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Sports teams need one more team member: Insurance company to win off-field battles

Team sports competition at all levels delivers enormous societal benefits, including entertainment, community pride, and life lessons for young people  — the value of hard work, grit, teamwork and “the thrill of victory . . . the agony of defeat.”

Team sports leaders would certainly prefer to focus on players, games and the great value of sports, rather than the dark side – the threat of unscrupulous lawyers filing frivolous lawsuits over any injury or accident.

That’s why sports leaders need the right liability insurance company on their team to protect themselves and their coaches, trainers, tournament managers, and even parents and players.

Here’s a brief checklist to make certain you, your staff, team leaders and other personnel stay safe by engaging a skilled and experienced insurance teammate to provide maximum protection:

  1. Carefully review existing insurance policies to detect gaps and exclusions in coverage.
  2. Make certain liability limits are sufficient to cover possible claims.
  3. Revise and improve operations and systems, including legal agreements, to pro-actively manage risk and prevent lawsuits.
  4. Choose an insurance company that will deal forthrightly with legitimate claims, but will fight like a tiger against frivolous and unreasonable lawsuits.
  5. Engage a company that is knowledgeable about team sports, will work as a team member, and will customize a policy that precisely fits your needs.

Because some of these checklist items are technical and legalistic, you need a company that is transparent and honest, that fully understands the team sports industry, and that can clearly explain your options – so you can enjoy complete peace of mind.

XINSURANCE, a specialty broker, covers high-risk outdoor activities nationwide, including team sports. CEO Rick Lindsey says an excellent insurance company will provide great customer service and will fight hard for clients. Over many years, Lindsey and his team have developed methodologies and procedures to protect clients involved in high-risk activities that are likely targets of lawsuits.

The first step is working with clients to detect gaps and exclusions in coverage. Insurance companies should also provide wise legal counsel and help clients revise operations and systems to manage risk. Business processes like underwriting, policy issuance, risk management, legal work, and claims adjudication should be handled in-house to ensure efficiency and speed.

The danger of being targeted by unscrupulous lawyers is growing. They advertise on TV every day, seeking to exploit any accident or injury. Especially vulnerable are coaches, trainers, tournament organizers and league and club leaders.

This tsunami of litigation is increasing the cost of insurance and making some insurance companies fearful of insuring high-risk activities.  Lindsey says such fear is unwarranted. Exaggerated claims should be fought in court. Settling too quickly encourages more frivolous lawsuits and costs more in the long run.

“I love sports and enjoy being part of the team,” says Lindsey. Sports leaders love to win on the field. But they will only enjoy true peace of mind with a good insurance teammate to help win critical contests off the field.