Employment Practices Liability Insurance in Vermont
Lawsuits are an ever-present risk for Vermont businesses, costing time, money, and reputation when they occur. While most lawsuits are filed from outside the company, in recent years VT businesses have faced increased risk of lawsuits from within. Discrimination, harassment, and other employment issues can trigger expensive lawsuits, putting your business at risk. Employment practices liability insurance can help to cover the costs of these legal actions.
Employment Practices Liability Insurance for Vermont Business
Employees are expected to be treated with fairness, dignity, and respect. The law supports employees in this regard, with statutes such as the Civil Rights Act and Americans with Disabilities Act, prohibiting discrimination based on a wide range of factors. However, hiring, firing, and disciplinary action are all often contentious topics, and mistakes or misunderstandings can occur. While these and other statutes protect employees, who is protecting your business? Employment practices liability insurance helps to provide the financial resources you need to defend your business against these charges.
Any company that has employees is at risk for being sued due to real or perceived violations of the law or contracts. Some common complaints include:
- Discrimination based on race, gender, age, disability or other factors
- Breach of contract
- Wrongful termination
- Libel or slander
- Sexual harassment
- Emotional distress
- Mismanagement of employee benefits
- Negligent employment practices
While proper training for all employees and managers can help decrease your risk, even the most conscientious Vermont employer can be sued. Even if you are ultimately found not guilty, you will still have expensive legal fees to pay. An employment practices liability policy can reimburse your defense costs and other legal fees, as well as help with any settlements or damages you are required to pay, up to your covered limits.
Your risk for an employment practices lawsuit begins as soon as you bring your first prospective employee in for an interview. With so much at stake, experts recommend that new VT business owners make employment practices coverage a priority and obtain coverage prior to hiring any employees. Your premiums are based on the number of employees you have, employment history, and if there have been any previous lawsuits.
Coverage limits on ELPI policies can vary widely, with many businesses purchasing coverage between $1 million and $25 million. This provides enough coverage for most situations you could be sued for. Your insurance agent can help determine the proper policy and coverage amount for your business.
It is essential to follow all employment statutes and avoid discrimination, harassment, and other unfair treatment of your employees. However, mistakes do happen, putting your business at risk for lawsuits, fines, and penalties. If your Vermont business has even a single employee, you are at risk for an employment practices lawsuit. Protect your company by investing in employment practices liability insurance today!