Beazley Unveils Wage and Hour Coverage as Extension to EPL

February 15, 2006

Specialty lines insurer Beazley reported the availability of coverage for wage and hour claims as an extension of its employment practices liability (EPL) coverage.

The wage and hour coverage is available and separately underwritten on Beazley’s stand alone EPL policies as well as on BeazleyOne, a private company liability policy that covers both EPL and directors and officers exposures. Available by endorsement, the wage and hour extension provides a dedicated defense sublimit for wage and hour claims.

“Wage and hour claims are among the fastest growing area of exposure for today’s employers,” said Carrie Brodzinski, EPL product manager for Beazley in the United States, “and yet employment practices policies typically don’t cover them. There is a high demand for an EPL product that addresses these claims.”

Wage and hour claims involve allegations that an employer has violated federal or state laws that govern how employees get paid. Employees’ claims can range from a simple miscalculation of overtime pay to complicated issues involving whether the employee is properly classified as an “exempt” employee earning a salary or a “non-exempt” employee eligible for overtime pay. These claims can be costly to defend and are routinely brought against employers of all sizes.

Research on the EPL market recently undertaken by Beazley reportedly identified wage and hour coverage as an area of particular concern to employers and an issue that brokers felt was not being addressed by EPL insurers. Brokers noted that as a rule EPL policies specifically exclude wage and hour claims from coverage, leaving insureds with a very real exposure. Beazley has developed its EPL wage and hour extension in response to these research findings.

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