Do we need solicitor's professional indemnity?
Whether you provide legal services to individuals or institutional clients, across a range of civil, commercial or criminal cases you are required to purchase solicitor's professional indemnity.
At get indemnity™ we have the access and knowledge to secure favourable terms from the wholesale insurance market.
Common solicitors professional indemnity insurance claims arise from:
Negligent act, error or omission
Failure to define scope of services
Failure to record instructions
Failure to identify conflicts of interest
Breach of confidentiality
Failure of diary system
In our experience a high percentage of negligence claims against solicitors are caused by missed time limits, rather than inadequate or incorrect advice given. Often due to a lack of effective systems and controls in place to prevent time limits being missed.
What is the SRAs qualifying insurers agreement?
In England and Wales, you can only purchase solicitors professional indemnity from an insurer signed up to the SRAs qualifying insurers agreement.
Solicitors professional indemnity insurance (PII) will provide cover in the event of a claim from a third party. The PII policy will meet the costs of any damages awarded, claimant costs and the costs of defending the claim.
Solicitors PII cover will include:
> Civil liability insuring clause
> Any one claim limit of liability
> Defence costs in addition to the limit of indemnity
> Excess is not applicable to defence costs
A high percentage of firms still renew their solicitors PII on the 1st October due to the legacy SRA system. However, firms are free to arrange their professional indemnity renewal at their choosing.
At get indemnity™ we operate as a digital insurance broker and have a wealth of experience in negotiating solicitors professional indemnity insurance.
What solicitor's professional activities pose a greater risk?
The exposure posed by solicitors has serious potential for high severity claims. The majority of claims made against solicitors relate to monetary loss attributable to the insureds negligence.
Below are commonly accepted categories of professional activities measured by risk:
Low Risk: Adjudication, Criminal, Expert Witness, Immigration, Officers and Appointments
Low to Medium Risk: Defendant Litigation, Employment, Estate Agency, Matrimonial, Personal Injury
Medium to High Risk: Commercial or Corporate Work, Conveyancing, Patent and Trademark, Probate, Trusts and Wills, Tax Planning
High Risk: Fees derived from Public companies, Securities Related
Which regulatory solicitor bodies are we governed by?
Solicitors are required to have professional indemnity to practice and will need to provide evidence to the relevant regulator.
> Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) is the regulator in England and Wales
> The Law Society of Scotland
> The Law Society of Northern Ireland
What are the market conditions for solicitors PII?
The solicitors PI insurance market continues to be challenging. With some insurers having left the market due to poor loss ratios and others becoming increasingly selective about the types of risk they are prepared to underwrite.
However, the scrapping of the 'assigned risks pool' and the 'common renewal date', has made the desire to underwrite more attractive for insurers.
Premium reductions are increasingly available for small and mid-sized law firms with few or no incurred claims, that participate in lower risk professional activities and are based outside of London.
How to compare solicitor's professional indemnity?
To compare solicitor's professional indemnity insurance, complete our digital on-boarding process and we can offer no-obligation quotes from a range of wholesale insurers.
Law firms should start the renewal process well in advance of their expiry date. In addition, insurance underwriters like to see robust risk management controls to identify, assess and mitigate potential risks.
To obtain the most competitive quotes we recommend you provide copies of your compliance procedures with your application.
Preferably this will include an overview of your:
> diary system;
> conflict of interest procedure; and
> file audit process.
Any claims should be clearly detailed within a claims schedule, highlighting any preventative measures undertaken to guard against recurrence.
At get indemnity™ we are experts in solicitors professional indemnity insurance and can negotiate cover at a cost effective premium. Please send all supplements to contact us once you have completed our online application.
Cyber crime insurance for solicitors
will cover your legal liability from third parties and expenses to mitigate the impact of a theft of customer data.
Whereas, crime insurance will cover the financial loss from a fraudulent theft of funds, it is worth noting that some insurers have combined the two traditional covers under one cost-effective policy.
Solicitors in particular should consider their exposure to social engineering fraud
, which compared with other industries carries an increased risk.
Liability insurance for solicitors
> Public and employers liability
If you have clients or members of the public visit your premises, or if you visit clients at their premises, consideration should be given to purchasing public liability insurance
. In addition, if you employ staff, you will be required to purchase employers liability insurance
> Management liability insurance
(offered under a management liability
policy) can also provide a cost-effective mechanism to protect individuals in leadership roles should an allegation of a wrongdoing occur. The cover will provide financial protection for individuals from civil litigation and regulatory investigations, while acting in a managerial capacity on behalf of the firm.
This guide is for information purposes and based on sources which we believe are reliable, the general risk management and insurance information is not intended to be taken as advice with respect to any individual circumstance and cannot be relied upon as such.