- Law Society Gazette, 12 June 2013
Partners and Members of Partnerships and LLPs can both be exposed to personal liability, particularly if the practice becomes insolvent.
While your Practice's Professional Indemnity insurance will, in the vast majority of cases, cover the cost of any claims that might arise, there could be circumstances where a catastrophic claim could exceed your available PII cover and expose you to personal liability. In such circumstances, an asset protection policy would help to protect you and your family against the impact of insolvency of the partnership or LLP.
Pro-Tect for Partnerships
Lockton's Pro-Tect policy has been specifically designed to protect your family and dependants in the event of insolvency of your partnership following (but not necessarily exclusively caused by) a catastrophic PI claim. The policy can provide up to £10m cover to secure your home, and ensure that your family have the necessary funds to continue to support themselves.
Renaissance For LLPs
Renaissance is exclusively formulated by Lockton to address the specific needs of members of an LLP. Unlike a conventional asset protection policy, Renaissance has the additional benefit that it can actually assist in preventing an insolvency altogether. The Lockton Renaissance policy is the first product of its kind to offer two layers of protection for members of an LLP.
It can provide 'excess layer' cover above the firm's Professional Indemnity insurance where a claim would otherwise exhaust the PI cover held and thus render the LLP insolvent.
Where a claim threatens the solvency of the LLP, the members can call on funds from the policy to top-up a settlement offer. If the claimants refuse to settle in accordance with the offer, and the LLP does become insolvent as a result, then a distribution up to the policy limit is made to the members personally for their own use.
In essence the policy gives members maximum room for manoeuvre when faced with a catastrophic professional negligence claim.
Contact our Solicitors' Team for more information.
Asset/Insolvency Protection FAQs
Do Pro-Tect and Renaissance require that the firm has a particular minimum level of cover under its Professional Indemnity policy?
Yes. For both policies the practice must maintain a minimum limit of indemnity of £5million.
Can Renaissamce Insurance be purchased in place of the top layer of the Practice's Professional Indemnity cover?
Yes, provided that the total limit held by the LLP is at least £5 million. This will be a commercial decision, depending on the needs of the individual practice. Having said this, we would recommend that Renaissance is purchased to sit on top of your current total Professional Indemnity programme, as the excess layer professional indemnity policy will typically provide an "any one claim limit" whereas Renaissance provides an aggregate limit.
Will existing claims against the firm have the benefit of Pro-Tect coverage?
No. While Pro-Tect will respond to claims intimated following the inception of Pro-Tect cover, (regardless of the date that the work was undertaken), it will not cover any claims against the firm or any partner of the firm arising out of (i) claims (ii) threatened claims or (iii) circumstances which have been notified to any insurers prior to the inception of Pro-Tect.
Will claims arising from work undertaken by partners and employees who have joined the firm after the inception of Pro-Tect be covered?
Yes. Such claims are covered including claims relating to prior practices notified in the application. However successor practices acquired during the period of insurance will need to be agreed by insurers.