One of the essential aspects of a successful career is the quality of education one receives. Education consultants deliver professional guidance to help students choose the best education destination for their interests and merit.
To deliver their services, education consulting firms gather information about a students’ background, academic history, and interests. They then offer personalized study advice and other consulting services related to academics.
However, giving students and their families the right advice can be risky. Suppose a client chooses a career path based on incorrect information and chooses an educational institution that won't help when they switch their career choice. In that case, clients may sue the consulting firm for inaccurate advice or negligence, which can land the business in court. Therefore, there is a need for education consultants to buy proper insurance for themselves to be financially protected against such hazards.
What are the Risks and Liabilities Associated with Education Consulting Services?
The role of education consultants involves meeting clients daily and offering them advice and counseling on choosing the right career, school, college, etc. Thus, they may be exposed to a lot of risks and liabilities, such as:
- A client trips over a box of files left by the consultant on the floor and twists their ankle. The consultant could be held responsible for the injury and sued by the client.
- A family hires an education consultant for their child to plan higher studies. The consultant helps the child write college essays. However, the child doesn't get a single offer letter from a university/college. The client may blame and sue the consultant for negligence in their work.
- A consultant accidentally knocks a client's computer off the desk and breaks it. The student would undoubtedly expect the consultant to pay for the repair or replacement of their computer.
- A school hires an education consultant to prepare a curriculum for children with dyslexia to improve their performance. Instead of performance improvement, children's grades fall after the curriculum is implemented. The school authorities can file a lawsuit against the education consultant for negligence at work.
- One of the employees of an education consulting firm drives the company's vehicle to school to meet a client. The driver runs a red light and collides with another car leading to the physical injury of the other driver. The consulting firm would be liable to pay for the medical expenses of the injured and the repair or replacement of the damaged vehicle.
- A water pipe bursts and causes excessive damage to the leased office space of the consulting firm. Commercial property insurance can provide coverage for property damaged and replace or repair the property due to such events.
These situations, and many others, may lead to financial liabilities for educational consultants that would adversely affect their financials. Therefore, having education consultant insurance will help smooth over such adverse times by covering these liabilities. It can also help pay for lawsuits and allegations related to curriculum issues, student performance, property damage, and physical injuries.
What Coverages are recommended for Education Consultants?
An education consultant's insurance offers several coverages to provide financial protection against unforeseen circumstances, such as:
General liability insurance
General Liability insurance pays for third-party property damage, bodily injury, and advertising injury. General liability is the ideal coverage when dealing with claims or lawsuits alleging that the firm or its employees caused bodily injuries or property damage.
If accidental damage occurs to the client's property, General Liability will cover that repair or the replacement of the damaged property. For instance, general liability will respond if a consultant accidentally knocks a client's laptop off the desk. When promoting businesses, it is possible to accidentally copy a competitor's logo, which can cause legal issues with accusations of misuse of another logo. General liability insurance provides coverage against defamation (both libel and slander) and copyright infringement.
Professional liability insurance
Professional liability will defend the insured education consulting firm if a client sues over professional negligence, an error in the advice given, or an omission of important details while performing the service. It's also known as "errors and omissions insurance" (E&O) or "professional indemnity insurance."
Moreover, an oversight or mistake by the education consulting firm can jeopardize a student's future and career and lead to an expensive lawsuit. Finding the appropriate professional liability insurance should be a part of the risk management strategy.
Workers' compensation insurance
This type of insurance is vital for education consulting businesses that have several employees. It protects the company by paying for medical costs resulting from employee injuries. Even in the relatively low-risk business of education consulting, employees can still get hurt while at work. Workers' compensation insurance pays for medical bills, ongoing care, missed wages, funeral expenses for fatal accidents, and death benefits to employees' families.
Employer's liability insurance is typically included in workers' compensation insurance that compensates for attorney's fees, court costs, settlements, or judgments if an employee sues the employer for negligence that contributed to their injury.
Business-Owner's Policy (BOP)
A business owner's policy combines general liability and commercial property insurance. It is typically offered at a lower rate than if these policies were purchased separately. This bundled policy pays for damages resulting from third-party bodily injury and property damage and loss or damage to the business-owned assets.
There are two kinds of fidelity bonds, first-party and third-party. First-party fidelity bonds protect the business's money from dishonest employees. These bonds pay expenses related to an employee who steals from the company, commits fraud against the company, or commits forgery that affects the company. Third-party fidelity bonds protect clients from dishonest acts of employees for the loss of money or property.
There are two kinds of fidelity bonds- first-party and third-party. First-party fidelity bonds protect the business's money from dishonest employees. These bonds pay expenses related to an employee who steals from the company, commits fraud against the company, or commits forgery that affects the company. Third-party fidelity bonds protect clients from dishonest acts of employees for loss of money or property.
An education consulting firm that operates on a relatively large scale will have a ton of sensitive student data required to do the job. Such an enormous quantity of sensitive data could be the target for cybercriminals.
Cyber insurance policy protects against the high liability costs of a data breach, cyber-attack, ransomware, phishing, malware, denial of service attack, and other cyber incidents that would cause customers to sue the business.
Cost of Education Consultant Insurance
Several factors contribute to the cost of education consultant insurance, including:
- Size of the company
- Type of education consulting services
- Business income
- Business property and equipment insured
- Types of insurance purchased
- Policy limits and deductibles
Summing it up
There's no doubt that proper business insurance for education consultants is vital to guard against potential threats, given the nature of the work. However, thoroughly check the terms and conditions of the policy, the terms and conditions as well as policy exclusions before making a final decision. A licensed commercial insurance agent can certainly guide you through the process. Get in touch with our insurance agents at InsuranceAdvisor.com for more information.