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  • Archives for insurance (17)

Tips for Avoiding Medical Malpractice Risk

Categories: Malpractice Insurance
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Published on: March 21, 2014

In today’s litigious society, malpractice lawsuits are a constant risk for doctors. You may think that everyone is entitled to the occasional mistake, but that old adage doesn’t apply to doctors simply because a medical mistake could cost a life. But, surprisingly, most malpractice lawsuits are filed, not because of an error, but because of miscommunication. Therefore, all doctors, even the very best, should take steps to minimize their risk for malpractice claims. Get started with the following tips:

  • Build up trust: A patient who trusts his or her doctor is less likely to sue. To build that trust, thoroughly review a patient’s chart previous to an appointment so you’re informed before walking in the door. Electronic health records (EHRs) are coded with a timestamp that shows how long you spent reviewing a file, which can be damaging in court if you didn’t spend adequate time reading over the information before treatment.
  • Follow up: If a patient misses an appointment, a doctor’s practice should have protocols for following up with that patient to reschedule. This minimizes the risk of charges of neglect.

Though your risks may be few, they can still result in a lawsuit. Call Mitchell & Mitchell Insurance Agency at (415) 883-2525 for more information on California malpractice insurance.

6 Useful Tips for Getting Home Insurance

Categories: Homeowners
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Published on: February 17, 2014

Both homeowners and renters need insurance to protect themselves, their loved ones and their belongings. The main difference between homeowners and renters insurance is that homeowners covers your home’s physical structure and your property, while renters covers only your property. However, whichever type of policy you buy should also include liability coverage to protect you against legal and medical fees that may result from a third party bodily injury or property damage that occurs on your property or because of your actions.

When selecting coverage, consider the following tips that you may not have previously known:

  1. You must choose whether you want coverage for replacement value or actual cash value. Replacement value covers the costs of repairing your home with materials of similar quality without factoring in depreciation. Actual cash value covers the costs or repairing your home after factoring in depreciation.
  2. Floods and earthquakes are generally excluded from basic policies, so ask your agent about adding those specific coverages if you live in an area prone to those types of natural disasters.
  3. High-dollar valuables—fine art, jewelry, a collection of china etc.—may have limited coverage under a basic policy. Talk to your agent about adding a rider to your policy to cover the higher value of such items.
  4. Your policy will need to be updated after large purchases or renovations to ensure proper coverage for the full value of your home and possessions.
  5. If you own a trampoline, pool or swing set, you should consider additional liability coverage to meet the higher risk.
  6. Unrelated roommates should purchase their own renters policies to protect their own belongings.

Whether you’re a home owner or renter, it’s recommended that you take a home inventory, which documents your possessions and their worth. Make a list of every valuable item you own, note the price, attach receipts for high-dollar items and take photos. This helps streamline the claims process if a covered event damages or destroys your property. Make sure you store this list in a safety deposit box and/or cloud drive so it’s secure in the event that your home is completely destroyed.

Learn more about protecting everyone and everything you love. Call Mitchell & Mitchell Insurance Agency at (415) 883-2525 for more information on Novato home insurance.

California Liability Insurance for Lawyers

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Published on: January 21, 2014

Professionals MeetingLawyers work closely with their clients, gathering very personal details with which they build cases upon in preparation for trials. This puts lawyers and law firms at a unique risk for loss or corruption of sensitive information and legal records. Errors and omissions insurance (E&O), also known as legal liability insurance, is designed to protect legal professionals from this risk and from litigation associated with data loss, negligence or failure to produce results due to negligence.

Some risks that lawyers may be liable for include:

  • Identity theft of clients
  • Misplaced legal documents
  • Loss or corruption of files due to hacking
  • Forensic and crisis management expenses after a loss
  • Failure to perform a job properly

Though these instances do not frequently occur, they do happen and they can add up to be extremely costly. E&O insurance is not required by law (though lawyers must inform clients if they carry this type of policy or not), but law firms would be wise to consider this specialized coverage for the specialized risks they face. Lawyers can best serve the public when they themselves are protected from charges of negligence or some other form of error that affected a client.

Without E&O insurance, a law firm may face financial ruin and a tarnished reputation in the event of an unfavorable legal malpractice judgment. The expenses incurred after just one incident could skyrocket well into the hundreds of thousands of dollar, possibly closing the doors of a law firm for good.

Lawyers are all too familiar with liability situations and should take steps to protect themselves from such cases as well. Policies range in price and coverage, and are offered to both law firms and individual lawyers. Contact your independent agent to learn more about E&O options to protect your livelihood and reputation from your unique workplace risks.

Do you want to learn more about protecting your law firm? Call us at 888-512-8878 for a quote on California liability insurance for lawyers.

Liability Insurance for California Professionals

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Published on: December 17, 2013

For cost effective professional liability insurance, California businesses and professionals can depend on Mitchell & Mitchell Insurance of Novato.

At Mitchell & Mitchell Insurance we strive to guarantee that our clients have the highest quality coverage strategies that they both need and deserve. We work hard to recognize extreme risk exposures that could put a strain on your business venture—one source of risk that requires specialized attention is Professional Liability.

As a professional, you know that liability is serious—it’s a crucial component to maintaining your business, your finances and your overall reputation within the community. For professionals in the specialized medical field, such as doctors, surgeons, dentists and chiropractors, this form of coverage is best known as malpractice insurance; while lawyers, accountants, architects and engineers have come to know this additional protection as professional liability insurance.

California professionals, like professionals across the globe, make mistakes. Even professionals who are equipped with the best employees, the best management team and have the best risk management practices in place have been known to make an error. No matter what type of business you are involved in or how specialized your services are, your coverage needs come down to one thing—if you are in the business of providing a service to your client for a fee, you are vulnerable to professional liability risks.

Having customized professional liability insurance in California will provide you with the protection needed in the event that your service resulted in physical, mental or financial loss for your client. Typically, professional liability will cover court fees and defense costs, even if the lawsuit you are battling is unwarranted.

Each business and every professional is different, which is exactly why your professional liability coverage should be unique. You’ve worked so hard to build a positive, credible reputation for yourself—why let it be exposed to liability risk?

Contact Mitchell & Mitchell Insurance today to learn more about your options for professional liability insurance in California.

Business Owners Insurance for Lawyers

Categories: Uncategorized
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Published on: September 12, 2012

As a lawyer, law and the judicial system is your forte. It is no surprise that many lawyers may not be as strong when it comes to the world of insurance. Lucky for you, our agents are here to make the insurance buying process much easier. This is where our Business Owners Insurance (BOP) policy comes into play.

Business Owners Insurance is one comprehensive package policy. It is a great way to reduce the number of policies you deal with, which in turn may reduce the confusion on your end. It is much easier to keep up with one packaged policy as opposed to five different ones! It can also reduce the amount of time you spend dealing with insurance altogether, so you can focus on your professional career rather than worrying about insurance woes.

However, one thing to remember: it is important that BOP will provide the appropriate amount of coverage for your specific business exposures. Typically, a Basic Account Package Policy (BAPP) will offer protection for:

  • Valuable papers
  • Computer equipment
  • Back-up of sewers or drains
  • Money and securities
  • Accounts receivable

If this is not enough for your business, you can always look into additional coverage, such as:

  • The option to purchase additional computer equipment coverage, without a separate policy
  • Liability insurance
  • Stop Gap coverage for your employees (if required to purchase workers comp)

These are just a few example of how flexible a Business Account Package Policy can be. For more information, do not hesitate to contact our agents at Mitchell and Mitchell Insurance Agency. We would love to speak with you and provide you with answers and a free quote!

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The Possibilities of Claims are Endless

All professionals, no matter what field, must understand that the possibilities of lawsuits and and claims are endless. This is especially true for those who are lawyers. Sure, you may be the one defending another due to a mistake he or she may have made, but that does not mean you are perfect! Yes, even lawyers face lawsuits of their own.

What are the most common causes of lawsuits? Here are just a few:

  • The majority of claims made are due to general mistakes, administrative errors, etc.
  • A client may claim that their lawyer has improperly abandoned a representation.
  • A client may feel as if the lawyer failed to address the client’s needs.
  • Breach of fiduciary duty due to conflict of interest.
  • Claims related to representation in the settlement content.
  • Claims brought in response to fee suits.
  • A small percentage of claims may even be brought from non-clients.

To prepare for the worst case scenario, it is best to consider purchasing the right coverage. Lawyers and professional liability insurance are great choices. For more information, contact our agency. We take pride in specializing in this unique coverage! Together, we can figure out what policies would benefit your practice.

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Lawyer FAQ: Who Will Defend Me if I am Sued?

A lawyer being sued? Seems like an awkward scenario, right? The truth is, this happens more often than one would think.  If you are a lawyer, it is important that you never nix the idea of this happening to you. While you cannot avoid a lawsuit 100%, there are ways to protect yourself, such as purchasing the right insurance.

Once you have coverage in place, you will not have to worry about paying out of pocket for court costs and expenses. Now, onto a frequently asked question: who will defend me if I am sued?

According to LawyersInsurance.com, “any claim will be managed by highly experienced and specially trained claims handlers, almost all of whom are lawyers themselves. Additionally, if defense counsel is needed, CNA will appoint a lawyer from one of its panel of distinguished and experienced legal malpractice defense attorneys to undertake the representation on your behalf.”  Your defense attorney will be screened and selected on the basis of expertise within the field of lawyer professional liability defense, ligation skills and more. If necessary, consulting experts on the underlying issues will be used, too.

While having the proper coverage and attorney in place is great, it is still best to prevent a lawsuit as best as possible. The last thing you want is a tarnished reputation!

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Etiquette 101 for Lawyers

Whether you are fresh out of law school or have been a lawyer for a few years, it never hurts to go over a few etiquette tips. The best lawyers will always have basic etiquette down to a science, great communication skills and of course, lawyers insurance.

Before we discuss coverage, let’s take a look at a few tips that may help build your reputation:

  • Make sure you have professional business cards on hand to pass out to clients and potential clients.
  • Always keep your right hand free in order to shake others’ hands.
  • If you take a client out to lunch, pick up the tab.
  • Never discuss a client’s case with ANYONE.
  • Do not interrupt your client. It is important to hear them out, 100%.
  • Dress the part. If you do not look presentable, others may not take you serious.

The right technique and etiquette will both build your reputation and bring more clients and success to you.

Also, remember that the proper coverage will keep business strong, too! In the event of an issue, error or accident, lawyers insurance will be there to protect you from unexpected finances. Contact our agency for a free quote!

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Business Owners Insurance for Lawyers

As a lawyer, you understands that it is essential to purchase lawyers insurance. With such a full range of products, lawyers will not have to worry about coverage gaps.

If you are looking to combine your law firm’s property and liability insurance coverage into one policy, you have come to the right place! Presenting… Business Owners’ Insurance.

By purchasing this type of package, you can reduce the number of policies that you have to keep track of. The best part? It will reduce the amount of time you spend dealing with insurance. To make sure you are 100% covered, it is best to go with a Business Account Package Policy (BAPP.) With a CNA BAPP, you have protection in place for: money and securities, accounts receivable, valuable papers, computer equipment, back-up of sewers or drains, liability and more.

To learn more about this type of coverage, do not hesitate to visit LawyersInsurance.com.

For a free lawyers insurance quote, contact our agency!

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ATTENTION: Attorneys Facing Cyber Threats, Part 2

Last week, we discussed the fact that more and more attorneys are facing cyber threats. While the proper attorney insurance may protect you from the worst case scenario, it is best to keep cyber threats to a minimum.

How? There are always different ways to protect your company from a data breach and other cyber liabilities. Here are a few:

  • Encrypt all sensitive electronic data to make it difficult for hackers to access private client information.
  • Make sure you have strong network security protocols to shrink the likelihood of a successful cyber attack.
  • Use strong passwords. Always use a mix of case sensitive letters and numbers. For maximum security, consider changing passwords once every few months.
  • Never open e-mails or download attachments from unknown sources.

For maximum protection, it is best to follow these tips above as well as cover your business. For more information on the attorney insurance we can provide, contact our agency. We would be happy to protect you from even cyber situations.

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