Most professionals strive to provide their clients with exceptional advice. However, no matter how experienced, educated or genuine your intentions, there’s always a risk that an error or omission could lead to financial loss for a client. While the error or omission may be completely accidental, as professionals we are held to a higher standard and as such, are considered accountable.
Professional indemnity insurance is designed to protect your business against third party claims (including legal costs) for damages arising from acts, errors, omissions or breaches of professional duty.
At Guard Insurance Brokers we understand the risks professionals face in the everyday provision of services and the importance of protecting against these risks. We also know that professional indemnity insurance can be complex and if you don’t get the right advice you may end up with inadequate cover.
As professional indemnity insurance specialists, we leverage our industry knowledge and strong insurer relationships to ensure we deliver the right professional indemnity solution.
Why not chat to one of our professional insurance brokers? We’ll happily answer your questions and help you find the right insurance solution for your business. Contact Us »
Who needs professional indemnity insurance?
You need professional indemnity insurance if you provide any professional service involving specialised knowledge or expertise, including:
Why are Professional Indemnity claims made?
Clients are increasingly aware of their rights to pursue a professional or specialist if their advice results in financial loss. A simple error or omission is all it takes to trigger a claim and involve you and your firm in expensive and time-consuming litigation.
Claims can arise in a number of ways:
- for negligence if you fail to exercise the standard of reasonable care for your profession;
- for defamation;
- under the misleading or deceptive conduct provisions of consumer protection legislation; or
- for a breach of contract to perform professional services.
The potential consequences of these claims are serious. At the very least your firm could incur legal costs to defend the claim, but you could also be liable to pay compensation and the claimant’s costs.
Unlike business insurance, professional indemnity insurance is written on a claims made basis. This means that your current insurer is responsible for responding to all claims, even if a claim was from advice you provided 3 years ago and even if you were insured with a different insurer 3 years ago. Because professional indemnity insurance is written on a claims made basis, you need to be aware of the following important conditions:
You must immediately notify your insurer of any potential or known claim, otherwise your claim may be declined.
Never let your policy lapse
If you let your policy lapse, you may not be able to get cover for any of the advice you have provided historically.
“I thought I was covered for that”
Make sure your professional indemnity policy insures you for all your business activities, which are usually stated under the insuring clause of the policy. Too often, we hear of professional indemnity claims being declined because the business activities have been recorded incorrectly.
6 years is a long time!
Under current legislation a client has up to 6 years to bring a claim against you, which means you need to retain professional indemnity insurance even when you exit the industry. This is know as ‘run-off cover’ and without it, you are financially exposed.
The professions we advise and arrange cover for include:
Registered Training Organisations
Business Consultants and Advisers
IT Consultants / Software Developers
Real Estate Agents