With the speed of change and growth of demand in the business of advising on fuel efficiency, it is easy to forget the potential pitfalls of providing such a service. A fuel efficiency consultant, while practising a comparatively new profession, is still in a responsible position and is hired by companies to provide advice which is potentially critical to the survival of a business, particularly in the current economic climate. Therefore it is important to consider fuel efficiency consultant professional indemnity insurance.
A fuel efficiency consultant will generally be seen as an expert in their field and could well be in a position of being asked to provide advice which will be relied on to help improve a company’s financial performance. Therefore the risk of legal action for giving erroneous advice is significant. This means professional indemnity insurance could be crucial for fuel efficiency consultants.
Although it might be more associated with the likes of doctors, counsellors and other medical professionals, professional indemnity insurance is often also taken out by the likes of PR professionals and other consultants who provide professional advice. Professional indemnity insurance protects a firm or individual policyholder in relation to any legal liability which arises out of the exercise and conduct of the business. A policy will typically also provide cover against loss of or damage to documents, the accusation of the infringement of any copyright, defamation, libel and slander levelled against the consultant, and will also cover against any dishonest actions of any employees. So, if a consultant were to suggest a company uses a new type of fuel, which then causes damage to a fleet of vehicles, resulting in a legal action, the consultant can expect a policy to cover legal costs of defending that action.
Many types of cover will help pay for the legal representation needed to protect a firm or individual consultant right through the defence of a claim, from an initial hearing all the way to a possible appearance at the high court. Many policies will also cover any damages which are awarded in favour of a claimant, possibly running into millions, although most policies involve limits on the amount the insurer will pay out.
Note an individual fuel efficiency consultant or firm will have to seek retroactive cover if they want protection for a legal action which results from an event which happened prior to the start date of the cover. Some also seek what are known as ‘run off’ or ‘overrun’ periods, which ensure coverage after a firm closes or an individual stops trading. These factors should be considered carefully due to the long period of time which can elapse between an event and the official arrival of a legal case. Although perhaps not the first thing that will cross someone’s mind when setting up a business, fuel efficiency consultant professional indemnity insurance could one day prove crucial to the survival of a business and at the very least provide peace of mind.