Frequently Asked Questions:
Lawyers Professional Liability Insurance is also frequently referred to as legal malpractice insurance or errors and omissions (E&O) insurance. The following are frequently asked questions that we often hear from our clients:
- What type of policy is the Lawyers Professional Liability (LPL) Insurance policy; is it an “Occurrence” or a “Claims Made” policy?
Professional Liability Insurance Policies are written on a “Claims Made” basis. This means that the policy in effect at the time a claim is made is the policy that responds to the claim, not the policy in effect at the time that the act, error or omission occurred. In other words, a “Claims Made” policy offers coverage for a claim arising from a legal service that not only occurred on or after the retroactive date (as stated in the Declarations Page of the policy), but also was first made against an insured during the policy period.
- Why do I need Professional Liability Insurance?
Lawsuits against legal practices are rising every day. The right type of insurance can help you avoid financial ruin and/or losing your law firm. Maintaining this type of insurance also lets your clients know that your practice will ensure that there is a way for clients to be protected if a mistake happens.
- How much insurance do I need?
It’s hard to know how much insurance is enough! Think about the size of cases that you handle, and what your exposure might be. Also, find out if any clients have a requirement for a minimum policy limit amount. Some clients, referral programs, lenders and title companies require certain limits.
- When do I need to report a matter and what should I report?
Anytime an attorney becomes aware of a potential claim, is served with a lawsuit or receives a verbal or written threat of malpractice, the matter should be reported immediately to your insurance agent, who will then report it to the insurance company Claims Department. Bar Complaints should also be reported to the carrier as a potential claim.
- What is covered?
The LPL policy provides coverage for Professional Services performed on behalf of the Named Insured. Most carriers provide coverage for legal services performed on or after the retroactive date, including work done as a notary, title agent and mediator. Each insurance company has a different definition of Professional Services, so be sure to read your policy for specific coverage details.