IT contractors insurance – getting a suitable deal

September 30, 2010 · Filed Under IT contractors insurance · Comments Off 

If you are considering IT contractors insurance, then you are making an important, – and some may say, valuable – decision. This professional indemnity insurance may help act as a financial buffer for your company against claims from third parties, as well as help with legal fees.

What are its benefits?

Professional indemnity insurance provides your business with protection in respect of any legal liability which arises out of the exercise and conduct of your business.

There are different types of professional indemnity insurance policies available for businesses and contractors, all which are designed to help minimise any financial loss (which in turn may help reduce personal stress) if a claim is made against you.

In the event of a successful claim, typically the policy can help defend a claim against you as well as cover you for any damages you become liable for. Certainly, having this form of risk management in place in the shape of a professional indemnity insurance policy may help your business survive if things get rocky and a client sues you for damages.

Buying it

So, where can you buy IT contractors insurance? It may be worth considering buying the cover from a specialist provider. Buying it from someone who has expertise within your particular sector may help you find the right product, rather than trying to go for an “off-the-peg” type of policy that a traditional or mainstream insurer may offer.

Considerations

So, what do you need to bear in mind when choosing your insurance?

First of all, do note that as with most insurance policies, generally you will be liable to pay an excess on your policy.

Look at the terms and conditions as well as any limitations, to see exactly what the policy will cover and any obligations you may have in order to take advantage of the protection.

With the different levels of cover often available, it is important that you choose the right one to ensure you are adequately protected. For example, some clients may expect your company to have a minimum amount of personal indemnity insurance in place before they will allow you to carry out work for them.

As touched upon above, policy terms and conditions for your IT contractors insurance may typically vary among the different providers, so check the small print to confirm the amount of cover you have; any excesses; and how long a policy must be in force for before you can claim.

Finally, to protect yourself and your livelihood does not have to be a time consuming exercise. A specialist provider of IT contractors insurance may help find you the right solution for your business quickly and cover can often be bought online. Finding out more may be a sensible idea.

What is IT contractors insurance?

August 4, 2010 · Filed Under IT contractors insurance · Comments Off 

As an IT contractor you are responsible for many different aspects of your clients and as such you may be a prime target for lawsuits or claims against yourself, or your company. With this in mind anyone who runs a business managing data and advising on the IT matters of others may wish to consider IT contractors insurance. So how might this insurance help you?

Let’s first take a look at some of the many things that your IT contracting company may be faced with.

Your client’s data
Firstly, information technology means you are working with your client’s computers and telecommunications systems which store large amounts of data. If something were to happen to this data such as it falling in to the hands of someone else, and it was in your safekeeping, you might face legal action. If your IT contractors insurance covers data loss, typically you have your insurance policy to help you when it comes to court costs (up to set limits of course).

Accidental breach of confidentiality, libel and slander
The same policy may also provide protection in the event that you breached confidentiality. Again the company or person you are working for may sue you, and without insurance, courts cost, including any awards made to the other party, typically have to come out of your own pocket. These may add up to a large sum, which in the worst case scenario might see you losing your business.

Your clients might also take you to court for libel or slander (if you accidentally wrote or said something about your client that was incorrect and / or which had a negative effect on their business) – again the typical insurance policy for IT contractors may provide financial protection in cases such as this.

Public Liability Issues
Public liability insurance may be included in with your IT contractors insurance, or you may have to pay a little more to purchase it separately. If your contracting job brings you into contact with the public, this insurance may be well worth having. If a member of the public was injured and it was seen to be your fault, a court case may be taken out against you. The insurance can help with the bulk of the associated costs of having a claim made against you, even if it doesn’t cover them all. When taking out the insurance or indeed any insurance, always check the small print of the policy. There are always limitations as to how much the insurance policy pays out in the event of a successful claim.

The typical benefits to IT contractors insurance

July 8, 2010 · Filed Under IT contractors insurance · Comments Off 

Anyone offering a professional service by way of a business may benefit from certain types of insurance. IT contractors insurance is a type of insurance that typically provides protection offering several benefits and may be worthwhile considering if you are in the information technology business.

The benefits included in IT contractors insurance may vary depending on who you take the policy out with and the level of insurance you require. While this type of insurance is not typically compulsory, it may pay to have it behind you if the worst case scenario were to occur and you found yourself in a tight spot if a claim is made against you by a client for such things as loss or damage (see examples below). Without insurance you may have to find large sums of money out of your own pocket as owner of the company.

You may find that the policy typically protects against events such as these listed below. However, not all IT contractor insurance policies will offer all of these benefits and features. Some may come as standard or may be an optional add on or may not be available at all, so it may make sense to consult a specialist professional indemnity insurance broker:

  • a loss of customer’s data or documents – as you are offering a service as an IT contractor insurance covering this loss may be a lifeline as typically you may be involved with data and/or documents;
  • public liability protection – the insurance provider may include this in your policy or you may be required to add this on as extra. This part of the insurance generally provides protection in the event of a member of the public suffering an accident or loss on your property;
  • breach of confidentiality that is accidental;
  • slander and libel claims that may be made against you.

When taking out insurance always check the small print as there are typically terms and conditions and again these may differ based on your insurance provider.

In summary, while insurance may be perceived as another added cost, without it your company and business may be put at risk. If the worst scenario raised its ugly head you might be forced out of business if a claim for substantial damages is made against you and have no insurance behind you.

Outlining IT contractors insurance

June 4, 2010 · Filed Under IT contractors insurance · Comments Off 

As an IT contractor, it may be advisable to consider the benefits of IT contractors insurance cover.

Why?

No matter how good you are at your job, if you think back over your career in IT, you may well be able to remember occasions when projects you were working on went wrong. Perhaps serious consequences arose for your employer.

If you were a permanent employee, you may have been protected from all of the financial consequences.

That may not be the case if you’re working as an external contractor.

Professional indemnity cover

IT contractors insurance is a form of professional indemnity insurance (PII).

It is not usually a mandatory requirement for IT contractors in the same way as it typically is for solicitors, architects, insurance brokers and the like.

It provides financial protection against claims by your client that your mistake, negligence or bad professional advice, have resulted in loss or damage to them or to their business.

They may know you didn’t mean any harm

In today’s harsh economic reality though, the chances that an unintentional error of judgment on your part will be overlooked with a shrug of the shoulders may be very slight indeed. Budgets are typically tight and there may be no slack available to rectify the position.

It may be all too tempting for a client to decide to sue you to try and get some redress for your actions.

Wide range of cover

PII can provide cover for a lot more than just faulty system design, missing deadlines or bad programming. It can also protect you financially if you are sued as a result of action such as:

  • you losing your clients data or documents;
  • defamation, libel or slander;
  • a dishonest act on you part;
  • you accidentally breaching clients confidentiality;
  • infringement of intellectual property rights.

You may find that your legal fees, which may need to be paid even if no case is found against you, will typically be included as standard in the PPI policies of many providers.

All other things being equal

Competition for IT contract positions can be fierce.

Even though it is optional for your line of work, having IT contractors insurance in place may highlight your professionalism and maturity to potential employers and could help swing a hiring decision your way and help you secure that precious contract.

IT contractors insurance – reducing your risks

May 6, 2010 · Filed Under IT contractors insurance · Comments Off 

Yes, IT contractors insurance costs money! There’s a fair chance then that you’re wondering if it’s worth the cost.

Of course, ultimately only you can make that decision. While doing so though, it may be advisable to think just as carefully about the risks of doing without it as you will about the cost of the premium.

Modern professional life – not a laughing matter

One of the most commonly heard words today in business and the media is accountability.

If you’re charging a fee for your professional services, your client and those around you will expect exemplary service. If they don’t get it or something just simply goes wrong, then they may hold you accountable and look to you for professional compensation.

Those scenarios may be seriously expensive, perhaps ruinously so. That’s why IT contractors insurance exists.

The nature of professional risk

So what exactly are your risks?

That will clearly depend upon the specific nature of your business and activities but you may find yourself on the receiving end of claims for compensation due to things such as:

  • professional negligence resulting in loss of a client’s data or documents;
  • accidental infringement of intellectual property rights;
  • implementation of solutions that are not fit for purpose and through which your client suffers material loss;
  • late delivery on target dates;
  • libel;
  • slander;
  • and so on.

IT contracting and insurance

IT contractors insurance is part of a generic insurance product range called PII (professional indemnity insurance).

It means that in the event you’re facing legal action for the above reasons, plus others, then you have the security of knowing that insurance is in place to help you survive. It may be worth also keeping in mind that even if the claim against you fails, you may still incur significant legal and other expenses in defending yourself.

In fact, today some employers are insisting on seeing that it exists before they’ll award an IT contract.

PII and honesty

Typically, PII exists to protect you against honest mistakes or circumstances beyond your control.

It typically won’t offer you financial protection if you’re found to be guilty of intentional malpractice or criminal intent.

The facts of life

If you are unfortunate enough to suffer a successful professional claim against you, the sums involved may in the worst case destroy your business and seriously affect your professional life.

Seen against this backdrop, the cost of IT contractors insurance may not seem so expensive at all.

Thinking about IT contractors insurance

April 3, 2010 · Filed Under IT contractors insurance · Comments Off 

IT contractors insurance typically isn’t mandatory in many contracting situations (though some clients may demand it) – but it may be a very good idea.

Professional risks

As an IT professional, you are probably rightly proud of your skills, knowledge and expertise.

You deploy these in support of your client’s objectives and receive a fee in return.

Unfortunately, things don’t always run quite as smoothly as that.

Things can and sometimes do go wrong and your relationship with your client or associates can sour very quickly.

Whatever may have been the case in the past, today people are inclined to turn quickly towards claims and legal redress when a problem arises. If you don’t have insurance to help protect you from the financial implications of such situations, then you may find yourself digging deep into your personal or company financial reserves.

IT contractors insurance (professional indemnity insurance)

Professional indemnity insurance (often abbreviated to PII or PI insurance) typically incorporates the provision of technology contractors cover. This may help offer some financial protection against certain risks.

The cover offer of course varies depending upon the policy but typically includes things such as:

  • public liability;
  • accidental breaches of confidentiality;
  • loss of a client’s data or documents;
  • slander and libel;
  • defamation of character;
  • your unintentional infringement of intellectual property rights;
  • etc.

It is worth noting that the above forms of professional indemnity insurance typically differentiate between your accidental transgression and an intentionally criminal act – the latter will typically not be covered.

Probabilities

Some IT contractors have progressed their careers for many years and never encountered any problems of the type outlined above. Let’s hope that you have the same good fortune!

The problem is, getting hit by any of these types of problems, even once, could easily lead to your financial ruin. So, do you want to gamble on your good luck holding forever?

The typical costs of PII may be seen as relatively modest in terms of the risks that you are perhaps taking by doing without it.

Finding out more about IT contractors insurance sooner rather than after it’s too late, might be a good investment of a little of your time.

IT contractors insurance – what is it?

March 22, 2010 · Filed Under IT contractors insurance · Comments Off 

If you are an IT contractor, IT trainer or IT consultant, then it may make sense to protect your reputation and your business with professional indemnity insurance. You can get trade-specific professional indemnity insurance – IT contractors insurance – which will help protect you in the event that problems arise due to work carried out by you / or due to advice you have given to a client.

IT contractors insurance can also help you in the event of something else going wrong between you and client. However, do note that policy terms and conditions can vary among professional indemnity insurance providers, so you need to check your cover to make sure you have the protection your business needs. What is standard within one policy may not be with another.

Following is a snapshot of just some of the cover a typical insurance for IT contractors policy may provide:

  • loss documents or data;
  • accidental breach of confidentiality;
  • libel and slander;
  • the supply of deliverables;
  • dishonesty;
  • unintentional breach of contract.

Getting covered

Professional liability cover can be crucial for your business. Certainly, should the worst happen and a claim is made against your company for one of the sort of situations listed above, then you may find yourself having to dig deep in to your pockets in order to pay for any loss or damages awarded to the claimant – plus your legal defence costs too.

This could run in to thousands and thousands of pounds – money you’d have to find yourself. Substantial costs may wipe out your business, depending on the sum awarded and how profitable your enterprise is.

So, investing in protecting yourself and your business against the ramification of such claims can make sense. In fact, you may find that some clients may only work with you if you have IT contractors professional indemnity insurance in force, as this protects them too.

Surprisingly, for the cover that a professional indemnity insurance policy could offer you, premiums may often be realistic.

Getting covered with an IT contractors insurance policy can give your business financial protection. And by using the services of a specialist provider, you will often be able to access a suitable deal at a suitable price.

IT contractors insurance explained

February 12, 2010 · Filed Under IT contractors insurance · Comments Off 

No matter how good you are at your job and how well you run your company, sometimes things go wrong. Then, you may be faced with a claim against you – with the knock on effect that your business may face financial ruin. That is why IT contractors insurance could be worth considering.

If you run a business, whether you are the sole employee-owner or you have staff, it can still make sense to ensure that you protect yourself against the unexpected. These sorts of unexpected things could include claims against you or an employee for perceived negligence; the loss of sensitive documents or data; plus other events that can crop up as result of you going about your business.

Certainly, in today’s litigious society, having some form of professional indemnity insurance (PI insurance or PII) in place could be a sensible idea.

Things can go wrong
You may think “it’ll never happen to me, my customers are always happy with what I do for them”. However, claims can be made against your business – such as where your customer suffers some form of loss because of actions – or lack of actions – carried out by you or an employee.

And if a claim is made against you, unless you have deep pockets to cover the cost of legal defence as well as potentially any compensation you may be ordered to pay, then your business will have to pay up.

You could then potentially face paying out a five or even six figure sum, as well as having your reputation tarnished.

The good news is that IT contractors insurance may typically help pay for the cost of defending you against any claims made against your business, as well as damages.

And insurance for IT contractors can not only help protect you financially, but can also help keep the reputation of your business intact.

What sort of cover can it provide?
The policy features and benefits of IT contractors cover will vary depending on the provider, but a typical policy may provide you with protection against claims for such things as:

  • accidental breach of confidentiality;
  • loss of data or documents;
  • product liability;
  • libel & slander;
  • defamation;
  • dishonestly;
  • unintentional infringement of intellectual property rights

Getting a suitable deal
If you are considering IT contractors insurance, then you need to make sure that you purchase it from the right place. Specialist providers of professional indemnity (professional liability) insurance will typically have unlimited expertise in the sector. This often means that they can give you access to suitable cover, helping you protect your business properly.

Protecting yourself and your livelihood does not have to be a time consuming exercise. By using a specialist provider of IT contractors insurance, they can help you find the most suitable PII solution for your business.

IT contractors insurance – how it may help your business

December 7, 2009 · Filed Under IT contractors insurance · Comments Off 

As a professional person, you are at risk in terms of the services you supply. IT contractors insurance could be one way of protecting you from those risks.

Professional liability

Although we may not always like it, the reality is that we live in a litigious world.

Your clients today may be very keen to demand that you pay for your mistakes that resulted in them suffering financial loss – ‘forgive and forget’ is now frequently an attitude of the past.

Equally, as modern technology has increased our communication capabilities, it has also arguably increased the risk of your statements and comments getting into the public domain. This may easily lead to demands that you accept accountability for erroneous or libellous statements, the accidental release of confidential information or defamation.

As an IT contractor, there is also a fair chance that you’ll have heavy exposure to your client’s data – lose it or accidentally release it to an unauthorised person and you may find yourself going through the legal compensation process very quickly indeed.

IT contractors insurance

Professional indemnity insurance (PII) may be a way of reducing your financial risks should you be on the receiving end of a large court award for one of these (or other) circumstances.

A summary of some of the circumstances covered typically may or may not include:

• accidental breach of confidentiality;
• loss of confidential information;
• product liability;
• libel and slander;
• defamation;
• dishonesty;
• unintentional infringement of intellectual property rights.

It may be worth remembering that the point is not whether you believed you slandered someone or behaved dishonesty – but only what a court believes and awards.

The awards can also be high – well into 6 or even 7 figures depending upon the circumstances and severity of the problem.

Our services

We offer IT contractors insurance that typically covers a wide range of situations and circumstances. It can also provide public liability insurance in case you are unfortunate enough to be sued for injury or damages sustained by a member of the public while you were providing your services. Finding out more from reading further on our site may be a good idea.

Why you may need IT contractors insurance

November 8, 2009 · Filed Under IT contractors insurance · Comments Off 

Many professionals and companies may never have even considered what professional indemnity insurance means, while others may have heard of it but never bothered looking into the subject. But it is typically available through conventional IT contractors insurance packages, and in some circumstances may save a business or individual hundreds of thousands of pounds or more.

Professional indemnity insurance may provide cover as part of a general IT contractors insurance deal, and in some circumstances might be referred to as business insurance, or, as part of a business insurance package.

Normally it may protect against claims for loss or damage by a third party or a client and relates to mistakes, real or perceived, made by you in the conduct of your business.

The deal may sometimes apply to one individual person, ie one freelance IT professional, or a company as a whole.

Often a deal may protect against legal claims that you have made a mistake, committed an act of negligence, or a general error in your work. For example, you may incorrectly install a software system which needs to be redone, costing a client money. In such circumstances they may decide to take legal action to recover any money they have lost.

In the past professional indemnity insurance used to be mainly associated with the likes of architects, doctors, and accountants. This was because some of them need to have it in place in order to qualify for membership of trade associations, or to abide by the law.

But it has become popular with other trades, specifically because of a heightened legal awareness which means clients may be more likely to sue if they feel they have been wronged.

IT contractors insurance comes with a policy payout limit, beyond which it may not pay for any more legal fees or compensation costs. Often selecting this limit is important, as if it is too low you may end up under-insured in the middle of a court case and have to pick up the rest of the bill yourself. On the other hand, if you end up over insured, you may be paying for a level of IT insurance protection you don’t really need.

Next Page »