Business Insurance for Doctors
If you are a doctor in Florida, one of the more critical questions you must address is whether to purchase malpractice insurance. The answer, in fact, is more complicated that simply “yes” or “no”. Doctors in Florida are not legally required to carry medical malpractice insurance and for a long time, this insurance was so expensive that many physicians took the risk of practicing without it. However, thanks to recent legal reforms that have created a more stable and more affordable market for malpractice insurance, most physicians now agree that the peace of mind that comes from knowing that you are financially protected from the cost of a lawsuit against you is “worth it.”
If you own and operate your own medical practice, you and your business—including your staff—should be covered by a comprehensive medical malpractice policy that:
- Enables you and your staff to obtain hospital visiting privileges
- Enables you and your staff to practice under healthcare networks
- Offers financial protection to both your medical business and your personal finances
- Covers legal fees even if a claim is dropped or settled
- Covers lost wages for your or staff members who cannot practice while fighting a lawsuit
If you do not own your own medical practice, you may believe that your employer’s medical malpractice insurance offers you complete protection. However, it’s important to realize that most malpractice insurance policies must be active when the alleged incident occurred as well as when the claim is filed. Thus, if you change practices in the middle of a lawsuit, you may not be covered. A personal malpractice policy follows you through multiple practices. However, this additional coverage may not be necessary if your employer has “tail” coverage, which enables you to report a claim made against you while you were covered under a prior policy. “Prior acts” coverage protects you retroactively, for incidents that not yet been reported (but may have occurred while at a difference practice).
Whether you are purchasing personal malpractice insurance or insurance to cover your medical practice, it’s important to know both the limits of coverage and all deductibles. Malpractice insurance usually has two different types of limits: per occurrence and overall aggregate; the former is what your policy covers per claim while the latter is what your policy covers during the specific policy period.
Insurance for doctors who own their own medical practice
For doctors that own their own medical practice in the sunny state of Florida, it’s important to remember that malpractice insurance is not the only type of insurance you need to make sure your business is completely protected! A comprehensive insurance package for most doctor’s offices includes standard business coverages as well, including:
- General Liability (protects against lawsuits unrelated to medical malpractice suits)
- Commercial Property (protects your physical property, including office space and equipment)
- Business Income (to protect you against lost income if you must close your practice due to covered property damage)
- Umbrella Liability Insurance (Excess Liability Insurance) extends the limits of your coverage to ensure the limits meet your perceived risk
- Worker’s Compensation (protects your staff against financial loss stemming from workplace related injury or illness)
Often, general liability, commercial property, and business income insurance can be “bundled” in a Business Owner’s Policy, or BOP, at discounted rates.
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