When it comes to safeguarding your business, it’s important to protect yourself against employee lawsuits. The costs associated with these claims can be staggering and can impact businesses of any size or type. Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI) provides protection against employment practice claims such as discrimination, sexual harassment, wage & hour and wrongful termination. During FY 2020, the EEOC resolved 70,804 charges of employee discrimination, securing $439.2 million for victims in both the private sector and government workplaces.
As the Covid pandemic continues, there is greater opportunity for exposure and an increased need for protecting your business with EPLI. Employers continue to struggle to balance regulatory compliance, respect for the individual rights of employees and ongoing needs of their business as we see 2021 and a 2nd year of Covid coming to a close.
As an employer, you must comply with employment laws and guidelines from regulators including the EEOC, CDC, OSHA, and the ADA.
Why does my business need EPLI protection now more than ever?
- Increased Employee Lawsuits: In the last ten years, employee filings with Equal Employment Opportunity Commission have increased - making this an ever-growing risk for employers .
- Settlements are getting more expensive: Not only is the number of employee lawsuits growing, but the amount of money payed out as a result of these claims is rising. The average settlement for employment practice claims is now estimated at $70,000.
- Big or small – all companies face risks: Whether your company is large or small or has many or few employees – all businesses should prepare themselves.
- Even if you are not at fault, it can still cost you: Even those businesses that are fault free face legal defense costs and fees are still an associated expense when it comes to employment practices claims. Businesses with EPLI coverage can breathe easy knowing they are covered.
- Covid related incident such as:
- Wrongful Termination: Be mindful of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act when making any employment decisions as to avoid any issues of retaliation.
- Invasion of Privacy: Remember ALL medical information must be kept confidential. Including temperature taking for the purposes of Covid screening. Remember consistency is key. Test everyone equally.
- Unsafe Workplace: OSHA is already getting notifications from employees alleging that their employers failed to comply with local stay-at-home orders or health and safety regulations.
Be aware of the terms of your current commercial liability policy and understand that it may not provide coverage. Some Commercial Umbrella policies may also exclude EPLI claims. Lastly, remember that policies differ from carrier to carrier. Working with an Independent Agent with access to multiple carriers is critical to your business.
Haylor, Freyer & Coon, Inc. has been protecting businesses since 1928. Our team of insurance and risk management specialists can assist with your EPLI coverage, utilizing the numerous carrier relationships we've developed over our 93 year history.