Insurance agent professional liability, also known as E&O (errors and omissions), is treated much like malpractice in other professions. Its strict definition states that E&O liability occurs whenever an agent causes financial loss to a client. Here are three important tips to help agents understand this important liability:
Policies Are Issued on a Claims-Made Basis
E&O protection does not cover the term of the execution or completion of the work product. The policy must be in effect when the claims are made. That generally means that an agent should maintain an active policy throughout the liability period of any work product.
E&O Does Not Cover Client Conflict Resolution
A common occurrence in the insurance world is an accusation by an agent client that the agent caused financial harm by stealing away a client’s customer. These types of situations are not covered under general E&O policies, and should be addressed with another type of coverage.
E&O Liability Is Not Necessarily Related to the Quality of the Work Product
Agents who carefully proofread their work and limit the number of mistakes are not necessarily any better off as far as E&O liability is concerned. Lawsuits are often less about the quality of the work, and more about the expectations of the clients. For this reason, E&O protection is important, even for agents who have never been sued.
Agents should contact their local insurance provider to provide a personal estimate of their insurance agent professional liability.