What Insurance do you Need for your Housekeeper?


Published on July 31, 2019

Employing a housekeeper? Employers insurance is a legal requirement. Here are some pointers to help make sure you have the right kind of coverage. Share on XAccidents can and do happen. No matter how cautious you are. You are legally required to have insurance if you employ someone in the UK. Read on to learn more about the type of insurance coverage required when employing a housekeeper.

Why do I Need Insurance?

Firstly, not having employers liability insurance is a criminal offence. If you’re an employer in the UK, you could be fined £2,500. That would be for each day you are not properly insured.  

Employers in the UK are legally required to have liability insurance. Your insurance policy must also be issued by an authorized insurer. And it should cover you for at least £5 million.

To summarise. If you employ a housekeeper, you must have employers liability insurance. This is in case an employee becomes ill or is injured while working for you. Insurance would kick in if an employee makes a compensation claim against you. And if a court finds you liable. For further detailed information see here.

Make Sure You are Covered

Most household contents insurance policies include coverage for domestic workers. Such as housekeepers and nannies. The limitations of liability are not always clear. So you should study all your insurance paperwork closely. You’ll often find these details hidden in the small print. We strongly recommend you to check with your insurance company. To make sure that you are fully covered.

If you aren’t fully covered you should arrange a separate insurance policy.

If you believe you don’t have enough cover, arrange a contingent policy to fit in with your household policy.

What if you use a Self Employed Housekeeper?

A self-employed housekeeper should have their own insurance. So in theory, employer liability should no longer be an issue for you. However, you should still consider getting coverage for public liability. Just in case your housekeeper falls and injures themselves. Which can be due to your perceived negligence. That way they could potentially make a claim against you.

Household contents insurance policies usually include public liability coverage. But the details can be hidden in the small print. We strongly recommend that you check with your insurance provider. Just to ensure you are fully covered.

If you feel you need more cover then speak further with your insurer. They may be able to increase your cover for an extra charge.

A self-employed housekeeper should consider carrying their own public liability insurance. However, this is not a legal obligation. That insurance provides compensation for damage or injury. The extent of coverage depends on the policy. You may not be covered for the cost of items damaged while being worked on or the cost of replacing locks if house keys are lost.

A good housekeeper will be happy to show you their policy when asked.

If you use an agency or company that employs staff, that agency should have its own employers’ liability insurance as well.

Take These Simple Steps

If you employ your housekeeper

  • Firstly, contact your current household contents insurance provider. Check you have suitable domestic employers’ liability cover.
  • Secondly, if you require extra coverage. Arrange for a suitable insurance policy with a reputable company.
  • You can arrange a separate policy with a reputable company if you aren’t covered.

 A self-employed Housekeeper

  • Firstly, check with your housekeeper. Find out if they have public liability insurance. Also, ask to see their policy.
  • Secondly, contact your current household contents insurance provider. Check whether you have suitable public liability insurance cover.
  • Also, if you require extra coverage. Speak with your insurer to see if the cover can be increased for an extra charge.
  • You can arrange a separate policy with a reputable company if you aren’t covered.

Prevention is Always Best

A trained housekeeper that knows how to work safely will minimize risks. Of course, we can never remove risks completely. But there are small but important things they can do. Such as by lifting items correctly and by using chemicals safely.

Polo & Tweed can offer housekeeper training tailored to your specific needs. This can be training in situ, or at our own venue. For further information please see here.

How can Polo & Tweed help?

Polo & Tweed is an international recruitment agency specialising in domestic staff. We place all domestic staff including housekeepers, nannies, and butlers all over the world. We help find the right people to work with your family. If you are looking to hire the perfect housekeeper for your home, Polo & Tweed can help. To find out how we can help please call on +44(0)203 858 0233 to speak with one of our friendly consultants or contact us here.


  1. Ann Creighton says:

    I employ a domestic cleaner for few hours a week. Please can you advise what insurance I should take out to ensure she is protected against accidents and I am protected against accidental breakages. Thank you.

    • mm Gabriela Pacurar says:

      Hi Ann, Thank you for your question. If you are an employer in the UK, you must have Employer’s Liability Insurance. For further detailed information see here.

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