Public liability cover in home insurance

This often gets overlooked but you actually have $10 million+ cover on almost all home and contents policies for if you’re responsible for accidental damage or injury.

I’m wondering where there’s anyone out there who has ever had to make a public liability claim on their home insurance.

What was the claims process like? Was it easy or did the insurer drag their feet? Did they try to wriggle out of the claim by throwing definitions from the PDS at you?


I’ve never had to make a claim on it, but one aspect that many may not be aware of is that (for NRMA at least) the PL insurance covers you when not at home, provided you are not engaged in a business activity. I’ve checked with them on this for when we were selling a bit of excess produce at a backyarders table at Tamworth Growers Market.

The general rule of thumb is a building policy covers you at home, a contents policy covers you away from home. Get a combined policy and you’re good to go (and a community market worth it’s salt will have PL included in the cost of a stall, in my opinion).

It’s been pointed out to me that depending on your insurer the only people who might be covered are the people who hold the actual policy, but anyone living with them. Different insurers have different definitions of the word “you”. I haven’t heard of anyone having a claim rejected because of it (probably due to how rare claims against this PL are) but in a lot of cases the possibility’s there.

I am acutely aware of the public liability part of home owners insurance, and I consider that $20Mil is the absolute minimum anyone should consider as we live in a increasingly litigious society, and a drawn out case could eat up heaps in legal fees, and if there was a compensation awarded for lifelong care of a accident victim then that could easily surpass $10mil.
I fortunately have never had to claim but I wonder sometimes given the policy exclusions whether anybody would have a successful claim as most policies decline coverage for anybody you invite to your premises, so in-fact most really only covers trespassers?