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Chiropractors are exposed to several unique risks. The physical nature of chiropractic services puts your business at a high risk of bodily injuries and clients may be convinced that the treatment didn’t work or made an injury worse. It is essential to review all the potential risks of your business in order to purchase insurance policies that provide enough protection.
What insurance coverage do I need as a chiropractor?
There are a number of insurance coverages important to consider as a chiropractor, but these policies are particularly essential:
Medical malpractice insurance is a form of professional liability insurance that specifically protects health care professionals from liability associated with wrongful practices that result in third-party bodily injury, medical expenses, and property damage. This coverage provides financial protection for your business from the cost of defending lawsuits related to such claims. Clients may be dissatisfied and file a lawsuit against your chiropractic business for errors in treatment or diagnosis, inaccurate advice, negligence, or failure to deliver promised results.
Exposure to these professional risks is high for chiropractors. A client may be unsatisfied with your diagnosis or treatment and claim that you did not achieve the results originally promised. The client may even leave your office more injured than when they arrived. If your business utilizes equipment such as electrical impulse or x-ray machines, each procedure increases the likelihood of client injury. Because you are often giving advice for home treatment and herbal remedies, it is imperative to obtain medical malpractice insurance in the event that your services lead to injury.
- You overlook a client’s medical history, which notes that she is recovering from a back injury. Following an intense chiropractic adjustment procedure, your client files a lawsuit against you claiming that your procedure further aggravated her back issues. Your medical malpractice insurance would cover the legal fees resulting from this lawsuit.
General liability insurance protects your business if you unintentionally cause bodily injury, property damage, personal injury, or advertising injury to a third party. Because patients regularly visit your practice, it’s necessary to protect your business from third-party injuries such as slip-and-fall incidents.
General liability insurance also covers third-party bodily injury or property damage resulting from your products and completed operations. For instance, if your business sells ointments, herbal treatments, and nutritional programs, you may be held liable if your customer becomes ill or injured after using or consuming your product.
Your policy will also include personal and advertising injury coverage, which protects your business from lawsuits based on non-physical injuries such as claims of copyright infringement in advertising, slander, and libel.
- Bodily injury: A client trips over a loose throw rug in your chiropractic office. She twists her ankle and requires medical attention. If she decides to sue your business for this bodily injury, your insurer would pay for damages and legal fees.
- Products and completed operations: Your chiropractic office sells heat packs, but the product does not come with adequate instructions or warnings. When a customer burns himself using the heat pack, he sues your business and the manufacturer for this marketing defect.
- Personal and advertising injury: Without his permission, your business releases an ad campaign using the photo of a celebrity who visited your chiropractic office. The celebrity sues your business for the invasion of privacy.
Commercial crime insurance provides businesses with financial protection from losses related to crimes such as theft, burglary, robbery, forgery, and fraud. Although commercial property insurance offers some protection from crimes committed by third parties, coverage is limited and more importantly, it does not provide financial protection from crimes committed by your own employees.
Your chiropractic business likely has employees handling monetary transactions. In addition, they likely have access to any products sold on your business premises. With these circumstances, your crime exposure from employee dishonesty can be great.
- One of your employees is in charge of sales and has access to your cash register. During a transaction, he pockets the customer’s payment. Your commercial crime insurance would cover this financial loss.
Workers’ compensation insurance provides financial and medical benefits to employees who suffer work-related illnesses or injuries during the course of their work. These benefits include medical expenses, rehabilitation, and a portion of lost wages. This coverage also includes funeral, burial, and death benefits for the employee’s surviving family in the case of a work-related death.
Workers’ compensation is essential for the employees of your chiropractic business. Due to the physical demands of the industry, arm and back injuries are common for employees. Because employees may perform x-rays, there is the potential for radiation exposure. Additionally, employees have direct physical contact with clients, so there is the potential for transmission of diseases. Training and preventative measures should be taken to protect your employees.
- During a procedure, a client becomes unruly and one of your employees strains his back trying to calm the client down. His bodily injury requires medical attention. Your insurer would cover these medical costs as well as a portion of your employee’s lost wages if he needs to recover from his injury.
Commercial property insurance provides financial protection for your business property, including buildings, equipment, furniture, and inventory. This coverage protects the value of your business’s property by providing funds for repairs and/or replacements if your property is damaged or destroyed by a covered peril. Common perils covered by commercial property insurance include fire, theft, vandalism, windstorm, and water damage. If your chiropractic business relies on equipment and machinery, it would be wise to consider commercial property insurance.
- Due to faulty wiring, an electrical fire breaks out in your chiropractic office. The fire destroys your medical equipment, such as your x-ray machine, and causes significant structural damage to your building. Your insurer would pay to replace your equipment and repair your building.
- Business income insurance, also known as business interruption insurance, provides coverage for loss of income and operating expenses if your business must temporarily close due to loss or damage by a covered peril. This coverage includes the business’s net profits and normal operating expenses such as rent, employee salaries, and taxes. This coverage can be important as it may take time to find appropriate accommodations to temporarily relocate your business elsewhere.
- Cyber liability insurance financially protects your business against losses and damages stemming from cyberattacks such as hacks, data breaches, denial of service attacks, and viruses. If your chiropractic business uses technology to store sensitive patient health information, obtaining cyber liability insurance can protect your business from the financial consequences of cyberattacks.
- Commercial auto insurance protects your business if you or one of your employees are at fault in a collision while driving a company vehicle. Commercial auto insurance would cover medical costs if the other vehicle’s occupants are injured and damages to the other vehicle. It also protects your company vehicles if they are damaged or lost due to theft, vandalism, collisions, or other covered hazards. This is important to consider if your employees are often tasked with using company vehicles to run errands or if they use their personal vehicles for business purposes.
Pricing and Quotes
Pricing for business insurance will vary based on the type of insurance coverage and the risk profile of your business. Insurers consider factors such as:
- Business size
- Number of employees
- Claims history
Businesses with higher risks will have higher premiums than those deemed lower risk. For example, a chiropractic business with a history of frequent claims will face higher premiums. Premiums also rise as you increase the limits of insurance. Different insurance companies have different models for rating risks, so it is worth comparing pricing across different insurers.
In order to get an accurate estimate on pricing, it’s best to get a quote from a reputable insurance company. Below we’ve highlighted a few of our trusted partners who offer coverage for chiropractic clinics:
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For any business, it is essential to review all potential liability risks to obtain an adequate amount of business insurance coverage. While your chiropractic business can take steps to mitigate risk, unforeseen accidents and injuries are inevitable. Chiropractors face a unique set of risks due to the nature of their profession, so make sure your business is properly prepared for all potential incidents.