E&O Prevention
Strategies for the Professional Agent
July 23, 2015

Agents of America


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AOA News, Views, Tips & More

Study The Events That Impact You And Then Act

By Joseph L. Petrelli, President and co-founder, Demotech, Inc.


"We speculate as to what is in store for us. But we not only undergo events, we in part cause them or at least influence their course. We have not only to study them but to act."  This is one of many excellent lessons that can be learned from Emily Greene Balch, an economist and sociologist who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1946.


Time's Up: Limitations Period Began Running on Claim Once Insured Learned His Policy Had Expired

By Donald A. O'Brien, Esq of Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP


McMorris v. Tally,No.2013-IA-01063-SCT (Miss. Sup. Ct. May 14, 2015)


An insured, Tally, purchased a one-year farmers/ranchers liability insurance policy with American Reliable through defendant agent and his insurance agency. The policy was purchased in January 2006, and on March 23, 2006, one of American Reliable's general agents sent Tally a notice that it would not renew the policy. When the policy expired on January 29, 2007, Tally's farm had no coverage. 


Terrorism: Criminals Choose the Hack Attack

By Scott Sweeney, Esq. and Ian A. Stewart. Esq. of Wilson Elser et al


In what appears to be yet another brazen demonstration of capability following an earlier hijack of government social media sites, a group calling itself the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA) recently hacked into the U.S. Army's main news and public information website, positing its own message for website visitors: "Your commanders admit they are training the people they have sent you to die fighting." In response, the Army was forced to shut down the site to implement additional security measures to protect its systems.


Courts Restrict Ability of Customers and Employees to Sue Companies Following a Data Breach, But Risks of Other Liabilities Remain

By Damon W. Silver, Esq. of Jackson Lewis P.C.


Among the multitude of unpleasant issues facing a company whose network has been breached is potential liability to customers and employees whose personal information has been compromised.  However, recent district court decisions from around the country continue to limit the opportunity of those customers and employees to have their day in court.  Specifically, these cases have held that, in order for a customer or employee whose data has been stolen to gain standing to sue the company that experienced the breach, the customer or employee must show that the stolen data was, in fact, used to the customer or employee's financial detriment.  And such financial detriment must be "concrete."  Increased risk of future harm does not suffice, damages are not recoverable for "mitigation" measures - such as the purchase of credit monitoring services - taken to protect against speculative future harm, and an individual's allegations that he fears such future harm will generally not be enough to establish a claim for emotional distress.

Same-Sex Marriage: A Practical Guide for Employers

By Dove A. E. Burns, Esq., Caroline J. Berdzik, Esq. and Stacey L. Pitcher, Esq of Goldberg Segalla


Now that the U.S. Supreme Court has issued its highly anticipated ruling that states must legally recognize same-sex marriages, what specific impacts will it have on the employment relationship and employee benefits?


In its June 26 decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, the Supreme Court held that the Fourteenth Amendment requires states to license marriages between two people of the same sex and to recognize marriages between two people of the same sex when their marriage was lawfully licensed and performed out-of-state.


New York City Enacts 'Ban the Box' Law - Barring Early Criminal Checks on Job Applicants

By Bennett Pine, Esq. of Anderson Kill P. C.


Joining a growing trend, on June 29, 2015, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio signed the Fair Chance Act, a species of so-called "ban the box" laws, which bars New York City employers from asking job applicants about their criminal history at the early stages of the employment process. Removing such questions (e.g., "Have you ever been convicted of a crime?") at the job application or initial job interview stage is part of a growing national movement to ban the box regarding criminal conviction inquiries.


Department Of Labor Proposes To Expand Overtime Coverage

By Philip R. Voluck, Esq., Keith J. Gutstein, Esq. & Jessica Tischler, Esq. of Kaufman Dolowich & Voluck, LLP


Acting at the behest of President Obama's March 13, 2014 Presidential Memoranda, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) recently released a proposed rule which, if adopted, could expand federal overtime coverage to approximately 4.6 million more workers in its first year. That the current minimum salary for an overtime exemption under federal law has not changed in eleven years and falls below the poverty line for a family of four was certainly a motivating factor behind this proposed rule.


Transgender Employee Protections Under Title VII vs. Employer's Religious Freedoms

By Marc Zimet, Esq. of Jampol Zimet, LLP


Important issues in employment continue to arise and evolve at a dizzying pace. One such issue currently being litigated in a Michigan federal court is a battle between a prohibition against discrimination based upon class (transgender persons) under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and an employer's religious freedom under the First Amendment to the Constitution.


Letter From  the Publisher

Protecting Your Reputation


As every Insurance Agent knows, their most important asset is their reputation, it takes years to build and just one mistake to ruin. Understanding the issues is the first steps in avoiding E&O Claims. AOA has created a three book series dealing with 56 different E&O topics and issues agents face every day. Enter promo code
WPD20 at checkout for an additional 20% discount.


Book One - 

A Comprehensive Guide To Avoiding E & O Claims


Book Two - 

E&O Exposures in the Sales Process

Book Three - 

E & O Exposures By Line of Business

Demotech, Inc.

Since 1985, Demotech, Inc. has served the insurance industry by assigning accurate, reliable and proven Financial Stability RatingsŪ (FSRs) for Property & Casualty insurers and Title underwriters. FSRs are a leading indicator of financial stability, providing an objective baseline of the future solvency of an insurer.  You can search the most current FSRs here.


Do You Need Continuing Education?

Complete your entire State-Required CE Online with WebCE! AOA has partnered with WebCE, a leading nationwide provider of Continuing Education for insurance professionals to provide you with state-approved self-study CE courses to satisfy your CE requirements online!  Check out your CE State Requirements. 


Is Your Insurance License Renewing Soon?
Is your agency licensed in multiple states? Does your agency maintain nonresident licenses? Do you know when renewals are due? Did you know a resident change requires address changes in the states in which an individual holds licenses? If you need assistance with any of your licensing needs go to the experts Supportive Insurance Services.

Excess & Surplus Lines Laws
We are happy to provide the 2015 Edition of Locke Lord LLP's Excess and Surplus Lines Law Manual.

This edition reflects all of the pertinent changes in the surplus lines laws and regulations of the 50 states and U.S. territories during the past year. We sincerely trust you will find this manual to be a valuable desk reference and if you have any questions regarding the contents, please contact John P. Dearie, Jr., Esq. Editor and Partner at Locke Lord LLP at jack.dearie@lockelord.com or (212) 912-2737


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