Tail Cover

Tail cover is probably the number one fear that GPs have when changing indemnity provider from a claims-occurred provider to a claims-made one. However, when it is explained, it is not as daunting or as expensive as you might think.

Let us examine the types of Professional Indemnity Cover currently available for GPs in Ireland.

CLAIMS-MADE

A claims-made insurance policy, which is the type we arrange, provides cover for those events and claims that occur and are reported while the policy is in effect. All coverage ceases on the date the policy is terminated and hence you must ensure you have tail or run off cover to deal with claims that may arise once you retire or leave practice.

CLAIMS-OCCURRED

Occurrence-based cover indemnifies events that happen during the period the claims-occurred policy is in effect, regardless of when a claim is reported, even if you are no longer covered by that claims-occurred indemnifier.

THE COST OF PROFESSIONAL INDEMNITY COVER

Claims-made policies are generally substantially cheaper than occurrence policies. For instance, Medisec membership including the Medisec Master Policy, underwritten by Allianz plc, offers full cover including unlimited out of hours sessions costs €6,136.12* per year. We understand that the claims-occurred cover options available in Ireland are substantially more expensive.

However, when comparing both options you must factor in the tail or run off costs of a claims-made policy. At Medisec, we reward loyalty and for members who join Medisec prior to their 55th birthday, and maintain cover until the normal state retirement age, free tail cover is currently provided by Medisec after you retire.

For members who have not maintained the length of cover, for instance they decide to retire early or discontinue cover under the Medisec scheme (eg they decide to emigrate), tail cover based on current premium rates costs circa €15,000 and can be paid in instalments over an 8 year period. Tail cover protects against a claim brought after their retirement or leaving our scheme.

New members inform us that these figures give peace of mind and a realisation that paying for tail cover may not be as painful as they initially think, as, they can recover such cost on the savings they make on their annual subscription, within two or three years, if they move from a claims-occurred policy to Medisec.

We’ve talked about the cost and the myths surrounding tail cover. But if you talk to any of your colleagues who are Medisec members and who have used our services, they will say that the most important aspect of our offerings has not been the cost factor, but the support they receive at a very stressful time, which comes from an experienced team based in Ireland and therefore understands the challenges faced by GPs working in Ireland today.

*Current quoted rates as at July 2018 which are subject to annual change.


Share this article: