more about personal accident insurance

How much does artists insurance cost?

Find out how much you’ll pay by comparing prices from a range of trusted insurers. You choose what goes into your policy, so you only pay for what you need.

Prices start from £6.79 per month

Get your quotes in 7 minutes – prices are guaranteed for 30 days.

Get your tailored quotes in 7 minutes

Start your quote

How we work out example prices We take the highest price from the bottom 10 per cent of all our customers paying in monthly instalments (based on data from 1 July - 31 December 2020). Most customers pay more than this but some pay less.

Example artists insurance quotes, real prices

£12.59 /month

£105.95 /year

A self employed artist who sells pottery and sculptures locally

  • 2-3 years' experience
  • Sole trader
  • No employees
  • Based in Plymouth

Public liability

£1,000,000


Employers’ liability

Not included


Tools

£2,000

£33.60 /month

£298.65 /year

A small art company that works on local commissions and projects for the community (UK only)

  • 5+ years' experience
  • Limited company
  • 1 employee
  • Based in Leeds

Public liability

£1,000,000


Employers’ liability

£10,000,000


Tools

£4,000

How we work out example quotes These examples are real quotes from our online system (created 10/09/2020). They’re based on a range of factors, like employees and location. Your own quote will be based on what you tell us about your business. Prices may go up or down from day to day, so the prices you’re quoted may differ to the ones you see here.

What kind of excess should I expect?

An excess is an amount you pay towards any claim you make on your insurance. For example, if your excess is £250 and you make a claim worth £1000, your payout will be a maximum of £750.

Insurance coverLowest excessHighest excess
Public liability£100£2500
Employers' liabilityNo excessNo excess
Tools£60£500
Stock£100£500
Business and office equipment£50£750

The figures above are for guidance only and any excess applying to your quote may differ. You’ll get a breakdown of the excesses for each quote when you compare with us.

How it works

  • Pick what goes into your policy

    Only pay for what you need

  • Get prices from a range of insurers

    Choose the best fit for you

  • Buy online in minutes

    Get your documents the same day

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How do I choose insurance?

Making sure you have the right type and level of business insurance can be the difference between getting a claim paid and having to cover the cost of an expensive accident yourself. Read our tips for guidance on what to consider when buying a policy.

Which type of workers do I need insurance for?

Employers’ liability insurance is a legal requirement if you employ people.

If you have people working for you, including bona fide subcontractors (BFSC), labour-only subcontractors (LOSC), part-timers, or full-time staff, employers’ liability insurance is required by law.

Read on for our simplified guide to the difference between labour-only subcontractors and bona fide subcontractors.

Will tools insurance cover all my equipment?

Depending on what you use to do your work, you may need other covers.

You may need more than tools insurance – for example, business equipment insurance if you have a work laptop, plant insurance if you use machinery.

Does artists insurance cover my work correctly?

Make sure you're picking the right cover to protect you properly. It's important to know that if you have another trade or job, you'll need additional cover. For example, do you need to consider private tutor insurance or craft insurance

Do I need cover for other types of work?

If you provide these services alongside building work, make sure you’re covered:

Other types of insurance

Which public liability cover limit should I choose?

Think about the maximum possible loss your business could face in the event of a claim, and make sure you take legal fees and damages into consideration. You can choose from three levels of coverage – £1 million, £2 million, or up to £5 million.


Talk to an expert

Our team of UK-based insurance experts are here to help, Mon 09.00am - 05.30pm, Tues 09.00am - 05.30pm, Weds 09.00am - 05.30pm, Thurs 09.30am - 05.30pm, Fri 09.00am - 05.00pm, Sat 09.00am - 02.00pm

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How do claims work?

Unlike price comparison websites, we take the hassle out of claims for you. We know how important it is to get your business back on track quickly – and with a minimum of fuss. That’s why you get access to your dedicated claims any time, day or night. Call them on 0333 207 0560 or claim online. They’ll do their best to be fair and supportive. The figure below is rounded across our range of products. Our claims process may vary for different products and operates on a ‘claim by claim’ basis.

£30 million in claims paid out in 2019

Paying 80% of settled claims within 24 hours in 2019

Chosen by 750,000 small businesses

We started out as a team of five back in 2005. We’ve grown since then with 600,000 customers across 1,500 trades now trusting us to provide their business insurance.

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Artists insurance FAQ

Whether you’re new to buying business insurance or you’ve been trading for a while, here are the answers to some commonly asked questions about artists insurance.

  • It’s always a good idea to start with an assessment of the risks your business might face.

    In general, here are some important things to think about when selling handmade crafts:

    If you employ people, you’re required by law to have employers’ liability cover.

    If you come into contact with members of the public in your work as an artist, public and product liability insurance is a key type of cover to consider. Not only does it cover you against mistakes and accidents in person, it also covers you against injuries or damage caused by the pieces that you sell.

    If you use any specialist tools in your work as a maker, creator or artist, such as a sewing machine or easel, you might want to think about getting tool cover.

    Other types of insurance to consider include:

  • When you’re selling crafts at a craft stall or craft fair, there’s a risk that you could injure someone or cause accidental damage to someone else’s belongings. So although it’s not compulsory, it could be a good idea to protect yourself and your business with public and product liability insurance.

    What’s more, the “product” element of public and product liability means you’re protected if a customer suffers injury or damage due to an item you’ve sold to them.

    Bear in mind, some organisers of craft events may insist that you have public liability insurance as a condition of entry.

    And remember, if you have people working for you (even temporary staff just to help you run your stall), you’re required by law to have employers’ liability cover.

  • Yes. You may start offering additional services that require you to use different skills or carry out different tasks. If you find yourself in this situation, it’s important to give us a call on 0333 0146 683 to update your policy before you take on this new work. If you don’t have the correct type of cover in place for the work you do, you may be unable to claim on your policy if something goes wrong.

  • Each insurer looks at CCJs and IVAs differently – some apply stricter rules than others, but having a CCJ or IVA doesn’t necessarily mean you won’t be able to buy insurance.

  • You can choose the payment type that suits your business and cash flow best. Some customers prefer to pay in one go, while others prefer to pay a regular monthly amount, like you do with lots of other bills. Simply Business offer three ways to pay for your policy:

    • one-off credit or debit card payment
    • BACS payment
    • Direct Debit

    If you choose to pay by Direct Debit, our credit provider, Premium Credit, pays Simply Business the full amount for your policy up front. You then repay Premium Credit in 10 monthly installments.

  • If you change your business legal structure from sole trader to limited company mid-way through your policy, give us a call straight away on 0333 0146 683. It’ll only take us a few minutes to cancel your existing policy and replace it with one that correctly covers your new legal structure. It’s worth bearing in mind that your insurer and premium amount may need to change.

  • This will depend on whether you have employers’ liability insurance in place. Public liability insurance is designed to protect your business against the consequences of legal action brought by members of the public for injuries or damage to their belongings. But when it comes to your employees causing injury or damage, this protection only activates if you also have employers’ liability insurance.

    If you employ people, you’re required by law to have employers’ liability insurance.

    There’s one exception here. Family businesses that aren’t incorporated as a limited company are not legally required to have employers’ liability insurance. The government defines a “family business” as one where all your employees are closely related to you (as a spouse, civil partner, sibling, child, parent, grandparent, grandchild, step-parent, stepchild or half-sibling). So if you run an unincorporated family business and you choose not to get employers’ liability insurance, it’s important to know that your public liability insurance wouldn’t cover you against damage or injury caused by your team.

We create this content for general information purposes and it should not be taken as advice. Always take professional advice. Read our full disclaimer

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