People selecting a malpractice insurance carrier should think about the coverage they need, their area of practice, and the history of a given carrier. There are a number of resources people may find helpful in the process of researching and selecting an insurance carrier to suit their needs. Professional organizations often have recommendations, as do trade publications, and colleagues may have specific advice about carriers to seek out or avoid.
Malpractice insurance is a form of professional liability coverage for people like doctors and lawyers. These individuals are held to a high standard as a result of their professional qualifications, and can be subject to large suits if clients or patients feel they were not provided with adequate care. The first step when choosing a malpractice insurance carrier is finding a list of carriers who provide appropriate insurance products. A lawyer needs legal malpractice insurance, while a health care professional requires medical malpractice coverage. The carrier may also break down coverage by specialty.
It is advisable to request quotes from several malpractice insurance carriers. Each quote should include full policy information, including the amount of coverage provided and the types of circumstances covered. This provides material for comparison when deciding which policy is most suitable. Policies providing more coverage tend to be more expensive, although if the insurance is negotiated through a professional organization, it may be possible to access discounted rates and special insurance benefits.
The company's record is also an important consideration. A malpractice insurance carrier does not just pay out if someone is taken to court and found at fault. Good insurance coverage provides a range of other services, including legal advice when a suit seems possible, along with assistance in locating and paying for legal representation. A malpractice insurance carrier can help people try to negotiate cases out of court, and can offer assistance with making decisions about whether to accept settlements or go to court.
Talking with other people in the field can be beneficial. While people are often reluctant to talk about the details of malpractice litigation they have been involved in, they can offer general opinions on how well a malpractice insurance carrier handled a given case. They may have recommendations for carriers to strongly consider or avoid, and can also offer advice on the scope of a policy for people shopping around among several policy options. Insurance agents who specialize in malpractice products can provide similar advice and recommendations.