NYSCA Insurance Plan FAQs
What are the differences between the various insurance policies, such as Accident, General Liability, Directors & Officers Liability, Crime, and Equipment?
The best place to go to get a “crash course” in sports insurance basics is under the Risk Management section of the NYSCA Insurance Plan website. Click on the Programs/Reports/Articles/Forms /Videos link.
The $100,000 Accident policy pays medical bills on behalf of injured participants. It has a deductible of $100 per claim. The coverage is “excess” which means that other collectable insurance such as parent’s health insurance must respond first before the excess Accident policy will pay any bills. In the event that there is no existing insurance in force on the injured participant, the excess Accident coverage will become primary and pays up to the limit of $100,000 subject to the $100 deductible.
The $2,000,000 General Liability policy protects the sports organization and its people against lawsuits alleging injury to a spectator or player. This policy provides an attorney for your defense and will pay up to the policy limit in the event of settlement or jury verdict.
The $1,000,000 Directors & Officers Liability policy ($2,000,000 limit available) protects the insured organization and its covered persons against lawsuits alleging discrimination based on age, sex, race, or handicap; wrongful suspension or termination of league personnel or players; failure to follow your own rules or by-laws when making a decision; and other similar alleged violations of someone’s federal, state, or constitutional rights.
The $25,000 Crime policy protects the local sports organization against a monetary loss caused by forgery, embezzlement, or theft of money, securities, or other property (equipment, machinery, concession supplies) by dishonest employees, volunteers, directors or officers. The policy also provides coverage for theft of money or securities by outsiders.
The Equipment policy protects the property of the sports organization against loss caused by perils such as fire, windstorm, theft, vandalism, etc. Items that can be covered include sports equipment, field maintenance equipment, concession stand equipment, concession stock, or small storage sheds that you own or lease/rent. This coverage is for loss or damage to your equipment due to fire, theft, vandalism, or other specified causes (subject to actual policy terms and conditions.) Payment will be made on a replacement cost basis.
Is our sports organization required to purchase all of the policies including Accident/General Liability, Directors & Officers Liability, Crime, and Equipment?
No. The only policy that must be purchased is the Accident/General Liability policy. Under this insurance plan, these two policies are combined into one policy and there is no way to separately purchase the Accident or the General Liability on a stand-alone basis.
Once the Accident/General Liability policy has been purchased, the other policies may be purchased on an optional basis. Please note that the Directors & Officers Liability, Crime, and Equipment policies cannot be purchased unless your sports organization purchases the Accident/General Liability policy through Sadler & Company.
Are higher limits of coverage available?
No. The limit of $100,000 on the Accident and $2,000,000 on the General Liability are the only limits available under this plan. If you are required to carry a higher limit, call Sadler & Company for other options.
If we are taking out the coverage under the name of our league, are we required to purchase insurance for all teams that participate within the league?
Yes, if it is your intent to apply for the coverage in the name of your league, you are required to pay a premium on behalf of all teams within your league.
The reason for this requirement is that the General Liability policy protects the league and its officers and directors in addition to team volunteers. Since the league and its officers and directors will be targets in virtually any lawsuit, a premium must be collected for all teams that participate under the league.
Is it possible to insure an individual team as opposed to the entire league?
Yes, it is possible to insure an individual team if the insurance is applied for under the name of the individual team.
It is not permissible to insure a single team if the application is taken out under the name of the entire league.
We strongly recommend that the insurance is taken out in the name of the entire league and a premium is paid for all persons on all teams participating on behalf of the league. In today’s litigation-conscience society, the risks of a volunteer losing everything in a lawsuit are just too high.
How long does coverage last?
Coverage starts the date and time that the enrollment form is received and approved by Sadler & Company, concurrent with the payment of the total amount due. All coverages expire one year from the effective date.
What if new teams or participants are added after we have applied for coverage?
If new teams or participants are added at any time after the original application date, it is required that a new premium be paid on their behalf. Under our Service for Current Clients section of the NYSCA program page you will find a add-delete forms you can submit with payment to add additional teams. There will also be a link in your proof-of-coverage email to print the add-delete form.
What if my sports organization only wants to buy Accident insurance and is not interested in General Liability or the other coverages?
It is not permissible to purchase the Accident coverage under this program on a stand-alone basis. For this reason, you must call Sadler & Company at 800-622-7370 to receive a quote through a different insurance plan if you are only interested in purchasing Accident coverage.
Do the insurance policies provide coverage for accidents and lawsuits that arise out of travel to another state?
Yes, coverage is provided anywhere in the United States as long as the event is league sanctioned and adult supervised and not otherwise excluded by the policy.
Is coverage provided in the event that our league has several all-star teams that travel and play other teams outside our league?
Yes, coverage is provided for your travel teams playing away from your premises as long as the activity is league sanctioned and adult supervised.
What if teams from outside of our league travel to our league to play in a scrimmage or tournament?
Coverage is provided for your organizations for competitions when teams from outside your sports organization travel to compete against teams within your sports organization. However, the Accident/General Liability coverages are not extended to protect the players and volunteers from the other teams.
Is coverage provided if my sports organization conducts a sports camp or clinic?
On the other hand, if your sports organization conducts a sports camp or clinic and members of the public outside of your sports organization are invited, such activities are not covered by this plan. It is recommended that you visit the Sadler & Company website and purchase the special coverage for Sports Camps and Clinics.
Once my sports organization applies for coverage, how long does it take for coverage to become effective?
If applying for coverage online, coverage is effective immediately and evidence of coverage will be immediately emailed to the applicant.
If applying for coverage by fax or mail, coverage is effective upon receipt of the fully completed application and check for the correct premium amount at Sadler & Company. When faxing/emailing a check, simply make the check payable to Sadler & Company in the correct amount, sign it, photocopy it, and fax/email the photocopy to Sadler & Company. Keep the original check for your records.
If applying for coverage by mail, coverage is effective upon receipt at Sadler & Company. Please note that the sole determining factor of the effective date is receipt at Sadler & Company and not the postmark date on the envelope.
Once my sports organization has applied for coverage through Sadler & Company, how long will it take for us to receive our proof-of-coverage certificates?
If you apply with our online option, you will immediately receive an email confirming your coverage and providing links that will allow you to print your Certificates of Insurance and claim forms immediately.
The other option is for you to mail or fax the application and premium check to Sadler & Company. As a general rule once the fully completed and signed application and check for the total premium amount are received at Sadler & Company, all paperwork is issued and emailed within five (5) business days. Therefore, please be sure to send your application and check approximately ten (10) days prior to your first event. This should allow sufficient time for processing and mailing.
What if I don’t know the exact number of teams or participants that will be participating prior to applying for coverage?
Very few sports organizations know the exact number of teams (or participants) prior to the application process. It is suggested that you complete the application based on your best guess estimates and pay the appropriate premium amount. Once we have processed your paperwork, you will receive an email confirming your coverage. There will be a link in this email that will allow you to print your certificates of coverage, as well as a link to print an Add/Delete form that will allow you to adjust your estimated figures after your roster has been finalized. If you initially underestimated the number of teams (or participants), an additional premium will be owed with the Add/Delete form. On the other hand, if you initially overestimated the number of teams or participants, you will receive a refund after forwarding your Add/Delete form to Sadler & Company. (Requests to delete teams must be received by Sadler & Company within 2 months of the effective date of coverage in order to be considered for approval.)
Is the total premium due up front or can it be financed?
The total premium is due with your initial application and cannot be financed.
In the event that your sports organization has multiple sports that start at varying times during the policy year, you do not have to pay in advance for all sports .Each sport can be added prior to the start date. For example, if your effective date is March 1 and your sports organization plays baseball and flag football, you may wait until just prior to flag football season before adding the coverage for flag football and paying the premium that is owed for flag football.
Can I make my payment by credit card?
Yes, We can accept payment via check or credit card. (Note: We can only accept payment by credit card if you are entering the application information directly into our online enrollment form.) When paying by check online the payment will be processed electronically as an ACH transaction.
Will I be notified once Sadler & Company has received our application?
No, it is not our normal procedure to provide notification of receipt as this extra step will disrupt our workflow process and will result in additional delays in issuance of the paperwork. If you are genuinely concerned about the effective date of your coverage, you should always fax or email the application and check and coverage will be effective on receipt of the fax/email at Sadler & Company. If you’re still concerned, we suggest that you send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org requesting verification of receipt of your application.
Or you can use our online application and conditional proof of coverage will be emailed to you immediately.
Is the Accident insurance coverage “excess?”
Yes, the Accident coverage is excess and requires other collectable insurance (such as parent’s health insurance) to respond first before the excess Accident policy will pay any benefits.
Does the Accident Plan contain a deductible?
Yes, the insurance plan contains a $100 “disappearing deductible.” The deductible disappears to the extent that parent’s existing health insurance, if any, has responded to the medical bills. As a general rule, the $100 deductible will only be applied when there is no existing health insurance in force on the injured participant resulting in this insurance plan providing primary coverage. On the other hand, when existing health insurance is in force on behalf of the injured participant, this plan will not apply its $100 per claim deductible to the extent that the existing insurance has paid at least $100.
Who are covered persons under the policy?
Coverage is provided for all athletes, coaches, managers, referees/umpires, officials and volunteers of an insured sports organization. No roster of names need be reported since 100% participation in the program is required.
What type of travel is covered under this policy?
Coverage is provided for adult-supervised group travel as authorized by the policyholder directly to and from a covered event.
How do we turn in a claim in the event that a participant is injured?
Claim forms can be printed from our website under the section “Services for Current Clients.” The authorized team/league official must complete Part 1 of the Accident Claim form verifying that the injury occurred during a sanctioned event, as well as the section asking specific questions about how the injury occurred. The parent must complete Part 2 of the Accident Claim form. The parent should then submit the completed claim form along with any Explanation of Benefits (EOB’s) from the family health insurance provider, if any, and itemized bills from the medical service provider (must include diagnostic codes, procedure codes and Federal Tax ID). These documents should be forwarded to K&K Insurance where they are processed. All claim questions should be directed to K&K Insurance at the phone number that is printed on the claim form.
GENERAL LIABILITY INSURANCE QUESTIONS
Who is covered by the General Liability policy?
Coverage is provided for the sports organization itself, its officers, directors, employees, and all volunteers including but not limited to coaches, managers, umpires, scorekeepers, concession workers, field maintenance workers, etc.
What activities are covered?
As a general rule, coverage is provided for all sanctioned and adult-supervised tryouts, practices, games, outings, and tournaments of the insured sports organization.
What are some examples of activities or events that are not covered by the General Liability policy?
- High-risk fundraising activities involving amusement devices, animals, motorsports, haunted houses and/or dunk tanks. Call Sadler & Company prior to the high-risk event as coverage may be added for an additional premium charge.
- Dances and concerts used for fundraising when the attendance exceeds 2000 attendees. Call Sadler & Company prior to such dances and concerts as coverage may be added for an additional premium charge.
- Events where alcoholic beverages are served where either 1)a charge is made for the alcoholic beverage or 2) a permit or license is required by a governmental entity to be taken out in the name of the sports organization. Call Sadler & Company prior to such an event as liquor liability coverage may be added for an additional premium charge (the minimum premium will be at least $500.)
- Sports camps and clinics involving participants outside of your sports organization are not covered unless a separate policy is purchased through Sadler & Company.
Does the policy provide coverage for lawsuits alleging sexual abuse and molestation?
Yes, coverage is specifically provided for sexual abuse/molestation in the amount of $1,000,000 each occurrence, subject to a $2,000,000 aggregate. Such coverage usually provides protection for the innocent board of directors and officers who are shotgunned into these lawsuits for negligent failure to screen out an abuser with a criminal record or failure to appropriately respond to an allegation of abuse/molestation. On the other hand, the alleged abuser or molester has no coverage.
PLEASE NOTE: Sexual abuse/molestation will not be covered for member teams or leagues that do not meet the following criteria:
- System in place to perform criminal background checks on paid and volunteer staff.
- Written procedure that includes sexual abuse and molestation prevention.
- Written procedure that includes response plans for allegations of sexual abuse and molestation. The plan must specify that law enforcement be contacted in the event of an allegation.
Are Players and Parents Required to Sign Waiver/Release Agreements?
No, this is not a requirement but is a strong recommendation. The signing of waiver/release agreements is quickly becoming a universal requirement for organized sports participation. Waiver/release forms are now required by virtually every municipal recreation department, YMCA, and health club in the U.S. as a precondition for participation. Private sports leagues should take note of this and follow their lead.
Waiver/release agreements give some protection to the insured sports organization and its covered persons against a litigation system that is out of control as evidenced by numerous frivolous lawsuits and outrageously excessive jury verdicts. While waiver/release agreements may not result in the immediate dismissal of a lawsuit where a minor is involved, they will likely reduce the amount of the settlement or jury verdict costs by up to 35%. This is of great value to you and your insurance company.
What if a parent balks at signing a waiver/release?
If your league has required the signing of a waiver/release by all parents and players, which we strongly recommend, you should hold firm on your requirement and not make exceptions for the few parents who may complain. It has been our experience that a waiver/release requirement will not drive participants away.
Should a parent complain or ask questions, you should cover the following talking points:
- The litigation system in the U.S. is out of control with too many frivolous lawsuits being filed and with outrageously excessive jury awards. These excessive jury awards are scaring sports organizations into settling cases that lack merit.
- The cost of legal defense and run-away settlements and jury verdicts can drive up the cost of insurance to unaffordable levels. This can threaten the future survival of sports organizations and the availability of volunteers upon which they depend.
- Requiring players and their parents to sign a waiver/release form helps to equalize the fairness in the legal system since players and parents must acknowledge that participation in sports does have some element of risk that can’t be totally controlled and that they assume this risk. In other words, the sports organization will do its best to provide a safe environment, but freak accidents do happen where no one is really to blame.
- Signing a waiver/release agreement does not necessarily mean that they can’t collect damages in a lawsuit because most courts will not give waiver/release agreements full weight. The typical outcome in the context of an injury to a minor is that the use of waiver/release agreements reduces the amount of damages that are owed by up to 35%.
- Almost all municipal recreation departments, YMCAs, and health clubs in the U.S. require the signing of a waiver/release form prior to participation and private sports organizations are now following their lead.
What is the difference between the Directors & Officers Liability policy and a General Liability policy?
This issue has caused quite a bit of confusion over the years. It is important to note that both policies cover exactly the same entities and people: the sports organization itself and its directors, officers, employees, and volunteers. However, each policy protects against a different type of lawsuit.
The General Liability policy primarily protects against lawsuits alleging the sports organization and its people have negligently caused bodily injury to a spectator or player. The policy also covers other types of lawsuits, such as property damage and personal injury, which includes slander and libel.
On the other hand, the Directors & Officers Liability policy protects against certain types of lawsuits that are not covered by the General Liability policy. The types of lawsuits that the Directors & Officers Liability policy is meant to cover include those alleging purely economic damages or that someone’s rights have been violated under state, federal or constitutional law. Examples of potentially covered lawsuits under this policy include discrimination based on race, sex, age, or handicap; wrongful suspension or termination of league personnel or players; a league’s failure to follow its own rules or by-laws when making an administrative decision; managerial negligence resulting in bankruptcy for the sports organization; and failure to maintain adequate insurance.
Are there any additional coverages provided by the Directors & Officers Liability policy?
Yes, the following enhancements are included in the policy.
Cyber Privacy and Client Identity Theft Included:
- Network Remediation $5,000 OR $25,000
- Loss or theft of client personal information $2,500 per person with $25,000 aggregate OR $10,000 per person with $100,000 aggregate.
If my sports organization is really only interested in protecting its directors and officers, why can’t it just purchase the $1,000,000 Directors & Officers Liability policy for $300 instead of spending all of the money that is required to purchase Accident/General Liability insurance on all participants?
There are a number of reasons why this thinking is flawed. First, since the Directors & Officers Liability policy does not cover bodily injury, property damage, or personal injury, it is still necessary to purchase a General Liability policy to protect the directors and officers against these types of lawsuits. For example, the directors and officers can be sued in the event of injury to a spectator or a player. Second, in order to qualify to purchase the Directors & Officers Liability policy, the General Liability must be purchased through Sadler & Company. Why must a General Liability policy be purchased through Sadler & Company before a league can purchase the Directors & Officers Liability policy? The reason is that the Directors & Officers Liability policy could potentially cover a lawsuit alleging that the board of directors was negligent in failure to purchase Accident or General Liability insurance. As a result, the insurance company will not offer the Directors & Officers Liability policy unless such coverages are already in place.
Is it important for my sports organization to renew its Directors & Officers Liability policy prior to its expiration date each year?
Yes. Since your Directors & Officers Liability is a “claims made” policy it is essential that there not be any lapse in coverage on the renewal. If there is a lapse in coverage, this can result in your protection being voided in the event that an incident that arose in the past does not result in lawsuit papers being filed until after your renewal.
CRIME INSURANCE QUESTIONS
What exactly does a Crime Insurance policy cover?
This policy protects the local sports organization against a monetary loss caused by theft of money, securities, or other property (equipment, machinery, concession supplies) by dishonest volunteers. This includes forgery by an identifiable officer or volunteer. Coverage is also provided for theft of money or securities by outsiders. This policy does not cover vandalism or theft of property by outsiders. See the optional equipment coverage if such protection is desired.
Do volunteers really steal money from organizations that serve children?
Yes, this happens much more often than anyone would like to believe. As a matter of fact, our office receives about 20 phone call per year from leagues that have lost substantial amounts of money due to theft by volunteers. It is relatively easy for a dishonest volunteer to steal from a youth sports organization since such organizations don’t have the necessary financial controls in place like most businesses do. For example, most sports organizations have inadequate safeguards for handling cash, don’t require countersignature of checks, and allow the monthly bank statement to be reconciled by someone who is also authorized to deposit or withdraw.
It is important that the Crime policy be renewed prior to its expiration date each year?
Yes, it is absolutely essential that the Crime policy be renewed without a lapse in coverage. A lapse in coverage under this policy can void coverage for past thefts that have not yet been identified if the claim is filed after the policy renewal date.
What does the Equipment policy cover?
Items that can be covered include sports equipment, field maintenance equipment, concession stand equipment, concession stock, or small storage sheds that your league owns/leases or rents. The coverage is for loss or damage to your equipment due fire, theft, vandalism, or other specified causes (subject to actual policy terms and conditions). Payment will be made on replacement cost basis.
When setting the value for our equipment coverage, should we insure all of our equipment and should we choose an amount equal to book value (includes depreciation) or replacement cost value?
Because your policy has a 100% co-insurance requirement, you are obligated to insure 100% of your equipment. In addition, the values that you set must be based on replacement cost valuation. This means that you should insure the equipment for an amount that would replace such equipment with a brand new piece of equipment at today’s prices. Failure to meet the policy’s 100% co-insurance requirement based on replacement cost can result in a reduced payout when a claim is filed for a partial loss.
Please note that any single item(s) valued at $1,000 or more must be individually listed under the Scheduled Equipment section of the application. You should include year, make and model whenever possible when listing the equipment. You must also list the full street location address of the
Is it possible to insure items like bleachers, scoreboards, and fences?
Yes, even though these items are more similar to buildings as opposed to equipment, it is permissible to insure them under the policy. Please make sure that they are individually listed under the “brief description of sports equipment” section of the application.
The plan description in the brochure indicates that it is permissible to insure small storage sheds. Is it also permissible to insure larger building with higher values?
In some cases it is permissible; however, please call Sadler & Company 800-622-7370 to discuss such buildings on a case-by-case basis.