The best professional liability insurance companies offer customized coverage that fits your industry, with endorsements to meet your specific business needs. They also have strong financial ratings and in-house claims teams to handle losses and are available 24/7 to resolve claims in a timely manner.
Using our proprietary rubric focusing on financial strength, customer satisfaction, convenience, and the policies offered, we evaluated 18 companies and determined the seven with the best professional liability insurance.
Best Brokers for Professional Liability Insurance:
- Simply Business: Best for saving money by comparing quotes
- CoverWallet: Best for finding errors and omissions (E&O) providers for consultants
Best Providers for Professional Liability Insurance:
- The Hartford: Best overall provider for professional liability insurance
- Next Insurance: Best for contractors and instant certificates of insurance (COIs)
- Hiscox: Best for buying E&O insurance online quickly
- Chubb: Best for marketing and media businesses
- biBERK: Best for administrative services for professional liability
Simply Business: Best for Saving Money by Comparing Quotes
- Customer service only available on weekdays
- Claim filing process isn’t very smooth
- Property coverage is usually unavailable online
- Tailor quotes in real time to get the right coverage
- Purchase policy online after obtaining a quick quote
- One-stop shop for insurance from different providers
- Save money by comparing quotes
Online digital broker Simply Business works with 16 different top-rated providers to help you find professional liability insurance. It has an intuitive and easy-to-use system and excels at providing insurance quickly by allowing you to purchase a policy online without speaking with anyone. However, if you prefer to speak with someone or need expert advice, you can also call its customer service hotline.
Through its marketplace, you can save money by comparing quotes and then tailoring the coverage to fit your business in real time before purchasing the policy—a feature other brokers do not offer. As the cost of insurance continues to rise, one of the best ways to save is by comparing different options for the same coverage from different carriers.
The upside of a broker can also be a downside. Since Simply Business isn’t a dedicated carrier, it can bring you quotes from lots of different companies—but if you have to file a claim, you’ll need to then work with that carrier. If you want the option of working directly with a provider throughout the process, then check out The Hartford, our overall best provider.
After answering some questions about our photography business, we received one quote for a general liability and professional liability policy. The policy was from Hiscox, for same-day coverage. The policy costs $62.74 monthly and carried a general liability limit of $1 million per occurrence and $2 million aggregate. The professional liability limit was $1 million.
Receiving only one quote from Simply Business is unusual. During our research, we usually get three to six different quotes per scenario provided. However, regardless of the volume of quotes, you have two options for proceeding:
- You can purchase the policy online without needing to speak to anyone.
- You can call and speak with an agent.
If, like in this example, you would prefer more options, then you can call to learn about additional options for insurance.
Simply Business offers insurance across the US. While it only operates on business days (Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET), you do have 24/7 access to your online account, where you can manage your policy, request coverage changes, and create a COI.
The broker’s users are happy with their experience. The complaints measured by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) with the providers Simply Business works with are consistently lower than expected, and it has 4.8 out of 5 stars on Trustpilot from over 1,100 reviews.
Unfortunately, Simply Business’ claims process isn’t the most user-friendly. If you have a claim, you are encouraged to contact the provider directly. If you need help, however, then you can reach out to Simply Business for information on which company to contact.
CoverWallet: Best for Finding E&O Providers for Consultants
- No mobile app
- No 24/7 call center
- Unable to purchase insurance online
- Limited industry appetite
- Multiple top carriers work with CoverWallet
- Policy management system comes with the purchase of a policy
- Comparison mechanism for quotes to help you find the right coverage
- Single contact for policy, billing, and claims questions
Financial stability: While CoverWallet works with carriers rated A- to A+, it is also owned by Aon, a multinational company.
Online insurance broker CoverWallet is a great resource if you are unsure of what coverage you need or are looking to connect with a top provider. It has targeted consultants as a key industry that it wants to support with professional liability insurance. It works with 10 different top-rated carriers to offer professional liability insurance specifically for consultants.
While CoverWallet does have some overlap with Simply Business regarding the providers it works with, there is a lot of distinction between the two companies. Brokers and providers negotiate and underwrite differently, so a quote from one provider may be very different from a quote from two different brokers. I’ve seen this countless times when researching for these articles.
CoverWallet’s main feature is that it allows you to compare quotes. In the majority of cases, when you visit its website, within 10 minutes of answering questions, the broker will respond with quotes from multiple top providers, showing you the cost and coverage for professional liability insurance or any other coverage you may need.
However, the industries CoverWallet works with to find coverage are limited, so if you aren’t in consulting but would like insurance, you’ll want to consider a different broker like Simply Business, which works with more industries.
We received one quote for professional liability insurance for $1,561.25 annually. The policy carried $1 million total coverage for liability with no deductible. The policy was underwritten by Hiscox.
From experience, we can say CoverWallet will normally provide at least three different quotes for you to compare. Sometimes, it is unable to do so online, but even then, you have the option to call and speak with a representative who will find additional providers for you to find the right one.
In addition to offering professional liability insurance, CoverWallet provides nearly every coverage a business may need. These include general liability, property, inland marine, workers’ compensation, commercial auto, and cyber insurance.
Beyond the quick online quotes and the ability to compare providers, CoverWallet offers other convenient features and services, like an advice tool. Even if you know you need professional liability insurance, you may not know all of the coverage you need. With CoverWallet’s advice feature, answer a few questions about your business and the broker will provide the coverages similar businesses purchase.
CoverWallet also offers an online policy management system where you can pay your bill, adjust coverage, add additional insureds, and request a COI. Through this system, you can also start the claims process.
While CoverWallet is not open 24/7, it does maintain hours on Saturdays. Its hours of operation are Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET.
The Hartford: Best Overall Provider for Professional Liability
- No app to manage your policy
- Cannot always purchase the policy online
- Custom policies for administrators and marketing
- Hammer clause built into many policies
- Higher limits of up to $10 million
- Business interruption of up to 24 months
Financial stability: Founded in 1810, The Hartford is one of the oldest insurance companies in America. It has a proven financial record of handling all kinds of losses, and The Hartford’s AM Best rating is A+ (Superior).
The Hartford is a large insurer offering a range of specialized professional liability policies—including ones for administrators and marketing agencies. Its policies have limits up to $10 million, and it has a single policy covering a large number of services. The provider has 24/7 claims services, the ability to get a policy online, and a strong financial position to pay claims.
The Hartford offers a specialized professional liability policy that combines coverage for professional services, media, third-party cyber, and technology liability in one policy. You can also add options such as scheduled or blanket services coverage. Because The Hartford is a large carrier, it can provide your business with additional coverage like commercial property and commercial auto insurance.
As a traditional carrier, The Hartford provides a single point of contact. However, it isn’t as tech-forward or convenient as some other options on this list. If you value those perks, then check out Next Insurance, which lets you manage your policy and claims online or through the app.
After answering a few questions, we received a quote for $1,378 annually. The policy carried a total limit of $1 million with a $1,000 deductible, and the quote came with multiple options, including limits of up to $2 million and a deductible of up to $25,000.
There was also an option to get a quote for general liability insurance and workers’ compensation. The Hartford even included an informational note that if we purchased general liability insurance, we could bundle it with professional liability coverage and most likely reduce the total cost.
The Hartford’s customers have given it positive marks. It has a lower-than-expected number of complaints with the NAIC and 4.7 out of 5 stars with over 66,000 reviews by its own customers on how claims are handled. It also works with independent agents who have rated it as one of the best carriers to work with, per a 2023 survey by J.D. Power.
What’s more, The Hartford has developed an exceptional digital experience. You can get a quote in minutes and sometimes purchase a policy online. You can then manage your policy, file a claim, and get an instant COI online.
While The Hartford’s digital experience is better than that of many traditional carriers, it can sometimes lag behind—particularly when it comes to reliably generating an online quote or allowing you to purchase one online. While more carriers are developing apps for its users, The Hartford does not offer anything comparable for its commercial line customers.
Next Insurance: Best for Contractors & Instant COIs
- No 24/7 call center
- Low limits for professional liability
- Same-day coverage available online
- Policy packages for construction workers
- GL/PL bundled together for convenience
- Quote process is entirely online and fast
Financial stability: Next Insurance is the youngest carrier on this list, but it has the financial strength to pay its claims. AM Best rated Next Insurance A- (Excellent).
Next Insurance specializes in coverage for contractors working in the construction trade. It offers a custom professional liability policy for independent contractors. The policy has been designed specifically for that line of work and covers professional negligence, regardless of whether it is actual or alleged, and legal defense and judgment costs. It is written on a claims-made form rather than an occurrence form and has a revenue limit of $5 million.
While other providers also offer instant COIs, Next Insurance stands out because of its unique ability to instantly create and share an unlimited number of COIs through the app or online for no additional charge. This feature makes Next an especially appealing provider for any contractor needing to provide proof of insurance for a bid or amend a policy with an additional insured.
This provider targets smaller businesses with a revenue capped at $5 million. If your business is near or exceeds that yearly revenue cap, then Chubb is a good option as it has the capacity for larger businesses.
We received a quote for a general contractor policy that included general liability bundled with professional liability, tools and equipment, and property coverage. This package came in three different tiers:
- Basic: $823.59 monthly, with general liability aggregate limits of $2 million and $50,000 for professional liability
- Premier: $861.76 monthly; this coverage only differed from Basic by including $5,000 in coverage for tools and equipment
- Deluxe: $913.09 monthly, with the same level of coverage as Basic or Premier for liability; tool coverage increased to $10,000 (from $5,000 with Premier), and this tier also includes $16,000 in coverage for rented office space
While these figures are high, Next states that 40% of customers pay anywhere from $26 to $45 per month for professional liability insurance.
Overall, Next Insurance customers are happy as the provider has received a lower-than-average number of complaints filed with the NAIC. Next invites users to leave reviews of their experience on its website, and with over 4,000 reviews, the provider has 5 stars. Negative reviews are few and far between—and for all the ones we located, Next Insurance responded, addressing the issue.
Our score reflects its customer service and takes into account that Next does not have a 24/7 call center for claims. This may seem like a small issue but having worked in a customer call center for commercial lines, I understand how valuable a 24/7 line is for customers to call after hours and on the weekend when their business is facing a serious problem.
As an insurance technology (insurtech) provider, Next Insurance has created a first-rate digital and mobile experience. Android and iOS users can use its app to manage their policy, file a claim, and create and share an instant COI.
Hiscox: Best for Buying E&O Insurance Online Quickly
- Complaints are slightly higher than average
- No 24/7 call center
- Contract review is free to policyholders
- Modular policies allow you to customize your coverage
- Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) coverage available as an endorsement
- Many industries targeted, like engineers, consultants, contractors, and inspectors
Financial stability: With its roots tied to a global insurer, Hiscox has more than 100 years of handling insurance claims. Hiscox’s AM Best rating is A (Excellent).
Dedicated small business insurer Hiscox has a wide range of professional liability policies available. The policies target allied healthcare professionals, engineers, and inspectors, and it even offers a miscellaneous professional liability policy. A standout feature of working with Hiscox is the ease of purchase. You can get a quote and buy insurance in minutes, making it the fastest option on this list.
This policy, which can be packaged with other coverages like general liability, cyber, and business property, is available for all healthcare workers, including those in counseling, home healthcare, spas, medical imaging, and speech therapy. The provider includes global coverage, so if you happen to be a medical professional who does nonprofit work abroad, Hiscox can build in coverage for that. In that event, you must file the claim in the US.
Hiscox is a great option for professional liability insurance, and since it’s a traditional carrier, you’ll have one point of contact throughout the life of the policy. However, Hiscox doesn’t have any weekend or after-hour options for calling. If your business operates on the weekend and you want the ability to call and speak with someone 24/7, then The Hartford or Chubb are both good options since they maintain a 24/7 call center.
We received a quote online for $90.55 monthly or $1,087 annually. The monthly payment was structured so that you pay $181.50 down and then have 10 installments of $90.55. The policy carried $1 million in total liability coverage with a $500 deductible. It also had blanket additional insureds included.
Beyond professional liability coverage, Hiscox offers the standard core coverages a small business would need, including workers’ comp, a business owner’s policy (BOP), and general liability insurance. It also has quality options for cyber liability insurance.
Hiscox is a dedicated small business insurer, and small businesses, on average, seem to be happy with it. While it has received a slightly higher-than-expected number of complaints with the NAIC, on the independent review site feefo, it has 4.7 out of 5 stars from 900 reviews.
While Hiscox does offer the ability to get a quote and purchase a policy online, for companies with higher revenue, or that need higher limits, you will have to call and speak with a representative. Hiscox is open Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET.
You can manage your policy online and request a COI. Most COIs are instant, though some may involve a delay if you are seeking a significant change to coverage.
Chubb: Best for Marketing and Media Businesses
- No mobile app for commercial lines
- Unclear if there is an online portal for policy management
- Unable to get same-day coverage
- Financial strength to pay claims
- Tailored coverage for multiple industries
- Experience handling errors and omissions (E&O) claims
- Quick and simple online quote process
Financial stability: Chubb is the world’s latest publicly traded insurance company, with a strong financial position to pay its claims. AM Best’s rating of Chubb is A++ (Superior).
Chubb offers professional liability insurance for a wide range of industries—including designers, real estate agents, architects, and engineers—and it has created specialty professional liability policies for media and marketing businesses with built-in coverage for advertising content. It has a strong risk assessment and engineering to support media industries and a 24/7 claims line in case something goes wrong.
The provider can insure nearly every size of business: micro, small, midsize, and enterprise-level companies. However, its online quoting system often does not complete the quote and requests a call to resolve it. Also, it is difficult to find out what type of online policy maintenance Chubb offers its customers. If you want the option to get insurance online and manage your policy online, then check out Next Insurance.
Chubb offers an online quoting system for small businesses, but it seems to be hit or miss on whether it will provide an online quote or direct you to contact an agent.
For this article, we were able to get an online quote in only a few minutes. The quote we received was for professional liability insurance for $1,145 annually or $95.42 monthly. The policy carried a $1 million total limit of professional liability coverage, $1 million for personal injury offenses, and $1 million for civil proceedings and claim expenses.
Chubb has custom policies for different industries, the ability to get a quote and purchase a policy online, and over 20 years of experience handling E&O insurance.
Customers are satisfied with their experience of having Chubb insurance. Risk managers, buyers, and brokers have even voted Chubb No. 1 for its in-house team of specialists who have experience with professional liability claims.
The provider has an online quote service that takes only a few minutes. You can purchase the policy online as well. However, in our research, Chubb’s quote system isn’t the most reliable and will often ask you to call for a quote.
Complaints in 2022 rose from 2021, as tracked by the NAIC, so complaints are now slightly above the national average. Additionally, and unfortunately, there is no clear way to obtain a COI online.
biBERK: Best for Administrative Services Professional Liability
- No weekend hours
- Minimal online policy maintenance
- Coverage availability varies by region
- Simple and quick system to get insurance online
- Instant access to your policy documents
- Dedicated small business insurer
- Save money by paying annually for your insurance
Financial stability: biBERK is part of the Berkshire Hathaway Insurance Group. Berkshire Hathaway’s AM Best rating is A++ (Superior).
Dedicated small business insurer biBERK is the best provider for businesses that offer administrative services because those industries fit within the provider’s specific appetite. This means there is a very high probability of getting a successful quote with coverage focused specifically on administrative services.
Additionally, biBERK offers other coverages for those industries, such as workers’ compensation, general liability, BOP, and commercial auto. Plus, you have a good chance of getting a quote online, too.
The relatively low score in biBERK’s financial stability is not a reflection of its AM Best rating. Instead, it reflects the fact that for most coverages, biBERK is a regional carrier available to fewer than 30 states.
While biBERK will often offer a tiered quote structure similar to Next Insurance, the coverage is still from the same provider. If you’d prefer to compare quotes in an online marketplace, then consider the broker Simply Business.
We received a quote for a public notary business that costs $184.92 monthly. Alternatively, if you paid for the entire year you’d pay $1,996 and end up saving over $200. This quote was for $1 million in professional liability coverage, both per occurrence and aggregate. Each occurrence carried a deductible of $1,000. The coverage was for the next day and not same-day coverage.
In addition to professional liability insurance, biBERK offers workers’ comp, general liability, commercial auto, and a BOP.
In 2015 the Berkshire Hathaway Insurance Group launched biBERK to offer insurance for small businesses quickly and conveniently. It certainly does that: the quoting process is fast and simple, and you can purchase a policy online. If you do wish to speak with someone, biBERK’s hours are Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. ET.
Beyond the convenience of its quote and bind system, it does offer a few other online services to its policyholders. Online you can make a payment, file a claim, and create a certificate of liability.
Its professional liability insurance is available in all 50 states. However, other coverage is spottier, so I recommend checking biBERK’s coverage map in case you’re looking for insurance beyond professional liability.
biBERK has sold over 200,000 small business insurance policies. Its policyholders are, overall, satisfied. On Trustpilot, there are over 800 reviews with an average rating of 4.0 out of 5 stars.
How We Evaluated the Best Professional Liability Insurance Companies
We determined the best E&O insurance companies using our in-house proprietary evaluation systems, and we developed separate and distinct systems for insurance providers and brokers. When evaluating them, we focused on the customer’s needs—paying particular interest to convenience, financial ratings (from AM Best), customer service, types of policies offered, and the overall experience as a policyholder for a specific broker or provider.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Professional liability insurance is a type of liability insurance that provides financial assistance and protects your company assets when someone claims financial or physical harm as a result of your advice or service or alleges that a contract has been broken. It is different from general liability insurance, which focuses on property damage or bodily injury someone experiences as a result of your business operations.
No, professional liability is sometimes referred to as E&O insurance. It provides the same coverage as professional liability: errors or omissions made by your company during the course of work.
Professional liability insurance costs depend on several factors, including the business, risk, revenue, and claims history. The quotes we received ranged from $1,000 to over $1,600 annually for a design firm policy.
A retroactive date is the date when coverage begins. You can select a date that may precede the date you are shopping for coverage. States have a statute of limitation to file a claim and so an incident can happen and you may not receive notice of it for a year or more. Insurers use a retroactive date to establish a clear coverage period for your business.
General liability provides coverage for property damage or bodily injury to third parties. Professional liability, on the other hand, is focused on errors related to your business or a failure to maintain a contract or service agreement.
Professional liability insurance is an important part of any business in the service sector. Ensuring you have the right coverage from the best professional liability insurance company frees up mental space to help you focus on your business. Simply Business is the best overall broker for professional liability insurance and can help you save money by comparing quotes. Get a free, no-obligation quote in 10 minutes or less today.