“D&O” stands for Directors & Officers liability insurance. This is an essential form of insurance that provides both defense and settlement for the mission’s Board of Directors and the mission’s Officers (CEO, CFO, Executive Director, etc.) The trigger for coverage to respond is that the Board and/or the mission’s Officers must have been accused of a “wrongful act.” There need not have been any actual bodily injury or property damage arising out of the alleged act, but there must be an allegation of something that was done “wrong.”
Because there is no universal D&O insurance form that all insurers use, there is a great difference between good insurance policies and weak ones. Typical in a good policy, will be provisions that allow not only the Board to be protected, but also the mission as an entity; that is, not only will each board member be protected individually, but so will the mission.
An example of a claim that would likely be defended against would be an allegation that an Executive Directors should not have been hired by the Board if he/she is accused of some malfeasance, such as mishandling donations, a sexual abuse allegation, or some other bad behavior.
All Boards ought to carry D&O insurance for at least $1,000,000. Premiums typically start around $750/year and are based on size of assets, number of board members, staff and volunteers.
Missions that provide pastoral counseling, lay counseling or medical services should seriously consider an E&O policy.
Contact the Merriam Agency today! Set an appointment to review your policy coverages.