D&O (Directors and Officers) Insurance cover is always an important consideration for non-executive directors; we carry the same legal risk as executive directors, but for lower remuneration and with fewer opportunities for oversight, so some form of protective cover against the unlimited liabilities which can face directors when things go wrong is often seen as a 'must have' in enabling non-execs to take on the risks of being directors.
In addition to the unlikely scenario of a genuinely valid claim against the directors, non-execs also face the same risks as executive directors of unfounded or malicious claims which, whilst without merit, need to be defended. The courtroom is an expensive place to be at the best of times, but the complexities of company law and the potential value of unlimited claims raise the stakes, meaning that legal fees in complex corporate cases are amongst the highest around. D&O Cover is typically expected to protect directors from both their potential liabilities (real or imaginary) and the legal costs of defending against those liabilities.
Monday 20th of June saw around 30 non-execs meeting at the Isle of Man International Business School to hear presentations from AON UK and CHUBB, organised by global insurance broker AON in collaboration with NEDS.im, to explain the ins and outs, expectations and 'gotchas' of D&O cover. The sheer numbers attending what might be seen to be a rather dry topic simply serve to reinforce the particular importance of D&O cover to NEDs, and the presentations were received with great interest, interspersed with many questions and debate from the audience.
NEDS.im would like to thank AON, and their experts who travelled from the UK to present to us, for a very informative and worthwhile seminar.
A second, follow up seminar is scheduled for July 20th covering professional indemnity and promises to be as interesting and informative as the last one.