For many chartered accountants, coming face-to-face with an actual or potential professional indemnity (PI) claim can be a particularly stressful experience.
While it may be unlikely, if and when such an incident does occur it’s sensible to have the right tools on hand. This includes, critically, having legal options at your fingertips that won’t break the bank.
Lisa Carbone, senior client executive at Aon, says it’s in these circumstances that CGU’s legal advice helpline can be of great assistance to CAs.
CGU has a panel of experienced insurance law firms with offices that can service every state and territory, and people at the end of the line to take questions and provide in-depth answers and solutions.
Complimentary expert legal advice
Practitioners with PI policies arranged by Aon can access a total of two hours’ complimentary legal advice on matters relating to the risk insured by the policy, helping to provide comfort and clarity in circumstances when a claim may need to be made. The legal advice is limited to one hour per claim in relation to a matter and a maximum of two hours per policy period.
It’s simply a matter of ringing the helpline and letting the lawyers advise on the best course of action to take. “When it comes to legal matters, such as a potential professional indemnity claim, getting legal advice from an expert is crucial,” says Carbone.
“With this service, chartered accountants can talk to a team of lawyers to receive expert advice that’s relevant to the services they provide to their clients. This is a service that is completely complimentary for our CA clients, so feel free to reach out and make use of it in relation to any matter related to the risk insured by the policy.”
Providing clarity on potential claims
A big plus of the helpline, Carbone says, is that it connects practitioners not just with legal generalists but lawyers who have extensive accounting-sector knowledge.
Solicitors on the other end of the line are well placed to provide CAs with clarity on specific situations in accounting so that practical and timely decisions can be made, she says. This includes providing advice on how your policy works and how to mitigate a potential claim.
“The helpline enables CAs to call for legal advice, without an appointment, to discuss a situation they’re facing in order to work out how to resolve the matter,” says Carbone. “There doesn’t have to be a formal claim to seek advice, with many calls made yearly from CAs focused on potential claims and how to stop them reaching formal claim stage.”
Picture: Lisa Carbone, senior client executive at Aon.
“The helpline enables CAs to call for legal advice, without an appointment, to discuss a situation they’re facing in order to work out how to resolve the matter.”
Help when claims become stressful
In addition to practical advice, the helpline can also help CAs deal with the stress of an actual or looming PI claim.
On this front, it can be a big support to have a legal expert on the other end of the line who knows what questions to ask in order to get to the heart of the matter. The lawyer will ask the appropriate questions, establish the background circumstances to the matter and provide advice that’s based on your individual circumstances, current law, and the extent of the coverage available under your policy.”
Find out more:
© 2020 Aon Risk Services Australia Limited ABN 17 000 434 720
The Professional Indemnity Insurance for members of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand is arranged by Aon Risk Services Australia Limited ABN 17 000 434 720 AFSL 241141 as agent for the insurer, Insurance Australia Limited ABN 11 000 016 722 AFSL 227681 trading as CGU Insurance. If you purchase this insurance, Aon will receive a commission that is a percentage of the premium. Further information can be provided upon request.
The information contained in this article is general in nature and should not be relied on as advice (personal or otherwise) because your personal needs, objectives and financial situation have not been considered. Before deciding whether a particular product is right for you, please consider your personal circumstances, as well as the relevant Product Disclosure Statement (if applicable) and full policy terms and conditions available from Aon on request. All representations on this website in relation to the insurance products we arrange are subject to the full terms and conditions of the relevant policy.