Directors & Officers Insurance – British Columbia

Every business needs to make decisions that impact the direction and growth of the organization. Directors and officers play a vital role in those decisions which also affect the interests of employees, stakeholders and clients. Regardless of industry, directors and officers have a responsibility to act in the best interest of the business. Mistakes and errors of judgment can happen, and in that case, the directors and officers of your business may be found legally responsible. Whether your business is public, private, 10 employees or 100 employees, litigation can arise. The implication of legal costs can not only be detrimental to your business financially but can have a major impact on your top talent and key clients.

As your local insurance experts for over 40 years, we know that each business in BC is unique in its own way. From directors and officers who serve small, one location businesses in the heart of Vancouver to those who are responsible for decision making for a large organization that spans from Abbotsford over to Kelowna and through to Nelson, and all other directors and officers in between, we’ve got you covered. With all it has to offer, it’s not hard to understand why so many people decide to set up shop in BC. And with 100 locations across the province, there’s sure to be a Westland location near you.

We understand it’s vital to protect what’s most important to you and your business. Our expert insurance advisors are here to ensure you’re protected and provide peace of mind so you can focus on nurturing your business for the future.

Why Choose Westland?

We know that your business insurance needs to match your goals, your business and your budget. Our expert business insurance advisors get to know you and your business, so that they can tailor a policy to your exact needs. We’ll work with you to build a risk management solution, ensuring coverages line up with your business needs.

We understand that insurance can be complex sometimes. Let our expert insurance advisors do the heavy lifting! We’ll help you find a policy that you feel is the best fit and provides peace of mind. To learn more about the benefits of being a Westland client, Click here.

Directors & Officers Insurance Explained

Those appointed as directors and officers have the responsibility to act in good faith for not only the company but all other stakeholders. As we’re all human, mistakes can be made and that can lead to personal liability for those involved. Coverage kicks in where your standard business liability policy ends. This specialized coverage protects executives in the event of an alleged or wrongful act. With transparency in business being a major trend, scandals can become public and severely impact a business and its future. Without D&O coverage, personal assets can be at risk for those involved in a wrongful act.

No matter the industry, our business insurance advisors can help you find the right coverage to ensure you have the right directors and officer’s insurance, so your business is protected from the unknown.

Any organization governed by a board of directors, from nonprofits to large businesses, needs a comprehensive D&O policy, as the individuals on the board are increasingly held accountable for their actions and/or inactions.

Most organizations will have a business liability policy, but a D&O policy differs and fills in other gaps in coverage. D&O coverage responds to other types of legal liability claims alleging wrongful acts (excluding Bodily Injury or Property Damage). This can include accusations alleging breach of duties, misrepresentation, financial and credit liabilities, failure to comply with laws and regulations, improper governance, workplace safety issues, employment practices claims (workplace harassment and/or abuse, failure to promote, wrongful dismissal), environmental claims and other potential wrongful acts.

Directors and officers of privately owned companies can be sued by employees, customers, competitors, creditors, governments and regulatory bodies and others. Such liability claims can be expensive to defend and expose directors’ and officers’ personal assets, which are often tied to the business. The costs associated with defending these claims can often be the most expensive part of a lawsuit. Even in cases where there are no grounds for liability on the part of the policy holder, a D&O policy will defend and pay the associated defence costs.

If a lawsuit arises from a D&O claim, the personal assets of an executive are at risk without the right insurance policy. D&O coverage exists to cover those that run businesses if a mistake leads to consequences that can harm the business, without being personally liable. For example, an employee left a company after experiencing harassment and discrimination. They’re now taking legal action to rectify their grievances.

At Westland, we have a specialized and comprehensive Director & Officers package that has everything to keep your business covered, including:

  • Claims for financial mismanagement, insolvency, unpaid wages or taxes, bad debts & misstatements to government
  • Alleged breach of duty, legal violations & unfair practices
  • Employment Practices
    Claims such as wrongful termination, inadequate supervision, hiring decisions, failure to supervise or promote employees; discrimination and/or harassment.
  • Costs for administrative or regulatory proceedings, inquiries, investigations or commission
  • Conflicts of Interest

Sources of D&O liability include employees, competitors, creditors, shareholders or government and regulatory authorities.

There are exclusions to coverage especially when the intention is not in the best interest of the company. For example, criminal or fraudulent activity or intentional wrongful acts solely performed for personal gain aren’t covered. D&O insurance policies typically don’t insure legal claims alleging breach of performance regarding contracts, including disputes involving collective agreements. If aspects of the contract obligations fail, they typically can’t lean on their policy to defend and pay damages.

An exception to this could be employment practices liability claims alleging breach of an employment contract (outside of collective agreements).  Damages for owed funds like severance pay that are required under employment law in would fall outside the scope.

We can help with your auto insurance needs too! Connect with us today to ensure you’re covered out on the road.

How Much Does Directors & Officers Liability Insurance Cost in BC?

Just as businesses differ across British Columbia, so do the risks and exposures which impact the cost. The following factors will impact the cost of your directors and officers liability coverage:

  • Industry
  • Claims History
  • Number of Employees
  • Industry Experience
  • Revenue
  • Private vs. Public

Review Your Insurance and Get a Quote with Westland

Ready to discuss your insurance needs? Our expert advisors are here to review your current insurance policies, discuss your unique risks and operations, and find the perfect insurance policy for your business. Whether it’s over email, the phone or in person we are ready to help! To get started on a quote now and see price estimates for your business coverage, click the button below. Our advisors will contact you right away and help navigate your risk management needs. Of course, we are always available to talk over the phone or in person. Check out our locations page to connect with an office closest to you!

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Claims Example

Directors and officers claims can be unique. For example, a condo building with an accessible parking spot right beside the elevator is moved further away, impacting that resident. If the board fails to respond accordingly, the board can be held accountable. The right directors and officers insurance policy will help mitigate these risks and get you back to your normal as quickly as possible.

Our goal is to find the best coverage for your business so you can focus on what’s important. To learn more about being a Westland client, click here.

10 BC Business Facts

  1. British Columbia has a solid small business sector, with 98% of all businesses in the province and over one million people employed.
  2. British Columbia is one of the top 3 producing regions of cranberries and blueberries in the world.
  3. BC ranks first in the country for small businesses (per capita), with 84.2 businesses per 1,000 people.
  4. Over 38% of self-employed BC residents are women, making BC the second-highest rate of women-led businesses in the country.
  5. The primary industry in BC is the service industry, accounting for more than 75% of the province’s GDP.
  6. In Vancouver alone, there are approximately 79,989 businesses.
  7. BC’s forest industry contributes about $12.9 billion to the provincial GDP every year.
  8. The film industry in BC employs over 70,000 people.
  9. Fan of seafood? BC is the place for you, exporting salmon, crab, shrimp, you name it!
  10. British Columbia is one of the most popular wine regions on the continent.
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