What insurance do I need to work as a paid carer?

If you are working as a self-employed paid carer, you run a small care business or you are a care provider, then it is imperative that you have carer insurance in place.  Those who are self-employed generally need specialist Self-employed Carer Insurance, whilst businesses need something slightly different.

If you are looking to employ or contract with a carer then the insurance that you need is slightly different – please read our article here

As a self-employed carer or personal assistant, you will need to have Public Liability Insurance (PLI) for carers in place. This is because there are some risks involved in the job, especially if you have to give medicine to your client, or help them move from room to room. Having a PLI policy protects you in situations that involve personal injury, errors, accidents, abuse claims and other risks within the job role.

If you are employed by a service user directly, they should have Employer’s Liability Insurance in place. However, we suggest that you also take out your own carer insurance policy. We hope that you never need to use your insurance, but this is definitely a case of better safe than sorry.

Care providers need comprehensive insurance policies in place to ensure that both clients and staff are protected fully in the workplace. These policies will cover things like alleged abuse, theft of property, errors, personal injury and so on. They combine both Employer’s Liability Insurance and Public Liability Insurance, as well as extras related to running a business. If you are looking at setting up your own care agency, then make sure that you have the appropriate insurance in place before you begin delivering services. Some of the providers featured here do offer insurance for care agencies and these are tailored to meet your needs. There are plenty of other insurers that also deal with businesses, so contact your insurance broker to find out the best option for you.

Some insurance companies will offer specific policies that are tailored for the needs of private carers. There are a number of companies in the UK that specialise in insurance for the care sector and it is not too expensive – though it is something that will need to be budgeted for. Here is a rundown of some companies that offer comprehensive serf-employed carer insurance in the UK.

Self-employed Carer Insurance Providers



Surewise offers Self Employed Carer Insurance for all carers and personal assistants who are self-employed or work for an agency, underwritten by The Salvation Army General Insurance Corporation, who give 100% of their profits to The Salvation Army. There are three levels of cover: Bronze, provides public liability cover for carers up to £1m; Silver, provides public liability cover for carers up to £2m; and Gold, provides public liability cover for carers up to £5m

The Self Employed Carers Insurance policy includes:

  • Public liability
  • Personal belongings at work up to £250
  • Legal expenses up to £100,000
  • Accidental death (varies by level of cover)
  • Disability Cover
  • Hospitalisation (accident-only) (per day, varies by level of cover)
  • Administering of prescribed medicines and first aid
  • No excess
  • Overseas cover up to 90 days (Gold only)

Blue Badge


Blue Badge offers self-employed carer insurance for carers and Personal Assistants to protect you against potential risks due to the nature of your job. Its specialist cover includes public liability insurance with two levels of cover: Standard, provides public liability for injury or damage to property up to £1m; and Premium, provides public liability for injury or damage to property up to £5m.

  • The insurance policies include:
  • Legal expenses in the event of a liability claim
  • Errors and omissions while providing care, including administering medication
  • Up to 90 days’ cover for care provision while on holiday
  • Accidental injury to any person in your care
  • Personal accident insurance

Mark Bates Ltd


The Personal Care Assistant Insurance is aimed at self-employed paid carers providing support to individuals. It includes public liability insurance, as well as a range of extras that form an attractive package. There are two levels available: Standard, provides public liability up to £2m; and Plus, provides public liability up to £5m.

The Personal Care Assistant Insurance policy includes:

  • Legal expenses up to £25,000
  • Personal accident up to £10,000
  • Personal possession up to £250
  • Employer’s possession up to £250
  • 24-hour helplines
  • No excess

Jelf (Formerly Bluefin)


Jelf offers an Individual Carer insurance policy to give protection and peace of mind to protect private carers performing all manner of tasks, such as personal care, night care, administering medicine (prescribed and non-prescribed), carers respite, cleaning, cooking, household tasks and more. It is only available to self-employed or sole proprietor carers. The company also offers insurance policies for care homes and domiciliary care organisations, which may be appropriate for those running a care business.

The Individual Carer insurance policy includes:

  • £5 million public liability insurance (£10 million limit optional)
  • Alleged abuse cover
  • Temporary visits abroad while working
  • Liability arising out of the supply or preparation of food and drink
  • Indemnity to Principal
  • Errors and omissions cover
  • Automatic defence costs
  • Personal accident
  • Accidental death or personal injury to any person
  • Cover in respect of administering prescribed and non-prescribed medicines
  • Accidental loss or damage to third party property (subject to £100 excess)

Fish Insurance


Fish offers Carer & Personal Assistant Insurance, which is designed to protect you from compensation claims arising from accidents, errors and omissions. The company is well known, as it is one of the UK’s longest established and leading disability insurance specialists.

  • The Carer & Personal Assistant Insurance policy includes:
  • Up to £5 million public liability cover
  • Protection against errors and omissions in the provision of medical treatment
  • Accidental damage to property
  • Accidental bodily injury to any person
  • Legal costs and expenses incurred in defending prosecution under food, health and safety acts
  • Up to £10,000 personal accident cover, with hospital allowance
  • Published on Nov 24, 2016
Comments (23)
  • Adeline Rogers
    Feb 22, 2019

    Am interested in your insurance company as a self employed carer.

    • Nick
      Feb 24, 2019

      Hi Adeline – thanks for the message, we don’t provide insurance ourselves but wanted to let paid carers know what insurance they need. There’s a number of insurance companies who have insurance for paid carers detailed on this page, try giving one of them a call. We speak regularly with Surewise and Bluebadge both of whom have competitive packages for Paid Carers – I’d suggest you start with them.

  • Virginia Ngozi Idigo
    May 19, 2019

    Dear Sir/Madam,

    As a self employed carer, how much am I expected to pay monthly or annually for my insurance cover.

    Kind regards,

    • Nick
      May 28, 2019

      Hi, generally I’d say it would be around the £75-£100 per year depending on the level of cover and additional extra’s you go for. Hope that helps, Nick

  • Wanda
    Sep 01, 2019

    If I’m caring for someone just one morning a week and want to buy insurance do i need to be registered as self employed or registered as a business owner? Thanks.

    • Nick
      Sep 06, 2019

      Hi Wanda – thanks for the comment, I don’t think that you need to register as a business owner (ie register a ltd company) as it would be a little excessive for what you’re proposing you’d probably end up having accountancy fees and you’d then also need to register with CQC – the costs of this for just one client would probably make the business nonviable. With regards to whether you need to register as self-employed or not is not so straight forward as it may be that HMRC would consider you to be employed by the person that you’re caring for rather than self-employed. Take a look at this article to see what you think as to whether you’re employed or self-employed.

      If you think that you might be employed then I know that it sounds scary for your clients when you say they might be an employer, but it can be quite straightforward if you use a payroll company and it’s simple for you as they deduct and pay HMRC any tax or NI (and pension if eligible). If you feel that you do meet the criteria to be self-employed then you can find more information here on how you go about it here.

      PS we run payroll services too see our site for people who need care to find out more!

  • Emma
    Sep 10, 2019

    Do you know if I have a self-employed live-in carer whether this will impact my house insurance at all?

    • Nick
      Sep 11, 2019

      Hi – that’s an excellent question, we’ve got some contacts in the insurance industry and so we’ll ask them and come back to you asap.

    • Nick
      Sep 17, 2019

      Hi Emma – We’ve heard back from our contacts at SureWise Insurance and they’ve checked with their Underwriters. The response from the Underwriters was

      “Yes, we would expect to be told if the customer has a live-in carer. (There’s normally a question about who lives in the property in the home insurance application)

      It would not affect our terms however we would advise that the policy excludes theft and malicious damage by anyone lawfully in the property.”

      I hope that this helps.

  • Callum
    Oct 10, 2019

    hi, if my mother in law wants to start a care agency and hire people underneath her to care for her clients as well what insurance is needed ?

    • Nick
      Oct 25, 2019

      Hi – if you’re starting a care agency then you’ll need a greater level of insurance (and ensure that you’re registered with CQC) I’d suggest you speak to an insurance broker to look around for the best options for you.

  • Anne
    Oct 25, 2019

    Is Jelf still trading?

    • Nick
      Oct 25, 2019

      To my knowledge yes.

  • Lisa
    Nov 28, 2019

    Is it possible to get cover as a support worker if I had a workers comp pay out in the past?

    • Nick
      Nov 30, 2019

      Hi Lisa – yes that shouldn’t be a problem. There are reasons why people can’t get insurance but this isn’t one of them. I’ll email you more details.

  • Claudette
    Dec 04, 2019

    I would like to be a private care what liability insurance do I need please and thanks

    • Nick
      Jan 06, 2020

      Hi Claudette – We’d suggest that you use an insurer who provides specialist self-employed carer insurance which includes public liability. There are a number listed in the post, You’re the Boss is an approved representative of Surewise and you can find more out about their specialist Self-Employed Carer Insurance here.

  • Michelle
    Dec 16, 2019

    Do I have to have a trained nurse working along side me to be covered? RCN won’t cover me unless I do.

    • Nick
      Jan 06, 2020

      Hi Michelle – it really depends on what it says in your insurance, for example SureWise (YtB is an approved representative) doesn’t require you to have someone alongside you (including to give medication) as long as you’re trained in what you’re doing. Have a look at our Carers Insurance page for more information

  • Irene
    Jan 31, 2020

    Hello there,
    I have a public liability insurance as a pet servicer.
    I do care work as well as a part time for individual. Do I need a separate insurance for doing care work?
    Appreciating your advise in advance.


    • Nick
      Feb 03, 2020

      Hi Irene – We’d suggest that you have proper Carer Insurance, there are several things that won’t be covered by your Pet Insurance which would be by specialist Carer Insurance. Have a look at this page to see what a specialist Carer Insurance Policy is likely to cover I hope that helps.

  • Joanne
    Mar 16, 2020

    Hi Nick,

    I’m a self employed PA employed by parents. Some of the young people I support require 2:1. I’m looking to employ some other PA’s to work alongside me. I need to take out Public Liability and Employers Insurance. It’s not an agency I would be employing people to work with me. How do I stand insurance wise? Kind Regards Jo

    • Nick
      Mar 18, 2020

      Hi Joanne

      The answer is not straightforward – sorry!

      You say that you’re employed as a self-employed PA, I’m guessing that this was a slight typo and that you’re ‘contracted’ by the parents rather than ’employed’?

      My answer really would depend on whether you’re providing personal care or not (as a regulated activity), if you are just providing support to the YP you support then you would need to take out Public Liability and Employers Insurance. Insurance wise this would be the same if you were providing personal care.

      However, if you provide personal care and you are employing people to work with you then you will need to be registered and monitored by CQC as well – see here for more info, unless you are setting up an introduction agency so that the people work with you but are contracted by the parents.

      Please do come back to me if you have further questions.


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