If you are contemplating going into business in professional services then you need to consider Professional Indemnity insurance or PI as it’s known in the white collar world. PI insurance is a key piece of asset protection for your small business and will help you sleep at night, but you may still need a tablet to get your full 8 hours after you’ve finished reading this. Now I’m not encouraging drug use but you are going into business so it sort of comes with the helter skelter territory.
PI Insurance is put in place to limit exposure to losing your assets due to bad advice or other mistakes. To put this in place you usually contact your professional association’s favoured insurer and start filling in the forms. This is generally a pleasant process and as your business grows you proudly fill in higher numbers of clients/patients etc each year. It’s essentially a no frills process and as the years go by you’re hassled by the salesperson a number of times to get it in by 5pm on the 30th of June. I usually complete mine around 11pm on the 29th of June accompanied by my favourite Shiraz.
Once you have PI Insurance in place you are all set and protected in business right?…. Think again sister. When you establish PI Insurance and renew each year, you are signing off on a potential future street fight. If a fight does start it begins with that dreaded word that is best isolated for the fear it puts into this scribe……………………… CLAIM ……………………….. If you put in a cl cl cl claim (it’s even hard to type let alone say) the street fight starts.
So are you street smart? Do you have street cred? Are you training for this? Have you watched that wonderful movie Fight Club where Tyler Durden shows you what you need to do? The answers to these questions is usually no. You’re likely a pussy in the white collar boxing ring. You are most probably too nice, you can’t fight and you struggle with confrontation. Great, I’ve finally got your attention.
You see, as soon as you put in your cl cl cl claim the email is received by the Shiny/Happy Insurance Salesperson and within 20-50 seconds they have referred it to another team of professionals outlined below.
If you are one of the lucky few that is street smart and can fight in the white collar arena then get ready for your next test.
Yes this street fight is not 15 rounds over 2 to 3 hours it is 20-40 rounds over 6 months to 2 years.
“Who is willing to fight for this preposterous length of time” you ask. One word my friend Lawyers! That’s right, you didn’t sign PI cover to protect your assets with that lovely no frills adminny/salesperson from that nice insurance company. Don’t be daft, you signed up for a future white collar street fight with a bunch of specialised white collar lawyers. And let me tell you, they love these fights, like a mother loves a new born 6 months after it’s over colic!
So you are now setup for the fight after you’ve put in the claim. Tune in next time and I will tell you how these white collar Mike Tysons will throw you around the ring like a screaming sack of straw!
Pat Mannix, Partner, Paris Financial