Monday 27 February 2017

Homeowners at risk as 20pc of tradesmen drop insurance

Charlie Weston Personal Finance Editor

LARGE numbers of tradesmen are cutting costs by choosing to operate without insurance in a move that leaves anyone who engages them exposed to large losses and claims.

One in five tradespeople has dropped all forms of insurance, with a further six out of 10 keeping their cover but cutting back on it, the survey by the Irish Brokers' Association shows.

Brian McNelis of the IBA warned homeowners and small business owners that if a painter carrying out work on a property drops a can of paint and injures a neighbour or customer, it is likely the homeowner or business owner and the tradesman will be sued.

"Maybe your household insurance policy will cover it and maybe it won't," Mr McNelis said.

The IBA said that anyone using the services of uninsured or underinsured tradespeople will be stung with a huge bill or years of higher insurance premiums on their house insurance due to a claim.

Householders should always receive written confirmation that their chosen tradesman or small builder holds valid and up-to-date liability insurance.

"Checking insurance provided by tradesmen is not easy for a lay person to do. Understandably, people don't know what to look for and how to check everything is okay," the IBA boss said.

It is the responsibility of any person employing a tradesman to ensure that they have adequate liability insurance cover.

Irish Independent

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