November 16, 2020
Errors & Omissions (E&O) Insurance
E&O insurance is supplementary liability insurance that enhances any business owner’s policy by safeguarding against catastrophic loss in the event of a lawsuit due to a negligent act, error or omission by the professional. In addition to claims of error, omission, or negligence, E&O insurance can also protect against slander, libel and breach of contract.
WHO NEEDS E&O COVERAGE?
It is appropriate coverage for anyone who gives advice, makes educated recommendations, designs solutions, or represents the needs of others. Service professionals, such as accountants, computer consultants, software developers, planners, architects, real estate agents, contractors, etc., are prime candidates for carrying E&O insurance.
Specialized forms of E&O coverage are also available to professions such as appraisers, real estate agents, insurance agents, home inspectors and notaries. Policies are designed to cover the large legal defense costs that are incurred trying to prove liability or innocence. They also ultimately cover the final judgment if the business owner does not win the lawsuit.
E&O POLICY OVERVIEW
E&O coverage kicks in where your Commercial General Liability policy does not provide coverage, such as for service errors, contract performance disputes or any other professional liability issues. These policies also include defense costs, which can be quite substantial even if liability is not found. Policies typically do not provide coverage for non-financial losses or for intentional or dishonest acts.
E&O policies generally have both a claim limit and an annual limit, which is based on the insured’s exposure. The claim limit is the maximum amount that will be paid for any single event, and the annual limit is the maximum that will be paid in any one year. Typical limits range from $250,000/$500,000 to $2 million/$4 million and differ depending on the type of business.
To be eligible for this specialized insurance, candidates normally have to have proof of licensure in their “covered class of business.”
When you invest in Errors & Omissions insurance, your trucks and other assets are automatically protected against claims of misrepresentation and negligence. If you make a mistake such as late or wrong address delivery, this insurance policy will protect your assets.
Some E&O insurance is important in the trucking business because you deliver goods that are required by clients to run their businesses. In this way, you are a strategic part of their product delivery process. It provides a safety net in case something unfortunate occurs on your part and disrupts this process.
HOW DOES E&O INSURANCE DIFFER FROM GENERAL LIABILITY INSURANCE?
At Reliance Partners, we understand that E&O insurance is different from general liability insurance. The general liability insurance covers any claims that are made concerning physical damage or bodily harm to someone or their property. On the other hand, an E&O insurance policy provides protection from claims made for monetary compensation due to intangible damages incurred by a client. We strive to explain this subtle difference to our clients whenever they invest in E&O insurance.
TIPS ON HOW TO AVOID E&O LAWSUITS
We have a long history of delivering protection for our clients by providing Error & Omissions insurance coverage. From this experience, we have learned what to do so as to avoid E&O lawsuits. Here is how to keep your business from incurring this legal inconvenience.
1. Maintain clear communication with your clients
A breakdown of communication between you and your client is one of the main causes of E&O lawsuits. The lack of sharing even a little piece of information can lead to a logistical disaster. For this reason, it is very important to maintain clear communication with your clients all the time. Make sure to explain the provisions of your business policies clearly. This will keep your clients satisfied and prevent the emergence of an E&O lawsuit.
2. Create protocols that are robust
Protocols indicate how specific processes will be handled in certain conditions. They act as a guide for the operations of your insurance officers and agents. It is important to establish robust protocols for product or service delivery. In this way, an error pertaining to your clients’ order can be processed and rectified smoothly and rapidly. A robust protocol will also guide your agents to handle these matters on a case by case basis.
3. Stay abreast of all the developments in the market
Sometimes, clients may complain that your company has provided some goods or services that are not up to standard. This could be due to changes in the rules of delivery, quality assurance or new regulations. To avoid this, make sure that you stay smart and aware of any changes in your industry. Maintain a diligent and responsible eye on your industry as you run your enterprise. This can help you to stay updated about advances in the legal and physical aspects of your industry at every turn.
4. Keep your records updated
Today, we use high-tech methods of record keeping. Therefore, it is necessary to establish and maintain a robust, digital method of keeping records. Lost, inaccurate or mismanaged client records can be grounds for an E&O lawsuit. Begin by assessing your current records system. Find out its strengths and weaknesses. Having done so, proceed to improve it gradually. This is best done using digital resources such as computers and Cloud technology. Remember to back up your records as often as possible to avoid inconveniencing your clients.
5. Appraise your resources
For you to flourish as a commercial trucking company, it is important to make sure that you provide high-quality services. This means that you should appraise your enterprise resources as often as possible. Your staff should be highly skilled so as to provide clients with top quality services. To accomplish this, coach your staff and nurture their skills. Assist them to grow and develop their careers within your enterprise. This will help them to make the right decisions in the short term and deliver high-quality services to your clients. It also goes a long way in ensuring that they have successful careers in the future!
COUNT ON THE EXPERTS
There are many different forms of professional liability insurance and multiple factors to consider when purchasing E&O coverage for your business. Because there isn’t a standard policy, an experienced agent who understands your company and can knowledgeably design a policy to meet your needs is invaluable.
Call us today at (877) 668-1704 to learn how E&O insurance fits into your total risk management program.