10 policies law firms should review

Lawyers today face greater risks than ever before. Malpractice claims are more common, with higher damages, and they’re joined by new dangers like the possibility of a catastrophic breach of electronic data.

The right insurance coverage can be the difference between a law firm surviving a claim or not. Here are 10 policies every firm should review periodically to minimize risk and ensure that all exposures are covered.

1. Professional liability

Also known as errors and omissions coverage, professional liability insurance protects lawyers from allegations of malpractice. This is typically a law firm’s most expensive but also important coverage.

2. Business owners

A business owner’s policy (BOP) provides general as opposed to professional liability coverage as well as coverage for your property and lost income due to property damage.

3. Workers’ compensation

New Jersey, like almost every other state, requires workers’ comp coverage. There are a number of plan options that affect cost considerably.

4. Valuable papers/electronic data

Files can be much harder to replace than a building or office equipment. This coverage supplements a business owner’s policy, which is often insufficient for these types of losses.

5. Data breach

These days data breach protection is critical–even corporations that make cyber security their business have found themselves vulnerable. Broad data breach coverage helps law firms identify and correct attacks or leaks, comply with notification requirements and more.

6. Employment practices liability

This coverage protects against claims of discrimination, sexual harassment, wrongful termination, negligent evaluation and more. Some (but not all) policies include failure to make partner, while others might offer benefits like access to employment lawyers.

7. Employee dishonesty

Many law firms choose not to buy employee dishonesty insurance because they trust their employees, yet a trusted employee is in the best position to harm your firm. Including this coverage ensures your law firm won’t be underinsured in the event the worst happens.

8. Company vehicles

Law firms are no different from any other business when it comes to insuring company-owned or leased vehicles or personal vehicles used by employees for company business. Vehicles are not included in a business owner’s policy so separate coverage is required.

9. Excess liability

This coverage kicks in if a general liability, workers comp or commercial auto insurance claim should exceed the limits of your standard policies.

10. Personal insurance

It’s important for partners and associates to also have the appropriate individual and family insurance coverage.

If it’s been a while since you’ve reviewed your firm’s insurance coverage, contact John B. Wright Insurance for a free, confidential discussion of your business needs.