Professional liability insurance premiums are escalating. They are scheduled to triple in the next twelve months. Insurance companies are adding more conditions for coverage and exclusions to coverage. Why?
1. When the economy is bad, clients are more prone to blame professionals for their problems. The number of lawsuits against professionals escalates.
2. The number of lawsuits in 2012 against holistic and natural health therapies professionals is more than double the number during 2010.
3. Most of these lawsuits are frivolous but cost the insurance company an average of almost $50,000.00 to win or settle.
4. This means professional liability insurance premiums will more than double and/or these policies will contain more conditions and exclusions.
5. More conditions means you will need to do more things for your clients and the insurance company in order to be covered for a loss.
6. More exclusions means some of the reasons people file lawsuits against you will not be covered by your professional liability insurance policy.
7. That could mean, you will need to hire your own attorney at your expense and pay any judgements against you -- even though you paid for professional liability insurance.
The question becomes: "What can I do about the rising cost of insurance?"
There are three answers:
1. Become a Professional Member and avoid having to buy Professional Liability insurance because you are protected by your own private health association.
2. Become an Associate Member and avoid having to buy Professional Liability insurance because you are protected as an Associate Member of our private health association.
3. Become an Affiliate Member to purchase your Professional Liability Insurance through our group insurance policy for less than what other companies will charge you. Just follow the links and use your Membership Number to buy insurance.
2. General Liability (Casualty) Insurance
General Liability insurance covers you if your clients are harmed on your property or a property you rent or lease. Some people refer to General Liability Insurance as "trip and fall" insurance because that's the most common claim.
There are a number of economical ways of obtaining economical General Liability Insurance:
a. Contact your homeowners, renters or tenants insurance agent and ask how much it will cost to add liability for a "part-time business" to your policy. That's the most economical way -- especially if you have a home office for your business. Try this approach first.
b. If your landlord or boss requires a "Certificate of Insurance" the best approach is to tell them it's a lot cheaper to add you to their General Liability or Business owners Insurance Policy. It is more economical.
c. If your boss or landlord will not accept that option, ask both your home and automobile insurance agents for a quote on General Liability Insurance for your office location.
d. If anybody tries to sell you a Business owners Insurance Policy, check it out and compare prices. This is usually more expensive than General Liability Insurance.
3. Other Forms of Liability (Casualty) Insurance
Some other forms of Liability Insurance policies you may already know about include:
Automobile Liability Insurance for motorized bicycles, motorcycles, cars, vans, pickups, trucks, motorized homes, busses, trailers and other motor vehicles covers the owner if the vehicle causes harm to people, animals or property. This is commonly called "Automobile Insurance."
Business Liability Insurance covers the business owner for injuries to people in and around the business property. In most cases, it is usually more economical to purchase a Business owners Policy that also covers shoplifting and theft, damages to customer's property and other losses. This is commonly called "Business Insurance."
Errors and Omissions Insurance covers the policy owner for claims of negligence. This is most commonly used to protect directors of an LLC or corporation from being sued individually. This is commonly called "E and O Insurance."
Fire Liability Insurance covers you if you, your employees or business start a fire on a property you do not own. Large companies with large smokestacks and coal furnaces commonly carry this type of coverage as do electrical and fuel or gas utility companies.
Product Liability Insurance covers the insured for damages their products cause purchasers. The largest product liability claims are usually filed against automobile, bioengineering and pharmaceutical companies.
Other companies that carry this type of insurance include appliance, athletic equipment, cosmetics, electronics, food, health and wellness products, tool and toy manufacturing companies and restaurants.
4. Property Insurance
Property insurance an be purchased to cover loss or damage to property for any of the following and other perils and events:
Accidental, fire and water, flood, governmental agency, hurricane and tornado or twister, riot, robbery, shop-lifting and theft, storm or wind storm damages and other named perils.
It is usually more economical to purchase property insurance as part of a package than individually. Here are some examples:
Automobile collision, comprehensive and theft is more economical if you purchase a policy also including liability insurance.
Homeowners and Renters policies are more economical than purchasing personal property, theft, fire and extended coverage insurance.
Business property can be insured in a Business Policy along with business liability for less than buying them separately.
Theft insurance is usually more economical when purchased with home or business insurance package.
You will usually get a better price if you work with your automobile or home insurance agent whether you rent or own.
5. More About Professional Liability Insurance
If you need to buy Professional Liability Insurance for some reason: