Public liability and professional indemnity insurance for community musicians

Sound Sense individual members benefit from:
  • £10m public and products liability insurance
  • £1m professional indemnity insurance (from 1 September 2021)
For any activity connected to community music, music therapy or the general teaching of music

Organisations and venues often require community musicians, whatever their field of practice, to carry their own public liability insurance. This is to protect against any compensation arising out of injury to third parties and damage to third party property. Having public liability insurance isn’t just peace of mind, it marks a musician out as a professional.

Taking out public liability insurance as an individual can be expensive. That is where the strength of Sound Sense as a professional association comes in. Detailed discussions with a specialist insurance broker have resulted in the development of a public liability insurance scheme, arranged by Sound Sense exclusively for its members.

Individual Sound Sense members paying the appropriate subscription are automatically covered by £10m public and products liability insurance at no additional charge. The policy meets the demands and needs of individuals working on any activity connected to community music, music therapy, or teaching of music requiring insurance against their legal liabilities to pay compensation arising out of injury to third parties and damage to third party property.

From 1 September 2021 our members' insurance package also includes £1m professional indemnity cover at no extra charge. Professional indemnity covers you against allegations of personal professional negligence and provides legal costs and compensation if required. We've added this additional cover in response to requests from our members, particularly those engaged in music therapy, for whom professional indemnity is required for work as an allied health professional.

More about Sound Sense insurance cover

How do I know someone is covered by the Sound Sense members’ insurance scheme?
  1. Look up the name of the member at Find a Musician. Those covered by the scheme carry the flag "Insured Through Sound Sense".
  2. If you need a pdf certificate, ask the Sound Sense member to provide this. But because a member’s subscription may lapse or be cancelled at any time, you should still check Find a Musician to make sure their insurance is currently in force.
  3. To check that Sound Sense itself is covered, check the policy details document supplied above.     
What does the insurance cover?

In brief, and subject to the terms and conditions of the full policy, the policy covers relevant Sound Sense members while:

  • undertaking any activity connected with the organisation or participation in community music activities
  • or music therapy
  • or while carrying out general teaching of music
  • or for any other musical activities provided your income from those other musical activities does not exceed £15,000 a year.

Cover is worldwide, excluding USA and Canada, for members normally resident in the UK. Members resident outside of the UK should contact us to for information on cover for work carried out in the UK.

Public and products liability insurance

Provides cover against your legal liability to pay compensation (including costs) following:

  • Accidental bodily injury to any person
  • Accidental loss of or damage to property

happening during the period of insurance and arising out of an insured activity. The limit of indemnity is £10,000,000. This limit applies in respect of any one occurrence or series of occurrences arising out of one originating cause for public liability. For products liability the limit applies to all occurrences during the period of insurance.

Professional indemnity insurance

Provides cover against civil liability claims made against the policyholder and notified to the insurer during the period of insurance as a result of any negligent act or negligent omission or any mitigating costs incurred in limiting or preventing such a claim. The limit of indemnity is £1,000,000 and applies to all occurrences during the period of insurance and is inclusive of your own defence costs. In addition, cover is also provided for

  • Replacing, restoring or reconstitution of Documents (up to £50,000)
  • Representation costs at hearings or tribunals (up to £50,000)

Who does the insurance cover?

It covers only named members paying at the "Individual" rate (previously known as "Individual, earning") and who are up to date with their subscriptions. It does not cover, for example, all the members of a band or a choir.

If I join, when does my insurance start?

If you pay through using PayPal, your insurance cover will start from the day you make your first payment. The Sound Sense team will be in touch to confirm your membership and insurance cover as soon as possible, normally within two working days. So if, say, you join and pay by PayPal on a Saturday, your cover will start on that Saturday and be confirmed by us on Monday or Tuesday of the following week. 

If you pay by direct debit, your insurance cover commences as soon as your Sound Sense membership is recorded on our database, usually within ten working days of us receiving us your properly filled-in Direct Debit instruction form.

If you would like an alternative starting date for your insurance (after the date of your first payment or the acceptance of your Direct Debit form) then contact us on info@soundsense.org and we will arrange this for you.

Note that if your direct debit mandate is rejected or your PayPal payment is reversed you will be treated as not having joined and never having been covered by our insurance.

Is cover retrospective?
Public liability insurance

Sound Sense took out this insurance from 1 April 2009, and incidents occurring before that date are not covered by this insurance; music therapy work before 10 October 2012 is not covered. Any incidents occurring after those dates but while the member was not paying subscriptions in the appropriate category are not covered: you can check this for any particular date and member by contacting Sound Sense. For incidents occurring before 1 April 2014 the limit of cover was £5,000,000.

Professional indemnity insurance

Sound Sense members' professional indemnity cover starts on 1 September 2021. Claims arising from work done prior to this will not be covered.

Who provides this insurance?

Hencilla Canworth act as insurance brokers for Sound Sense, and this policy is underwritten by Covéa Insurance plc.

Hencilla Canworth Limited are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Covéa Insurance plc are authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority

How do I sign up?

If you are already an Individual member of Sound Sense, and are up to date with paying your subscriptions, then you are automatically covered. You can download a copy of your personal insurance certificate from the members area of this website – simply log in, click on “My Details”, and you will see a “Download Certificate” link near the top of the page.

If you are not yet a member, then you can join at any time using the link below. Please note that you must select "Individual" membership, as our insurance cover does not apply to members in any other category.


Where's my insurance certificate?

Individual members can download a personalised pdf certificate of cover from the members' area of this website. Simply log in, click on “My Details”, and you will see a “Download Certificate” link near the top of the page.

If you are unable to access your certificate in this way, please email us on info@soundsense.org and we will be happy to help.