If you are in a service-related business, you know how important it is to protect yourself with liability insurance in the case of damage or injury to a client or property. A form of protection that is sometimes overlooked, however, is one that protects you in case of lawsuits involving negligence or failing to perform specific duties. This type of coverage is called Errors and Omissions Insurance (also known as Professional Liability Insurance) and can help to protect your business from incurring large costs related to lawsuits of this kind, which can be financially devastating, especially to a small business.
If you are not familiar with this kind of coverage, you can find a wealth of information on Errors and Omissions Insurance online, including what is covered, what is not, average costs and insurers in your area. Here is an overview of what you can expect with typical coverage, although you should always check with your local agent for specifics related to you and your business.
Who Needs It?
If your business provides services to your clients for a fee, you should consider an Errors and Omissions insurance policy. This can include such professions as plumbers, mechanics, printers, accountants – anyone who performs a service for a client. The amount of coverage you need can vary depending on your location, the size and nature of your business, and potential risk. Speak with your agent to determine the appropriate amount of coverage you need, so as not to be under insured when you most need it.
Your Errors and Omissions policy protects your business from losses that are not covered by traditional liability insurance. This can include such things as:
- Negligence (whether alleged or actual)
- Copyright Infringement
- Personal Injury (such as slander or libel, not to be confused with bodily injury)
- Claims from services provided in the past
- Attorney fees
- Court costs
- Settlements (up to the limit of the policy)
What is Not Covered?
- Bodily Injury
- Property Damage
- False Advertising
- Fraudulent Acts
- Matters of Employment
- Trade Secrets or Patents
Again, it is important to speak with your local agent to determine exactly what is covered and what is not, so there are no surprises or misunderstandings down the road.
An online search for Errors and Omissions Insurance will help give you a better understanding of this type of coverage with a general overview of various insurance companies and examples of situations that could be covered. It is important, as with any decision regarding your business, to thoroughly research your insurance options to determine the best coverage for you. It is an investment in your business, your future and, ultimately, yourself.