In last month’s interview with Williamson Carson’s Director Matt Whinney, he explained that there is often confusion around Public Liability and Professional Indemnity insurance. The truth is these products couldn’t be more different. 

We want to avoid anyone lacking the right cover should the worst happen. Here we will explain what they’re all about and why they’re important. 

Professional Indemnity insurance

Professional indemnity Insurance covers you and your business should you face allegations of professional negligence. These tend to be matters within your control. 

For photographers, instances of negligence may vary from:

  • Mistakes made by you or one of your team while carrying out commissioned work. For example, if a shoot does not deliver what is set out in the brief and you need to re-shoot. 
  • Breaches of intellectual property or copyright. For example, if an image has been used by you without having the necessary permission in place. 
  • Losing data. If you lose confidential information belonging to a client this could result in a breach of confidentiality claim.

Typically, evidence of negligence is required in order for a claim to be sustained.  

 Public Liability insurance

Public liability covers businesses of any size and any industry when a client or member of the public is injured or their property is damaged as a result of that business’ activities. Similarly to Professional Indemnity, it’s also triggered by negligence, but the negligence related to physical damage or physical injury only. 

For photographers, instances of negligence may vary from:

  • Someone getting injured by falling over Colorama
  • Slipping on a wet surface 
  • Water spilt on a client’s mobile phone or memory card

Public liability cover levels are in the millions because compensation could take into consideration the third party’s loss of earnings, medical costs and ongoing care costs. Some organisations require you to have a certain level of Public Liability insurance in place. So a policy not only protects you from mishaps but is a necessary part of working in the photography industry. 

Your Professional Indemnity and Public Liability policies both cover any compensation costs, plus where there have been legal proceedings they cover the cost of your legal defence and any settlement payouts. 

Whatever the reason, claims can be extremely expensive to defend, making both Professional Indemnity and Public Liability essential covers for all professional photographers.


We hope this is useful information. Williamson Carson are experts in insurance and passionate about supporting the creative industries. Discover how we can help protect you from risk, with bespoke cover for your industry. Contact us now. Read more insights and interviews by Williamson Carson.