Hollay Ghadery Last Updated On: June 27, 2023

What Is Home Liability Insurance?

Home liability insurance provides protection against lawsuits and injury claims by individuals hurt on your property or by property damage by you or anyone who resides in your home.

This coverage is a component of your homeowner’s/renter’s insurance package that also includes coverage of your home, possessions, and any other structures on your property. So, home liability insurance is part of most home insurance policies, but it can also be purchased as stand-alone coverage. 

Here’s a simple way to think about home liability insurance: It covers you for what happens to others when they are on your property.

It does not cover injury or liability protection against suits from a family member but if your dog bites a neighbour, your child injures another child on your property, then homeowners liability coverage generally picks up the tab.

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What Does Home Liability Insurance Cover?

Based on what we’ve already said, you probably already have a general idea of what is covered by home liability insurance, but let’s be more specific so you can have a better handle on your coverage.

Property Damage. Let’s say your kid throws a baseball through a neighbour’s window or your dog chews up the neighbour’s fence—home insurance liability coverage has got you covered up to your policy’s limits.

Personal Injury. This is the coverage you hear about the most: someone slips on your icy sidewalk or takes a spill down your stairs. Bodily liability will cover your legal responsibility and work in tandem with the medical payments (also called guest medical) part of your homeowner insurance. This portion of your insurance pays for reasonable and related medical bills for the person or people injured on your property.

Guest medical covers:

  • Hospital costs
  • Professional nursing services
  • X-rays
  • Ambulance
  • Dental work
  • Medical and surgical expenses
  • Nursing services
  • Prosthetic devices
  • Funeral services

Again, your personal liability homeowner’s insurance will only cover these costs up to your limit, so it’s a good idea not to be stingy with your coverage. Get as much as you can afford.

Here are some other coverages that are provided by some (read: not all) homeowners liability insurance providers:

Food Poisoning. If you’re hosting a party and someone becomes ill because of the food and needs medical attention and/or takes up a lawsuit, your homeowners liability insurance can cover you.

Libel and Slander. As relatively unknown but useful coverage, libel and slander protection will cover you if you’re accused of defamation.

What Personal Liability Home Insurance Doesn't Cover?

As with any insurance policy or add-on, there are certain situations where home liability insurance will not cover injuries or damage. The majority of these situations will not be covered because they aren’t your fault or fall outside of the policy’s parameters.

For instance, if a courier fell down your steps because you’d failed to shovel them properly, then any injuries would be covered by your insurance. However, if a courier fell down your steps because his shoelaces weren’t tied and your doorbell cam can prove this, then that’s his fault and you’re not covered (nor could you be successfully sued).

Here are some other instances in which your homeowners liability insurance would not be applicable or necessary:

  • If you damage your own property
  • Intentional damage
  • Damage caused by someone who isn’t named on your policy or a member of the family
  • Car accident injuries
  • Injuries that occur in a common area of an apartment or condo complex
  • Damage covered by another person’s homeowner’s policy
  • Injuries that result from particular high-risk breeds of dogs

When in doubt about coverage, ask your agent or insurance provider. If you don’t have an agent or insurance provider, let us hook you up with a free quote. We’ve curated a list of the top home liability insurance providers and will match you with the perfect and most affordable provider for your needs.

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Homeowners Liability Insurance Is a Part of Your Homeowners Policy

You have a friend over to your home and they slip down your icy front steps and break their arm. Given that the average cost of a trip to the ER is around $1,400, even the closest pal may be looking to you to help pay for their hospital bills. 

And legally, they’d have every right to. This is just one example of when having home insurance liability coverage can come in handy. Also called personal liability homeowner’s insurance, this kind of coverage can protect not only your money but also your relationships against the unexpected. 

Who Doesn’t Home Liability Insurance Cover?

While family members and people listed on your homeowner’s policy are covered by home liability insurance, tenants are not. So, if you rent out part of your home, you’re going to want to look into separate landlord insurance. What’s more, your tenants will want to consider renters home insurance

How Much Home Liability Insurance Do You Need?

Most standard homeowners packages contain a $300,000 liability limit. Many insurance professionals recommend raising that to $500,000 or suggest you consider an umbrella policy to increase your personal liability coverage on your homeowners policy to ensure adequate coverage in our increasingly litigious society.

If you have other assets you wish to protect, go with a higher limit. Yes, it will cost you more in the short-term but could save you big time, in the long run. If you don’t have enough coverage and are sued, the plaintiff can come after your assets to make up the difference. 

Also, consider your family members—people and pets. If you have young kids or a dog, consider purchasing additional protection.

Again, we can help. We have a number of insurance companies available to help with crafting a homeowners/renters policy to protect you and your investment from losses due to accidents to others that happen on your property.

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The Cost of Homeowners Liability Insurance

Considering what homeowners liability insurance covers, the cost of it is extremely affordable. Since this type of coverage is usually bundled into your homeowner’s insurance, many people aren’t even aware of its individual cost, but it’s around $10 per $100,000 of coverage.

That seems reasonable enough, considering it can be the difference between simply filing a claim and financial devastation. 


Yes, absolutely. It’s usually built into your homeowner’s, condo or renter’s insurance though, so it’s not generally something you have to acquire separately, but most mortgage providers won’t provide you with a loan without proof of homeowner’s insurance.

Personal home liability insurance covers things that happen to someone else or someone else’s property caused by you or someone living in your home (other than a renter). E.g. If your new patio table goes through your neighbours sliding doors during a storm, your home liability insurance will cover the damage up to your limits.

No, just to other people. Your health insurance should cover you if you or a family member is injured in your own house. And you don’t need liability to cover YOU anyway because it’s highly unlikely you’d sue yourself.


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