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Paralegal Insurance

Paralegal insurance protects against legal mistakes. Being a paralegal is not easy – you always have to be ready to do your best at any time.

Sometimes, you could be handling files or clients, and at other times, you’ll be appearing in court. And since legal mistakes can impact clients gravely, paralegals carry professional liability insurance or paralegal insurance.

Paralegal insurance is a professional liability insurance against lawsuits filed by clients. As a paralegal dealing with many clients, you could lose valuable client files because of the excessive workload.

Clients may not be interested in hearing an explanation when this happens. Paralegal insurance companies like Apollo protect you when stubborn clients threaten to take legal action.

Paralegals are highly skilled individuals who help organizations, governments, and private individuals. While dealing with either individuals or agencies, any mishaps could lead to a lawsuit. Hence, you need professional liability insurance to protect you from the suit.

What is paralegal insurance?

Paralegals have many responsibilities they have to shoulder, even though they aren’t lawyers themselves. A paralegal’s job is just as stressful as the job of a lawyer.

If something goes wrong, you will have to deal with it. And the fact is you can’t predict when something will go wrong – even mixing papers is dangerous.

Paralegal insurance is a type of professional liability insurance that reduces the cost of compensation to your clients. It also helps you cover lawsuits when clients take legal action for either missing files or other important documents.

Having paralegal insurance isn’t a license to be a careless paralegal. Instead, it suggests that you should be more careful in carrying out your duties.

With professional liability insurance, you can compensate your clients for damages or cover the cost of lawsuits. Expert paralegals and other professionals recommend having professional liability insurance. And the major reason for that is the unpredictable nature of the future.

What does paralegal insurance cover?

There is a wide range of things that paralegal insurance covers. They include:

  • Alleged as well as actual claims of negligence
  • Attorney fees
  • Personal injuries that could arise from libel or slander
  • Damages derived from copyright infringement
  • Independent contractors
  • Temporary staff
  • Claims opposed to services that were rendered previously
  • Damages and claims

The damages the insurance policy will cover are only those that the policy limit can bear. This means that if the cost that must be paid goes beyond the policy limit, you will pay what remains. Although this goes without saying, negligence doesn’t automatically mean that a paralegal is guilty of the accusation.

It is a daunting task to own a paralegal firm; they usually have more work than licensed attorneys. This is because the charge for their hourly fees is much lower than what a licensed lawyer would charge. And this is the reason why most people go to them when they need legal advice.

Anything can happen when you have a lot of data and clients to manage. And when there is a little mishap, what follows is a negligence claim. Therefore, a paralegal insurance policy is recommended as a backup plan. And that plan should include coverage for errors of omission.

The best practice would be to get paralegal insurance coverage before you begin to render services. This applies to paralegals who own their firms or those retained by attorneys.

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Requirements for paralegal insurance

You can defend your company from several damages with the best coverage if you have the right insurance policy. This is because they will protect you from every problem you are likely to face. Not having insurance as a paralegal in Canada or anywhere is way too risky.

To get paralegal insurance, you must abide by subsection 12(1) under Part II of By-Law 6 for a proper one. However, if you are eligible, you can be exempted according to subsection 12(2) of By-Law 6.

This is because the minimum requirements for paralegal insurance are outlined in By-Law 6. The requirements are as follows:

  • Policy limits are set at $1 million for each claim and at an aggregate of $2 million each year.
  • Concerning your financial resources as a paralegal, there is a sensible maximum amount which can be deducted.
  • Paralegal insurance must offer coverage for liability actions of negligence, omissions, or errors in legal services provided by paralegals.
  • The paralegal has to be named as an insured on the insurance policy. Or, they could be named through endorsement.
  • There should be a provision that grants an extended 90-day period beginning from the day the policy is cancelled. This period is meant for reporting.
  • There should also be a provision where an additional insured should be named: the Law Society. This is meant to ease the process of reporting claims and for cases where policy amendments or cancellation is necessary.
  • There should also be a provision where a 60-day written notice to the Law Society before policy amendment or cancellation. Without this notice, the insurance policy cannot be amended or cancelled.

Consequences of non-compliance

You will have to face the consequences when you refuse to obtain a paralegal insurance policy. The penalty is a change in your status to “Not Eligible to Provide Legal Services – No Proof of Insurance.”

Once your status has been changed, it will display your paralegal public listing on the Lawyer and Paralegal Directory.

Before you can provide legal services, especially in Ontario, you must provide proof that you have a professional liability insurance policy. That proof must be uploaded to the Law Society portal.

This is especially true if your status is “Not Eligible to Provide Legal Services – No Proof of Insurance.” You can’t provide legal services until you have uploaded it.

Failure to follow the requirements provided in the by-laws can have your license as a paralegal suspended. This suspension is in relation to subsection 47(1) of the Law Society Act.

Someone who is appointed through Convocation gives the order for suspension, after which your license will become inactive.

Why should a paralegal consider working with a broker for your professional insurance needs?

There are certain important reasons why you should work with a broker if you wish to get paralegal insurance. They are as follows:

  • Experienced brokers offer better aid in terms of getting better rates
  • Brokers help you locate plans faster and easier
  • Having and working with a broker helps you take paralegal insurance off your to-do list

Experienced brokers offer better aid in terms of getting better rates

There are a couple of standards in law that your insurance coverage should be able to meet if you’re a paralegal. The practical meaning of this is that deviations in your insurance policy could depend on what you’re willing to pay. It could also depend on the additional coverages you want the policy to carry.

Brokers usually have access to many issuers of insurance, and they have a unique way of finding great plans. Most of the plans they find are guaranteed to offer the coverage you require at a sensible price.

Brokers help you locate plans faster and easier

Apart from having good relationships with issuers of credit, you won’t find anyone with in-depth knowledge like a broker. Especially in the insurance industry, brokers are the best persons when you need information or advice. Furthermore, in the area of finding great insurance plans within a short time.

Conveyancing documents, for instance, will be put together faster by a paralegal who is experienced in real estate. This feat cannot be pulled off by a paralegal with experience in criminal law. In the same vein, experienced brokers find more insurance plans quickly than non-insurance experts.

Having and working with a broker helps you take paralegal insurance off your to-do list

 Beyond being recommended, paralegal insurance is a requirement in Canada. However, it is a bit tricky to find the plan that is right for you. But the entire process of getting a paralegal insurance policy that is solid can be made simpler by a broker. If the broker is fully experienced, they can get the job done more efficiently.

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The cost of paralegal insurance against professional liabilities

The likely first question that anyone would ask before purchasing an insurance policy will relate to cost. The truth, however, is that you can’t exactly determine how much an insurance policy will cost.

The reason is that there are many insurance companies that provide these services, and each company has a different rate.

Usually, companies who charge more tend to offer high-quality paralegal insurance policy coverage. You can also find companies whose charges aren’t very expensive, but their coverage isn’t very good.

Thus, note that the cost is something to consider after thoroughly studying the policy and its requirements. And then, choose what suits you best.

The cheapest policy option may not be the best option for you when you make mistakes, especially without knowing. If you have the right paralegal insurance policy, it should be able to handle the payment against lawsuits.

The average cost of professional liability insurance is somewhere between $500 and $2000 per year.

When is the best time for a paralegal to buy error and omissions insurance?

Just like you shouldn’t drive your car without car insurance, you shouldn’t offer paralegal services without insurance. The importance of paralegal insurance cannot be overemphasized. This is why the Law Society places a requirement on having an active policy.

The proper time to obtain a policy is as soon as you begin your paralegal business.

You should make sure that the policy is in place before you start providing services. The insurance policy can only protect you when you have them, so it’s risky to operate without them. If you obtain a policy after you have already been sued for negligence by a client, it won’t cover you.

Where to get paralegal insurance

When you have the right insurance policy against professional liability, you know you have somewhat of a backup plan. No one can predict the future – hence, it is important to have full protection when things go awry. There are several companies that offer paralegal insurance services, including:

  • Apollo insurance agency
  • Tripemco insurance group

Apollo Insurance Agency

Apollo insurance agency is one of the best paralegal insurance agencies in Canada, with over 900 reviews and a 4.7-star rating on Trustpilot. One benefit of getting coverage from this company is that you enjoy a free online quote. You can customize your policy based on your preference.

Apollo provides the right information to help you make an informed decision. They also offer solutions for finding easy coverage (follow three simple steps to get the right coverage). They are compliant with the Law Society’s By-Law 6 requirements.

Tripemco Insurance Group

Tripemco insurance group is another organization that offers paralegal professional liability insurance. Among the benefits of getting coverage from this company is that they offer a free quote. They provide active customer service to help you select the best coverage to suit your needs.

They cater to small or start-up paralegal firms, even if the firm has just one paralegal. Their services are in line with By-Law 6 of the Law Society.

Summary of paralegal insurance

Paralegal insurance is a type of insurance that covers professional liabilities for paralegals. In handling legal cases for clients, documents could go missing, and important information can be omitted.

However, through paralegal insurance, you can escape severe financial damages in situations where clients sue. The cost of each policy varies from one company to another.

There are several professional liability insurance companies in Canada that can provide you with great services at a reasonable rate.

Other types of business insurance

Business Insurance in AlbertaBusiness Insurance in ManitobaBusiness Insurance in British ColumbiaBusiness Insurance in New Brunswick
Business Insurance in Nova ScotiaBusiness Insurance in Newfoundland and LabradorBusiness Insurance in OntarioBusiness Insurance in Prince Edward Island
Business Insurance in QuebecBusiness Insurance in Saskatchewan

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Offers shown here are from third-party advertisers. We are not an agent, representative, or broker of any advertiser, and we don’t endorse or recommend any particular offer. Information is provided by the advertiser and is shown without any representation or warranty from us as to its accuracy or applicability. Each offer is subject to the advertiser’s review, approval, and terms. We receive compensation from companies whose offers are shown here, and that may impact how and where offers appear (and in what order). We don’t include all products or offers out there, but we hope what you see will give you some great options.

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August 21, 2023
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FAQs about paralegal insurance

How much does paralegal insurance cost?

Paralegal insurance costs differ between insurance companies that offer these services in Canada. Therefore, there is no way to determine the amount it would cost. However, policies of higher quality will definitely be more expensive than those that don’t cost much.

What is the requirement to provide legal services as a paralegal in Canada?

You have to select a status that allows you to provide legal services. Then, you also need to upload your business's contact information into the Law Society’s portal. Finally, you have to upload proof that you have claimed insurance under the area of Insurance in the portal.

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