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June 2014 -- The E&O Report

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June 2014
Volume 26, Number 7

Last Call for IIABNY's 2014 Annual E&O Loss Control Seminars

My partner, Chris Weldon, and I presented IIABNY’s annual errors and omissions loss control seminars on May 6, May 7, May, 20, May 21 and May 22 in Buffalo, Syracuse, Long Island, Manhattan and Westchester County, respectively. The live, four-hour sessions were attended by approximately 500 New York insurance agents and brokers. If you have yet to attend an E&O loss control seminar this year, there is still time to do so.

On June 11, the telecast version of the 2014 E&O loss control seminar will be presented live in a studio in Troy and simulcast to 13 other locations across New York state. The telecast seminar will be the same four hour seminar that has been presented live. The telecast seminar will provide licensed attendees with four hours of continuing education credit applicable to the following New York insurance licenses: Life (LA), Life Consultants (C1), Life/Accident/Health Broker (LB), Brokers (BR), General Consultant (C3), Property Casualty Agents (PC) and Public Adjuster (PA).

In addition to agents and brokers earning CE credit by attending one of IIABNY’s E&O loss control seminars, their employers could qualify to receive credit on their renewal premiums if their E&O insurance is purchased through IAAC and underwritten by Westport or Fireman’s Fund.

During this year’s seminars, we cover a wide range of topics that include the following:
  • A review of New York law affecting property and casualty and Life and Health insurance agents and brokers (this topic includes a review of various cases, statutes and regulations).
  • Duties and obligations that agents and brokers owe to customers.
  • Statistics concerning where and how New York E&O claims and lawsuits arise.
  • The legal relationship between agency/brokerage and the insurer.
  • Benefits for an agency or brokerage following good E&O loss control practices.
  • Loss control practices that every insurance agency or brokerage should have in effect.
  • Best practices for handling claims.
  • The importance of documentation.
  • Issues concerning certificates of insurance.
  • Various items that insurance agencies and brokerages should consider in preparation for catastrophic events.
  • Some things that customers may not have told you.
  • A review of the Affordable Care Act.
  • The most common defenses used in connection with the defense of E&O claims and lawsuits.

As outlined above, there are a large number of topics we address during the seminars. The following seminar topics seemed to be of special interest to attendees at the live seminars and generated a great deal of questions and comments.

The first topic we discussed related to several recent New York court decisions. Specifically, many questions were raised when we focused on the case holding an insurance agent may have created a special relationship by the manner in which he dealt with a customer. We offered several suggestions concerning how New York agents and brokers can handle this type of situation and reduce the likelihood of facing a similar E&O lawsuit.

The next topic generating a great deal of discussion was a review of the statistics concerning trends in New York E&O claims and lawsuits. We discussed such things as the types of transactions and insurance policies that most often result in E&O claims against New York agents and brokers. We also reviewed agency/brokerage staff most likely to be involved in an E&O claim and the types of customers most frequently filing claims. We also discussed the kinds of E&O claims, lawsuits and regulatory issues New York agents and brokers most often face. And, we offered various E&O loss control tips and practices that can not only help protect agencies, brokerages and customers but improve customer service.

The third topic generating much discussion concerned some necessary and relevant information customers may not have told you. We reviewed some of the cases we handled that arose because customers gave their agency or brokerage incomplete information. Additionally, we discussed some of the issues we see related to both personal and commercial lines insurance. And, we offered various E&O loss control tips and practices that can help agents and brokers protect themselves and their customers by ensuring agencies and brokerages have all the information they need.

If you were unable to attend any of the live seminars, we truly hope you can attend the June 11 telecast seminar. We firmly believe the information we present at these annual seminars can help every agency and brokerage, no matter its size, protect itself against E&O claims and lawsuits. Register for the June 11 telecast seminar by visiting the IIABNY website or calling IIABNY at (800) 962-7950.

Submitted by:
James C. Keidel, Esq.
Keidel, Weldon & Cunningham, LLP

Keidel, Weldon & Cunningham, LLP concentrates its practice in the defense of insurance agents and broker’s errors and omissions claims and litigation, errors and omissions loss control counsel and education, insurance coverage analysis and litigation and insurance regulatory matters. Please direct any comments or questions to James C. Keidel, Esq. by mail to the main office of Keidel, Weldon & Cunningham, LLP, at 925 Westchester Avenue, Suite 400, White Plains, NY 10604, telephone at (914) 948-7000 or e-mail at The law firm also maintains offices in Syracuse, New York; New York City, New York; Wilton, Connecticut; Fair Lawn, New Jersey; Warwick, Rhode Island and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

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