Why Business Owners Should Consider an Employment Practices Liability Insurance Policy Posted May 24 2018 by Sandra Heminger In today’s increasingly litigious society, business owners operate under the constant threat of lawsuits from employees, on a variety of issues. The proliferation of federal, state, and local employment laws has created a plethora of exposures that can leave your business vulnerable to costly litigation. Businesses of all sizes are at risk: whether you are the head of a large corporation or the owner of a small neighborhood company, once you hire your first employee, you expose your company to the possibility of a lawsuit. An Employment Practices Liability Insurance Policy provides necessary protection for your business. Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI) protects your business, its directors, officers, and employees, providing coverage for the legal costs and damages associated with claims by current, former, and potential employees for a number of employment-related allegations, including: Wrongful dismissal Sexual harassment Hostile work environment Invasion of privacy Denial of promotion Failure to make partner Age, race, gender, or sexual orientation discrimination Failure to accommodate the needs of the disabled The number of employment related lawsuits filed each year is rising. Cases against employers are on the rise. According to the best industry estimate, 3 out of 5 businesses will be sued by an employee. Companies are now vulnerable from the first contact with a potential employee, from the pre-hiring process through the exit interview, even if the potential employee was never hired or was only with the company for a few days. A single employee can sink your entire company. No matter how vigilant you are, you cannot monitor every hire, termination, and conversation that takes place in your offices. Any misbehavior by your employees - a careless remark, inappropriate joke, or slightly mishandled termination – can be the basis of a lawsuit with the potential to bankrupt your business. There are steps you can take to minimize exposure, such as requiring attendance at workplace relations training sessions, implementing a zero-tolerance policy for sexual harassment, and establishing formal procedures for hiring, firing, and disciplining employees, but there is no way to ensure your company’s safety. Defending against discrimination lawsuits, even groundless ones, is expensive.Legal costs accrue at an incredibly fast rate during business litigation. The average cost to have a meritless lawsuit dismissed is between $10,000 and $15,000. If a slight concern about your company’s possible culpability causes you to agree to a quick settlement, expect expenses of $10,000 to $50,000. Costs rise sharply if there is any merit to the case against your company, with the costs of settlement and defense soaring to $150,000, $200,000, or more. Should your company be served with this type of lawsuit, your EPLI coverage reacts with legal defenses that may be included within or outside of the policy limits and would react to settlements and judgments awarded to the accuser. Now that you have a better understanding of the many reasons why business owners should consider an Employment Practices Liability Insurance Policy, you can rely on MHG Insurance Brokers to ensure that you and your business are fully protected. The Insurance Specialists at MHG understand that every business is unique. We have the experience and resources to assemble a complete insurance plan that includes all the business insurance policies your company should have, including Commercial Property Insurance, Workers’ Compensation, Business and General Liability Insurance, and more. Call us today at 954-828-1819 or visit us online at mhginsurance.com, and let our Insurance Specialists show you how to protect your business from the expense of costly lawsuits and other risks. Businesses of all sizes are at risk: whether you are the head of a large corporation or the owner of a small neighborhood company, once you hire your first employee, you expose your company to the possibility of a lawsuit.