4 Tips to Secure D&O Coverage in Uncertain Economic Times

4 Tips to Secure D&O Coverage in Uncertain Economic Times

The best preparation is early preparation, given the current state of the market. Here’s some advice on how to build your D&O program and information about executive liability.

By Greg Boornazian, Christie Vu and Ben Young

Small and medium-sized businesses may face even greater risk for financial impairment in the coming months due to the reduced availability of credit, interest rate increases and the tightening of lending guidelines. With the current state of the market, now is the best time to review your organization’s Directors & Officers (D&O) insurance with your broker to determine if your organization and executives are adequately protected in the event a financial impairment does occur. To help prepare you for coverage negotiations with your insurer, here are a few considerations that underwriters will look for when evaluating companies for D&O coverage:    

4 D&O Placement Tips from the Underwriting Perspective

1. Start early.

Reviewing your D&O insurance program with your broker as early as possible before any potential bankruptcy provides you with the ability to design a program to protect your company and directors and officers in the event a bankruptcy does occur. This allows for better opportunities in the negotiation process for favorable coverage. The closer the company heads to financial impairment, the less likely an insurer will enhance any policy terms or conditions. 

2. Be upfront about the organization’s challenges and strategy.

Underwriters perform an individual risk assessment on the company and look at the macro environment in general, such as market conditions, political changes, segment bubbles and court decisions. While each risk is unique, underwriters manage a book of business with many homogenous groupings. It’s likely your strategic themes will be similar to other risks they have reviewed. Specific details about your funding strategy, profitability plans, unique business model or geographic strengths in your particular segment can make a difference.

Treat your underwriters like they are potential investors in your company. Market conditions for underwriters harden and soften in cycles too so they may be understanding and open to learning how interest rate hikes, high-profile bankruptcies, pandemic-related securities cases, supply chain issues or staffing challenges may impact your company.

Be prepared to answer the following questions that underwriters may ask:

  • Have there been any operational changes? Examples include: any exit from product lines or geographic areas, any downsizing, divestiture or “cash conservation” strategies being implemented, or any past management strategies resulting in an unmanageable risk burden or persistent net losses. 
  • Have you engaged with any third party turn around specialists?
  • Has there been any one-time write-down requirements or other accounting change implementations, including a change in auditor?

3. Meet in person or virtually with underwriters

Addressing potential underwriter concerns may facilitate a smoother D&O placement when conditions are at risk of deteriorating. Relationships matter and with new capacity in the market there are several experienced underwriting teams interested in getting to know more about your risk and reestablishing or forging new relationships with your executive teams. Underwriters who spend time with management to understand the cycles of a given business or strategies to combat threats to profitability may be more agreeable to offer capacity.

4. Elevate the discussion

Include your own experts in the discussion. Chief financial officers, risk managers and general counsel are well suited to best connect with underwriters and add color to the conversation on the spot.

Underwriters prepare for these meetings and will want to engage at a meaningful level to help differentiate your risk from others based on more detail than can be gleaned from an application. By sharing the most recent audited financial statements with notes ahead of time, an underwriter will be able to drill down on certain facets of your company such as details regarding loan covenant defaults and waivers, cash burn coverage capability for the next 12-18 months, accounts receivable / accounts payable imbalances, long-term debt payment obligations, EBITDA and net income trends, and net loss explanations including reasons such as depreciation versus interest expense. 

Also, prepare interim and pro forma information to support management’s thesis. These are critical underwriting details that create a more complete financial picture of the company. 

These are just a few examples of what underwriters are looking to understand when evaluating the financial health of the company but addressing them directly may be conducive to better terms overall. For more advice on how to build your D&O program and to learn more about executive liability, B&B Protector Plans. For more information on what your D&O policy should include ahead of bankruptcy, read Part I of this series.

This information is intended for informational purposes only. Protector Plans Executive Liability is not liable for any loss or damage arising out of or in connection with the use of this information.

10 D&O Policy Considerations Ahead of a Potential Bankruptcy or Insolvency

10 D&O Policy Considerations Ahead of a Potential Bankruptcy or Insolvency

It’s smart to prepare for risks such as bankruptcy in these uncertain economic times. But, how? Here we share D&O policy considerations ahead of a potential insolvency.

By Greg Boornazian, Christie Vu and Ben Young

The U.S. Federal Reserve’s current push to slow down the U.S. economy is threatening to send the country into a recession[1], putting privately held companies at greater risk for bankruptcy due to their inability to pay down debt and the rising costs of borrowing funds.

Small and medium-sized businesses may face even greater refinancing risk in the coming months due to the reduced availability of credit, interest rate increases and the tightening of lending guidelines.

In the first quarter of 2023 alone, overall commercial bankruptcies increased 19% compared to the first quarter of 2022.[2] With the expiration of most COVID relief programs, such as the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (“CARES”) Act, and rate increases by the U.S. Federal Reserve, more bankruptcies may be on the horizon.[3]

To help protect against these potential risks, organizations can rely on their Directors and Officers (D&O) liability insurance to safeguard their teammates and their business.

D&O insurance helps protect a company’s bottom line and the personal assets of their corporate executives — past, present and future — against lawsuits brought by shareholders or other parties, including employees, regulators, creditors, vendors, customers and competitors, for their decisions and actions in managing a private company. Coverage is typically for:

  • Defense costs
  • Judgments
  • Settlements 

D&O Policy Coverage Considerations

Because of the state of the economy today, now is the time for you to evaluate your organization’s D&O policy coverage to ensure you are protected in the event of a bankruptcy or other financial insolvency by reviewing the terms, conditions and limits against your current expected operating environments and bankruptcy ruling trends with your broker.

Here are 10 coverage considerations to keep in mind:

1. Debtor-in-possession: In a bankruptcy, typically the company’s current management team stays in place to continue operating the company and is referred to as the “debtor-in-possession.”[4] Your D&O policy should include “debtor-in-possession” as part of its definition of an Insured so that coverage continues.

2. Insured vs. insured exclusion: This provision protects the insurer from providing coverage for collusion and internal disputes between insured parties by excluding coverage for any claim brought by or on behalf of an insured against another insured on the same policy. Ensure the exclusion in your policy includes a carve-back stating that the exclusion does not apply in the event a claim is brought in a bankruptcy proceeding — or some other similar wording — so that the policy provides coverage for any claims brought by a bankruptcy trustee.

3. Conduct exclusion: The actions of your D&Os will likely be scrutinized if a bankruptcy occurs and triggers your policy’s conduct exclusion. For example, a bankruptcy trustee may claim that its D&Os committed fraud, which led to the company’s bankruptcy. Since conduct exclusion language differs across insurers, make sure to:

  • Carefully read the language in your policy to ensure it advances defense protection to the D&Os.
  • Include a requirement that the exclusion applies only if a final, non-appealable judgment against the insured D&O happens.
  • Review the final adjudication requirement in your policy to see if it’s based on “the” or “any” underlying proceeding, to determine how broad the exclusion applies.

4. Order of payment: Review your policy to determine how payments will be made if a bankruptcy occurs. This provision should indicate that payments first be made to the directors and officers to cover any costs not reimbursed by the company.

5. Side-A Coverage and Presumptive Indemnification: Once a bankruptcy proceeding is filed, the court suspends any litigation proceeding except for litigation against directors and officers.[5] As a result, your D&O’s Side-A policy could still be used by directors and officers since it protects them if the company can’t indemnify them.[6] Your D&O policy should include the following two provisions:

  • Any bankruptcy or insolvency issue your company faces does not absolve the insurer of its obligations under the policy.
  • The parties waive any automatic stay that may apply to any proceeds of the policy.

6. Side-B Coverage and Presumptive Indemnification: D&O policies typically include a presumptive indemnification provision stating that the insurer assumes that directors and officers are indemnified by the company to the fullest extent permitted by law.
Whereas Side-A coverage does not include a retention, Side-B coverage does, which is similar to a deductible. The difference: a retention requires the insured to pay for any costs up to the specified amount before the insurer begins to pay.

Some courts have found that D&O policy proceeds are part of the bankruptcy estate since it is corporate reimbursement coverage, not individual protection coverage.7 This could leave D&Os exposed since an automatic stay does not suspend any lawsuits made against them.  

TIP: Ensure your D&O policy includes carve-backs to the presumptive indemnification stating the insurer will pay any costs if the company refuses, is unable or fails to advance or indemnify its D&Os, without applying any retention, unless and until the company has agreed (voluntarily or by court order) to make these payments.

7. Run-Off Coverage. This covers directors and officers up to six years after a merger or acquisition occurs, and only covers actions that happened before the merger or acquisition. Ideally, the D&O policy should not include bankruptcy as a trigger for run-off coverage so the policy can support D&Os who have remained with the company to manage it through murky waters.  

TIP: Discuss terms and pricing with your underwriter in advance, as the quote for this coverage typically is not offered at renewal or when negotiations begin.

8. Wind-Down Coverage. Discuss the need for inclusion of wind down coverage with your broker, concurrent with run-off terms. This helps cover directors and officers while wind-down activities take place after the run-off coverage begins. Endorsements may specify coverage for actual or alleged wrongful acts committed by an insured in connection with the winding down of the business and operations.

TIP: Ask your broker about what the excess layers of your D&O program are offering in terms of pricing and coverage in the event of a run-off, as this coverage can be expensive.

9. Policy Period Extension. In Chapter 11 bankruptcies, a company is usually allowed to continue its business operations while restructuring its debt and working with an assigned committee to develop a reorganization plan.[7] Since D&O policies typically run annually, an extension to the policy period will likely be needed through expected emergence.

TIP: Confirm if your insurer is willing to offer an extension. In addition, ask about restrictions on policy period lengths due to reinsurance requirements. Also ask your broker if incumbent markets are likely to offer go-forward coverage or will a complete remarketing effort be required.

10. Additional D&O Limits. D&O policy liability limits are shared across your organization’s Side-A, Side-B and Side-C coverage. This D&O policy liability limits are shared across your organization’s Side-A, Side-B and Side-C coverage. This can leave directors and officers exposed if the limits have been used on claims to indemnify the company or other employees. To safeguard directors and officers from personal liability, additional limits can be purchased solely for your directors and officers in case the company cannot indemnify them. Here’s a short list of additional D&O limits to consider:

  • An additional limit for Side-A coverage that would apply once the D&O policy and any excess policy is exhausted. 
  • A difference-in-conditions policy. This standalone Side-A policy has few exclusions and may drop down in certain situations, including filling gaps when there are disputes between carriers and insureds.
  • An independent director’s liability (“IDL”) policy may be considered for additional protection. IDL policies are purchased by the individual and may be tailored for those who sit on multiple boards. It’s useful for high-net-worth individuals who serve on boards of small, start-up or non-profit operations whose operating history or financial scope may be limited.   

The above considerations highlight just a few of the ways a D&O policy can protect your directors and officers in the event of a bankruptcy. For more advice on how to build your D&O program and to learn more about executive liability, contact B&B Protector Plans.

For information on what underwriters are looking for in placing a D&O policy, read Part II of this article here.

This information is intended for informational purposes only. Protector Plans Executive Liability is not liable for any loss or damage arising out of or in connection with the use of this information.

[1] CNBC “No exit ramp for Fed’s Powell until he creates a recession, economist says,” March 8, 2023.

[2] Epiq “Bankruptcy Filings Increase All Chapters in March; Commercial Filings Up 79 Percent Year-Over-Year,” April 3, 2023. 

[3] S&P Global Market Intelligence “US corporate bankruptcy filings hit 12-year high in first 2 months of 2023,” March 3, 2023.

[4] United States Courts “Chapter 11 – Bankruptcy Basics.” 

[5] Rivkin Radler “The Reach of the Automatic Stay in Bankruptcy: Far, But Not That Far,” December 10, 2015.  

[6] American Bar Association. “Whose Policy is It, Anyway? A Debtor’s Insurance Policies and Rights to Policy Proceeds,” December 14, 2014.

[7] Houston Chronicle “What is the Difference Between Liquidation and Emergency in Bankruptcy?

 [AD1]Add link to part II

Why Shipping Insurance Can Be Your Competitive Advantage

Why Shipping Insurance Can Be Your Competitive Advantage

Shipping insurance can protect your brand and your profits by providing coverage for lost or damaged packages. Whether you are shipping or receiving items, this lesser-known coverage can help replace lost or damaged packages.

By Lisa Lash

A lost or damaged package can disrupt your business operations, and lead to unsatisfied customers, negative reviews and expensive replacement costs.

Shipping insurance – also known as parcel insurance – can’t prevent your packages from getting lost, but it can shield you from costly replacement expenses. Shipping insurance also protects your financial interests by delivering at least 50% savings over coverage from shipping carriers at the point of sale (POS).

While import volumes are below the record-setting levels that sparked port congestion, shipping backups and wayward packages at the height of the pandemic, volumes are still higher than pre-pandemic levels.[1] Higher volumes can lead to more lost or damaged packages, making shipping insurance a more important investment than ever to protect your business and your reputation.

Who is parcel insurance for?

If your business ships lower-priced items, such as t-shirts valued at $5, the automatic coverage of up to $100 available through UPS, FedEx, USPS and other carriers at the POS may be enough coverage.  

It’s companies that ship or receive a high volume of goods, typically at least 3-5 packages a day, at an individual value of $100 or more, that can benefit most from parcel insurance. That’s because it is more cost-effective and covers more than what is automatically available at the POS from a shipping company. In fact, parcel insurance can cost 50% less than coverage available at the POS.

What does parcel insurance cover?

Not everyone is aware that parcel insurance is available as an alternative to POS coverage. If your company ships a high volume of goods, obtaining parcel insurance can provide a competitive advantage because the cost for parcel insurance is based only on the value of the items you ship, not the size or weight of each package. Insurance costs are also not based on a set monthly premium. You pay only for each box shipped.

Shipping insurance can cover high-cost goods, including the following items:

  • Furs
  • Artwork
  • Jewelry
  • Laptops
  • Cell phones

Commodities not usually covered by parcel insurance include gift cards, lottery tickets, game tickets, loose diamonds or stones, and personal or gift items shipped by employees. Parcel insurance also does not cover items delayed in transit, or fraudulent claims.

How does parcel insurance work?

Parcel insurance coverage is right-sized. Therefore, your monthly coverage costs are based only on the value of what you ship each month, based directly on your manifest report. For example, if you ship more items during the holiday season, your parcel insurance costs will be higher at that time than the months when you ship less.

Parcel coverage safeguards against lost or damaged items and can also cover items shipped to you. Insurance providers simply need to know the industry you’re in and the types of goods that you typically ship. Since international buyers tend to lose parcels more frequently, this coverage can be especially valuable for global shipping.

Any drastic changes to what you typically ship must be reported to your shipping insurance provider. For example, if your business typically ships customer packages and then when participating in a tradeshow, you need to ship items to the event, such as six big-screen TVs and a display and other high-value items, you would need to report the different types of items being shipped to ensure coverage.

What are some common parcel insurance claims?

Packaging items well and tracking delivery can help avoid claims, but mishaps still happen even to the most careful shippers. Here are two common claims scenarios:

  • The delivery that disappeared. This typically involves a misdelivered package. The buyer didn’t receive the package, even if there’s a delivery scan. In this scenario, shipping insurance covers the cost of refunding the buyer if they really didn’t receive the item.
  • The dropped and damaged delivery. Often, a box will fall and damage the contents, such as the glass on an electronics screen. Other times, it could be a rare item that breaks, such as a set of expensive china or pottery. Shipping insurance offers protection when contents are damaged.

How long does it take to get started?

Businesses can start using their Parcel Insurance on the same day they obtain it, and most insurance providers can provide you a quote and issue a policy in one day as well. After uploading the free software from your parcel insurance provider to integrate with the manifest shipping software, your insurance provider will have access to your packages shipped and can begin your coverage.  

For more information about parcel shipping insurance, contact  Parcel Insurance Plan.

[1] Port Calls “US record imports streak ends, volumes still high,” September 2022.

How to Close Your Law Practice and Ensure You’re Covered by a Malpractice ERP

How to Close Your Law Practice and Ensure You’re Covered by a Malpractice ERP

By Christina Melia, Esq.

Lawyers want to make sure their malpractice coverage tail supports them well into retirement. Reducing your future liability requires a clean transition to retirement phase.

When it’s time to close the books on a fruitful practice, lawyers must strategize much like they would when building a legal case. A retirement playbook for attorneys must consider liability exposures even after the practice closes its doors. 

Prior to the pandemic, about 15% of lawyers planned to work after age 65.[1] Yet, many baby boomers are now retiring sooner than retirement age,[2] and the generation’s attorneys are no exception. To remain covered by insurance when retiring, malpractice liability requires lawyers to adhere to specific requirements. This is especially true if an attorney plans to practice law in any other capacity.

Extended reporting periods: What are they? Why are they important?

Owners of law practices secure malpractice insurance to protect their businesses — and their own assets — from financial damages resulting from any legal actions pursued by an aggrieved client or other party. Once a lawyer retires, it’s critical to maintain this liability coverage so that any claims made based on past exposures would potentially still be covered. An extended reporting period (ERP) or policy tail helps meet the objective of continued coverage. Ahead of retirement, make sure to obtain an understanding of your current policy limits, because the ERP will mirror the limits of your current policy.  

One individual retirement ERP, for example, allows the owner of a law practice to report claims, acts or omissions up to seven years after the firm closes. To qualify for a Retirement ERP at no additional premium, a lawyer must be at least 55 years old and have an active malpractice liability policy with that individual ERP for at least three years. Here are a few other requirements for this ERP coverage:

1. To activate the ERP, you must inform your carrier via letter of your retirement plans. If you don’t, you could jeopardize ERP coverage.

2. You must cease the practice of law to retain the policy tail. Here are some situations to avoid which will render your ERP null and void:

  • Acting in an “of counsel” capacity to another firm or client
  • Notifying an insurance carrier that the firm has been closed or sold and still practice law
  • Filing a notice or brief in a courthouse

3. There are some situations in which you can still use your legal expertise subject to carrier approval and be covered under the Retirement ERP:

  • You can represent yourself
  • You can act as a mediator between two parties
  • You can teach continuing legal education classes
  • You can act as executor of a will or trustee for a trust arrangement

In order to avoid these requirements or restrictions a firm can purchase an Optional ERP.

13 Things You Need to Know When Closing Your Law Practice: A retirement checklist

Plugging gaps for exposures is an important consideration while you practice law and after you retire, but there is more you need to do before officially closing your practice.

  1. Give clients and staff sufficient notice — in person, by phone or mail — that you’ll be retiring and ramp up collection activities for outstanding balances owed to your firm.
  2. Decide whether there is enough time to litigate open cases or if clients must be referred to another attorney. Outline the process for seeking new legal representation and if necessary, facilitate the search for a new attorney.
  3. Politely decline new cases and provide detailed instructions on how to proceed for existing clients whose legal matters will likely continue beyond your retirement date.
  4. Craft specific messaging around your retired status for inbound business phone calls and emails. Set up active phone numbers and email addresses for forwarding so that clients clearly understand where to go for files or additional information.
  5. Send notifications of retirement and instructions on next steps to a last known physical address for existing clients who cannot be located. Retain funds for these parties or consider turning the monies over to a common interest on lawyers’ trust accounts (IOLTA) fund or other government entity.
  6. Take careful measures on information safety and data security when transferring client files. Electronic files should be password protected and/or encrypted, which can help reduce the chance of compromise or data breach.
  7. Seek the court’s approval before removing yourself as counsel from any active case and refund any fees paid by clients for planned services that extend beyond your retirement date.
  8. Determine status of inactive client files and retain original client materials. Keep any information and/or trust account activity statements that your client may need at a later date.
  9. Maintain active client files as well as client trust account statements for the amount of time specified by the laws of states where you practiced.
  10. Send a trackable letter updating your new status to the Bar Association as well as state and local licensing bureaus.
  11. Analyze partnership agreements (if applicable) for concluding the relationship per the terms of the contract.
  12. Extend the liability portion of your malpractice insurance for claims that may arise from past activities. An extended reporting period (ERP) is often available as “tail coverage,” which can protect you at a prescribed dollar amount for a set number of years.
  13. Extend the liability portion of your malpractice insurance for claims that may arise from past activities. An extended reporting period (ERP) is often available as “tail coverage,” which can protect you at a prescribed dollar amount for a set number of years.

In your line of work, you understand the importance of attention to detail. That mindset must continue as you approach retirement. For more information on how you can mitigate risks when closing your law practice, contact Lawyer’s Protector Plan.

This information is intended for informational purposes only. Nothing contained in this publication is, nor is intended to be, legal advice. Lawyer’s Protector Plan is not liable for any injury, loss, damage, or expense arising out of or in connection with the use of this information.

[1] Clio, “A guide to Preparing for Lawyer Retirement,” November 24, 2021

[2] Pew Research Center, “Amid the pandemic, a rising share of older U.S. adults are now retired,” November 4, 2021

When should you refund a dissatisfied patient?

When should you refund a dissatisfied patient?

Issuing refunds to patients is not out of the ordinary for dental practices. To protect your livelihood, you will want to follow some prescribed guidelines, reducing the chances of an unhappy customer filing a malpractice claim.

By Ty M. Galvin, D.D.S., and Michael A. Gile, D.D.S

Dentists understand they must issue refunds to unhappy patients from time to time. It’s not an unusual circumstance nor should it be disruptive to your practice. Maybe you performed a basic service that ultimately wasn’t covered by the patient’s insurance, or a structural issue arose with a crown or bridge that you feel responsible for.

In these cases, there are ways to reduce your liability and still defuse the situation when offering out-of-pocket dollars back to the patient.

5 steps to processing a refund

In your practice, you’ve come to know many patients — some better than others. If a refund request occurs, you might be tempted to write a check and quickly put the incident behind you. But this could pose a problem regardless of how well you know the patient. So, it’s prudent to establish and consistently abide by a formal process for refunds. Here’s how.

1.     Determine the reason for the refund.

Before issuing a refund, investigate the reason for the patient request and determine the validity of the patient claim. That starts with a basic fact find. A patient’s concerns will usually be conveyed via an initial phone call or email to your office. Make it a point to have your staff gather as much information as possible about the issue when this occurs.

You’ll then need to review the facts before deciding to provide a refund. It may be a snap decision to refund $40 for a fluoride treatment that’s not covered by insurance, but refunding the full cost of an implant will warrant a more thorough review. 

 2.     Search for an alternate resolution to the issue.

Money may not be the only remedy to a patient’s dissatisfaction. If the issue pertains to reconstructive dental work you performed, addressing and fixing the perceived issue with a tooth, bridge or crown might alleviate the concern. When the patient recognizes that you’re taking every conceivable step to correct the problem, your goodwill could be enough to make everything right.

Your ultimate goal is to make the patient happy, but in some cases that objective may be unrealistic. Some individuals may persist with their claim to a refund despite your best efforts to placate them.

3.     Document every step of the process.

It’s critical to gather all pertinent information surrounding the frustrated patient’s experience. Document each communication between the patient and your office, noting the date, time and specific details of conversations and emails. Make sure to log all work performed or discussed in the patient’s chart.

Make note of the patient’s demeanor during face-to-face meetings or phone calls as well and use neutral language when interpreting or documenting their behavior. Observing hostile or irrational behavior may not cloud the facts of an issue but documenting state of mind could have some bearing on outcomes — if the dispute finds its way into the legal system.

4.     Incorporate a formal release document into the refund process.

If the patient agrees to a settlement, refunding or waiving a payment is only one part of the deal. Formalizing the terms in writing could help deter any further action taken on the patient’s behalf. In some instances, you may simply be forgiving a balance due but before writing a check, obtain a signed release, which could help permanently close the case, or provide the necessary documentation should it proceed to a claim, lawsuit, or State Board action.

The release form is a document the patient signs to lessen the risk of litigation or a board complaint. A signed release should be secured before you refund a patient. Asking for a signature on a release could trigger an unpleasant reaction from an aggrieved patient. Faced with that possibility, you might look for another way to diffuse the situation.

Note that the general release form should be recreated on your office’s letterhead. If you mail the release to the patient to sign, include a self-addressed envelope to make the process easier for them, along with a letter that notes the following information:

  • The refund won’t be processed without a signature on the release
  • A mention that a payment removes your office from any future liability
  • A time frame within which the release must be signed and returned

You don’t need to self-report a simple refund to the National Practitioner Data Bank, but payments from state law actions or lawsuits must be.

5.     Stay mindful of potential malpractice claims.

Malpractice claims are an unlikely result of a refund request, but the possibility can’t be entirely dismissed. A simple refund process won’t require you to contact your insurance broker or carrier, but escalation beyond an open and shut case will mandate a notification.

Two occurrences indicate that the patient may be pursuing legal action: If you receive notice from an attorney representing the patient, and/or the patient turns the matter over to the state dental board. If faced with either of these consequences, inform your broker or carrier immediately.

It goes with the territory

Unhappy patients are just part of the landscape of having a dental practice, and sometimes you simply have to sever ties with them. Consider these mildly unpleasant circumstances a cost of doing business. You can hope that refund requests get resolved quickly and simply but be wary of how dissatisfaction might turn into something more complex and costly.

For more information on how to protect yourself from unwanted claims, contact PPP Risk Management.

This information is intended for informational purposes only. Professional Protector Plan for Dentists is not liable for any loss or damage arising out of or in connection with the use of this information.

Why Savvy Couples Say “I Do” To Wedding Insurance

Why Savvy Couples Say “I Do” To Wedding Insurance

With an average of 12 vendors hired and $27k at stake, wedding insurance can help provide protection when the unexpected happens on, before or even after your big day. Here’s a look at key considerations in choosing a policy that’s right for you.

By Regina Burnett and Meagan Phillips

Congratulations! With a wedding on the horizon, there’s a good chance that you’ve been visiting venues, choosing menus and making dozens of decisions for a truly memorable day. But there’s more that you can — and should — do to protect your big day from the unexpected.

Planning a wedding takes time and money, with the average wedding costing $27,000[1]. Couples typically hire as many as 12 vendors for their wedding to ensure their special day runs smoothly.[2] For this reason, adding a wedding insurance policy can be an important part of your to-do checklist.

Even the most careful wedding planning can’t completely prevent the unexpected, from forgetful photographers and suddenly shuttered venues to extreme weather and sudden family illness.

Beyond counting on vendors to show up, and hoping for clear skies, obtaining a wedding insurance policy can both help protect your special day — and provide peace of mind that reimbursement is possible for a covered loss.

What does wedding insurance cover?

Wedding insurance is a special event insurance that can provide coverage when your planning or private event gets derailed in some way. This includes venues closing, military deployment, vendors going out of business or not showing up, extreme weather, unexpected sickness or injury and more.

It can protect you in the months leading up to your wedding, at the event itself, and even after, including the making of your contracted wedding video and photos. It can also help protect you from liability if one of your guests causes property damage to the wedding venue, for example. 

Consider these scenarios:

  • A perfect storm: A severe storm knocks out power and disrupts travel for days, causing a couple to postpone their wedding. Because policies are based on the total anticipated cost of the wedding, wedding insurance can reimburse for the contracted expenses of caterers, property and equipment rental, transportation and other expenses, including invitations and flowers.
    A 14-day extreme weather exclusion applies. Purchase a policy early to ensure coverage is in place.
  • The runaway band: After months spent choosing a wedding band, the band breaks up before the big day, and keeps your deposit. Wedding insurance could reimburse you the contracted lost deposit paid, helping you secure a new band before your event, without missing a beat.
  • A second take: When the photographer’s memory card malfunctions, and he doesn’t deliver the photos as promised, wedding insurance can provide coverage for the cost of retaking new wedding photographs after the event.

How much wedding insurance coverage do you need?

Obtaining wedding insurance that spans the entire planning time will help protect you from these types of unanticipated scenarios. There are also ancillary coverages that are built into each policy to protect against incidents that may impact your special day but not actually cancel it, including the loss of deposits, videos, wedding attire, rings and special gifts.

Policies are based on the total anticipated cost of the wedding, so the coverage protects your total financial exposure. Premiums to cover your wedding can cost as little as 1% of the total cost of your wedding.

Does your policy cover your entire financial exposure?

Not all wedding insurance policies are created equal. Some cover only the day of the event, while others cover the event and the expenses leading up to it, from vendor deposits to day-of catering and photography.

Remember, the event itself is just one area of liability, which is why it’s important to obtain a wedding policy that covers your whole financial exposure. You may not realize that when you rent a venue for your event, you will be responsible for incidents that occur at the wedding as well. For example, if someone falls while dancing and breaks their leg, you may have to cover that expense.

When is the best time to buy?

Consider buying wedding insurance as soon as you begin planning your wedding, signing contracts and putting money down as deposits. You can purchase it up to two years in advance. The price of the policy is the same regardless of when you buy it, so it’s a good idea to be covered as soon as possible.

Make sure you do everything you can to have an unforgettable wedding, including obtaining insurance coverage that protects your investment on your special day. To learn more about wedding insurance, contact The Wedding Protector Plan®.

Underwritten by Travelers, the Wedding Protector Plan®. provides wedding insurance coverage for the ceremony, reception, rehearsal, rehearsal dinner, and a post-wedding brunch without a deductible. There’s also the option to add liability coverage for the many other things that could go wrong. With the Wedding Protector Plan®, you can ensure that nearly every risk is covered. Learn more about this valuable coverage and Get a Quote or Purchase A Policy when the wedding planning begins.

*The information in this post is general in nature. Any description of coverage is necessarily simplified. Whether a particular loss is covered depends on the specific facts and the provisions, exclusions, and limits of the actual policy. Nothing in this post alters the terms or conditions of any of our policies. Please read the policy for a complete description of coverage. Coverage options, limits, discounts, and deductibles are subject to individuals meeting our underwriting criteria and state availability.

[1]The Ascent “This Is the Average Cost of a Wedding in 2022,” July 2, 2022.

[2] The Wedding Wire “2021 WeddingWire Newlywed Report: COVID-19 EDITION,” 2021.