Every business that acts as an employer has the possibility of exposure to lawsuits from employees or former employees. We hear from our doctors, “My employees love working here. They would never sue me.” The reality of running a business is everyone who employs workers runs the risk of being sued. Companies such as medical practices do not always have defined Human Resources policies and procedures, which leave them more vulnerable to litigation.
As an employer, you can put in place protections against employment practices lawsuits by implementing the simple steps below, which may help prevent a lawsuit or claim in the future and help protect your practice from potential financial hardships.
- Incorporate a Human Resources Manual/Employee Handbook specific into your practice with clear policies and procedures. It is important the handbook contains the businesss’ equal employment opportunity policy as well as an internal mechanism to complain about discrimination or harassment. You can download a customizable Human Resources Manual at www.CAPphysicians.com/HRsupport.
- Train supervisors in Human Resources procedures and policies and keep all policies in one place.
- Provide employee handbooks to all new employees and review policies and procedures with all new hires as part of an employee orientation.
- Keep your policies up to date when there are changes in the law. Be sure your Human Resources Manual reflects these changes.
- Prior to terminating an employee, or if an employee has issues with wage and hour, leaves of absence, discrimination allegations, employee misconduct, and/or performance policies, contact the CAP Human Resources Hotline at 213-473-8664.
- Purchase an Employment Practices Liability policy to protect against any claims brought against your practice.
On average, 81 percent of Employment Practices Liability claims settle for between $22,000 and $40,000, a significant amount for a small business. CAP physician members have a $50,000 defense-only benefit provided by your Employment Practices Plan (EPP), with a $5,000 deductible for individual members. This EPP plan would not pay for any settlements, fines, or penalties. As you can see from the above examples, this benefit would help, but probably not cover the all the costs a claim may bring.
CAP Physicians Insurance Agency, Inc. (CAP Agency) has competitive rates for EPLI coverage available for our doctors. You owe it to yourself and your practice to get a quote. We at the CAP Agency stand ready to help you protect your practice. Contact us at 800-819-0061 or email us at CAPAgency@CAPphysicians.com for more information.