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Liability insurance

Liability insurance

Liability insurance

(OP)
Besides my full time job, If I take own my own
small structural design job, and place my PE stamp on it
Do I have to have Liability insurance on me.
Of course it is so costly that I cannot afford it.
So I should not do this. or there are some loop holes.
Thanks in advance

RE: Liability insurance

Sure, the loophole you can use is to give all your worldly possessions including your house, bank accounts, car and furniture to your wife (depending on state law), relatives or friends.  That way if you're sued, there's nothing to take.
Otherwise, get the insurance.  If your fees aren't enough to cover the insurance, then you shouldn't be doing the work.

RE: Liability insurance

Although some clients require Errors & Omitions as well as Liability insurance, you only need it if you want to keep your house and belongings should you get sued.  

There is insurance available where it is obtained on a project to project basis and the cost of the insurance is based on the exposure/value of the job.

You should talk to a lawyer (who will present you with a conservitive approach).  I'm not sure if incorporating your side job (such as Recentgrad P.E., Inc.) would protect you or not, but it would be worth checking out.

RE: Liability insurance

A lawyer should be able to help you come up with contract provisions that could limit your liability to the client.  There is still third party liability to be concerned about, if a design error causes harm to somebody other than the client.

RE: Liability insurance

You need to find out if your company will even allow you to take side jobs.  Many will not.  If you do a side job and get sued your company may be exposed to a suit as well.  I don't drive my car without insurance, I wouldn't sign and seal drawings without it either, imo.

RE: Liability insurance

In many states, the state engineering rules prohibit moonlighting unless the employer is notified.  Be sure to check on that.  Also, many states require a corporate PE license, even to practice as an individual, and you should check on that.

From a practical standpoint, if you're more or less broke anyway, you're not as likely to get sued.

RE: Liability insurance

I have a full time job and have been doing side jobs (as ya'll call it) for 10 yrs. My side jobs which makes double my salary. However, I work after work till midnight sometimes + all weekend. The money is good. Law suites are there. I have been sued once in 10 yrs. I do not have insurance. The job was a small residential structure for $250.00 and the law suite cost me $20,000.00. In other words, you are taking a chance. I made much much more in 10 yrs than I did being sued. If you are confident, then it should not be a problem.

RE: Liability insurance

I have been doing work on the side for about 13 years.  The first 4 -5 years I didn't have liability insurance.  I finally found the ASCE liability insurance specifically for part time work.  It is high but not unreasonable.  My 10 years worth of premiums are less than AshhafPE's $20,000 law suit and I'm covered up to $250,000.  I am much more comfortable with the liability insurance.  All the things I am doing all the extra work for are protected.

RE: Liability insurance

RockEngineer, thanks for the info. I will go checkout ASCE liability. The only concern I have is, you always here that if you have insurance you always double your chances for law suits. People see it as a way for them to make easy money. The city I am in is the number 1 in the nation as far as law suites ranging from foundations, plumbing leaks, mold, ..etc you name it.

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