Directors and Officers Liability Insurance

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Many people believe and advocate that Directors and Officers liability insurance is necessary only for large enterprises. However, today, many small and medium businesses have started including this policy in their risk management portfolio. Every business, whether it is large or small can make mistakes. Hence, every business needs a quick and reliable recovery plan. The Directors and Officers liability policy provide a rapid recovery plan for the company’s top executives. As a director, you’re ultimately responsible for the decisions you’ve made. Thus, it is important for small organizations to provide a protective shield against lawsuits. So, if you own a small or medium business, do you need to buy a D&O policy?

Advantages of a D&O policy

If you are operating a small or medium business and have no plans to avail directors and officers liability insurance then take a look at the following advantages of having this policy:

  1. SMEs are easy targets for lawsuits

SMEs do not invest much in hiring in-house legal representatives as they run on a tight budget. So, it becomes crucial for every SME to buy this policy. This policy can help them in staying prepared for any lawsuits arising against management or directors. A D&O liability policy covers executives, managers, and the board of directors of your company against negligence claims and errors & omission claims. Any employee, client, or shareholder may sue you for wrongful acts like misuse of the company’s funds or breach of contract. Such cases put a severe strain on the company because of the hefty costs of litigation. A large organization recovers from such mishaps. However, for small or medium enterprises, it becomes very difficult to regain financial stability after incurring high expenses in litigations and court proceedings. A D&O policy can provide much-needed financial support in such touch times.

Additional Read: How directors and officers liability help companies in distressed times

  1. Helps in attracting good talent

Every business strives to hire good talent. If an organization has a D&O liability policy, it becomes much easier to acquire quality talent from the marketplace. Successful and knowledgeable people need to feel confident that they will be able to make their decisions without facing personal lawsuits. An SME showing that promise interests them. A D&O policy safeguards the personal assets of the officers and directors and instills confidence among the would-be senior employees.

A similar rationale also holds true to attract good independent directors. Such directors can add significant value to the SME but will come on board only if the company has D&O insurance.

  1. Helps in getting investors

Today investors require every business to have a Directors and Officers liability policy, be it small or large. It decreases the magnitude of risk for investors. The D&O policy helps in raising capital through angel investors or venture capital. Thus, while planning to invest in your company, investors will ask you for this protection. Hence, in order to attract investments for your company, it is important to buy a Directors and Officers liability policy.

  1. Provides financial protection against negligence

A Directors and Officers policy help save SMEs from reputational crisis and lawsuits. Additionally, it offers a financial cushion by covering the defense cost. A decision you make as a director or manager for the betterment of the organization might backfire and make you personally liable for the loss. In such cases, D&O policy is the first resort for you. For an SME, such instances can endanger your organization because claims are costly. Thus, it is always advisable to maintain an optimum level of D&O cover to face mishaps like unrealistic promises to investors, negligence, error or omission, etc.

  1. Improves your credibility in the market

Having a D&O policy enhances your organization’s goodwill and brand value. It makes your organization an entity, which is interested in safeguarding the interest of its board of directors. There is a growing need to buy this policy in order to deal with contingencies more confidently. Investors, clients, and employees play a key role in an organization and a Director’s policy has a very high aspirational value for all of them. It brings financial stability. Having a Directors and Officers insurance policy is a beneficial proposition in cases of mergers and acquisitions also as it increases the credibility of the firm.

Additional Read: Who is covered under Directors and Officers (D&O) Liability Insurance?

Case Study

XYZ textiles limited is a small enterprise. This firm recently faced a lawsuit pertaining to a breach of duty. One of its clients sued them for not delivering their order on time. As an SME, it put a great strain on the organization to fight legal court proceedings. The hefty cost of litigation, about Rs 30 lakhs, became a huge financial burden on the firm. Additionally, it affected the reputation of the firm negatively. The firm had not taken a D&O policy and this made them vulnerable. Consequently, there was no recovery plan to regain their financial stability. The firm had ignored the importance of a D&O policy due to which they had to face a financial crisis.

Having a D&O policy is a smart practice for SMEs and it should not be ignored. It offers solutions that cater to your business needs like attracting market talent and prepares you to scale up to fight against mishaps. Thus, every business, small or big, should buy this policy. Even a start-up should acquire it because of the D&O policy’s beneficial value. The cost of a D&O cover for XYZ textiles would have been about Rs 30,000 for Rs 1 crore of sum assured. This could have saved XYZ the entire payment of Rs 30 lakhs of legal fees.

Role of SecureNow

SecureNow can help you choose the best D&O policy for your company. Share with us your coverage requirements and we will help you choose the policy which will provide the most comprehensive coverage.