This post is a real-life example of Dr. Smith (name changed for anonymity), a doctor who needed his own tail coverage when changing jobs.

When Dr. Smith changed jobs, he was shocked by the $85,000 malpractice insurance tail premium he faced. This was the first time he had to buy his own malpractice insurance, since he always worked for groups that covered his professional liability. His employment contract specified that the group (his employer) would provide his malpractice insurance in the scope of his employment. However, per the contract, he was responsible for covering his tail when he left the group. He had no idea he would be facing such an expense just to leave the group to start a new job.

After consulting with MEDPLI, Dr. Smith learned some valuable lessons to share with other doctors:

1: Before signing an employment contract, review the terms about who pays for liability insurance – employee or employer? As the employee, it is better to have the option to buy your own policy. This leaves you with a choice. If you are relegated to buying their policy at their price, you will overpay when it’s time to change jobs. It is wise to have a qualified attorney review your contract before signing. If you are going to be responsible for tail when you leave, you should consider setting aside money to fund your future tail expense.

2: Before buying tail insurance, it pays to shop around. Instead of paying $85,000 for the tail coverage provided by his former employer’s carrier, he ended up paying $65,000 for the same coverage terms with a different “A” rated insurance carrier. Standalone tail insurance is offered by many “A” rated insurance carriers, and it is time-consuming to properly shop the market. MEDPLI shops the malpractice insurance market for you, saving you time and delivering options that will save you money.

3: Enlist a specialist to help you. A specialized malpractice insurance broker can help you get quotes from all viable carriers and will save you time doing so. Ensuring you get suitable coverage is another benefit to working with a qualified broker. Your tail policy is your shield for any new claims that come in after you leave, so it is imperative that you are properly covered. Working with an expert helps you get peace of mind knowing you have the right coverage for your unique situation.

MEDPLI helps physicians make sense of professional liability insurance while ensuring our doctors get the best coverage at the lowest cost. MEDPLI provides consultation to physicians in all medical specialties across the United States.