E & O or Professional Liability Insurance Need

E & O or Professional Liability Insurance Need

Posted by WPLS on Aug 14, 2012 9:27 am

I had to turn down a client recently because I didn't carry E&O, which the Client required.  The project was what I consider a simple Property Line Relocation Survey to enable the client to remove and replace an existing fence on an older property which had been previously surveyed and divided with what Wisconsin calls a Certified Survey Map and all other states call a Minor Land Division.

Question:  Why would I or any other Surveyor need E&O in a situation like this?

Please forgive my ignorance/naivate.

Thanks.

Re: E & O or Professional Liability Insurance Need

Posted by Don Poole on Aug 14, 2012 11:48 am

I've questioned that also but I did find that E&O isn't as expensive as I first thought and it has opened up some doors that were previously closed.  Price it out and you may be surprised...

As for the insurance requirement aspect, well it's just to help cover thier investment, in case you do mess up and can't cover the additional cost yourself.

Don


Don Poole PLS
Outermost Land Survey, Inc.

"Outstanding in the field"

Re: E & O or Professional Liability Insurance Need

Posted by MLB on Aug 14, 2012 1:21 pm

More and more clients are requiring this type of insurance. You will often find it as a line item in contracts. It is more commonly found in construction contracts than property surveys. Removing and replacing a fence is considered construction in some circles.

I have had to carry it for, believe it or not, GIS work for municipalities. Go figure?
MLB

Re: E & O or Professional Liability Insurance Need

Posted by WPLS on Aug 14, 2012 4:17 pm

Thanks for the info gentlemen. 

I suppose it does make sense, sort of. 

Still...it is a bit insulting, in this situation at least, to get the message "We'd like to hire your services but we just don't trust your professionalism, ethics or capability to complete the work on time and correctly."  The client didn't say this of course but this is how I read the underlying intent of a phrase like "We require you to have Professional Liability Insurance".

Enough said I guess. 

I'm looking for E & O Insurance. smiley

Re: E & O or Professional Liability Insurance Need

Posted by Paul Montero on Aug 14, 2012 6:39 pm


I used to think insurance was just for people who goof up. Insurance could save you because it provides first defense. Meaning even if you did not goof up the defense in a law suit could make you broke. Insurance takes care of defense.

You have to be covered and paying premiums at the time the law suit is brought upon you though. Say if you are covered for the time you do the work and a law suit is brought on you years after you are done you are not covered for that work unless your policy is current. So you have to pay them forever or get a rider on your policy if you quit paying.


Re: E & O or Professional Liability Insurance Need

Posted by AverageJoe on Aug 15, 2012 7:32 pm


Still...it is a bit insulting, in this situation at least, to get the message "We'd like to hire your services but we just don't trust your professionalism, ethics or capability to complete the work on time and correctly."  The client didn't say this of course but this is how I read the underlying intent of a phrase like "We require you to have Professional Liability Insurance".

 

Do you want your doctor to carry malpractice insurance?

We're all human and make mistakes.  I sleep well at night knowing that if one arises to bite me, it won't ruin me financially.

For the client's benefit, they want to know the product they're buying is warrantied against defect.  E&O is the way to achieve that for professional services.

Re: E & O or Professional Liability Insurance Need

Posted by Don Poole on Aug 16, 2012 10:15 am

We have had over $20K in projects, so far this year, that I could not have done wihtout E&O...  My E&O is less than $2K per year.


Don Poole PLS
Outermost Land Survey, Inc.

"Outstanding in the field"

Re: E & O or Professional Liability Insurance Need

Posted by Reggie Jaquish on Aug 17, 2012 10:14 am

I carry E&O to protect my family from losing the house, and the client from having to sue me, if by some chance i needed it. I'm not insulted by the need for E&O insurance. I am insulted that we have people practicing land surveying without fulfilling their complete duty to their clients.

Reggie Jaquish

Re: E & O or Professional Liability Insurance Need

Posted by Hoelle on Aug 19, 2012 10:31 pm

I'm an insurance broker and will for the most part echo the comments of your colleagues. I think you should be able to find affordable premiums and deductibles, and I'd start with your local insurance agent. If you don't have a local agent, you should be able to find several to choose from with a web search. If you're a member of a state or national association they may also offer a program. As for why this is necessary, you'll find more and more clients of yours are being advised by their attorneys, trade associations and others that they need to make sure professionals working for them are indeed carrying E&O insurance. You can almost be guaranteed that's the situation if you're working for a municipality. The goal for your customer in confirming your coverage is to make sure they (or likely their insurance carrier) don't get stuck with the bill if in fact you do make a mistake or are accused of being responsible for damages of some kind.

Nothing against attorneys, but the plaintiff bar is very well informed, organized and aggressive. You don't have to make a mistake to be named in a suit. It's not necessarily fair, but it's reality. From your standpoint, without question the benefits are payment of covered claims and payment of defense costs, and given the cost of top level legal defense, you'll be happy you have appropriate coverage.

Good luck

Re: E & O or Professional Liability Insurance Need

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Re: E & O or Professional Liability Insurance Need

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Re: E & O or Professional Liability Insurance Need

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