Coverage: Premium remains stable in 2016
The year 2016 marked the sixth year in which most insured lawyers paid a base premium of $3,350 for their professional indemnity insurance. As rents and property values continue to climb, and as technology becomes obsolete at an ever-increasing rate, we were proud to be among the few practice expenses NOT growing in 2016. LawPRO is well positioned to lower the base premium to $2,950 for the 2017 program.
REPCO reduced again
Real estate lawyers benefited, in 2016, from a new reduction in the premium for the Real Estate Practice Coverage Option (REPCO). In 2016, the REPCO premium was $100, down from $250 the previous year. Introduced in 2010 at a premium of $500, REPCO was established to support changes to the protection for the registration of interests in land in Ontario.
There were two other changes to the policy for 2016. First, in recognition of the willingness of lawyers not in private practice to make a contribution to newer entrants to the profession, run-off coverage was made available for mentoring activities by exempt lawyers.
Second, to harmonize coverage as between lawyers and paralegal shareholders in combined-licensee professional law corporations, coverage was introduced for those paralegal shareholders. By the end of 2016, all paralegal shareholders in combined licensee firms were required to be covered under the LawPRO program.
The LawPRO program premium is customized to respond to a variety of practice circumstances. New lawyers, part-time practitioners, and lawyers who restrict their practice to criminal and/or immigration law pay reduced premiums, while lawyers exposed to additional risks, or who have stopped practising but want enhanced run-off protection can tailor their coverage accordingly. The image below provides an overview of lawyer participation in various coverage options in 2016: