🎂 Turned 31 this year? Get health insurance before your price rises.
Get cover

Market Stall Insurance

Don’t let a freak accident shut your stall down for good. Compare public liability insurance cover.

Running a market stall brings a lot of hidden responsibility along with it. Whether you’re hawking hot chocolate, hats or hand-cream, the fact remains that you’re in charge of your own little corner empire.

The unfortunate truth

If an accident happens, for example you leave an artifact in the main thoroughfare for a moment while distracted and someone trips over it, you may be held responsible for the incident through negligence. While it may seem unfair, you still have the responsibility to deal with the consequences if things escalate to a lawsuit for instance.

Most festivals and events won’t even allow you to register without first obtaining public liability insurance for your market stall. Find out why it matters and get a pain-free quote for market stall insurance below.

Receive a Quote for Business Insurance

By submitting this form, you agree to finder.com.au privacy policy
If you are ready to speak with a consultant about different business insurance options available, simply enter your details in the form. Keep reading if you want to learn more about the different types of cover available.
FBI Lender Logos

Receive public liability insurance quotes from these direct insurance brands

Details Features
Business Liability Insurance
Business Liability Insurance
Tailored made cover with a wide range of additional options to choose from. Up to $20 million in liability cover and choice of excess.
  • $20 million in liability cover
  • Consumer protection cover for Queensland electricians
  • 24/7 emergency claims assistance
  • Optional cover for Money, Business Items and Stocks
Go to site More info

CarriageWorksTwilightMarketsDo I need insurance for my stall?

So you’ve decided to open a market stall to bring in some extra cash? Regardless of whether you’re running a regular stall at your local market or travelling to several markets across the region to build a bigger customer base, you’ll still be exposing yourself to a wide range of potential risks.

Markets can be busy, unpredictable and hazardous places, and unexpected accidents can happen at any time. If something goes wrong and a claim is made against you, the financial consequences of paying any compensation or damages could be substantial. This is why it’s essential to make sure you have the right market stall insurance cover in place before you open for business.

What types of insurance do market stalls need?

There are a few key types of insurance that every market stall owner should consider:

Most market organisers make it a mandatory requirement for all stall owners to have public liability insurance in place before they'll even be allowed to set up a stall.

What's covered?

This type of insurance covers your legal liability if a member of the public or maybe another stallholder is injured, killed, or suffers property damage due to your negligence.

For example, if a customer trips over a piece of art at your stall and breaks an ankle, if you’re deemed responsible for the accident you could be held liable for the customer’s medical costs and lost income until they recover. In this scenario, public liability insurance provides crucial financial protection.

This type of cover is also usually a mandatory requirement at many markets.

What's covered?

It provides protection against claims for injury or damage caused by a product you sell at your market stall. As an example, a customer could make a claim against you if they suffered severe food poisoning from the food you sold them.

Products liability insurance is particularly important for any market stall owner who manufactures and sells food or drink products because, under Australian Consumer Law, people who suffer loss or damage due to safety defects in goods they buy are entitled to seek compensation.

Most business insurance providers won’t cover theft or damage of your stock while it's actually at your market stall.

What's covered?

If you regularly operate a market stall it’s still a good idea to consider portable stock cover, which covers stock while in storage and while in transit to and from the market.

Available as part of a business insurance policy, portable stock insurance provides cover for fire, theft and a range of other risks. It’s also possible to cover the loss, theft or damage of business money to provide added peace of mind.

What is the difference between public and products liability?

When looking for insurance cover for your business, chances are you’ll come across two different types of policies: public liability insurance and products liability insurance. While these types of insurance are quite similar to one another, there are some key differences you should be aware of.

  • Public Liability: As touched on above, public liability insurance provides cover if a negligent act results in a third party suffering a personal injury or property damage. If that third party decides to launch legal action against you, your public liability insurance policy will provide cover for legal costs, fees and expenses that may result.
  • Products Liability Insurance: Is designed to offer a different kind of protection. Under Australian consumer law, retailers and distributors of products have a duty of care to their customers. For example, if you sell a product that has been poorly designed, has various defects or improperly labelled, it could cause harm to one of your customers.

As a result of this, that customer could then choose to launch legal action against you to seek damages. Products liability insurance protects you against this risk, providing cover for any claims relating to third-party injury or property damage.

Depending on the type of business you run, one or both of these forms of cover might be necessary for you.

Back to top

How can market traders benefit from public liability insurance?

There are a range of reasons why public liability insurance cover can be vitally important to market traders. In fact, for many market and festival organisers, having this type of insurance in place is a mandatory requirement for stallholders.

No matter where you run your market stall, be it at a concert, market, event, festival or community fair, there’s always a chance that something could go wrong. These type of events are often busy and even quite crowded, with members of the general public wandering in all directions as they browse. Accidents can happen at any time, especially with so many people around, and if someone suffers an injury or property damage as a result of your negligence you could find yourself facing legal damages.

Without public liability insurance cover in place, would you be able to afford your legal defence? If you were required to pay compensation, would you be able to survive financially? Public liability cover offers vital financial protection for your assets, ensuring that you will be looked after if something goes wrong.

Taking out a public liability insurance policy means you can simply concentrate on running your stall, safe in the knowledge that unforeseen events won’t spell disaster for your business.

What is covered under a public liability insurance policy?

Public liability insurance offers a range of important cover features to market traders. Though cover can differ from one insurance provider to the next, benefits of these types of policies typically include some common features.

If you are found to be legally liable for personal injury or property damage suffered by a third party, your policy will provide cover up to an agreed-upon limit. Typical indemnity limits on policies include $5 million, $10 million or $20 million.

Under this type of cover, the definition of personal injury covers a range of incidents, events and conditions. This includes:

  • Death or bodily injury
  • Sickness or disease
  • Mental anguish
  • Shock and fright
  • False arrest
  • Wrongful detention or imprisonment
  • Assault or battery
  • Libel, slander or defamation
  • Wrongful eviction
  • Invasion of privacy

In terms of property damage to a third party, public liability policies provide cover for the physical loss or destruction of tangible property. It also covers the loss of use of other tangible property, even if it hasn’t actually been damaged, but if it can’t be used because of damage to other property.

Many insurance providers will also offer both public liability and products liability cover under the umbrella of one policy.

Find out more about Public Liability Insurance in Australia

Back to top

What are some public liability exclusions facing market traders?

Just like with any other type of insurance policy, a number of exclusions apply to public liability cover. These may differ from one insurance provider to the next, but cover will generally not be provided for:

  • Fines and penalties that are punitive or exemplary
  • Any loss, damage or liability resulting from acts of war, terrorism, rebellion, revolution or insurrection
  • Anything to do with radioactive contamination or nuclear material
  • Any liability you assume under a contract that would otherwise not have applied
  • Situations where you have waived your rights to recourse without the underwriter’s prior consent
  • Liability related to the possession or use of a motor vehicle or trailer
  • Liability relating to the use of aircraft or watercraft
  • Liability for damage to property you own or are leasing
  • Any deliberate acts of disregard by you or your employees
  • Liability for injury to any of your contracted employees
  • Where your policy includes products liability, your insurer may refuse to pay any claims relating to the sale of things like toys, electronics, medicine or beauty products.
Back to top

How much does market traders public liability insurance cost?

When shopping around for public liability insurance, it pays to compare multiple quotes. However, keep in mind that there are a number of factors that can influence how much your insurance will cost. These include:

  • The size of your stall/business
  • What products you sell
  • Where and when you operate your stall
  • Your business turnover
  • How much coverage you take out.

If you regularly run stalls in high-risk locations, you can obviously expect to pay more for cover. In order to work out exactly how much cover your business needs, you’ll need to take the time to consider the risks you face on a regular basis and what the consequences would be if those risks were to become reality.

Back to top

Public liability insurance for market traders FAQs

Q. Do I really need public liability cover?

  • A. Yes. Operating a market stall at a busy festival, event, fair or concert exposes you to a wide range of potential risks. Taking out this type of cover will give you and your business essential financial protection. In fact, many festival and event operators make it mandatory for stallholders to have public liability insurance.

Q. How much cover do I need?

  • A. It’s impossible to provide an answer to this question without knowing more about your business. How big is your stall? Where and when do you operate? What products do you sell and what is your turnover? Answering these questions will help you understand your business’ insurance needs.

Q. How do I compare public liability policies?

  • A. Obtain quotes from a number of insurance providers to get an idea of how much each policy will cost. Use finder.com.au’s comparison tools to weigh up the pros and cons of competing policies, and read policy documents closely to familiarise yourself with the benefits, limits and exclusions of each policy. An insurance broker can help if you need further assistance.

Public liability cover is something you must consider if you run a market stall. Compare a range of policies, seek multiple quotes and obtain expert advice to ensure you end up with the right public liability policy for your needs.

Get public liability insurance quote

Back to top
Was this content helpful to you? No  Yes

Related Posts

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com.au:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.

6 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    AllisonJune 6, 2018

    Hi. I want to sell some products I have made and purchased at a local contry market. Can you help me decipher this insurance info?

    • finder Customer Care
      JeniJune 7, 2018Staff

      Hi Allison,

      Thank you for getting in touch with finder.

      Many market organisers require you to insure your stall in case things go wrong. You may need both public and product liability insurance to make sure you’re covered. You might also consider professional indemnity insurance.

      – Product liability insurance covers you for any damage or injury caused by a product you sold.
      – Public liability insurance protects you against claims for property damage and bodily injury such as a product you’ve sold negligently causing a fire.
      – Professional indemnity insurance protects you if your client suffers a loss as a direct result of advice you gave.

      Some insurance providers will sell insurance packages specifically for market stall holders (sometimes called ‘Market Trading Insurance’).

      If the market you’re intending to sell your goods at offers insurance as a part of the registration fee, make sure you understand exactly what you’re covered for. You may feel more comfortable obtaining your own insurance in addition to the insurance on offer from the market. You should also make sure that your set up and pack down time is included as a part of your insurance package.

      I hope this helps.

      Have a great day!


  2. Default Gravatar
    SusanJuly 29, 2015

    Hi We are planning a market and are having trouble with people regarding insurance, do people who run charity stalls need insurance? or people who only make a small profit eg. senior person selling knitted items? This is turning people off participating.



    • finder Customer Care
      RichardJuly 29, 2015Staff

      Hi Susan,

      Thanks for your question. finder.com.au is a comparison service and we are not permitted to provide our users with personalised financial advice. Yes, if you’re running a market you’ll generally need to have stall insurance. If you would like to speak with a broker about the best options for you, please enter your details into the contact form above.

      I hope this was helpful,

  3. Default Gravatar
    johnNovember 26, 2014

    Hi can you tell me who is liable if i trip over some market stall framework, the organiser or the owners of the stalls?
    The trader had packed up and gone, It was dark and i didn’t see the metal frame work bars although the canopy was still on the roof and back (no sides)
    I tripped over and damaged my clothing. No harm to myself thankfully.


    • finder Customer Care
      RichardNovember 28, 2014Staff

      Hi John,

      Thanks for your question. finder.com.au is an Australian website so the laws and relations may be different here than that in the UK. You would need to contact the event manager to find out who would be liable.


Ask a question
Go to site