Important details to remember about Professional Liability policies for architects/engineers-
While Professional Liability policies are not lengthy they have quite a bit of information included. Below are a list of items to keep in mind when reading your Professional Liability policy.
Most Professional Liability policies are claims made and reported policies. The claims made means the policy that is in place when the notice of claim is received is the policy that responds on the claim. Additionally the claim must be reported to the insurance company when it is received at your firm. The claim must be both made against your firm and reported to the insurance company during the policy period.
The limits of liability in a Professional Liability policy include expenses and damages. For example, if you have a claim settlement for $100,000 and the expenses are $30,000 the total for that claim is $130,000 and will reduce the limits available for the remainder of the policy term. If your firms per claim limit of liability is $1,000,000, this claim example will reduce the limit for the remainder of the policy term to $870,000.
With regards to exclusions, be sure you are aware of what they are in your firm’s policy, especially if your firm is not insured with the standard markets. Most standard market exclusions will be sales or distributions of goods, faulty workmanship and intentional and dishonest acts. Non-standard markets may have exclusions on mold or specific project types such as condos.
Probably one of the best features of a Professional Liability policy is free pre-claims assistance. These do not count against your claims history and help your firm in the event of a pre-claim situation.
There are several important pieces of your firm’s Professional Liability policy to be aware of. As always, read your policy to have a full understanding of the policy. If you have questions please call or email your Professional Underwriter agent.