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Will Farm Insurance Cover Accidents on the Farm?

Caeva O'Callaghan | December 22nd, 2020


Does farm insurance cover accidents?

Members of the public enjoy working and walking on farmland. But there are risks involved you need to be aware of, and have the proper insurance for.

Your farm insurance policy will cover you for accidents involving members of the public. This is because public liability comes automatically with your overall farm policy.

When it comes to employees however, this will require different insurance. Get in touch today to organise farm cover that protects you and those you care about.

In this article, we’ll answer questions such as:

  • Does farm insurance cover my family?
  • Do I need separate insurance for farm workers?
  • Will members of the public have protection under my farm insurance?

Working, living or walking around a farm comes with inherent dangers. They are risky places to be, so make sure you have adequate cover in place.

Public liability for farms

Public liability is one of the most important types of cover you can get. While no two farms are the same, every farm is subject to the risk of a public liability claim.

Public liability insurance covers your legal responsibility to the public, visitors and suppliers should something go wrong while they’re on your farm. In the event of a claim against you following an injury, disease or property damage on your farm, public liability insurance will cover the amounts you’re legally responsible to pay. This could include hospital costs, loss of income, and damage to property.

But are farms really that dangerous? Honestly, yes. To any farmer with experience, the risk usually seems less. But to members of the public and workers with less skills, lives are very much at risk.

Common public liability claims on farms include:

  • Sheep or cows straying onto the road causing delays or collisions
  • Livestock causing damage to walls and property
  • Muck or slurry on the road causing accidents
  • Falling trees and branches

You should never overlook the importance of having a good public liability insurance policy in place. Failure to have adequate public liability protection or failure to disclose the full extent of your farming activities to an insurer could have future consequences that could put your farm ownership at risk.

Employers’ liability insurance

You need employers’ liability insurance if other people work on your farm, such as seasonal employees or voluntary helpers. If your family helps out, this kind of cover also covers them and other unpaid workers you have doing tasks for you. However they must be aged over 16 if you are insured with FBD, Aviva or Zurich. If you are insured with Axa, they must be aged over 14.

You can also add paid employees – whether they are casual or full time. It is best to talk to our Farm Insurance Experts as they can advise you on the cover you need and then go and find the cheapest policy available.

Employers’ liability insurance helps cover the cost of compensation for your employee’s injuries or illness which may occur while working on your farm.

There are many risks to people working on farms, including injury from livestock, machinery, or trips, slips and falls.

Under the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005, all farmers have a duty to prepare a Farm Safety Statement. This is a document which outlines all the risks and hazards on their farm.

As an alternative to preparing a written Safety Statement, farmers with three or less employees can simply complete a risk assessment. You can find a copy of the Code of Practice document on the Health and Safety Authority (HSA) website.

Reducing risks on the farm

In addition to ensuring you have enough insurance cover in place, you need to do everything possible to lessen the risk of accidents on your farm.

This means posting appropriate signage wherever livestock are roaming or machinery is operating. Keep all public roads and pathways clear to the best of your ability, and drive safely and responsibly in farm vehicles on public roads. Be aware of trespassers and dogs who may worry your livestock.

When you take on employees, make sure everyone has the appropriate workwear including high-vis jackets and stout boots or wellies. Keep first aid kits on hand, and always follow the manufacturer’s safety advice when working with farm equipment.

If you don’t take reasonable precautions and are seen to behave in a risky fashion, your insurance may not pay out for a claim.

If you have any questions at all regarding farm insurance, talk to our experts today.

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YOUR LOCAL FARM INSURANCE SPECIALISTS

JEAN MARC ROLLAND

NAVAN

CAROLINE MCARDLE

DUNDALK

LINDA WEST

MONAGHAN

All Information in this post is accurate as of the date of publishing.