We are currently working with two physicians who have had significant changes in their practice since their medical malpractice coverage renewed earlier this year. An opportunity arose for one physician to work for a larger organization that would pay for her malpractice insurance. The other physician decided to perform a new type of procedure that his current policy would exclude. In these two cases, we are re-marketing their coverages and are even working on providing malpractice savings at the same time.
When You Should Re-evaluate your Medical Malpractice Coverage
In one of our previous blogs, we identified the benefits of reviewing your medical malpractice insurance mid-term, including potential cost savings to you. When shopping for malpractice insurance, we recommend comparing coverage and price, especially when:
- There is a significant change to your practice, such as employment, change in procedures or number of hours practicing per week.
- There is a positive change in you claims history, such as a claim being closed with no payment.
- You experienced a significant rating increase at renewal.
How to Find Optimal Coverage and Find Malpractice Savings
An educated insurance broker will review your policy and look for markets that will provide comparable coverages and malpractice savings to you. Your agent should provide a comparative document itemizing each carrier’s description for these important coverage clauses:
- Consent to Settle – Do you have full control in deciding when the insurance company should settle your claim? Consent to Settle without the Hammer Clause is always the best option.
- Incident Sensitive or Written Demand – Does the policy allow you to report Incidents that you believe may result in a future claim? Or, do you need to wait for someone to file an official claim before the company will trigger your coverage. Incident Sensitive is always best. If the incident does turn into a claim, your insurance company will respond to the claim.
- Defense Payment – Inside or Outside Policy Limits – Your policy limits are considered payment for indemnity. Most of the time, payment for defense is in addition to your policy limits, which is ideal. However, some carriers choose to include defense within the policy limits, which can eat up the limits needed for indemnity.
- Additional Coverages – In addition to professional liability insurance coverage, your insurance company may add in additional coverage for Cyber Liability, Data Breach and Regulatory Compliance. While some insurance companies may provide lower limits for these coverages, it is always a good idea to check what additional coverages the insurance company offers.
The Deciding Factor
The important this is to check your current policy’s Cancellation clause to see if they would charge a short-rate penalty, typically 10% of the premium not being used, upon cancellation. Many times, even with the short-rate penalty, coverage can still be acquired that would provide significant malpractice savings to you. Your agent can calculate the total amount of premium you would receive as a refund. In addition, your agent will help you decide whether moving coverage is beneficial to you and would provide malpractice savings.
If you’d like to learn more or find out if your particular situation would warrant another look to find better coverage and malpractice savings, click here to tell us your story. We’re listening.