The short answer here is, yes! The Board of Directors for a non-profit is responsible for making many decisions on policy, operations, finances, and more. Most board members are not experts in every field, so having an insurance policy against mistakes that are made without ill intent is just smart business.
What is Directors & Officers Insurance?
D & O Insurance is a policy that is actually owned by the Non-profit, meaning that the organization will actually pay the premiums and have certain members that are covered. This is usually members of the Board of Directors, and may also include other key members, such as an Executive Director.
Typically, the policy protects against breach of duties, wrongful acts, or poor decisions. Many policies require that whoever is covered must be acting in good faith. Check with your PA business insurance professional for a complete understanding of coverage. Here are a few examples of scenarios that most D & O policies would cover:
- Mismanagement of funds and assets
- Failure to provide services or fulfill contract responsibilities
- Human Resource issues like wrongful termination or harassment
An Interesting Characteristic of D & O Insurance
Most insurance, like auto and home insurance policies, will cover you as long as you have coverage on the day of an incident. With most D & O insurance policies, coverage may not necessarily be necessary on the date an incident occurs. As long as you have coverage on the date a lawsuit is filed, the organization would be covered. For example, if your non-profit buys a D & O insurance policy today, and next month a harassment suit is filed for an event that occurred last year, the organization would be covered because it has insurance the date the law suit is filed. This can work against you a bit if you pay for D & O insurance for five years straight and then cancel it one year because the premiums are too high. If a suit is then filed when you don’t have insurance, even if for an event that occurred when you did have insurance, you could be exposed. Situations like this make a qualified PA business insurance agent an enormous asset to non-profits.