Charity begins at home, or so they say?

One of the biggest areas of increased economic activity in recent years has been in the charitable sector, as governments looks to push responsibility, decision making and scarce resources down to charities, community interest companies and the not-for-profit sector, in order to deliver a range of services.

Some cynical people would say this also pushes responsibility away from elected politicians, who can then wash their hands if anything goes wrong, but in truth this is simply the practical outcome of giving responsibility to local organisations with eyes, ears and hands on the ground, where the problems are and solutions need to be delivered.

It therefore automatically follows that those organisations need tailored insurance solutions, which are fit for purpose in their sector.

There are challenges here, as sometimes the members of the public they interact with have difficult or problematic lifestyles, may be vulnerable and may also require a high level of care and consideration.

There are also a lot of volunteers brought into such organisations and whilst they are not employees in the normal sense of the word, they still require the same level of care, especially dealing with other individuals who may at times present the risk of injury or damage to themselves, as well as the people trying to help them.

The founders of these organisations also need specialist cover to make sure that in the course of their activities, if they unwittingly break the law or fall foul of it, they are protected personally. No trustee should be disadvantaged financially or otherwise whilst leading the organisation and this is where trustees liability plays an important part.

Today I going to be talking to a founder, whose organisation has grown massively over the last few years and with it his responsibilities, duty of care and therefore his liabilities.

We will look at the solution that is already in place and decide if it needs any alterations to deal with the organisations increased activity levels and its growing volunteer workforce, #becauseaccidentshappen to nice people all the time.

At all times I will make sure we have the correct technical solution at the lowest price, because more than any others sector, cost saving is essential, so those scarce resources can be spent in the most efficient manner and most importantly on the individuals it seeks to help.

If you want to know more about the specific solutions just call 029 20 470 375 or email nigel@severnbay.com


What does resilience mean to you?

In business we think about growth and development plans all the time. How are we going to get from where we are now, to where we want to be in 5, 10,15 or 20 years time. How do we structure our business to achieve those aims and goals?

We know there are many things that could happen to frustrate those goals, and we pick off the easy ones buying business insurances once a year and then forgetting about them, but what about those things you can’t insure?

Whilst some of them might cross our mind occasionally, businesses founders seldom set time aside to consider the implications and even more rarely plan for events and incidents that could seriously interrupt the activity that generates income.

Here are a few you may not have thought about:

  1. Failure of a key supplier or customer
  2. New competitor buying into the market
  3. Legal and regulatory changes
  4. Import export restrictions
  5. Failure of critical IT systems or production machinery
  6. Long lead times on acquiring critical equipment
  7. Sudden increased material costs and stock shortages
  8. Cyber-attacks and financial crimes
  9. Micro-biological contamination
  10. Internal teams leaving to set up business

All these things can and do happen from time to time. I know, as a business continuity advisor I look at them all the time and make sure businesses can #justkeepgoing when unforeseen events really do occur.

With a little planning and foresight, you can develop plans and response structures that can kick in the minute an incident occurs, so that you can continue your income generating activity with little or no disruption and that can be the difference between success or failure.

Resilience = Consideration + Planning + Implementation + Ongoing Validation

If you’d like to know more, have a look at our website www.severnbay.com or call on 029 20 470375.

Positive feelings

It’s a new dawn and a new day and I’m feeling good!

Bet you just sung that with a southern twang?

What gets you going on a Monday morning?

For me its knowing that I can make a real difference to people who care about getting the right advice at the right time. If they are prepared to engage with me and let me find out all about their business then I can understand what they do, assess the exposures and give them the correct advice.

Now we all hope we don’t ever need to use our insurances, but in truth that’s not the real world and with no-win no-fee legal cases on the rise, sooner or later someone disgruntled individual will probably have a go at you, justified or not.

If you have valuable assets, buildings, stock, equipment and machinery, then they must be protected correctly. If they get destroyed, damaged or stolen and your insurance isn’t correct, your claim could be void and you are left holding a very expensive piece of paper.

Getting the correct advice and guidance is essential, suitability is everything and the devil is always in the detail of the wording, which to be honest most policyholders never read.

We do, so you don’t have to.

Want some good advice, free at the point of discussion. Just call 029 20 470375 or message me here.

Have a great week 😊

Professional Indemnity

The odd one out!

Most liability cover is about two things, DAMAGE to property or INJURY to people. Its really that simple, although of course the devil is always in the detail, but what about the odd one out!

PI Cover (Professional Indemnity) also known as professional liability, is very different. It is not primarily concerned with damage or injury, although there are some examples where this is relevant, but more of that later.

Professional Indemnity deals with:

The FINANCIAL LOSSES suffered by your clients, where they allege that the financial loss is a direct result of your, negligence, errors, or omissions.

That is that you did something wrong, or you failed to do something you should have done, and that “professional failure” led directly to the financial loss.

Now it’s easy to see why this cover generally relates to what are loosely termed the professional classes, such as Solicitors, Accountants, Architects, Surveyors, IFA’s, Stockbrokers, IT Consultants etc… The list goes on and on, but generally speaking anyone who offers a service or provides advice, for a fee, would require PI cover, as their primary concern.

Bodily injury can be covered. So now we are thinking about nurses, doctors, dentists, medical consultants, and other healthcare professionals, where the professional failure could lead to a medical condition or injury. In this context we call PI cover, medical negligence.

Obviously, there are lots of other covers that professionals can arrange, like anyone else, including the standard liabilities and damage to property, but PI would always be their main concern. In a lot of cases the professional bodies to which these individuals and businesses belong require PI cover to be in place before they can transact business.

If you are unsure about whether you need PI cover, or whether it would be advisable, for you or your business, feel free to give us a call 029 20 470375 or just message me here for a no obligation chat.

It could be the most valuable call you ever make.

Have a great weekend 😊

Cyber Risks

Cyber risks, are they real?

Cyber risks are very real, but it’s a very old story. Criminals will take advantage of any situation if they think there is an angle where they can make money and if that means stealing yours, digitally or remotely they will. Its just another opportunity to them.

But what should you really be worried about!

Common threats include:

  • Hacking or disabling a website, particularly if its an E-Commerce site that generates income.
  • Ransome ware, that can disable your systems and prevent you running your business.
  • Damage or destruction of physical IT hardware and critical infrastructure.
  • The loss of personal data, especially if you hold payment details.
  • Social engineering including invoice fraud.
  • The cost of rectifying any of the above or the fines that might follow for failure to keep data safe.

The first thing in business, is to make sure you have the most robust IT security system it is possible to have, after all if you can stop the criminals at the door, they never get inside your systems or have the opportunity to wreak havoc or impersonate real people in the business.

Make sure you engage with a professional who understands the risks and can set up and importantly monitor all of your systems in real time. We use Supporting Role Ltd | IT Support Services (supporting-role.co.uk) and I can highly recommend their services.

Then you need to train your employees, most importantly so they are constantly aware of the evolving threats and the common scams that criminals use to get inside your business and your systems. If the email looks fishy just delete it, or at the very least question its validity with the apparent sender or a senior member of staff or even a director. Don’t feel foolish, you will get far more praise for potentially saving the business £1,000s.

Cyber Insurance can deal with the cost implications of some of the above, as well as helping with IT tools that can help secure your systems, but it is unlikely to pay the fines levied by government or other regulatory bodies, as this is seen to be against public policy. These fines can be significant and running to 10’s of thousands.

Cyber insurance is a good backstop to costs, but it won’t avert the serious disruption to your business that might follow a significant criminal cyber event, remember:

  1. Professional IT Security systems first.
  2. Staff training and awareness refreshed regularly.
  3. Cyber insurance to cover off potential costs.

If you want to know more about cyber risks, then call for a chat on 029 20 470375 or message me here.

Prevention is always better than cure.

Have a safe and thoughtful week 😊

Building Fire

Claim and counter claim

This week, because my claims manager is away, I have dealt with several claims myself. A theft of tools from a building site, a vehicle fire and a theft of goods from a third-party haulier acting for a client. We don’t earn any money dealing with claims, but it is the most important part of our job.

Let me explain:

Occasionally and only very occasionally we lose a client on price alone and for no other reason and that is very disappointing.

I can point out all the advantages of dealing with us over dealing with another broker or heaven forbid arranging insurance direct, but if price is the only consideration, we occasionally lose a client, and we stick to our principles and charge a fare fee for the work we do and will not compromise on that.

In a lot of these cases there is a common thread, and that is that the client will have never had a claim and that is good for them, but it means they have never experienced that side of our business and how we handle those matters when clients need us most.

Neither will they have ever seen the way our team spring into action to ensure the client has the right advice at the right time.

We never simply hand our clients over to an insurer, we would never do that, we practice active claims management and make sure the claim goes in quickly, in the correct format to ensure maximum success and that we push insures constantly to get a resolution or settlement as soon as possible.

There is also all the advice and guidance we can give clients about restoration, trusted contractors, approved adjustors, chartered surveyors and all the additional information required to settle the claim quickly.

If a client never has a claim, how are they going to know about the quality of the recommendation we’ve made, or the quality of service we provide a when a claim occurs?

Now I genuinely hope our clients never have to make a claim, reality is I know they will sooner or later, but a small part of me relishes the opportunity when they do, but only because I know we have an opportunity to shine.

Being there when our client need us and showing them why they made the right purchase.

If you or a friend are having a problem with a claim, happy to chat it over and provide advice and I can tell you how I once got a client £25,000 in the space of 5 days, when his current broker had wiped his hands of the situation.

Just give us a call on 02920 470375

What have you got to lose?

Employee Injury

Accidents can happen!

The absolutely worst claims I have ever had to deal with in 40 years are always those that involve serious injury to employees.

They are serious for the employee who might face serious life changing injuries and a significant period where they can’t work, or may even die, with the awful consequences for the family and dependents.

Its terrible for the business that now has to deal with the implications. Did they do everything they could do, was their health and safety system robust, were all the correct risk assessments in place and communicated to employees, will the H&S Executive or local authority carry out an in depth investigation and so on…..

Sometimes, the accident is the result of a simple accident that no one could have foreseen or more often a careless or thoughtless action by the employee or others working with them, either way whatever happens, compensation of some sought will be due to the employee or their family and that is where employers liability insurance comes into force.

Whilst the implications in disruption, time and resources re considerable for the employer, failure to have the correct liability cover in force can result in fines of up to £2,500 per day and in serious situations, up to 6 months in jail for the directors or principals in the business.

So when does the law make Employers Liability Insurance a legal requirement?

Under the regulations of the “1969 Employers Liability Compulsory Insurance Act” and subsequent statutory regulations Employers Liability cover must be in force where:

A business has any employees and they are employed for as little as 1 minute of 1 day in any year! This includes unpaid volunteers, interns and the like, effectively anyone working in and for a business. This also includes directors or trustees in a limited company or charity. The only exclusions for businesses are:

Single Director Limited Companies with no other employees

Unincorporated businesses where there are principals / partners and no other employees

If you are unsure whether or not you need this cover then seek professional advice or contact us for a completely free assessment of your position, we can set your mind at rest and provide the correct cover for your situation should you need it.

Just call 02920 470375 or email info@severnbay.com

After all no one goes to work to be injured or killed and no business owner wants to end up in jail.





BIBA 2023

BIBA 2023 Manchester Central

As a proud member of The British Insurance Brokers Association for over 40 years, and now as a board member, I can say without any hesitation that the BIBA conference in May each year, bringing brokers and insurers together in one place for three days, is one of the best and most productive weeks of the year.

This year the theme is “Rising to the Challenge” The BIBA Conference 2023 | The British Insurance Brokers’ Association

If you have annual arrangements you wish to arrange or renew, doing it at the BIBA conference each year is probably the most effective way. The range of providers present and more importantly decision makers, all in one place make for an excellent conference.

Add to that the line up of keynote speakers and sessions each year, bring everyone up to date with what’s new and emerging as well as all the legal and regulatory matters that will affect our businesses going forward over the next 3 – 5 years. If you are an insurance professional #biba2023 is the place to be.

It’s also nice to be in the middle of something which has been in planning for the last 12 months, leading directly from the manifesto which is published in January each year. In 2023 we are #managingrisk & #deliveryingstability.

Looking forward to meeting friends old and new and securing services that will directly benefit our clients going forward.

Have a great week, I know I will.




Construction Workers

All quiet on the construction front!

Professional indemnity insurance is generally bought by what are loosely called professional service companies, such as architects, accountants, surveyors, IFA’s, solicitors and the like.

What is less widely known is that is often required in the #constructionindustry , especially where a principal contractor engages other firms to complete certain parts of the works.

Any company designing sub-sections of the works like consulting engineers, will be required to have #PIcover and this is normally required to the same level as the principal contractor.

Even electrical contractors may need an element of PI if what they do includes inspection, testing and signing off fixed electrical systems.

I was once asked for PI cover by a sign company. it was completely pointless, if the client wasn’t happy with something, he would just have gone back and fixed it, but because everyone else on the framework had PI he was forced to provide it also.

Not sure if you need PI just drop me a message here or call 02920 470375

Have a great week.


Do you know what Professional Indemnity policies cover?

Ok here is the short and simple explanation, they cover:

* Financial Losses
* Suffered by your clients
* Where they allege that
* Those losses are the result of
* Your Negligence, Errors or Omissions

Things where you didnt exercise a reasonable professional skill, things you did wrong or things you didn’t do.

Normally required where advice or a professional service is provided #becauseaccidentshappen to nice people all the time.

Can extend to include things like, slander, libel, loss of documents & remediation.

Bodily injury can be included where the service relates to the provision of medical or human services, normally termed as Medical Negligence.

Want to know more?

Just call us on 029 20 470 375 or message me here.

Have a great week