Professional Liability Insurance for Consultants

Your clients hire you as a consultant for specific expertise, skills, and knowledge. Be it providing business or marketing strategy, career advice, or IT implementation guidance, consultants are known for a variety of tasks. This makes them exposed to risks too. With professional liability insurance, consultant can be financially protected in the professional services that they offer.

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What is Professional Liability Insurance?

Professional liability insurance is a type of business insurance that protects professionals, including consultants. If a client files a lawsuit over a mistake (actual or alleged) or a bad piece of advice, this insurance can protect them. Under this insurance, the insurer takes on the insured’s liability for his professional work and compensates him against legal action. Thus, anyone who provides a service to clients for a fee should opt for professional liability insurance.

Why Should a Consultant Have Professional Liability Insurance?

As a consultant, you may face many work-related risks, but without professional liability insurance, there’s an additional risk of lawsuits. Even if you are good at your job, a dispute with a client or a mistake can end in a lawsuit. Regardless a professional liability lawsuit against you is valid or not, it can be financially draining and can be a risky proposition for your career. 

Many factors are beyond your control and can affect your reputation and financial standing. For example, if your name appears on a contract, you are likely to be held accountable even if the mistake does not occur directly from your end. Without proper professional liability insurance, consultants may face financial expenses like attorney fees, defense expenses and other court-related expenses.

Which Consultants Need Professional Liability Insurance?

Professional liability insurance is a must-have for:

  • Consultants providing specialized services or opinions
  • Consultants with clients who integrate their services into their brand or product offerings
  • Consultants supporting various administrative or technological aspects, etc.

Professional indemnity insurance is also sometimes called error & omission insurance. It helps protect management consultants, IT consultants, marketing consultants, and human resources consultants amongst others.

Kinds of Liability Insurance a Consultant Needs

Being a consultant can be financially and personally rewarding. However, it does have its share of risks along with rewards. That’s why as a consultant you should consider the following liability insurances to keep you protected.

  1. Professional liability insurance: As discussed above, consultants are at a greater risk of being accused of error, misunderstanding, or negligence. Even if they are not at fault professional liability insurance can protect them. So, if a consultant makes a mistake, the client can sue him/her. Professional liability insurance can cover legal expenses.
  2. General liability insurance: This insurance covers a consultant in the event of a third-party claim that includes bodily injury or property damage. If you damage your client’s property by mistake or someone gets injured, this insurance can cover the repairing cost of the property, medical bills, and legal costs.
  3. Workers compensation insurance: Whether you have a huge team or a single person working with you, workers' compensation is a must-have. The main reason is, the cost of workplace injuries is on the rise and this could cripple your business.
  4. Cyber liability insurance: This type of insurance covers data breaches, cyber-attacks and gives legal protection. In case your client suffers a breach and files a lawsuit against you, this insurance gets you covered.

Conclusion

Consultants are hired for their expertise and skills to serve businesses with a specific purpose. While professional liability insurance may not be required per a mandate or law, having it surely provides you with the required precautions. With professional liability insurance, consultants make an effort to safeguard themselves and invest in their own businesses (professional duties). With this insurance, you showcase you’re open to rectifying mistakes, taking responsibility, and assuring your clients they’re financially protected in case of professional negligence.

Written By: PolicyBazaar - Updated: 11 October 2022