Getting Close to RetirementPlease see the answers to your questions below each question:

I know that this can be frustrating, but all attorney malpractice insurers’ extended reporting period (ERP/Tail) provisions are provisions that an insurer will not modify.  There are many reasons that ERP options are exercised and if an insurer made a concession to one firm it would need to make the same concessions open to other firms.  As such insurers strictly follow their ERP obligations as outlined in the policy and will not deviate.

Let me know if you have further questions after reading the following responses.

Lee

Attorney’s Question(s) :

I have another avenue to question.  Please bear with me as I try to get through this frustrating situation. 

1.  Is it possible for me to pay for extended reporting coverage, and then be able to practice a little after expiration date without affecting the coverage?  Are the limitations in the free tail coverage thereby lessened?        

Response:

You have the right to purchase an ERP that does not prohibit you from continuing to practice law.  Please note that this ERP only covers you for covered acts during the time that you had ‘inforce’ coverage.  It does not cover you for any acts once the policy has terminated, the ERP only extends the reporting period.  The costs are outlined in your policy as follows:

Optional Extended Reporting Periods:

12 months at 100% of the Premium shown in Item 6. of the Declarations

36 months at 150% of the Premium shown in Item 6. of the Declarations

Unlimited months at 225% of the Premium shown in Item 6. of the Declarations”

As your current premium is $2866; the cost of the ERP endorsement would be:

            12 Months   --  $2866

            36 Months --   $4299

            Unlimited  --    $6448.50

If you wanted to cover acts after coverage termination then you could purchase a policy without any past acts coverage.

 

2.  If so, can I elect to do so with my current insurer?  

Response:

If you were to purchase an ERP, it has to be from your incumbent insurer.  If desired new coverage without prior acts coverage can be purchased with any insurer at a later date.

 

3.  If so, can it be elected during the 60 period after policy expiration that you mentioned?

Response:

You have 60 days from the coverage termination date.  Please note that the additional premium must be in the hands of the insurer prior to the end of the 60 day period, so realistically we need to have the premium received by us at least 1 week prior to the end of the 60 day time period to have the premium get to the insurer prior to the 60th day.  If the monies are not received prior to this date, there is no grace period and the option is closed.

Here is the language from your policy that deals with the ERP:              

(1) Common  Extended  Reporting  Period  Terms:    An  Extended  Reporting  Period  is  not cancelable.  This sub-paragraph (1) shall not apply to any cancellation resulting from non-payment of premium.  The rights contained in this paragraph (k) shall terminate unless written notice of election of an Extended Reporting Period together with any additional premium due is received by the Insurer no later than sixty (60) days subsequent to the effective date of the cancellation, nonrenewal or change in Firm membership.

 The additional premium for any Extended Reporting Period under this paragraph (k) shall be deemed fully earned when such Extended Reporting Period commences, and in the event  the Firm terminates, for any reason, such Extended Reporting Period before its expiration, the Insurer shall not be liable for the return to the Firm of any portion of the premium for the Extended Reporting Period.

The Extended Reporting Period does not extend the Policy Period or change the scope of coverage provided. The Extended Reporting Period does not reinstate or increase the Insurer’s Limit of Liability. The Limits of Liability applicable to Claims reported to the Insurer during the Extended Reporting Period shall be the same Limits of Liability that

(Please note that the above response is specific to this insured for this insurer’s malpractice policy.  Depending on the insurer and your specific circumstances the response will differ, especially related to ERP cost and timing.  Also note that not all insurers offer a ‘no-cost’ non practicing ERP.)

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