Insurance isn’t something that a freelancer thinks about very often. I know this for a fact, because in my own experience of bouts of freelance work, in terms of priorities, many important financial arrangements are eclipsed by the need for luxuries such as food and the basic need to cover rent and bills.
There are many demanding elements to working for yourself as a freelancer that balance out the fact that you technically get to choose which projects you want to work on. As well as having to keep on top of multiple projects, the admin-related roles of chasing down late payments and keeping track of your accounts means that something like insurance can understandably slip through the net.
When you’re starting out on your own, it’s going to be tough and any kind of success as a freelancer is enough to make you dive for the champagne. If you’ve made the jump to go freelance after a few years of working for other firms or publications, you might have a set of regular clients to get you started, but if you’ve struck out from scratch, you’re going to have an uphill battle to get established.
That hill is not insurmountable though, but once you approach the crest you’re going to notice a couple of things. First of all, the hill you were climbing was hiding a second, much larger hill and secondly, you’re going to have a few things to deal with that you hadn’t contemplated before in terms of your finances. A lot of people recommend making friends with an accountant sooner rather than later when you start working for yourself, as HMRC-related paperwork builds up frighteningly quickly if you’re not paying attention.
Adding to that paperwork avalanche that risks sweeping you off the freelancing hill is the issue of public liability insurance. There are two things you might need to consider depending on the nature of your clients. If you do a certain amount of consultancy, you might want to consider taking out professional indemnity insurance. This will cover you for if you get sued as a result of giving advice based on your professional opinion, or if you inadvertently break a confidentiality clause in the course of your work.
You might also want to look into taking out cover on a home-based office. If you’re working from a kitchen table, or a spare room, you might have inadvertently turned part of your home into a commercial property which is unlikely to be covered by your home insurance policy. There may be important documents or equipment that you use, even if it’s something as straightforward as a computer, that would prove expensive to replace.
Insurance is not going to be your first priority, but it should be somewhere on your “things to look into” list. Talking to a broker will give you the best impression of what will be most suited to your needs, or if you could even benefit from the policy in the first place. Working for yourself means you already have plenty to worry about and being able to cross a few things off your panic-list will prove invaluable.
Browse the sections to read articles prepared by thought leaders in all the key marketing disciplines. If you would like to deposit a Knowledge Bank report contact firstname.lastname@example.org