What Does “Third Party” Mean In Employment Practices Liability Insurance?
I’ve touched on Employment Practices Liability Insurance in the past here.
In a nutshell, Employment Practice Liability Insurance provides protection for employers against claims made by employees, former employees, or potential employees for discrimination (age, sex, race, disability, etc.), wrongful termination of employment, sexual harassment, and other employment-related allegations.
Some Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI) policies have “third-party” coverage included. “Third-party” coverage refers to claims made by non-employees, usually customers, who allege that an employee engaged in wrongful conduct such as sexual harassment or discrimination. Without a specific policy endorsement for third-party claims, EPLI policy forms do not cover this exposure. Without third-party coverage, a gap in coverage results because EPLI policies are written to cover employment related claims by employees or applicants against their respective employers.
Beware that coverage for third-party employment practices liability claims is excluded under commercial general liability (CGL) policies.
Companies that are heavily customer oriented, such as retail stores, restaurants, or auto dealerships, are most exposed to third-party liability claims. On the other hand, companies not involved much in customer interaction such as manufacturers are not nearly as exposed to these kinds of claims.
Third-party liability coverage is generally available by endorsement for additional premium and should be seriously considered by firms which face these exposures.
Our economy is in such a state where liability claims are on the rise. Many, but not all people, are out there are looking for any way they can make an extra buck during these challenging times. This rise in claims doesn’t only apply to Employment Practices Liability insurance, but general liability, workers compensation, and other forms of liability as well. Business owners beware!