Benefits & Insurance

Member Benefits

How do I make use of my member benefits?


On joining you can access the members area on the website where you will find a list of current benefits. To take up most of these you need only show your current membership card.

Insurance Cover

Who is covered by the public liability insurance benefit?


All of our paid up members are automatically covered for public liability insurance - up to £5 million relating to their art practice. This is a policy paid for by the Union offering block cover to our members. You do not have to have an individual policy.

The Scottish Artists Union is not a broker, we do not deal with claims.

However if you need to make a claim against this policy you do it by contacting SAU's insurance broker and quoting your membership number. The Insurance company will then check this against our records to ensure that you are currently paid up. 

To make a claim contact:

Mike McCormack

[email protected]

Tel: +44 (0)20 8686 5050

Public Liability

What is public liability insurance?


Public liability insurance is designed to cover businesses or an individual's practice from the threat that they will be sued by a member of the public. The basic concept of public liability is that it will cover your business in the event that it causes injury or death to a third party, or damage to a third party's property. Public liability is an essential cover that all artists need in the event that you are pursued by a third party.

The definition for public liability insurance is as follows:

The insurance of liability for accidental bodily injury or damage to the property of third parties.

Public liability insurance applies to all businesses as it is the most basic essential cover. Although it will not prevent you from being sued, it will provide the financial backing in the event that there is a claim awarded against you.

If you do not have public liability insurance and you get pursued for compensation you will be liable to pay the full amount of the claim; if you are not able to pay the compensation you could lose your business, home, and any other assets that you have.

PLI: Cover

Does the public liability insurance cover working outside my studio?


The insurance covers you working in any space that you are carrying out your artistic practice in, e.g. open studio events (including your home if this is your studio base), workshops with children, art fairs, trade fairs, public installations etc. The insurance covers working in the UK and while temporarily engaged on projects internationally.

PLI: Valid

When does my public liability insurance become valid?


When you become a member of the Scottish Artists Union you are covered by SAU's Membership public liability insurance policy.

You are a valid member of the union as soon as your membership fee has been accepted by our bank. Therefore if you require your insurance cover quickly when you join you do not have to have received your card in the post – you simply check that your membership fee has been successfully debited from your bank account (check your bank statement).

PLI: Free

My public liability insurance costs the earth! How can you offer it totally free?


Because we are covering a large number of people with a negotiated and defined practice (our entire membership) we can get very good discounts on the policy price. A clear example of the collective power of the Scottish Artists Union.

PLI: Not covered

Are there any ways of working that are not covered by the free insurance?


There are some small exceptions relating to moving performance work, heat making devices and pyrotechnics. We have discussed fully with the insurance company the varied forms of work undertaken by visual and applied artists and believe them to be fully aware of the unusual combinations of work and technical devices employed by artists.

However any artist unsure whether their specific circumstances will be covered is advised to speak directly to the insurer. You will be given the contact details on request.

PLI: Proof of cover

Does the Scottish Artists Union provide proof of public liability insurance cover?


In most situations, proof of union membership (membership card, invoice or email) combined with the information on the Insurance page in the Membership section of this website should be sufficient proof of cover.

Occasionally an employer/commissioner/event organisation may request further proof - please contact [email protected] and they will be happy to furnish you with a covering letter.

Please note, the insurance policy does not name each individual member. It covers ALL members of the union.


Other Insurance

Does the Scottish Artists Union provide any insurance other than public liability?


Yes, since April 2018 provide Professional Indemnity Insurance to our membership. Professional Indemnity insurance can covers legal costs and expenses incurred in your defence, as well as any damages or costs that may be awarded, if you are alleged to have provided inadequate advice, services or designs that cause your client to lose money.

Members can access full details of their Insurance cover here

Contact Hencilla Canworth, insurance brokers with all enquiries regarding details of Members insurance cover and additional policies on 020 8686 5050.


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