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Miscellaneous Errors and Omissions (E&O)

There are over 1.1 million accountants and auditors in the United States

In today’s marketplace, there is an increased need for specialized advice and services in a wide range of industries to meet the requirements of customers and clientele. With increased scrutiny and customer demands, professionals and consultants are at an elevated risk for financial losses resulting from legal actions.

No matter the unique nature of your clients’ professional services, they must defend themselves in the event they incur financial losses associated with professional liability claims. Miscellaneous Errors and Omissions (E&O) Coverage provides peace of mind for consultants, self-employed professionals and others under one broad policy.

As a leader in providing access to wholesale specialty insurance, the dedicated professionals at Burns & Wilcox have the knowledge and expertise needed to safeguard the reputation and stability of all your professional clients.

Coverage Details and Features

  • Admitted and non-admitted capabilities
  • Low minimum premiums
  • Broad definition of covered “Erroneous Act”
    • Negligent act, Error or Omissions
    • Libel, Slander, Defamation
    • Violation of right to privacy
  • Broad definition of professional services
  • Contingent Bodily Injury and Property Damage Coverage available for many services
  • Defense costs outside the limit available
  • Packaging available with:
    • General liability
    • Cyber/Privacy
    • Media and technology

Pilot Car

  • Occurrence based General Liability; $1 million/$2 million; $550 minimum premium
  • Claims-made professional liability; $1 million/$1 million limits; $1,500 minimum premium
  • Contingent BI/PD included with a $25,000 sub-limit
  • Standard definition of professional services: “Professional pilot car that escorts oversized loads including emergency shunting, flagging, height pole and route surveys”

Optional Enhancements

  • Additional insured endorsement available for $100 additional premium
  • Blanket Additional Insured Endorsement available for $500 additional premium
  • Waiver of Subrogation cover for $150 additional premium
  • Inland Marine coverage available upon request
  • Contingent BI/PD increased limit options: $50,000 sub-limit of contingent BI/PD-$250,$100,000 Sub-limit of contingent BI/PD-$500 higher limits can be considered

Target Classes

  • Accountants/Bookkeepers
  • Claims Adjusters/TPA
  • Consultants
  • Home Inspectors
  • Insurance Agents
  • Mortgage Brokers
  • Real estate agents/Brokers/Appraisers Real estate agents/Brokers/Appraisers
  • Staffing Companies
  • Technology Companies

Questions to Ask

Do you have prior coverage? If so, may I have a copy of your policy?
Viewing a client’s earlier policies provides an agent with a price to target and a broker with a quick idea of whether he can locate competitive coverage. However, miscellaneous E&O is almost always written as a claims-made policy, so there is an even more important reason to get a copy of the policy; unless an agent has proof of the prior coverage and can match the coverage and retro dates, the policy will likely be written for “no past acts,” and provide no protection for claims against past services reported after the new policy takes effect.
Are you aware of the time constraints for reporting an incident under an E&O policy?
Failing to thoroughly explain how a claims-made policy works could put an insurance agent’s own professional liability on the line. Agents need to be sure their clients are familiar with the reporting time frame for E&O claims and that clients understand why they may need to purchase a retro date for continuous coverage, or an extended reporting period (tail) endorsement to protect themselves from claims filed months or even years after performing a professional service. Of course, it also is important to go over the rest of the policy.
Are you planning to cease operations in the near future?
Closing up shop or merging with another business doesn’t end liability. Just because a client hasn’t been sued for completed work doesn’t mean he’s permanently off the hook. Claims from professional services often take years to develop. A bookkeeping service can files taxes for a client company and hear nothing for three years, until the IRS audits the taxes, determines taxes were underpaid and imposes a stiff penalty on the bookkeeper’s client. An agent can request an insurance carrier provide an extended reporting period to continue coverage for past services after the business closes, but this must be requested within the allotted timeframe outlined within the terms of the policy.
Would you fill out this supplemental application?
Miscellaneous E&O addresses more than 300 different categories of professionals, including business consultants, travel agents, medical billers, claims adjusters and franchisers. To hone in on the most relevant information, markets have created between 30 to 50 different supplemental applications tailored specifically to the various professions. The appropriate supplemental application along with the main form application enables the agent to obtain appropriate, often broader coverage and sometimes secure a credit for a client’s good loss-control practices. In addition, a broker usually can provide ballpark pricing and coverage limits from a supplemental app, which helps the agent manage their client expectations.
May I have copies of the resumes for key employees and principals?
Information on a resume often affects how underwriters see a risk and whether they are comfortable offering a low deductible or more favorable terms or rate. A newly established business may improve its rating and terms when the resumes submitted with the application indicate an experienced management team and staff.

Ask an Expert

Because Miscellaneous E&O is so broad, what is the best way for a retail broker or agent to explain it to their clients?
Miscellaneous E&O coverage is ideal for any organization that provides a knowledge-based service to an individual or entity for a fee. When mistakes occur, such as overlooking a critical piece of information or misstating a fact, Miscellaneous E&O coverage delivers protection for financial harm suffered by your client. Coverage typically includes errors, omissions and negligence during the rendering of professional services. In addition, civil liability can be extended to cover libel, slander, privacy infringements, and intellectual property infringements.
Would Miscellaneous E&O coverage be most applicable to large, multinational corporations who offer their clients highly specialized services?
While Miscellaneous E&O would certainly be applicable to a highly specialized global organization, it applies to companies of all sizes. Take for example the story of a marketing agency that issued a direct mail campaign to the incorrect target audience. The agency was sued for negligence and incurred defense, reprinting, and settlement costs of nearly $1 million. As a small organization, the lawsuit sent the agency into bankruptcy. Miscellaneous E&O coverage would have covered these costs and allowed the firm to remain solvent.
Are there certain industries where Miscellaneous E&O coverage is more of a necessity?
Since the Great Recession the United States has been moving from manufacturing to a knowledge based economy. Industries such as technology, energy, and medical have experienced great growth with consulting services and new ventures emerging from all sectors. These start-up entities inherently create new risks and liabilities. Miscellaneous E&O can help to protect these entrepreneurs to ensure their businesses remain sustainable for the long haul.

At Burns & Wilcox our expertise becomes your expertise. Our marketing materials are designed to help you give your clients what they want to hear – yes to almost any hard-to-place-risk.

Applications for this product may vary. Please click below to find the office nearest to you for assistance.

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