People looking to come to work in the UK or who are planning to go the other way and find employment abroad, can find the amount of legislation and paperwork involved confusing and daunting. This means companies and individuals can turn to immigration consultants for advice on how to go through the processes and obtain any visas or other documents. The service such consultants provide is typically relied on quite heavily – they are often given a large amount of responsibility and carry a duty of care in respect of their clients. Should an immigration consultant make a significant but simple error, the advice they give to a client could be wrong and lead to a client’s application falling through. If the client loses money because of this, what’s known as a ‘financial injury’, they may be minded to seek compensation through legal action. Such circumstances can prove daunting and very expensive, unless a firm or freelance has an immigration consultant indemnity insurance policy in place.
Indemnity insurance is taken out by a vast range of professionals, and is a possible option for anyone who provides expert advice. It will pay the reasonable legal costs of anyone who must mount a defence following an accusation related to a mistake, error or omission which they are responsible for.
This can prove a lifeline for some businesses as a court case can be an expensive proposition, even if the defence itself succeeds. A claimant can then be awarded compensation, further heightening costs – this will normally be covered by an indemnity policy, up to agreed limits.
Selecting the right level of cover for a policy is important, as with any type of insurance. An individual or business may choose cover which will pick up £80,000 in legal bills. If a case is then defended which results in £52,000 in legal costs, plus £40,000 in compensation, the policyholder will be faced with meeting the £12,000 difference. This is known as being ‘under-insured’ and a policyholder must always take care to find what is right for them.
An indemnity policy will also normally give cover for other eventualities such as legal claims relating to defamation, breach of confidence, copyright infringement and will even include public liability if needed. The dishonest behaviour of a firm’s employees will also be covered – meaning if a worker from an immigration consultant steals from a client, such as through credit card fraud, any resulting legal action will also be covered.
Although it might not strike an immigration consultant as an immediate necessity, indemnity insurance is now offered to and taken up by almost any professional who offers advice for a living. In a world where almost everyone is aware of the right to seek redress, it can provide a safety net that at worst will give peace of mind and at best will keep someone going even in the face of a legal challenge.