My mom is a huge fan of the TV show "Law and Order." It doesn’t take much to get her talking, but if you really want to get her started just bring up the Show. As I understand, the show essentially loosely base the episodes on events "Ripped from the Headlines." So following that model, this post comes from information ripped for "The Post" (St. Louis Post Dispatch).

A Local Municipality was involved in a discrimination suit where an employee alleged she was fired due to a cancer related illness. The city had denied the accusation alleging she was fired for insubordination. Upon review, the City’s Insurance Carrier agreed to settle the case for $70,000 and agreed to pay the employee’s attorney’s fee of over $20,000.

The way it reads, it could be interpreted as if most Businesses have this coverage, when in fact they do not. This is not covered by a General Liability Policy – in fact it is specifically excluded by the General Liability Policy. For this protection an Employer needs to have Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI). This post  does a masterful job of describing the coverage.

Back to the case, many employment related suits are unsuccessful. However, look at just the attorney’s fees racked up by the claimant ($20,000 plus). I am not an attorney, but shouldn’t we assume the municipality had comparable fees if not greater? Even if the claimant was not successful, that would have been a significant expense for the municipality for a small business that amount could be devastating! Additionally, it does not consider the time away from work for an employer to defend a case like this. Fortunately the municipality was intelligent and had obtained EPLI. Accordingly, not only was the settlement handled by the Insurance Company, but also the cost of defense and the majority of time spent defending.

If you do not have the coverage, it is worth looking into (disgruntled employees are capable of much)! Not to mention the "cool factor" of being able to casually say, at your next social function, something like, "I, ah, took care of EPLI for our business last week." then act as if everybody should know what you are talking about.  So give us a call (636-519-0059) or email me: I can get a proposal together for you from just a brief conversation. 

Well, thanks to the assistance of "The Post" this developed into an uncharacteristically solid business blog post. I can quite comfortably recommend a LinkedIn share by use of the LinkedIn share icon below.

Posted 9:56 AM

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