New York EPLI
Is Your Business At Risk? Protect It With Employment Practices Liability Insurance
Discrimination - Wrongful Termination - Harassment - Sexual Harassment
These types of accusations would not fall under your workers compensation coverage or your general liability coverage you would need EPLI coverage.
Sexual harassment is a costly workplace offense - both in terms of the emotional impact on people and hard dollar costs. (Especially if there is a lawsuit). There is often no coverage on your commercial package policy or workers' compensation policy either. You need special coverage.
Sexual harassment, as it legally applies to the workplace, is often misunderstood. Both words are emotional charged and have varying degrees of meaning among different people. However, it can always result in an EPL lawsuit.
The insurance experts at Tanner Insurance Agency Inc would remind you of the legal basics to help you catch trouble before it starts.
There are basically two types of sexual harassment when it comes to EPL Insurance:
- The first type, referred to as 'quid pro quo' is the most obvious. 'Quid pro quo' means 'this for that' or 'something for something'. In the sexual harassment arena it refers to sexual advances being used as a basis for employment decisions. For example: Mary doesn't get promoted because she refuses her supervisors advances. Or John suddenly gets bad performance reviews after reporting his supervisors offensive behavior. Most reasonable people are going to see the problem here.
- The second type of harassment, which is also illegal, is more subtle. It involves a hostile work environment where sexual comments, physical touching or displayed objects create an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment.
Important point: Who decides if the work environment is intimidating, hostile or offensive? Not you. Not upper management. Whoever is offended makes that call. This is just one of the reasons why you should buy Employment Practices Liability Insurance.
If a "reasonable" person is offended - whether it be by sexual pictures, profanity, dirty jokes or direct sexual comments - then sexual harassment has probably occurred and an EPL claim will arise. An example could be that nobody else in the office really cares about John's vulgar language and swearing all day long... nobody except Mary. And if Mary is offended, it makes her work environment uncomfortable, then she could have a case for sexual harassment. Next thing you know you are being sued and you will need EPLI to pay for at the very least legal fees.
In contrast, let's say Mary and John talk dirty to each other all day long... but they both like it. As long as neither of them is offended then there's no sexual harassment. UNLESS... somebody else has to listen to it and THAT person is offended by their comments.
So you see, it's not so much what is said or done, but whether or not someone is offended by it. Any of the above situations can result in an EPL lawsuit.
Obviously, its only right to discourage all sexually charged or profane language and conversations in the workplace and simply avoid the potential of someone being offended in the first place.
Big Trouble For Small Businesses
You know your employees and you'd like to think they would never dream of filing charges against you or your business for discrimination, wrongful termination, harassment, or sexual harassment. Unfortunately, it can and does happen. Protect your business with Employment Practices Liability Insurance.
What if you terminate an employee with serious performance issues and they just happen to be over 40 years old? They may make an allegation of age discrimination. This is would fall under EPL Insurance.
A pregnant employee might allege she was discriminated against by being treated differently on multiple occasions due to her pregnancy. She might identify other employees who may attest to the allegation. This too would be an employment practices liability claim.
These days, hiring, firing and day to day employee management can be a risky business. Responding to charges like these can cost thousands of dollars even when the allegations are found to be groundless. You may incur legal fees and may even settle to avoid being involved in a lengthy litigation with an EPL accusation. After all you need to focus on your business.
EPL Insurance in New York can protect you and your business. It is usually a claims made coverage, for liability damages and defense costs, subject to the policy limits, due to charges brought by full time, part time, temporary and seasonal employees, and independent contractors, as well as applicants for employment.
Why buy this coverage from Tanner Insurance Agency Inc? In most cases:
- The coverage is very affordable
- We can add to your commercial package policy
- You get an online loss prevention program
- Specialized EPL claim service
- Experienced law firms
You have worked hard to build your business and your reputation, don't risk it. Protect your business today!