Professional Liability Insurance in Santa Barbara
Professional Liability Insurance- What is it and why do I need it?
Professional Liability Insurance is a liability insurance coverage that certain businesses and professionals purchase to protect against liability claims. Claims that happen as a result of an error or omission while performing their normal professional work. This is why Professional Liability insurance is also referred to as “Errors and Omissions” insurance. Examples of businesses that normally would purchase professional liability insurance would include accountants, financial planners, attorneys, property managers, real estate brokers, mortgage brokers, consultants. Another category of professionals would be physicians (where they refer to it as Malpractice insurance,) architects, and engineers. But many businesses and professionals outside of these professions have a professional liability exposure, and could benefit from having the protection that professional liability insurance provides.
What Does Professional Liability Insurance Typically Cover?
Professional Liability policies cover economic losses suffered by third parties, if you are sued by them. For example, if an accountant makes a major mistake when filing a clients taxes, and the client suffers financial harm, this could lead to a professional liability claim. The professional liability policy could activate to defend the accountant against a lawsuit or demand, and pay a settlement.
Professional Liability policies are different than general liability policies, because general liability insurance policies respond to bodily injury and property damage claims related to accidents. For example, if a contractors ladder falls over and hits a passerby on the head, this would lead to a general liability claim because the ladder falling over was an accident. But if the same contractor installs the wrong color granite counter top in the new custom kitchen, this would not be a general liability claim, because it is not an accident. It is important for business owners and professionals to understand that their general liability policies specifically exclude professional liability claims. In order to have professional liability coverage, you need to purchase a professional liability policy.
There are some examples where professional liability claims can lead to actual injury. For example, nail salons and hairdressers need to have professional liability to protect their professional work. If they dye a customers hair the wrong color, this is a mistake that could lead to a professional liability claim.
An important takeaway is that many businesses and professionals need both professional liability and general liability.
How Much Does Professional Liability Insurance Cost?
Many factors go into the cost of a professional liability insurance policy. The type of business that you are in, the number of employees you have, your annual sales, your past claims history. Given vast range of business types and professional liability policies out there, there is no way to ballpark a one-size-fits all premium. The best way to obtain a professional liability cost is to have us run a quote specific to you and your company. As part of the quote process, we will work with you to complete the appropriate professional liability application specific to your business type. We will then take your application out to market to shop for the best policy terms and rates. We work with dozens of the highest rated professional liability insurance companies, wholesales, and programs across the country. We only need one application from you, and we will take your submission out to market and go get you the best policy we can find.
How Can Baxter Insurance Help Me With My Professional Liability Insurance Needs?
At Baxter Insurance we know professional liability insurance. We have served thousands of businesses over the past 30 years. We have access to the top professional liability markets, so we can save you time and money. One quick application with us, and we will bring you back a great professional liability quote. Our agents have the expertise to help you sort through the literally hundreds of insurance companies and their policies to help you make sense of it all. And the best news? Using an insurance agency like us usually saves you money because we are going to market the policy. You are also going to have an insurance adviser you can call on throughout the life of your policy to help you with questions, service, and most importantly, in the event you have a claim.
Any Other Important Considerations When Purchasing a Professional Liability Policy?
Yes- Professional Liability Insurance policies are written on “claims made” policy forms. This is very different than other business insurance policies. Claims-Made policies mean the insurance company will only provide coverage if the claim is made at the time the policy is active. For example, if you start your policy in January, and in February you make a mistake that leads to a claim, but you cancel your policy in March, and the client sues you in April, you are out of luck. Even though your policy was active when the claim happened, the policy was cancelled when the claim was made. So when you purchase professional liability insurance, you want to make sure you keep your policy active year after year, without any lapse in coverage.
But what if I switch insurance companies?
Good question. You can switch insurance companies, but make sure your new insurance company writes into your new policy your “retroactive date.” Your retroactive date is the date your professional liability policy first started. For example, if you are an attorney and you started practicing law and purchased your first professional liability policy January 1st, 1990, that is your retroactive date. You need to make sure that any new insurer you move your policy to agrees to keep that same retroactive date in-tact. Otherwise you lose all of your prior years of coverage!
What Businesses Can Baxter Insurance Write Professional Liability For?
We can insure almost any business for professional liability insurance. Some common client types that we help are:
Real Estate Agents
Mortgage Brokers Professional Liability Insurance
Contractors Professional Liability
Not Listed? We can write it. Just contact us.
Providing free Professional Liability Insurance quotes to all cities in California including:
Santa Barbara, Goleta, Montecito, Summerland, Carpinteria, Summerland, Solvang, Santa Maria, Los Olivos, Los Alamos, Santa Ynez, Ventura, Oxnard, Ojai, Fillmore, Camarillo, Thousand Oaks, Agoura Hills, Westlake Village, Simi Valley, Bakersfield, San Jose, San Diego, Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Long Beach, San Francisco