Institute of Swimming FAQS


Who/What is covered by the Liability insurance?

IOS members resident in the UK or Eire automatically receive Public Liability and Professional Indemnity Insurance within their membership affiliation.

The Liability insurance provides protection from the consequences of claims against the organisation for injury, financial loss or damage to third party property, arising from your teaching and coaching activity, where negligence occurs.

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What is the age limit?

There is no age limit within the liability insurance however we would direct you to the ASA and IOS for any age guidance and suitability when undertaking coaching and teaching qualifications. E.G. ASA Level 1 course is age 16 or over.

The Personal Accident policy provides cover to Affiliated members of IoS resident in the UK and Eire between the ages of 16- 80 years. However, the benefits for anyone over the age of 70 are limited to Death, Loss of two or more Limbs or both Eyes or one of each, or Loss of one Limb or Eye.

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What is meant by 'Claims Made'?

The Liability Insurances is provided on a “claims made” basis. It is essential that any claims or circumstances that might give rise to a claim are notified during the policy period in accordance with the terms of the policy wording otherwise the right for indemnity under this insurance will be forfeited

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Does the policy cover non UK/Eire residents?

NO. Insurance provided via the IOS membership will only apply to members who are resident in the UK or Eire.

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What do I do if I become aware of, or am involved in, an incident?

If the incident involves an injury it is essential for you to record this in your accident book. We refer you to the liability incident recording and notification guidelines.

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If I am injured, can I claim from the policy?

If you are injured you would not be able to claim from the Liability policy however the IOS membership includes a separate Personal Accident Insurance.

Details of the benefits and coverage provided can be found here >

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Am I insured if I teach abroad?

Yes both the Liability and Personal Accident insurances recognise that IOS members may temporarily operate outside the UK for guidance the longest period being up to 6 months however you must maintain a residency here in the UK or Eire.. Please be aware that there are limitations in the coverage for liability claims brought in the USA or Canada.

The IOS Insurance does not replace the need for the members to obtain appropriate travel insurance for their additional travel insurance needs such as medical expenses, loss of passport, cancellation etc.

To get a Sport Travel Insurance quote, please click here >

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Is a member insured to teach in a private home pool?

Yes . Please note however that the Insurance included in IOS membership applies to the teaching activity only.

If you own the pool it is essential that additional insurance is sourced for the pool owner liability and property damage and that you notify your home Insurer to advise the premises is in being used for this purpose.

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Does my IOS insurance cover me for general Loss of Income?

Within the membership benefits are:

  • Personal Accident Insurance with a weekly benefit if you injury yourself and are unable to teach – details can be found here
  • Loss of Revenue – should the pool you operate at be damaged and you are unable to teach at this location – details can be found here.

Personal Accident insurance is not a sickness policy and we would refer you to your usual financial adviser to investigate sickness, private medical insurances & critical illness insurances.

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Does the Personal Accident cover me for general accident?

The Personal accident policy will apply if you injure yourself whilst undertaking your teaching activity.

Link to Personal Accident Page >

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I have been diagnosed with a medical condition does my IOS Insurance cover me?

NO there is no private medical or sickness benefits within the IOS Insurance.

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Do I need to have a lifeguard or hold lifeguarding qualifications to be insured?

Yes the ASA and IOS Best Practice requires you to have a Lifeguard present at all teaching sessions.

If you are the sole teacher poolside it is essential that you also hold the appropriate, lifeguarding qualification.

If there is a qualified lifeguard present from the venue responsible for your session you do not need to hold a lifeguarding qualification.

If you are teaching and the lifeguard a Risk Assessment is essential if there are more than 2 teaching sessions taking place at any one time. Guidance suggests that you should not be both teaching and be the lifeguard where more than 2 teaching sessions are taking place. You need to assess the risk for ability to both monitor the teaching session and the lifesaving responsibilities. As with all risk assessment it is also essential to record bot the assessment and the risk management solutions.

HSE 5 Steps to Risk Assessment >

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Does there need to be a lifeguard on poolside?

Yes the ASA and IOS Best Practice requires you to have a Lifeguard present at all teaching sessions.

If you are the sole teacher poolside it is essential that you also hold the appropriate, lifeguarding qualification.

If there is a qualified lifeguard present from the venue responsible for your session you do not need to hold a lifeguarding qualification.

If you are teaching and the lifeguard a Risk Assessment is essential if there are more than 2 teaching sessions taking place at any one time. Guidance suggests that you should not be both teaching and be the lifeguard where more than 2 teaching sessions are taking place. You need to assess the risk for ability to both monitor the teaching session and the lifesaving responsibilities. As with all risk assessment it is also essential to record bot the assessment and the risk management solutions.

HSE 5 Steps to Risk Assessment >

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Can I teach on my own as a level 1?

NO. An IOS member can teach within their level of teaching/coaching qualification, and will be insured for public liability and professional indemnity sections of the liability insurance.

We would refer you to the ASA for guidance on which qualification is required. E.g. level 1 teacher is only trained/qualified to support not run a teaching session and therefore when teaching should be under supervision of a level 2 or above.

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Am I insured to teach a child with a medical condition – epilepsy / MS / Blind /Deaf?

We would refer you to the ASA/IOS for guidance. A current Level 2 Teacher can access additional support and training for teaching individuals with certain medical conditions within their CPD courses. We would also refer you to the Wavepower document where additional guidance is available.

Risk assessments and risk management are essential in these circumstances.

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Do risk assessments need to be complete and if so how often?

Yes. It is essential that you undertake risk assessments for your IOS and Teaching activity to support you in your risk management. You owe a duty of care to those around you and if an allegation for negligence is made against you the risk assessments you have done may be called upon to establish that you done everything reasonable to prevent an incident occurring.

Further guidance can be provided via the HSE >

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