What Does It Actually Do?

Public Liability Insurance in Australia offers protection for businesses, organizations, and property owners against potential claims arising from incidents that occur on public or private property. These claims can involve an individual or entity being held legally responsible for causing injury, property damage, or other losses to a third party. The purpose of public liability insurance is to provide financial coverage for such claims, helping to safeguard the insured party from potential legal liabilities.

As insurance brokers, our role is to help businesses, organizations, and property owners find the right public liability insurance policy to meet their unique needs. We work with a range of insurers to ensure that our clients have access to policies tailored to their specific risk exposures and requirements.

In the event of a claim, specialized insurance investigators or independent adjusters are often engaged to carry out Public Liability Investigations. These investigations involve gathering information through interviews, site visits, and the review of documents such as incident reports, photographs, and surveillance footage. The outcomes of these investigations are crucial in assisting insurers, legal teams, and other stakeholders in making informed decisions about claim settlements, dispute resolutions, and risk management strategies.

Some examples of situations that may also require an investigation could include:

Slip and Fall at a Shopping Centre

A customer slips on a spilled liquid in a shopping centre and suffers a severe injury. The claim is confusing because it’s unclear who is responsible for the spill – the shopping centre management, the store located near the spill, or another customer who dropped the liquid. Determining liability requires a thorough investigation into the incident, including reviewing surveillance footage, interviewing witnesses, and evaluating cleaning and maintenance protocols.

Injuries from a Faulty Product

A customer purchases a product from a retailer and suffers an injury due to a manufacturing defect. The confusing aspect of this claim is determining who is liable for the injury: the manufacturer, the retailer, or even the distributor. An investigation would need to examine the product’s manufacturing process, quality control measures, and any previous complaints or incidents related to the product to establish liability.

Accident at a Swimming Pool

A swimmer suffers injuries at a public swimming pool due to poorly maintained facilities, such as a broken ladder or slippery tiles. In this case, confusion may arise from determining whether the swimming pool management, the local council, or a third-party maintenance company is responsible for the incident. The investigation would involve examining maintenance records, safety protocols, and the parties responsible for the upkeep of the facilities.

Food Poisoning at a Catered Event

Several guests at a catered event experience food poisoning, and they file a public liability claim. The confusing aspect of this case is determining the exact source of the food contamination. It could be the fault of the catering company, the event venue, or a specific food supplier. Investigators would need to examine food handling practices, storage conditions, and other factors to pinpoint the cause and establish liability.

By working with an insurance broker, businesses and property owners can secure the appropriate public liability insurance coverage, providing peace of mind and protection against unforeseen incidents that may lead to costly legal claims.


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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