Twenty years ago, employment practices liability insurance (EPLI) policies were scarce in the United States. Even a decade ago, most employers didn’t purchase that type of coverage. That has changed.
In 2018, it’s estimated that half of all firms with 1,000 or more workers have in place some version of EPLI coverage, which protects employers against employee claims for discrimination, wrongful termination, harassment, and other employment-related issues. Many smaller businesses now are following suit as insurance companies make such policies more available and accessible.
Should churches take notice of this trend in the public and private sector? Yes, according to the experts we interviewed.
“Churches have this belief that they don’t have these type of issues and that they would never have an employee sue them,” said Cori Cable, associate corporate counsel with Brotherhood Mutual Insurance Company. “But the fact is, it does happen. There might have been a time a few decades ago where churches were rarely sued by employees, but that is no longer the case. Employment practice claims are some of the fastest-growing claims against churches, and it’s because of allegations of discrimination, harassment, retaliation, and other wrongful termination acts.”