The Safety Net Your Business Needs

As a business owner in Australia, it’s crucial to understand the difference between an employee and a contractor. An employee is someone who works for you, and you have a significant amount of control over how they complete their work. In contrast, a contractor is someone who provides their services to you, but you have little control over how they complete the work.

While hiring a contractor may seem like a convenient solution to some of your business’s needs, it can come with significant risks. If a contractor causes damage, it can cause your business a lot of money if they don’t have adequate insurance.

For example, suppose a contractor working on your construction site accidentally drops a heavy object on a neighbouring building, causing damage. In that case, your business could be liable for the repair costs if the contractor doesn’t have insurance.

To protect your business from such situations, it’s crucial to check that the contractor you hire has insurance. The best way to achieve this is by requesting a certificate of insurance. This certificate will outline the types of insurance the contractor has and the level of coverage.

A contractor should be expected to carry several insurance policies, including general liability insurance, workers’ compensation insurance, and professional liability insurance. General liability insurance covers bodily injury, property damage, and personal injury caused by the contractor.

Workers’ compensation insurance covers the contractor’s employees if they are injured while working on your project. Professional liability insurance covers errors or omissions made by the contractor.

In some cases, the law requires a contractor to have specific types of insurance. For example, all states and territories in Australia require contractors to carry workers’ compensation insurance if they have employees.

When hiring a contractor, take steps to protect your business. Firstly, ensure that the contractor has adequate insurance coverage, as discussed earlier.

Secondly, make sure you have a contract that outlines the contractor’s responsibilities and what happens if something goes wrong. It’s essential to have an indemnification clause that puts the responsibility for damages caused by the contractor back onto the contractor.

Finally, consider including a hold harmless clause in the contract. This clause protects your business from being held responsible for any losses, damages, or expenses that arise due to the contractor’s work.

In conclusion, contractor insurance is a crucial consideration for businesses in Australia. Understanding the differences between employees and contractors and ensuring that your contractors have adequate insurance coverage is essential to protect your business from financial losses.

RSM Tasmania is a local business broker so they understand your local issues. They have been servicing Tasmania businesses for over 15 years with outstanding success, and a warm welcoming smile.

Roger Hosie will be happy to explain what you need please call (03) 6244 7854
or email 
rogerh@rsmgroup.com.au

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