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Liability Insurance FAQ
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Medical Malpractice Liability Insurance

Medical malpractice liability insurance is a form of professional liability insurance that professionals in the medical field purchase to protect themselves from lawsuits. It is different from regular liability insurance, which doesn't provide coverage for incidents resulting from the medical professional's negligence. On average, this coverage is expensive to purchase, costing several-thousand dollars annually. However, in a society where medical malpractice lawsuits are common, it is a necessity.

This form of coverage is usually paid annually, semi-annually or monthly. As long as premiums are paid, the medical professional is covered for all malpractice suits. Not all physicians and other medical professionals carry this insurance, as it isn't a requirement in every state. However, those employed in hospitals must show proof of insurance to even have the privilege of working with patients. Physicians almost always carry it, as do physician assistants and nurse practitioners. Therapists and nurses also often carry it, but not always. The insurance policy is purchased from a commercial insurance provider offering this form of coverage. Rules usually depend on the underwriting agency.

Medical Malpractice Liability Insurance - Features

Some hospitals have their own medical malpractice liability insurance coverage. In this instance, their experience rating usually determines how much the rate is. Other factors, such as what kinds of procedures are performed there, will also play a key role in deciding the rate. Aspects involving court representation, legal research and work and well as licensing protection are staples in a hospital policy.

When insurance is purchased for individual professionals with a form of medical license, it covers many expenses related to lawsuits. Usually policies also cover travel expenses that are related to any depositions or court appearances. If a physician is temporarily suspended from work, there may also be a wage allowance to compensate for lost income. In addition to this, a specific amount is available for compensation toward the injured party. The amount depends on how much insurance the professional chooses to carry.

Medical Malpractice Liability Insurance - Premiums

Demographic area and the focus of the medical professional's area of expertise are the two key factors that influence the cost of a policy. Some states have higher average rates than others. Rates are calculated by the amount of lawsuits filed in a specific area of the medical field. High-risk areas may be priced at rates that are twice or triple the amount of a low-risk area.

Some forms of medical malpractice liability insurance increase with the amount of claims filed. If a physician has a high number of claims in a short amount of time, insurance companies may elect to raise the rate or drop the physician. Most claims take between four and five years to resolve, depending on the state. Each state is responsible for regulating its medical professionals' insurance rules and rates.