As insurance brokers, we occasionally encounter circumstances where clients have new employees who aren’t aware of the insurance policies that may be in place to protect their organization.
Larger organization can have multiple departments, various types of insurance and frequent personnel changes. Sometimes there can be a void within an organization when it comes to addressing claims, complaints, lawsuits, etc. Generally, it is a problem resulting from a lack of process and procedure and occurs primarily when new personnel are introduced into the company. Delays in insurance claim reporting or responses to legal documents can potentially jeopardize the coverage afforded under an insurance policy.
In an effort to eliminate things “falling through the cracks”, we recommend the following:
- Management teams should be educated on the types of insurance policies the organization has in place, as well as the brokerage service contacts for those policies
- Address with your team how the insurance may be triggered by different types of events i.e. automobile accidents, employee injuries, EEOC charges for harassment, data breach, etc.)
- Assign a “gatekeeper” for all incoming legal correspondence or claims. Department heads should funnel all such documentation through the gatekeeper
- Charge the gatekeeper with getting documents to the broker or insurance carrier promptly
- Newly hired management team members should be educated on insurance issues/policies as part of their new employee orientation
- Heighten your team’s awareness of , and sensitivity to, legal correspondence received
- Conduct an annual refresher course to review the insurance coverage currently in place and remind your group to funnel all legal documents and claims through the gatekeeper
Author: Stephen P. Friend, CPCU, AIC