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  • Shane Drew

    May 23, 2007 at 12:20 pm

    Bill, I’ve just been told that I have to increase my public liability to $20 million if I want to continue working for some of my largest clients.

    I do a lot of work in tourism and mining, and both industries have written to me asking for a ‘paid’ receipt proving I have paid for, and increased my $10mil cover to $20mil. I really have to wonder if some contracts are worth it in truth. But then, if I do it to keep one contract, the rest are covered anyway.

    I know a few sign boys that do work on the wharfs here, in the marine sector. The condition of them doing work on the hard stands is that they have their insurance documents on them, to be produced on demand. No papers – no work.

    There was a sign shop here last year that put up light box signs, and his boys went home before the job was completed. They were going to return in the morning to tidy up and finish the last little bit. Pity they didn’t check the electrical fittings were safe, as the cleaner got electrocuted.

    They were fined $45,000’s for the breach of safety, and had their electrical license revoked too I think, and they eventually filed for bankruptcy last week.

    Never seen a big payout though, especially as most states here have ‘caps’ to how much compensation you can claim.

    Never ceases to amaze me how a drunk, for instance, can dive into a shallow pool and break his neck, and sue the home owner for not having a sign that says ‘no diving in the shallow end’. He won $3mil. I doubt if a sign would have stopped the drunk, but if you’d had a sign, the compensation would have been less.

    The real crime though, is that if you are deemed to have caused an accident on a work site, even if you have done everything humanly possible to prevent one, your will never be classed as guiltless. Under new work safe laws here, you must accept a level of guilt. Therefore making insurance vital to your business.

    The level of legal representation now in a simple ‘accident’ is crazy. Not half obvious that our politicians are former solicitors eh.

    Sorry to hijack the thread. I’ll stop babbling now 😥