Tutoring Insurance and The Tutors’ Association
If you're a tutor based in the UK, start with Part 1 to find out how I just saved £200 on my tutoring insurance by becoming a member of the Tutors' Association. If you're outside of the UK, jump to part 2 to learn about why getting tutoring insurance could save you a lot more than a couple of hundred bucks.
Part 1 - What is The Tutors' Association?
It's a member-led organisation that aims to represent the tutoring industry and be an online resource for tutors. The three main goals are of The Tutors' Association are:
to create a community for tutors
reassure parents that tutors have committed to professional standards
provide a voice for the tutoring profession.
Benefits of joining The Tutors' Association
Cheap insurance - as low as £52 for a year of public liability and professional indemnity cover (both up to £1 million). That's £200 cheaper than my previous insurer for a very similar level of cover.
Legal advice service – Legal advice can be expensive but as a member, you have access to a free helpline. You can call Law Express about any personal, family or business legal issues and they will provide confidential advice.
Branding – Gain credibility on your tutoring website or social media channels and reassure parents that you have committed to professional standards by signing up to the Association's code of conduct .
Accountancy and tax return service – When it's time to complete your tax return, you can do it yourself or take advantage of the special membership offer provided by TWD Accountants and let a professional take care of it for £99 plus vat, (normally £225 plus vat).
You also get links to useful sites like online DBS applications, discounted tutoring materials and access to free or reduced rate seminars and workshops throughout the year. If you like, you can even add some designatory letters after your name to show that you're a current member of the association.
How much does it cost?
For an individual member, it costs £99 per year. You can also pay monthly by direct debit at no additional cost (so only £8.25 per month). Considering I just saved £200 on my tutoring insurance, even with the annual mebership fee, I'm still £100 better off. That's before I've taken advantage of any of the other benefits mentioned above. Sounds like a good deal to me. Here's where you can apply:
Part 2 - Why get tutoring insurance?
Unfortunately today's 'compensation culture' is ever increasing with more and more people making claims if they feel there might be some kind of negligence. It seems likely that this trend will become more of a problem for the tutoring industry as in other areas of society. Getting some insurance is a common way to protect yourself from possible negligence claims against you as an online or face to face tutor. There are two main types of liability insurance:
1. Professional indemnity.
This could be needed, for example, if you were preparing a student for an exam and they failed to get the grade required. The student you were tutoring (or their parents) may blame you for not adequately preparing them for the exam and demand a refund or compensation.
Click here for more detailed examples of claims that might be made against you as a tutor:
2. Public liability
This type of insurance will cover you for situations where you might accidentally damage the property of one of your students. For example, if you were tutoring in a student's home and accidentally knocked over an expensive ornament, then a claim for payment to replace or repair the ornament would be covered.
One of the many benefits of tutoring online is that this type of public liability risk is greatly reduced when you are not tutoring face to face, either in your students home or your own. However, even though I do the vast majority of my tutoring online, I occasionally do some face to face tutoring so I want to know that I'll be covered.
The Tutors' Association has partnered with Alan Boswell Group to provide good value liability insurance for tutors. Combined professional indemnity and public liability insurance is available for as little as £52 a year, which is significantly cheaper than the previous insurance I had. Why is this cover so much cheaper than other insurers? Because an insurer has to underwrite and issue individual policies and this can be expensive, particularly if you want both public liability and professional indemnity on your policy. Alan Boswell Group have created a specialist tutors liability policy that is affordable because everything is done online, they issue all the paperwork on the insurers behalf and the cover is very broad so individual underwriting is not necessary.
So you're fully covered as a tutor, but at a very reasonable price. You can be confident that you are covered for potential liability claims that may be bought against you by students, parents or a third party.
UK tutors – If you're interested in becoming a member of The Tutors' Association, you can apply here: Application Form
You can also join as an associate member by simply agreeing to the code of ethics and sending a copy of your CV, but this level of membership is only available for your first year. After that, you'll need to upgrade to an individual member by submitting a CRB/DBS check and two references. Both levels of membership cost £99 per year.
Insurance for UK tutors is available here from the Alan Boswell Group website, but it's only available for Tutors' Association members so you'll need your membership number to complete the application. (By the way, I'm not affiliated with Alan Boswell or qualified to advise on the product itself so please contact them directly with any enquiries).
Non-UK tutors. What experience have you had with tutoring insurance in your country? Please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments box below.