Should I Carry Malpractice (Liability) Insurance? - page 6

This question comes up frequently and is asked of me quite often, "should I carry malpractice insurance?" Many nurses are covered under their own individual liability insurance carrier. Many more are not. I am ... Are you?? ... Read More

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    Quote from siri
    this question comes up frequently and is asked of me quite often, "should i carry malpractice insurance?" many nurses are covered under their own individual liability insurance carrier. many more are not. i am.......... are you??

    nurses can be sued at any time, for any reason. often, allegations brought against you are unfounded, but just being named in a lawsuit gives one pause and can be one of the most stressful times in your life. the nurse feels embarrassed and fears damage to a perfect reputation.

    your employer's policy may cover you, but only up to a point. remember: your employer's policy is created to fit their specific needs and protects them first. carrying your own policy will ensure you personal attorney representation when you need it and this attorney will be concerned with only protecting your needs and your best interests.

    all malpractice insurance policies have limits of liability. if you are only covered by your employer's insurance, other defendants employed at your entity may and probably do share your liability limits under the same policy. if you as well as others are named in a suit, your legal costs, including any settlement, could exceed your employer's shared liability limits. this would mean out-of-pocket expenses for you!!


    the following are a few individual carriers:


    it is up to the individual nurse how much liability to carry. $1,000,000/$6,000,000 coverage premiums are approximately $90/year in most states for the rn and $90/year for the lpn - nso.


    so, do you carry your own individual liability insurance??

    small price to pay for peace of mind...

    great post. interestingly enough, i think this is a topic discussed on the saunder's nclex review book.

    does anyone have any suggestions for how to compare the quotes from these different insurance provider's? i'm beginning to feel a little overwhelmed by the accumulating annual costs of being a nurse.
    Kim O'Therapy and lamazeteacher like this.

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  2. 1
    Quote from elkpark
    ... many employers throw individual RNs under the bus in order to protect the facility -- this is what their attorneys (the ones who would also be advising you if you depend on your employer) tell them to do -- when it was often quite obvious, from reviewing the records and interviewing the parties involved, that the only thing the RN had done wrong was have the bad luck to be assigned to that particular client on that particular day ... The hospitals would single out one or more RNs they could "blame" for the incident, and then promptly fire them to show their good faith ("golly, we had no idea we had such a dangerous and incompetent nurse on our staff! We fired her as soon as we figured it out. 'cause we're doing everything we can to run a first-class operation here!") ...
    Would an individual liability insurance help that RN to keep the job?
    Thank you.
    lamazeteacher likes this.
  3. 0
    I looked up all the resources for MALPRACTISE insurance that SIRI provided. Only NSO gave coverage information, which excluded employment reinstatement. An expert in fair employment practises would have to take over, if you were found innocent of charges (hopefully represented by your own attorney, paid at ? % of the lawyers' charges, by the insurance company.

    You could go to the EEOC to try to get your job back, if you thought prejudice against your race, age, religion, political beliefs, etc. occurred, and there's proof of that (witnesses who will testify that they/you heard a supervisor/administrator make a cutting remark about your or anyone's race, age, religion, political beliefs, etc. If it's in writing (by the prejudiced person in their handwriting), even better. Sometimes computers of persons accused of something can be confiscated, but that is very difficult to get because:
    A. you'd need a warrant from a Judge
    B. someone could have hacked into it, removed the remark, or even placed it

    If your state has "at will" hiring and firing policies, that will obviate any attempt to get your job back. The question I have, is why would you work there again?
    Obviously they would want to fire you again, and be watching every move you made, or have someone possibly lie about you, for his/her own advancement.

    One of the hardest things with which I had to deal, when I lost jobs (due to age discrimination) was the loss of coworkers who had become friends. They were afraid to stay in contact with me, and I didn't want them to lose their jobs through association with me....... Of course other things that made it so hard, was the humiliation, shock, and realization that this could even happen!
    Leaving those short lived positions off my resume frightened me, as omissions, if discovered, can bite you back. Also, once you're oriented to a position, it's so much easier to do your job, than having to start over in a new one.

    I made the above points in case anyone has the belief that someone gets over this kind of experience. For the past 14 years my age has been daunting (once it was discovered through filling in and submitting applications for health insurance benefits, which require your full birth date, and are required, even if you don't want their health insurance!).

    So, I get malpractise insurance, even though I'm officially retired (but still wanting to work - I have denial issues). Good samaritan laws have changed in some states, leaving a nurse who stops to assist someone who has fallen, vulnerable to lawsuits and/or loss of license if there was neglect/inadequacy
    to perform properly. Speaking of changes, I read in yesterday's NY Times, that the Supreme Court, with its "conservative" majority, just made it more difficult to prosecute an employer for age discrimination by removing one of the requirements. While I wish the decision hadn't been made, I do agree that no one should be liable for proving what they didn't do (prove the termination wasn't because of discrimination against the age of the employee).

    So, new grads and others, be aware that you need your own insurance in case you're sued; and that your employer's representation covered by their insurance, won't necessarily protect you, if its in the best interest of the employer, to separate from you, by legal strategy, to win their case. Life can be unfair. Know, too, that it's your rapport with patients and their families that can save you, sometimes. Let no unguarded remark(s) to them, render you exposed to their ire.

    We're in our profession to provide comfort and support, and to assist in getting patients to ambulate, cough, etc. or other painful things, when they don't want you to do the latter. Renouncing them for what you think (negatively) of them for their resistance to do things, usually won't get them to do it without ill will. Praise and pillows helps get them to deep breathe and cough, rather than threats of possible pneumonia. Doing comfort measures shows that you're on their side(s).
  4. 2
    I am a new graduate and I just started my first position as an RN. Heck yes, I bought my own malpractice the moment HR called me and told me I had the job. It really is extremely little to pay for the peace of mind to protect my license that I worked so hard to get.
    Kim O'Therapy and lamazeteacher like this.
  5. 2
    Quote from Titanic777
    Would an individual liability insurance help that RN to keep the job?
    Thank you.
    No -- but it would protect her/him from having to pay for legal representation in court and/or before the BON out of her/his own pocket. The first hour with an attorney would, in most cases, cost more than the typical annual premium for nursing liability insurance.
    NRSKarenRN and VickyRN like this.
  6. 0
    Quote from elkpark
    No -- but it would protect her/him from having to pay for legal representation in court and/or before the BON out of her/his own pocket. The first hour with an attorney would, in most cases, cost more than the typical annual premium for nursing liability insurance.
    Actually a lot of attorneys don't charge for the first consultation, while you're interviewing several to see who you want to represent you.
  7. 1
    Quote from JerzeeMike
    I am a new graduate and I just started my first position as an RN. Heck yes, I bought my own malpractice the moment HR called me and told me I had the job. It really is extremely little to pay for the peace of mind to protect my license that I worked so hard to get.
    Congratulations on graduating, and getting a job!

    Insurance has always been representative of security. Now the health insurance industry's greed demonstrates that it is not always a means of maintaining peace of mind, when crooks become involved. That is always evident when prices/premiums rise dramatically and unrealistically. Watch the money!! (My graduation gift to you.)
    MaritesaRN likes this.
  8. 1
    Quote from lamazeteacher
    Actually a lot of attorneys don't charge for the first consultation, while you're interviewing several to see who you want to represent you.
    Well, yes, but that hour wouldn't actually be working on your case, as you note. The first hour of your selected attorney working on your case would cost, in most cases, more than the actual annual premium for the coverage (a lot more, in most cases) -- and so would each additional hour until the case was resolved.
    talaxandra likes this.
  9. 0
    Quote from elkpark
    Well, yes, but that hour wouldn't actually be working on your case, as you note. The first hour of your selected attorney working on your case would cost, in most cases, more than the actual annual premium for the coverage (a lot more, in most cases) -- and so would each additional hour until the case was resolved.
    Unless the NLRB (National Labor Relations Board) was talked into paying for it......
  10. 0
    Quote from lamazeteacher
    Congratulations on graduating, and getting a job!

    Insurance has always been representative of security. Now the health insurance industry's greed demonstrates that it is not always a means of maintaining peace of mind, when crooks become involved. That is always evident when prices/premiums rise dramatically and unrealistically. Watch the money!! (My graduation gift to you.)

    always carry an insurance if you are working in a clinical environment. Office work vs. floor nurse----a must . This is where it is so high in lawsuits. The reason why the doctors spend a lot of money on this because of the volatility of this nature.....even more if in California...it is a lawsuit business out here. Hope they put a ceiling on that malpractice lawsuits, to discourage ridiculous and irrelevant law suits from some predators out there....


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