JCT 6.5.1 (non-negligent liability)

Developers or individuals will bring in Contractors to carry out works on construction projects – from new build properties on their land, to renovation works to their existing properties. Checks are almost always made to ensure that the contractor carries a minimum level of Public Liability, but just how far does this cover go and how can you still be exposed?

A 1958 legal precedent established that an Employer who hires a Contractor has a responsibility to pay compensation for any damage inflicted on third parties, even where such damage did not occur as a result of negligence. This means that any damage to neighbouring properties for items such as subsidence, landslip, ground heave or similar as a result of work at your location could result in claims against you and negligence does not need to be proven.

If either you or your contractor only carries Public Liability, then this will not be sufficient to cover for claims of this nature. It is advised that a non-negligence liability policy is taken out on joint names between the Employer and the Contractor to cover against this.


  • This is likely to be a contractual requirement
  • Gives you peace of mind during development
  • Working with a broker allows for comparison of covers and competitive pricing
  • Protects property owners against their strict liability to damage to neighbouring premises