Compare Accountants and Bookkeepers Professional Indemnity and Liability Insurance
Whatever the size of your practice or the complexity of the work involved, we can arrange Professional Indemnity Insurance, specially created for accountancy firms and bookkeepers.
Clarke Williams are a specialist insurance broker for Professional Indemnity and Liability to the accountancy industry. We understand how the world is becoming a lot smaller, clients can be based anywhere and that the laws are constantly changing on tax. Let us help your business.
We can tailor insurance policies to fit your needs and meet the criteria set by the professional bodies of the accountancy industry:ICAEW, ICAS and ACCA.
In recent years, there has been much talk of offshore insurance companies or unrated markets. If we arrange your Professional Indemnity and business insurance, you will be safe in the knowledge that we only place our clients with A rated insurance companies. This ensures that we deliver long term insurance stability and reliability, as well as value.
What type of Insurance does an accountant need?
If you’ve never purchased Business Insurance before, the process can be quite daunting. Below is a guide to what you might need.
Professional Indemnity Insurance
Professional Indemnity Insurance covers your business in respect of any incorrect advice or perceived failures in your professional services when undertaken accountancy work for your clients. The cover will pay for any compensation that may be due and any legal defence costs while defending an allegation.
The policy will cover you for:
- Negligence or breach of duty of care – making a mistake in your work or allegations of giving bad advice to your clients.
- Negligent misstatement or misrepresentation – making a mistake or error when providing information or advice to your clients.
- Breach of confidence – sharing confidential or sensitive information without the owner’s consent.
- Defamation – making false or damaging claims about a person or organisation.
- Infringement of intellectual property rights – for example using content from a website or publication without permission.
- Compensation costs for court attendance.
- Free legal helpline
- Representation costs for disciplinary hearings
- Awards by ombudsmen.
- Loss of documents
- Civil liability – if a claim occurs because of the work you have carried out for a client and the insurer has not specifically excluded it, it’s covered.
Public and Public Liability Insurance covers you for any bodily injury or property damage which arises during your day today business activities, such as visiting a client’s premise.
Employers’ Liability Insurance is a legal requirement for all employers within the UK. The minimum required limit is £5,000,000 although most insurers give £10,000,000 as standard. The policy is designed to protect employees’ who sustain an injury or illness during their normal business activities by providing compensation.
Buildings & Contents Insurance. Cover your computers, equipment and other workplace property such as business records against fire, flood, theft and more, so that you can have peace of mind that you’re protected against the unexpected.
Business interruption Insurance is designed to help you get back to work after a crisis. You can choose to insure your total business income, profits and any additional expenditure that you might of incurred.
The best way for us to understand your business and get the best premium back from the market is for you to complete our proposal form.
Alternatively if you renewal is not due yet, register with us now so that we can contact you nearer the time.
Register your renewal date
Our account managers will arrange Professional Indemnity and Liability policies at a competitive price with comprehensive wordings, which are acceptable to your clients or Professional Body.
Have confidence that Clarke Williams can help your business. Here are a few of examples of businesses we have helped provided Professional Indemnity Insurance for:
Consultants with overseas exposure
Accountants with high profile clients
Professional Bodies and Trade Associations.
Still unsure about what you require? Professional bodies often provide guidelines on what levels of insurance cover a company should hold. Below is a list of the main accountancy bodies within the UK, it may be useful to consult with them if you do not know your requirements.
- The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales (ICAEW)
- The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (ICAS)
- The Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ireland (ICAI)
- The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)
- The Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT)
- The Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT)
Know your risk.
What work is considered high risk and how do insurers calculate an Accountants Professional Indemnity Premium?
The professional activities undertaken by accountants can be complex. Underwriters will be interested in what type of work the proposer is doing when calculating a premium. A proposal form can be longwinded but it is the best way to provide the information and a split of the practices annual income derived from each area of work, as it paints a clear picture of the business.
The list below gives an indication of where the insurers see the risk and what areas most claims occur under an accountants Professional Indemnity policy.
Personal taxation – Is low risk but can become complex in certain areas, for example, members of Lloyd’s, non doms or people from the entertainment industry, who sometimes have a habit of spending all their earning and then blaming their accountants!
General Insurance – Most Accountants, where such work is undertaken, tend to act as introducers only and do not get involved in insurance broking to a significant extent, in most cases selling Tax Investigation Insurance. This type of work is considered very Low risk. If you would like to become an introducer for Clarke Williams please get in Contact.
Corporate taxation – The bigger thecompany the more work involved. The activities are invariably hazardous depending upon the nature of work undertaken by the practice.
Management consultancy – A very low level risk to insurers when undertaken at a strategic level, however the risk can increase if interim management is undertaken or a temporary appointment is taken as a finance director.
Insolvencies, liquidations and receiverships – Most insurer will wish to stay away from accountants undertaking this work. Every project comes with a risk because the worst has already happened to someone’s business and money is almost certainly owed. As such, creditors can be aggressive and questions are regularly asked.
Commissions from investment business regulated under the Financial Services Act – As introducers only, the exposure is low but where financial advice is given regarding potential investment opportunities the risk can be very high.
Mergers, acquisitions, disposals – Insurers tend to be very cautious when insuring an accountant who undertake M&A. Claimants can be very professional with unlimited resources. Due diligence is an area of hazard and deals can go wrong all the time, leaving an accountant high and dry with blame be apportioned from both sides.
Overseas business – Any overseas activities can be a concern for an insurer, particularly when an accountant is dealing with larger firms where the regulation and taxation laws differ from continent to continent.
”It will never happen to me”. Still not convinced? Have a look at the below claims examples for Accountants:
Failure to lodge a client’s tax returns led to client losing a tax repayment and interest.
Amount Paid: £7,600.
An accountant’s failure to spot that a serious fraud had been committed due to inadequate audit procedures by the practice.
Amount paid: £193,00.
A firm, acting as accountants to a profitable company, introduced their client to a third-party tax mitigation consultancy. A tax mitigation scheme was put in place which was subsequently proved to be fraudulent from a tax perspective by HMRC.
Amount paid: £129,000.
Personal taxation &pensions
Incorrect advice with regards to pension payments and alleged concealment of commissions.
Amount paid: £17,000 plus costs.
Poor investment advice by a practice led to serious loss on a Trust.
Amount paid: £83,000 plus investigation and defence costs.
Mergers & Acquisitions
The role of the accountancy firm was not clear whilst acting for the purchaser of a business. The purchaser thought that the accountancy firm were looking at the commercial viability of the acquisition. The accountancy firm thought that their instructions were limited to the preparation of financial documents. As a result, there were delays, additional cost and a lot bad feelings as the purchases felt that they hadn’t been represented correctly.
Amount paid: £434,000.
An employee in the firm stole clients’ money.
Amount paid: £15,000