Q: I can’t find a riding insurance policy to cover me against broken bones and other injuries that might mean time off work. As soon as I mention show jumping, I am put into the dangerous sports category and nobody wants to offer me any cover. This means that at present, while my horse is insured to the hilt, I have no cover at all.

A: THB British Equestrian is the official broker to the British Show Jumping Association (BSJA), and it offers an individual personal accident insurance policy for riders, with discounts for members. Other insurers, including South Essex Insurance Brokers (SEIB) and Shearwater, also offer policies.

Personal accident insurance will cover you for loss of income if an injury stops you from working temporarily, and provide a lump sum if you are permanently disabled or die in a riding accident. The type of things covered are loss of eyesight, loss of limbs, permanent disablement and death; the maximum payout can be as high as £50,000.

“Individual personal accident cover is on a unitised basis and the premium depends on how much cover is bought, your job and what riding you do,” explains David Buckton of SEIB’s policy.

“For example, a policy providing cover at a capital sum up to £20,000 for death or permanent total disability, loss of limb etc, £200 per week temporary total disability up to 104 weeks, for a clerical worker/amateur show jumper would cost less than £20 per month.”

Shearwater offers a “Two Part” policy for those who ride horses for pleasure or as a business, including grooms and trainers.

“Standard cover provides up to £50,000 in the event of permanent total disablement, loss of eye/limb or accidental death, if caused by an accident,” said a Shearwater spokesperson.

“The second level (or super) cover, available in addition to standard, provides for loss of earnings from a total but temporary disablement if caused by an accident, such as a broken leg. Cover is provided for up to 52 weeks, with a maximum of £250 per week for loss of earnings.

“A housewife, who rides purely for pleasure but does no eventing, would be offered basic cover at the lowest premium, which is currently in the region of £85. However, an event rider, who competes/trains horses for a living would be offered both the basic and super cover and would pay a higher premium.

“The policy offers 24-hour/worldwide cover for UK residents,” concludes the spokesperson.

If you require a lower level of cover, check your horse insurance, as some insurers offer an element of personal accident cover in these. Some organisations, such as the British Horse Society (BHS), include it in their membership package. BHS Gold members ( £50 per year plus £5 joining fee*) automatically get personal liability and personal accident cover with SEIB. Personal accident cover is restricted to £10,000.

Useful contacts

  • British Horse Society (tel: 08701 202244) www.bhs.org.uk NB: joining fee is waived for H&H readers – quote H&H when enquiring
  • Shearwater Insurance Services (tel: 08700 767666) www.shearwater-insurance.co.uk
  • South Essex Insurance Brokers (tel: 0845 450 0631) www.seib.co.uk
  • THB British Equestrian (tel: 01732 771719) www.thbgroup.com

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