Landowners: Taking responsibility for your land

Many Land Owners are unaware of the risks associated with land ownership and their responsibilities. Whether it’s a green-field site, such as pasture or woodland, building land, communal area or private road you can be held liable for injury to others under common law.

Insurance is therefore sometimes viewed as an optional extra or unnecessary expense. The truth however, is that good insurance cover is a vital component of owning a site which needs to be considered carefully.

Land Owners are responsible for anything present on their land including trees and hedges, watercourses, structures (such as outbuildings, walls and gates), livestock, and equipment, as well as the safety of both employees and members of the public.

Liability concerns of Land Owners are real and should be understood by those who allow the use of their land for recreational purposes to the public.

Consideration should be given to increased risks such as land with buildings, public rights of way, lakes, mines etc. Regardless of the issue, we will work with you to find the solution.

Risk Management

You can significantly reduce your exposure by understanding your legal responsibilities and developing a sound programme of risk reduction, this should protect both the land user, and yourself, examples being:

  • Carrying out regular checks of the land including any buildings, roads, fences public footpaths & trees • If you become aware of a problem then prompt remedial action should be taken 
  • If work is to be undertaken by yourself then you should consider erecting warning signs or diversions to protect the public 
  • If you are employing a contractor ensure they undertake a Risk Assessment and hold adequate Public Liability insurances 


Examples of claims:

  • A child playing football on land and getting a nail in their foot - settled at £7500 
  • Tree fell on top of a person who was running along a track in the woods - settled at £53,000


Tarian can provide public liability insurance which is both simple and affordable.

Cover is available for both natural and man-made hazards, with the option to include Employers’ Liability if required. For more information contact our team on or 01286 677 787.

Source: Thistle Underwriting