November 16, 2020
Directors & Officers (D&O) Insurance
D&O FILLS THE COVERAGE GAP
Unlike a commercial general liability policy that provides coverage for claims arising from property damage and bodily injury, a D&O policy specifically provides coverage for a “wrongful act,” such as an actual or alleged error, omission, misleading statement, neglect or breach of duty.
For example, a manufacturer told one of its suppliers to increase inventory because they were expecting a large increase in production. As predicted, demand for the manufacturer’s product grew, but the manufacturer increased its inventory with another vendor. The original supplier successfully sued the manufacturer, alleging they suffered damages as a result of having relied on the manufacturer’s promise.
A D&O policy provides defense costs and indemnity coverage to the entity listed on the policy declarations, which may include the following:
- Coverage for individual directors and officers
- Reimbursement to the organization for a contractual obligation to indemnify directors and officers that serve on the board
- Protection for the organization or entity itself
CONSIDERATIONS FOR NONPROFITS
According to the Nonprofit Risk Management Center, nonprofit organizations often report some difficulty in affording the cost of D&O insurance. To minimize the annual premium, they recommend choosing only those policy provisions considered most critical. For example, a volunteer-run nonprofit without paid staff may skip employment practices coverage until it hires staff. If affording a lump sum premium is a concern, inquire about the availability of premium financing. To defray the cost of premiums, some nonprofit organizations consider charging board members a portion of the policy cost.
WE’RE HERE TO HELP
Whether you’re a nonprofit, privately held or a public company, it is likely that your business can benefit from a D&O policy. Since there is no such thing as a “standard” policy, a professional agent is invaluable when purchasing D&O coverage. We understand your organization and can knowledgeably help design policy language to meet your needs. Call us today to learn more about the appropriate protection for your company against potential directors’ and officers’ liability.