Recent figures show that the UK charity sector is now served by over a million trustees and 15.9 million volunteers (Ansvar, 2007). It is most encouraging to see so many caring people involved in the voluntary Sector. Even so, it is a sad reality that Charities or Companies Limited by Guarantee, their trustees and officers and employees are vulnerable to being sued or prosecuted for their decisions and actions. Trustees are often surprised to realise that in the event of a claim for negligence, breach of duty, or inadvertent breach of the Law, they can be held personally liable for an unlimited amount.
Prior to the recent changes in the Charities Act, charities were usually prevented from purchasing Trustee Indemnity Insurance. However, the lifting of this restriction means that your charity can now obtain the protection your trustees deserve and pay for it from your charity's own resources.
Currently, your Trustees or Directors can be held legally liable for breaches of the myriad laws which govern what you do, as well as allegations of negligence in the running of the charity, provision of services or advice, libel and slander or for mishandling funds.
There are many decisions that have to be made on a regular basis in the operation of a charity or company limited by guarantee. You may also be giving advice or help others in some way. As if this wasn't enough, there are also many ways in which you can be held liable if you employ anyone or own property! Adverse publicity could also affect your reputation and good-standing. Our specialist covers will remove some of the financial worry concerning such situations and much more besides.
Our Managing Director, David Balen has worked in many voluntary organisations over the years and is currently trustee and treasurer of a number of charities. We have developed some unique relationships with insurers in this sector, including a specialist not-for-profit insurer.
We are offering features tailored to the needs of Charities and voluntary organisations making a positive contribution to society. We also deal with other Companies who have a specialisation in this area, enabling us to choose a well-designed protection plan for your unique needs.
We are offering a comprehensive and flexible package of options for organisations of all sizes and structures.
The wording of the insurers we use improves the usual sections of cover such as Buildings, Contents, Employers' Liability, Public Liability and Charity Trustees' Liability. The cover is broadened further by incorporating Professional Liability, Malpractice and Fidelity Guarantee. Thus we can offer a wide selection of options to provide adequate protection to any charity, at a price which is not beyond their means.
We can also offer a single package, if there are no assets to insure (e.g., Buildings, Contents), for Trustees Indemnity, Legal Expenses and Loss of Reputation only, with optional extensions for Professional Liability, and Fidelity Guarantee.
We can also cater for the smaller charity or not-for-profit organisation with our Starter Connect package. This is ideal for groups with an income of under £25,000 and caters for Public Liability, with options for Employers Liability and Contents/All Risks cover.
The Trustees of a charity have unlimited personal liability for their actions. Furthermore, the Directors and officers of the Charity, or even employees who have managerial responsibility can also be held personally accountable for their actions. Likewise other matters such as employment regulation, tax disputes and breach of professional duty can have an impact on the charity and its executives.
A charity is also vulnerable from fraudsters, who often consider them to be easy targets. Even employees also may be tempted to steal from the charity and where loss occurs, the charity may not have sufficient funds to continue.
A charity's reputation is of paramount importance and, where that reputation is damaged through adverse publicity, funding may cease and volunteers may not wish to be associated. Without being able to provide a response to allegations the charity may potentially be disadvantaged.
Research suggests that many community groups are without appropriate insurance cover even though it is often a condition of premises hire. The package is designed to provide Public Liability and other optional covers for the activities of clubs, groups and societies, whether at the hired or rented premises or away from them, at a reasonable cost.
Please do not hesitate to contact us to discuss any of the above.