Fire protection consultants have an important and trusted role to play in advising companies on how best to protect property and employees from risk. As such their advice must be accurate and reliable – lives and property may be at stake if their work is not reliable. Of course, the training and professionalism employed by the vast majority of consultants in this sector means mistakes are rare, but not impossible. A greater awareness of legal matters means a court case, based on valid or invalid arguments, is a greater risk than ever. Fire protection consultant professional indemnity insurance is designed to guard against such an unfortunate eventuality.
Professional indemnity insurance is designed to protect an individual or company if a client brings an action for a mistake or negligent act committed by a consultant. It is a type of cover popular with the likes of PR professionals, private doctors or medical practitioners, graphic designers and architects, among others. Should a fire protection consultant, for example, recommend the wrong kind of protective material for a building which then fails completely during a fire, a court case may be brought. A professional indemnity policy will provide funding for the legal defence of such a case, subject to a certain excess and maximum limit. Many policies will even cover the costs of compensation awarded to a claimant as a result of a case, again subject to a certain limit.
Professional indemnity insurance will also usually provide a number of extra benefits including protection for an individual consultant or firm should they lose or damage important business documents belonging to a client. A policyholder will also be protected should they commit unintentional defamation, libel or slander or breach a client’s confidentiality unintentionally.
‘Retroactive’ cover, which protects a consultant should a claim arrive which relates to an event which took place before a policy started, is also available. Many policyholders also opt for ‘run off’ periods, which provide cover for a period after someone retires or stops trading. Fire protection consultant professional indemnity insurance can therefore provide peace of mind and act as a safety net should a mistake be made, in many cases allowing consultants to carry on as normal even when facing legal action.