Professional indemnity Insurance is not something that you should look at just once a year as the policy is approaching its renewal date.
There are many steps a practice can take during the course of the year to understand where they may have potential risk management issues which need reviewing and potentially amending. Much of this can be found in the information used to complete your professional indemnity renewal proposal form. As part of your risk management procedure, you should:
- Request claims summaries from insurers for the last six / seven years every quarter to see if your claims experience has changed, i.e. settlement payments, increased or decreased reserves. These all have a bearing on the premium you pay
- From the same claims summaries, review how claims have occurred and the risk management procedures which have been implemented to mitigate a re-occurrence. Check whether these risk management levels can be improved further and see if there is a common connection between the claims reported, a member of staff, a particular client or the same areas of practice.
If you only obtain your claims summaries two months prior to renewal date and discover your claims have significantly deteriorated, then you are going to be hard pushed to persuade an insurer to provide a competitive premium. It is important to obtain regular updated claims summaries which will give you time to review the information and speak to insurers where appropriate. This is something you can do with or without your broker’s assistance.
Another thing to consider if you only complete a ‘short renewal proposal form’ each year for your existing insurer, is to also complete a full one. This may sound ridiculous but each year the proposal form changes, with insurers asking different and additional questions. Many of these questions may well help you identify any potential weaknesses in your current risk management procedures and also allows you to further demonstrate your practices’ attitudes and safeguards.
For further information, please contact us directly at Solicitorassist when we will happily discuss your individual needs.