Important Business Information for
NTCB Certified Professionals
The Insurance You Need to Protect your Office, Equipment and Income
Professional Liability Insurance covers professional people against claims of incompetence, malpractice and errors or omissions. We all make mistakes. Most of the time our mistakes do not harm another person. Biofeedback and neurotherapy are considered very safe interventions. It's difficult to harm somebody with modern biofeedback and neurofeedback equipment. But it does happen.
A more likely scenario is that some disgruntled client may falsely blame you for something you did not do. The attorney fees to defend even false claims can far exceed the cost of several years’ premiums for malpractice insurance. And there are times when jury’s award large judgments against a professional that did nothing wrong. For these reasons professional (malpractice) insurance is recommended as a cost of doing business.
General Liability Insurance covers the business owner against damages caused when somebody is injured on your property or as a result of your business products or non-clinical services. General Liability Insurance does not cover malpractice, automobile or homeowners liability.
Your business premises include renting or using a space to conduct business. It also includes other people's businesses and residences if you're conducting business in these places. Conducting business includes sales and marketing activities. If your clients are injured on those premises whether you own them or not, the law holds you liable as the business owner. The land lord or property owner may also be held liable.
For these reasons, general liability insurance is recommended as a cost of doing business. In some cases this insurance can be included in your malpractice insurance for a small fee. In some cases this insurance can be included in your business property insurance or homeowners insurance for a small fee. (Note: The insurance package offered through the Biofeedback Association includes both general and professional liability insurance.)
Automobile Liability Insurance covers the driver and vehicle owner against damages caused when somebody or something is injured by an automobile you drive or own. If you or an employee uses your vehicle for business, or to drive to and from work, you are obligated to explain this fact to your automobile insurance company. Automobile insurance companies charge a higher fee for this type of use. If you use your vehicle for business, the company may deny your claim if you do not inform them of this fact. Automobile insurance does not cover you for personal, professional or business claims for damages.
Homeowners Policies covers the homeowner and occupants of the home for damages caused by the property or occupants to people or property. Homeowners insurance does not cover intentional damage, professional or business liability claims or other claims not related to owning a home or being a resident of that home. These policies also cover your personal property. In some cases, homeowner’s insurance policies can be amended by the company to cover business liability for a home-based business. If you run your business from your home, discuss this option with your insurance agent.
Renters Policies covers the renter and other occupants of rented property for damages caused to people or property similar to a homeowners policy. These policies also cover your personal property. If you run your business from a rented residence, discuss the option of covering your business property and liability with your insurance agent.
Business Owners Policy is like having a homeowner’s insurance policy for your business. This policy covers your business property and your general liability. It combines business property with general liability insurance in one package. If you already have a general liability insurance policy, all you need is business property insurance instead of a business owner’s policy.
Business Property Insurance covers your business property including things like biofeedback and neurotherapy equipment, computers, telephones, cell phones, office furniture, office equipment and supplies. This coverage is for theft, fire and other losses. It does not usually cover damage to your property caused by you, your family or employees. It does not cover malfunctioning of the equipment or normal equipment failure and maintenance.
Since a business owner can tie up a lot of money in business property, it usually makes sense to carry business property insurance. In some cases this insurance can be included in your business property insurance or homeowners insurance for a small fee.
Life, Health, Accident and Disability Insurance protect the business owner and business owner's family against the possibility of loss of income caused by illness, accident, injury, disability or death.
As a business owner we recommend you protect your assets and your family against catastrophic loss. This can be done with insurance, savings, good luck, or a combination of these three things. At the very least, you need to become familiar with the following kinds of insurance to make informed decisions about protecting yourself and your family against unbearable loss:
- Automobile Insurance to cover your vehicles and family members
- Homeowners or Renters Insurance for the same reasons
- Professional Liability (Malpractice) Insurance
- General Liability Insurance
- Business Property Insurance
- Life, Health, Disability and Accident Insurance
Our unsolicited recommendation is that every biofeedback and neurotherapy professional contacts a reliable insurance professional to discuss these matters. If you don't know where to start, contact your automobile and homeowner's insurance agent. Then we suggest you compare what you find with the group policy available through the Biofeedback Association of North America (BANA) or the newly formed Natural Therapies Association of North America (NTANA).
NTANA is open to qualified professionals certified in acupressure, alternative healthcare, aromatherapy, auricular therapy, bioenergetics, biofeedback, biofrequency, colon hydrotherapy, homeopathy, hypnotism, light therapy, natural therapy, naturopathy, neurofeedback, neurotherapy, nutrition, pain management, quantum biofeedback, reflexology, shiatsu, sound therapy, spiritual healing, stress management and healing modalities equivalent to any of these modalities.
Disclaimer: This article was written by former insurance executive John Gilbert while serving as the executive director of the Neurotherapy and Biofeedback Certification Board (NTCB). NTCB has not fully investigated the content, explanations nor recommendations and suggests that biofeedback professionals investigate for themselves.