What is Professional Malpractice Insurance? Do I need it?

Most people know that doctors, dentists, and lawyers need malpractice insurance, yet so do accountants, financial planners, computer analysts, journalists, realtors, and many other professionals.

A lawsuit against any professional for “malpractice,” can occur in surprising ways. There is no need to make a mistake to suffer an attack of a lawsuit. Of course, if a mistake is made the chance of a lawsuit may be higher; however, lawsuits may arise from misunderstandings as well. The courts in America, which is the most litigious society on earth, are full of lawsuits based on misunderstandings and even those that are considered “frivolous,” with no basis in fact whatsoever.

Malpractice insurance is understood more clearly when the insurance is called Errors & Omissions (E&O) insurance.

Here is an example of where E&O insurance applies. Imagine a stockbroker gets an order from a client to buy or sell a stock. If the broker makes a mistake when entering the order and does the wrong thing by accident, there can be a large problem for the client’s account. If the broker was supposed to sell a stock and instead buys it, the losses may be substantial. If a loss occurs because a broker made a mistake, then E&O insurance is necessary to cover the mistake.

Accountants, lawyers, computer analysts, and many other professionals can also make mistakes. These mistakes may be costly and cause a lawsuit from any people that suffer damages. As a rule, any professional that needs to have a license by a state or other authority benefits from having “malpractice” or E&O insurance.

How much malpractice insurance do I need?
There are two considerations when thinking about malpractice insurance. The first one is the possibility of a huge award that comes from a lawsuit. The second one is the cost of the legal defense. Even if the lawsuit does not result in an award, in other words, you win; you still have the potential of enormous legal fees that arise simply from the defense of your case.

Be sure to check in with the agents at Front Range Insurance Services to review your commercial insurance coverage for malpractice issues.