Professional Insurance Programs

Top Insurance Needs for Dentists

How will my professional liability policy operate if I decide to take a break from practice to pursue other life goals?

Historically, the best of the best professional malpractice policy was known as a claims made policy.  The meaning is in the name, the amount of coverage is the amount you have at the time the claim is made.  The design of the policy is such that it looks back at if you were insured at the time of the claim, but provides you policy limits for today’s market.  i.e. In 1975 it is possible that no person would anticipate and $3,000,000 claim, where today it is very possible.  When you are no longer practicing you purchase an Extended Reporting Endorsement or ‘tail’ to protect you from any issues that may arise in retirement.

Claims made policies are designed for those that practice uninterrupted for their entire career.  Today’s professionals are finding that is not often the case.  Professionals at times make a choice to take a step back from practice to pursue higher education, do volunteer work or raise a family.  To allow for that flexibility an occurrence policy is now a popular trend in dental professional malpractice insurance.  This policy allows for gaps in coverage when perusing other life goals outside of dentistry.   There is no need for the Extended Reporting Endorsement or ‘tail’ with this policy.


If I become disabled, how can I protect my income?

Individual disability policies would protect your income from a long term illness that prevented you from practicing.  As a professional that works and earns a living with their hands, proper disability protection is key.  It is important that the long term policy you choose will cover when your profession can no longer be performed; some policies stipulate that there must be an inability to perform any job.


If I am self employed – how do I obtain personal health insurance?

The coverage and options for individually purchased health insurance are changing quickly in today’s market.  Plan designs and coverage options vary greatly depending on where you are purchasing insurance.  Key items to look at when considering a health insurance policy will be; network, premium, deductible and co-pay options.  Be sure to understand how your expenses will be covered before signing up for a policy.


As a business owner, how should I arrange my long term insurance plan including life insurance?

Professionals and business owners are prudent to preplan and protect their business from all potential risks.  Your personal insurance is not separate from that conversation.  Having proper advanced planning about your life insurance, key person insurance in partnerships and long term care insurance needs are vital parts of your business protection plan and often overlooked by many busy professionals.


How do I properly insure my business property and my personal property?

Business owner’s policies are designed to protect the business and everything inside of it.  The WDA endorses a business and workers compensation policy through West Bend that include coverage’s specific to a dental practice like needle stick coverage and increased limits on electronic equipment like Cerec machines and Cone Beam x-ray.

Your home and personal affairs are covered through a separate home and auto policy.  There are WDA discounts available to members with certain carriers.


These coverage areas are vital areas of concern for today’s dental professional.  For a complete review of these and other important insurance matters of interest contact Professional Insurance Programs, your WDA owned and operated insurance agency.