Public Liability Insurance Claims

What is a Public Liability Insurance claim?

If you have suffered injury or loss or damage to your property, which you feel is our responsibility, you can submit a Public Liability claim in order to recover your losses or expenses. Public Liability claims will only be paid where it can be shown that we have failed in our legal duty and this has resulted in the injury, loss or damage.

How do I make a claim against the Council?

You or your legal representative can make a claim by letter or email. You should include the following information in your claim letter

  • The date of the incident
  • The location of the incident
  •  A description of what happened
  • Why you feel we are responsible

You can also include any receipts, invoices or other information you feel supports your claim. You can find where to send your claim at the end of this leaflet

What happens to my claim once I send it in?

Your claim will be passed to the relevant department (e.g. Roads, Waste Services) for them to prepare the necessary reports and information required. They will make every effort to prepare these as quickly as possible, however this can sometimes take a bit of time depending on the complexity of the case. Once completed they send this to our Insurance Team to log. Our Insurance Team will then send your claim and the department reports to our insurers to begin their investigation. The insurers will write to you to advise that they have received your claim.

Who are the Council’s Insurers?

Zurich Municipal are our Public Liability Insurers and your claim will be passed to one of their claims handlers to assess.

How do they make their decision?

A Zurich Municipal claims handler will decide if they feel we’re legally liable to meet your claim based on your original claim and all the information we sent them. They make their decision based on how they feel a Court would decide the case if it was presented with the same information. Claims are only paid where it can be shown we failed in our legal duty, which resulted in your injury, loss or damage to property. To ensure claims are handled fairly and independently we have no input into Zurich Municipal’s decision-making process

How long will the process take?

While some claims are determined quickly, others may take longer depending on the circumstances of the claim and the information required. Zurich Municipal’s claims handlers will make every effort to reach their decision as quickly as possible, however sometimes further information may be needed from you or us before they can reach a decision. Once they are satisfied that a decision can be made, they will write to you to inform you.

What happens if my claim is successful?

Zurich Municipal will contact you to discuss the settlement of your claim and come to an agreement on the figure. They may need further information from you, such as estimates or invoices, medical records if you have suffered an injury or wages details if you have lost income.

What if my claim was unsuccessful?

Zurich Municipal will advise you in writing that your claim was unsuccessful and will provide details on why they have reached that decision. If you are still unsure as to how this decision was reached you can ask them to provide a more detailed explanation

Can I appeal if my claim is unsuccessful?

You can appeal an unsuccessful claim, however Zurich Municipal will only reconsider a decision on a claim if you can provide further information that is relevant to the incident that they have not previously been made aware of. If you are still not satisfied you have the right to seek your own independent legal advice or contact Citizens Advice Scotland.

Can the Council overturn the decision?

We cannot comment on or reverse any decision on liability made by Zurich Municipal, we can only provide them with information to reach a decision.

Can I make a complaint?

If you are unhappy with the service provided by the Zurich Municipal Claims Handler who dealt with your claim, you can submit a complaint to the Claims Manager at Zurich Municipal – see contact addresses at the end of the pamphlet. If you’re not satisfied with the way your claim has been handled you can make a complaint. You can make a complaint on our website or by writing to us at the Customer Advice and Support Services address below. A complaint about the service provided is a separate matter from the decision on liability and won’t result in a claim decision being reversed. If you are unhappy about the outcome of your claim you can find information about how to appeal above.


Customer Advice and Support Service

Council Headquarters, Newtown St. Boswells, Melrose, Scottish Borders, TD6 0SA

  • tel: 0300 100 1800
  • email:

Insurance Services

The insurance service for us is provided by the City of Edinburgh Council.

The City of Edinburgh Council, 4 East Market Street, Edinburgh, EH8 8BG

Zurich Municipal

Glasgow Casualty Claims, POB 3318, Interface Business Park, Swindon, SN4 8XR

Citizens Advice Scotland Or check your phone book for your local citizens advice bureau