Professional Liability Insurance
Professional liability is justifiably a high-priority concern. The frequency of professional liability claims and the size of awards have increased dramatically in recent years. While the consequences of a malpractice claim can be devastating, both personally and financially, professional liability insurance can help protect the physician by providing financial and legal support. This section provides general information the physician needs to become properly informed about liability insurance.
Deciding how much insurance to purchase is a physicians' personal decision, based on a number of factors, including:
- practice specialty
- practice location
- willingness to risk personal assets
- state legal requirements.
A wide range of policy limits is available, but typically start from $100,000/$300,000 and go upward. The lower number of the two policy limits is the amount an insurer will pay per claim, and the higher number is the total the insurer will pay in aggregate for all claims during a policy period. Therefore, with coverage of $200,000/$600,000, an insurer would pay up to $200,000 per claim and no more than $600,000 for the total of all claims during the policy period. If a large settlement or judgment is entered against a physician, an insufficient level of coverage could jeopardize personal assets.
Find out if your state requires physicians to maintain a minimum level of medical liability insurance.
Surcharges to Offset Liability Premiums
The AMA Board of Trustees report on liability surcharges in physician offices.
Medical Liability Reform
Learn more about AMA's continuing advocacy efforts to reduce medical liability premiums.