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NEW YORK -- Midsize companies may purchase employment practices liability insurance at reduced rates and risk management services to reduce employment practices risks under a new program from broker J&H Marsh & McLennan Inc. and law firm Littler Mendelson.
The program, Leaders Preferred, targets employers with 250 to 3,500 employees.
The EPL coverage is written by National Union Fire Insurance Co. of Pittsburgh, Pa., and other American International Group Inc. companies; Executive Risk Inc.; and Zurich-American Insurance Group.
Under the program, attorneys from Littler Mendelson audit a business' human resources policies and practices and provide specific strategies to reduce employment-related risk at no additional cost. The audit covers a company's employment documents, practices and policies, as well as compliance with state and federal employment-related laws. An audit report points out deficiencies in the company's current practices and suggests strategies for avoiding common mistakes that lead to liability.
The Leaders Preferred program generally provides broad coverage for workplace discrimination, wrongful termination, sexual harassment and other employment-related claims. The policy covers current and former employees, and in most instances third-party vendors, clients and customers seeking damages or injunctive relief.
The coverage includes prior acts of acquisitions, punitive damages, third-party claims and independent contractors as employees.
For information, contact Peter Foster, employment practices liability specialist with J&H Marsh & McLennan, 617-960-5804; or William Pratt, vp at J&H Marsh & McLennan, 408-467-5633.
HARTFORD, Conn. -- A new payroll deduction plan allowing employees to deduct as little as $25 per pay period for personal investing is now available from CIGNA Financial Services, a discount stockbrokerage unit of CIGNA Corp.
Payroll deductions can be invested in more than 4,000 mutual funds, including more than 300 no-load transaction funds from approximately 70 fund families, as well as stocks and bonds.
The program, called CIGNASaver, is targeted at employers with more than 1,000 employees. CIGNASaver is free to employers and employees.
For information, contact Charles Herbert, director of CIGNA Financial Services, 860-534-3091.
Carpal tunnel testing
JACKSON, Tenn. -- IPS Physician Services, a workers compensation medical management and cost containment company, is offering a carpal tunnel syndrome prevention and detection program.
The program, called Wrist Watch, tests newly hired workers for carpal tunnel syndrome before they begin work.
According to the company, an average of 15% of new hires have compression of the median nerve at the wrist -- which leads to carpal tunnel syndrome -- before their employment begins.
The Wrist Watch program involves three steps: training and supervising a plant nurse or another health professional about carpal tunnel syndrome detection and treatment; studying all the workstations at a facility and ranking jobs by degree of hand and wrist intensity; and testing all new hires and currently employed workers, if desired. If an employee is deemed at risk for carpal tunnel syndrome, an IPS physician would make recommendations about job restrictions.
For information, contact D. Patterson Adams Jr., president of IPS Physician Services, 901-664-9412.
Net services coverage
NEW YORK -- Professional liability coverage for providers of Internet-related services is now available from American International Group Inc.
AIG's policy protects against errors and omissions, claims of copyright or trademark infringement, computer virus, unauthorized access and personal injury for corporations, partnerships, their subsidiaries or individuals providing services on the Internet.
The policy also covers: Internet access provider services; Web site design and construction; e-mail; development and/or installation of encryption software; and maintenance of chat rooms and online bulletin boards. The policy also covers computer services related to setting up a home page, including programming, design, installation and consulting services. Additionally, coverage is available for Internet-related advertising, broadcasting and electronic publishing services.
The coverage is contingent upon compliance with minimum safeguarding procedures set forth by AIG. The policy covers defense costs for claims, even if allegations are groundless, false or fraudulent. Coverage is on a claims-made basis with limits of up to $25 million.
For information, contact Jill Salmon or Tim McAuliffe, 212-458-1127, or http://access.aig.com.
Food processing risks
DETROIT -- A new program combining food processing industry consulting services and specialty insurance protection is now available from Aon Risk Services Inc. of Michigan. The program is designed to help the food processing industry focus on increased regulatory and potential liability issues.
Aon is offering a combined product recall/business income protection policy that covers traditional exposures from a recall and also provides product incident loss-of-income coverage. Coverage details still are being negotiated.
In addition, Aon is cooperating with NSF International to help food processing companies with Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point compliance.
Ann Arbor, Mich.-based NSF International is an independent, non-profit organization that develops food processing industry standards.
Aon has designed risk management services to help clients qualify for NSF's HACCP-9000 certification, which brings them into full compliance with HACCP and food hygiene practices integrated with ISO 9000.
The federal Food and Drug Administration and other federal and state regulatory agencies have recommended the HACCP technique to evaluate a food company's ability to produce safe, quality products. HACCP also is being incorporated into the FDA's legal requirements for the food industry.
For information, contact George K. Peters, vp at Aon Risk Services Inc. of Michigan, 313-259-7225.