We have received several questions from our clients regarding coverage for an individual on staff serving as in-house counsel. I have approached this question from two different angles:

  • Individual serving as an employee
  • Individual serving as an independent contractor

The first issue to resolve is whether either status of “individual” is covered by the insurance policy. To that end, the following statements describe how individuals are covered under the General Liability, Umbrella and Excess Umbrella policies:

  • Employees are covered, but only for acts within the scope of their employment by you or while performing duties related to the conduct of your business.
  • Volunteers are covered, but if they are compensated in some way they do not qualify as insureds.
  • Coverage applies to a “leased worker,” which is defined as a person leased to you by a labor leasing firm under an agreement.
  • Coverage does not apply to an independent contractor.

Secondly, there is no exclusion for professional services under the Bodily Injury, Property Damage and Personal Injury provisions of the policies. Thus, the current policies would provide coverage for liability allegations if the individual is an employee or leased worker of your organization.

We have to look separately at the Directors and Officers and Employment Practices Liability policies. These policies contain the following provisions:

  • Employees are defined as insureds under the policy.
  • There is no exclusion for professional services in the coverage language.

We are confident that any employee while acting within the scope of his/her duties would be covered under all of the insurance policies that are secured by the organization. Should the status of the individual be something other than an employee, that situation is less conclusive. Should you have further questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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Acting fast when you have a claim is always important, but especially so when an employee’s health is concerned. Use our First Report of Injury form to get started, and get in touch right away with Heather Cox if you have questions.

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A major retailer faces a lawsuit from a prison ministry organization and a job applicant who allege the employer’s application process discriminates against individuals with a criminal history.

According to the lawsuit, the retailer applies an overly-strict process of eliminating any individual with a criminal history, regardless of the nature of the crime or when it occurred. As a result, the screening policy “disproportionately disqualifies Black and Latinx applicants and employees from job opportunities.”

The case involves one qualified applicant who received a job offer, only to have the retailer rescind the offer when her criminal background check revealed a traffic-related misdemeanor conviction from 10 years prior. Brianna Smith “Macy’s Hit with Discrimination Lawsuit Over Criminal History Screening Policy” www.legalreader.com (Jun. 28, 2019).

Commentary and Checklist

A thorough screening process is a best practice for any employer hoping to hire a new employee. This can include credit checks (depending on the job position); interviews with personal references; interviews with professional references; skills testing; medical testing (post-offer); and a criminal history background check.

Criminal background reports will disclose both arrests and convictions of felonies and misdemeanors. They also reveal court records, warrants, sex offenses and incarceration records. However, employers need to tread carefully when using this information to make employment decisions.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) encourages employers to avoid blanket practices that exclude people from employment based on criminal record, and instead manage each applicant on a case-by-case basis. Employers should consider the nature and gravity of the crime, when it occurred and the nature of the job. Also, employer should give the applicant an opportunity to respond to the report and their past criminal offense.

Also, keep in mind that many states have passed “Ban the Box” laws that prohibit inquiring about criminal records on a job application form. This is to enable an applicant to make it through the interview process, perhaps as a finalist, and then to have their past offense evaluated for any relevancy to the job under consideration now.

Here are further considerations to help employers limit the discrimination risk associated with criminal background checks in the hiring process:

  • Train managers, hiring officials, and decision-makers about Title VII and its prohibition on employment discrimination.
  • Develop a narrowly tailored written policy and procedure for screening applicants and employees for criminal conduct using the EEOC’s Enforcement Guidance and individualized assessments. https://www.eeoc.gov/employers/smallbusiness/facts/tips_criminal_records.cfm; https://www.eeoc.gov/laws/guidance/arrest_conviction.cfm
  • Identify essential job requirements and the actual circumstances under which the jobs are performed and determine the specific criminal offenses that may demonstrate unfitness.
  • Determine the duration of exclusions for criminal conduct based on all available evidence.
  • Document any determinations made regarding an applicant’s criminal record, and the justification for your employment decisions.
  • When asking questions about criminal records, limit inquiries to records for which exclusion would be job-related and consistent with business necessity.
  • Keep information about applicants’ and employees’ criminal records confidential and only use the information for the purpose for which it was intended.

Written exclusively for ChubbWorks, the employment practices liability carrier for MJ Sorority, January 21, 2020.

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Whether or not to quarantine sick members or employees at the chapter house is up to each individual chapter and house corporation to decide based on their organization’s guidance, their campus and local health department guidance, and the structure and layout of their individual facilities.

Many of our clients are feverishly preparing for their members to return to campus, both resident and non-resident. We can only imagine the stress and anxiety that you are facing as you navigate the opening of your chapter house. We appreciate you and your leadership as you face this challenge, you need to be confident in knowing that your organization has secured a comprehensive insurance policy to cover the entities and your exposure to liability. 

As we have urged, we are confident that you will implement the COVID-19 CDC guidelines, you will have trained your staff on the procedures, and you will have educated all your collegiate members on the safety guidelines. Having done so and doing your best to get compliance, your liability will be significantly reduced. The standard is “what a prudent and reasonable person would do.”

During these chaotic times, the comprehensive insurance coverage that your organization has purchased hopefully gives you the freedom to make the best business decisions for your chapter or house corporation.

Safety measures are being implemented for not only your collegiate members, but just as importantly, for your employees. We recently had a question that we wanted to address for reference. The question was what should be done if the house director becomes ill with the COVID-19 virus. 

Below are some points to consider:

  • If the house director has a private entrance and bath, it can be much easier to quarantine an individual in this space. If the chapter house is her only home, you can have her stay at the house. Safety measures must be considered during her quarantine time (see our Things to Consider Before Reopening resource for further guidance).
  • If there is no private entrance and bath, your options become more limited and must be carefully considered.
  • In quarantine, she will not be able to perform her usual duties, so a temporary employee will need to be hired that would not necessarily need to live in the chapter house who could assume these duties.
  • Should you hire an additional employee, we would ask that you contact us to discuss any insurance implications which are doubtful. Workers’ compensation laws are very strict, and we don’t want you being at odds with these conditions.
  • The insurance company does not require that the person who is doing the traditional house director functions live in the chapter house, so this gives you more options to consider.
  • We would encourage you to look to your university as they may have graduate students or past RAs that could be used for this temporary period.

As always, please do not hesitate to contact your Client Executive should you have additional questions or need further guidance.

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Risk control doesn’t start when an employee begins work – it starts with the job itself. View Travelers’, the insurance company for MJ Sorority clients, collection of resources to help you attract and hire employees in your organization.

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We are seeing an increase in an exposure that is not as we had previously presented to the insurance company regarding the type of the individuals who are serving as House Directors. The conventional understanding has been that the individual is a single female performing this function of overseer of the property on behalf of the house corporation and the chapter.

We are now uncovering an environment which is quite contrary to this scenario. We have seen examples of the following:

  • Single Female with a child
  • Husband and Wife Couple
  • Single Male
  • Husband and Wife Couple, expecting a child

The role of the House Director is to be the one individual who can be responsible for the management of the chapter house which includes, but is not limited to, the safety and security of the members and the physical property. This is a 24-hour job and this individual plays a substantial role in minimizing the exposure in the liability and property risks. This is indeed a big job that needs the time and attention given to it that only a single person can do. Having a husband or worse yet, a child on the property is, in our opinion a huge distraction, just on the issue of work performance alone, let alone the increased liability exposure.

The liability exposure is severe for the following reasons based on the type of exposure:

Male:

  • Security issues with 18-21 year old women. A male house director, presumably, would have constrained use of the facility just as any other male.
  • Potential for this individual to be considered an “employee” of the chapter or house corporation, and be eligible for what is 24 hour Worker’s Compensation coverage.
  • Potential for the fraternity or sorority’s general liability policy to be responsible for any injury while on the premises. Unlike the volunteers and members of the fraternity/sorority, they can not recover both the medical payments and the bodily injury benefits. This becomes a huge issue for us because, in essence, we are taking a general liability policy which has been priced accordingly and turning it into a “health insurance” policy for the individual. The rate increases of health insurance coverage over the last five-six years could also become what we see in the General Liability area.
  • Potential exists that he could be construed as an “agent” (both as an employee and/or as a volunteer) of the fraternity/sorority and your policy would have to defend his actions.

Child:

  • Chapter property does not contemplate infants/children and all those associated concerns about safety of the child.
  • Potential for the fraternity/sorority policy to become a health insurance policy for the child should he/she be injured while on the property. We have had such a claim already from one of our clients who had a four-year-old in residence.
  • Injuries to children are especially detrimental to a client’s loss ratio because the insurance company keeps claims involving children under eighteen open until the child reaches the age of maturation (typically either 18 or 21) for the state in which the injury took place.

The insurance underwriters do not support the presence of single male House Directors. In the case of a married House Director whose husband wants to live in the chapter house, we ask that you use the sample employment contracts on our website. We have one in which the House Corporation/Chapter is hiring both the husband and wife, and one in which the House Corporation/Chapter is only hiring the woman. Employing a House Director’s husband has not only far-reaching liability ramifications and workers’ compensation concerns, but it is also a matter of tax implications.

In addition, we cannot allow any children of House Parents/House Directors to live in the facility. We ask that no exceptions be made for this exposure.

We welcome your comments and hope to continue to keep our policy “contemporary” to the collegiate landscape as it changes. The above guidelines will be further refined after we have had an opportunity to gain some additional insight from our clients on this important matter.

We understand that this is a difficult issue to tackle, and we want to help you determine how best to manage this risk. Should you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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Non-Owned Automobile Liability is the most commonly misunderstood coverage in the Sorority Book of Business. Non-Owned Automobile Liability is designed to protect the organization for the risk of being named in a lawsuit involving an automobile. It does not protect individuals who are driving on behalf of the Sorority/Fraternity.

Non-Owned and Hired automobiles are automatically covered under the organization’s Automobile Liability policy. 

Hired Autos:  Autos you lease, hire, rent or borrow; except autos from your employees and members (for example, vehicles you rent from Avis, Hertz, etc.).  When you are renting an automobile on behalf of the organization, there is no need for you to purchase the physical damage coverage for the automobile from the rental car company.  Hired Automobile Physical Damage coverage is provided subject to the policy deductibles.

Non-owned Autos:  Autos you do not own, lease, hire, rent or borrow that are used in connection with your organization.  This includes autos owned by your employees and members but only while used in your organization.

Provides coverage for sums you legally must pay as damages because of bodily injury or property damage caused by an accident and resulting from the use of a covered auto. 

It is important to note that the Hired Automobile Physical Damage coverage extends to direct damage or theft of a rented automobile and operates for the benefit of the insured, which is the fraternity/sorority.  Automobile rental agreements, therefore, should always be executed in the name of the fraternity/sorority, rather than an individual’s name.

Any Named Insured using a non-owned or hired auto is an insured, except:

  • The owner or anyone else from whom you hire or borrow a covered auto.
  • Your employee – if the covered auto is owned by that employee or a member of his/her household.

Non-Owned Automobile Liability coverage does not provide coverage for someone who is driving their personal automobile to or from Sorority/Fraternity events. This coverage is designed only to protect the organization, not the volunteer, member, officer, etc. who is driving their own vehicle on the organization’s behalf. Any volunteers, members, officers, etc. who choose to drive their personal automobiles on behalf of the organization need to rely on their own personal automobile coverage in case of an accident.

Individuals who use their own vehicles to drive to/from a sorority event must look to their own automobile insurance for protection should they be involved in an automobile accident.

The exposures associated with the Non-Owned Automobile Liability coverage are particularly concerning from a risk management perspective because of the vast number of personal automobiles that are driven to and from Sorority/Fraternity events at any given time that expose the organization to a Non-Owned Automobile Liability claim.

Further exacerbating the sheer exposure issue with non-owned autos is the number of members, volunteers and third-party individuals who only carry the state minimum automobile liability limits, which are woefully inadequate for accidents involving even minor injuries. For their own protection and fiduciary stability, we recommend that all volunteers and members of your organization carry at least a combined single limit of $300,000. Higher automobile liability limits are marginally more expensive than the state minimum limits, and the higher the limit, the less likely you are to suffer long-term financially consequences to an automobile accident.  

Even in situations in which the organization was not negligent in causing the accident, plaintiff attorney’s often use the “deep pocket” mentality when it comes to automobile accidents involving even minor injuries, meaning that the Sorority/Fraternity is seen as the “deep pocket” in the situation. Accordingly, in many of the examples listed below, the organization was brought into the lawsuit because they were seen as having more money and/or higher insurance limits to pay for the cost of lengthy litigation and judgment.

Over the last ten years, under the MJ Sorority Book of Business, the insurance company has paid out over $3.7M in automobile-related claims on behalf of our clients. With the potential for one accident (see examples below) to wipe out ten or more year’s worth of an organization’s Non-Owned Automobile Liability premium, the non-owned automobile exposure is quite disturbing.

Clearly the Non-Owned Automobile Liability exposure is an uncontrollable one, which is what makes it so concerning for our clients. The most important risk management tool in attempting to limit your Non-Owned Automobile Liability exposure is to encourage your members and volunteers to have a minimum combined single personal automobile liability limit of $300,000. In addition, we do not support designated driver programs that are not held in conjunction with an official sorority event (see this position paper on our website for more information). Finally, it is important that the chapter and sorority/fraternity leadership educate their members and volunteers as to how this coverage operates, so that they are aware of the exposure to their personal insurance coverage when they drive to/from any sorority/fraternity event or activity.

The following claim examples are real-life examples of how the Non-Owned/Hired Automobile Liability coverage responds when an incident occurs:

Example #1

Several chapter members were driving to a regional conference together in a member’s personal automobile. The vehicle swerved off the interstate in a single-vehicle accident, and one of the chapter member occupants was killed and another chapter member occupant was severely injured. The families of the killed and injured chapter members sued the driver and the Sorority for damages. The driver of the vehicle only carried the state minimum insurance limit of $25,000, which were quickly exhausted. The organization’s insurance policy settled with both families for a total of $740,000. The sorority was brought into this lawsuit because the driver’s limits were so low and the families of both women felt that someone (i.e. the Sorority) should pay for their loss. In addition, the Sorority’s policies stated that sisters driving vehicles in “official sorority capacity” were doing so as agents of the Sorority, which further hurt the Sorority’s defense.

Example #2

An officer was involved in an automobile accident in a rental car while attending a Leadership Conference. The officer failed to yield the right-of-way in traffic and struck another vehicle, injuring the two passengers in the other vehicle. The insurance company, on behalf of the organization, paid out $252,000 in settlement to the claimant and defense costs and $13,000 in property damages to the rental car company. The insurance company, on behalf of the organization, settled this claim because the officer was driving a rental car, and all cars rented for sorority purposes are covered under the insurance policy.

Example #3

A chapter advisor was driving a few members to the chapter house after a philanthropic event in her personal automobile. She ran a red light and severely injured two people riding on a motorcycle. The advisor’s personal automobile insurance limit was only $100,000, which was exhausted immediately. The total cost of the claim was $2,385,000. The insurance company settled this claim on behalf of the organization because of the deep pocket theory. In addition, the insurance company was unwilling to take the claim to court and risk the jury ruling in favor of two young people with severe injuries.

Example #4

A chapter member’s personal automobile was vandalized during the middle of the night in the chapter’s parking lot. The member’s personal automobile policy will need to pay for the repairs because the organization was not negligent in causing the damage, and the member had signed the housing agreement, which holds the organization harmless when personal property is damaged. The organization’s Non-Owned Automobile Liability does not cover property damage to individual’s personal automobiles.

Example #5

A “sober sis” program on a random Friday night led to a claim that cost the organization and the automobile driver’s family nearly $1M. For more information, check out our Position Paper on Sober Sis/Designated Driver programs. A chapter-sponsored “sober sis” program implies that the chapter will put in place proper safety guidelines and have some control over the transportation safety; however, the chapter has little control over an individual driving their personal vehicle and has even less control over the other drivers on the road.

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Check out the Insurance Summary for more detailed information about your organization’s automobile policy, but the below graphic has the top three things to remember:

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Person driving behind a car and sharing the road with another car

We have all encountered scenarios in which other drivers make us shake our heads. People often are quick to accuse other drivers of being reckless, but if pressed, they may admit to sometimes driving recklessly themselves. If unsafe driving is everyone’s problem, what is the solution?

Our safety professionals have put together three tips that can help make sharing the road safer while getting from point A to B.

Assume You are Invisible

It can be easy to assume everyone else on the road is paying attention, following traffic laws, and can see you clearly. However, that is not always the case. Next time you are expecting another driver to respect your right-of-way or let you merge into another lane, do not assume they are on the same page. 

Avoid Competitive Driving

Whenever you are on the road, resist the urge to drive competitively. Instead, go with the flow and drive defensively. See yourself as part of a community of drivers – all trying to get to your destinations safely. Your improved driving behavior may rub off on others and help create safer conditions for everyone on the road.

Control Your Emotions

It may be easy to react to aggressive driving by becoming aggressive yourself. But taking the high road is often the best route. Someone cuts you off? Take a deep breath and just let it roll off your back. 

Here are some ways to help prevent your emotions from getting the best of you on the roadway:

  • Be patient when traffic delays slow you down.
  • Keep a safe following distance behind other vehicles. You never know when someone may stop short.
  • Avoid confronting aggressive drivers—be polite and courteous, even if others are not.
  • Use your turn signals and leave plenty of room when turning or changing lanes.
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woman behind the wheel of her car putting her cell phone in the center console, 7 Common Car Accidents and How to Help Avoid Them

Let’s face it: accidents happen. And when they do, you might be looking at car repairs and injuries as well as possible increases to your insurance premium. Safe driving can go a long way in keeping you and your family safe and your premium in check. Here are seven common car accidents and tips on how to help avoid them:

1. Rear-end Collisions

Rear-end collisions are a common reason for auto insurance claims. Whether you are the driver who hits a vehicle in front of you, or the driver who gets hit by a vehicle behind you, these accidents can often be avoided. Consider these tips:

  • Keep your distance. Drive far enough behind the car in front of you so you can stop safely. This is especially true in inclement weather. Stay at least three seconds behind the vehicle ahead of you, and longer if you’re in a heavier vehicle. Extend the timing when weather conditions are bad.
  • Drive strategically. Avoid situations that could force you to suddenly use your brakes. If a driver is following you too closely or isn’t paying attention, you might be rear-ended.
  • Don’t get distracted. Never take your eyes off the road to eat, read a text message or find your phone. If the driver ahead of you stops suddenly, it only takes a second or less of not paying attention to rear-end their vehicle.
  • Don’t drive when drowsy or under the influence. You’re more likely to make driving errors when you’re sleepy or impaired by drugs or alcohol.

2. Parked Car Damage

Another common cause of auto damage: having a parked vehicle hit by another car. Whether you’re leaving your car in a parking lot or on the road, take steps to help avoid parked car collisions and claims. Here are some suggestions:

  • Go the distance. Don’t park in the busiest part of a parking lot. Instead, select a space away from heavy traffic. You’ll help reduce your chance of getting hit by another car.
  • Maximize the space. Always park in the center of a spot. Reposition your vehicle if it’s too close to a parking line. It will help keep your car from being hit by others pulling in to or out of adjacent spots. It can also help prevent dings from swinging doors.
  • Park in a garage, if you can. The idea is to put your car in a safe place when you’re not driving it.
  • Park street-smart. Try not to park near busy intersections, tight turns and driveways. Other drivers may not see your vehicle and could side-swipe it when passing by.

3. Single-vehicle Accidents

Single-vehicle losses include collisions with road barriers, debris or animals, in addition to rollovers and accidents when driving off-road. It’s not hard to help prevent them.

  • Drive right for the weather. Even if yours is the only vehicle on the road on a rainy, snowy or icy day, drive at speeds that allow you to maintain control. Learn how to avoid hydroplaning on flooded roads and refresh your winter driving skills before the season begins.
  • Always pay attention. Just because you’re the only person on the road doesn’t mean it’s okay to text, make hands-on phone calls or eat while driving. You never know when conditions might change.
  • Don’t drive too fast. Speeding has been involved in approximately one-third of all motor vehicle fatalities for more than two decades.1 Simply put, speeding is dangerous, even if there is no one else around you.

4. Windshield Damage

Chips and cracks to vehicle windshields are a common auto accident that many drivers don’t realize they can help prevent. Most windshield damage happens when rocks and stones are thrown up in the air by other vehicles. Help prevent this damage by keeping your distance from cars and trucks.

Also, don’t drive behind snow plows when they’re dropping salt or other granular substances. Some pieces are large enough to cause chips and cracks.

5. Crashes at Intersections

Intersections are another place where accidents frequently occur. Distracted drivers may miss traffic signals changing from green to yellow to red. Or they don’t notice vehicles pausing before making turns.

Practice defensive driving to help avoid accidents. Take a moment after the light turns green to make sure no one is coming through the intersection. Look out for drivers speeding to make it through a yellow light on a cross street. When you’re approaching a yellow light, be cautious rather than take chances.

6. Parked Vehicle Theft

No matter where you park your car, there’s always a chance of a break-in. Still, there are things you can do to help prevent potential unnecessary damage to your vehicle. Keep in mind that items stolen from your vehicle could be a loss that you file under your homeowners insurance coverage. Damage that occurs to your vehicle during a break-in would be filed under your auto insurance coverage.

  • Never leave valuables in a parked car. Having them in view is an invitation to thieves. Take expensive things with you, store them inside your glove compartment or lock them in the trunk.
  • Never park in dark locations. Instead, find spaces in well-lit areas. Plan ahead if you’re parking prior to sunset.

7. Backing Collisions

Whether you’re backing out of a parking spot or your driveway, accidents can happen.

The best thing you can do to avoid accidents when backing up is to avoid having to back up in the first place. When possible, park in a way where you won’t have to back up into traffic, such as pulling through or backing into a parking spot.

Another helpful tip: drive vehicles that have a backup camera. If your car doesn’t have one, you can have one installed.

If you drive a car that’s not equipped with a backup camera, here are some other suggestions of what you can do:

  • Before getting into your vehicle, look around to assess your surroundings and traffic patterns.
  • Back out using the shortest, most direct route possible.
  • Reverse in a straight line, turning only when clear of parked vehicles or any other obstructions.
  • Back out slowly while continuing to check traffic around you.
  • Use your mirrors and brakes until you’re completely out of the spot and integrated into traffic.
  • Never do anything distracting while backing out.

While there are many things you can do to help prevent collisions, theft, injuries or damage to your vehicle, it’s not always possible to avoid the unexpected. Contact your local independent agent or a Travelers representative to make sure you have appropriate coverage to meet your needs.

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Mother driving safely with daughter in backseat

More than 40,000 Americans died on the roads in 2016, the most significant increase in deaths over a two-year period in more than 50 years.1 Whether someone you love has been known to text and drive, or you have found yourself distracted behind the wheel, these tips can help avoid dangerous activity on the road.

  1. Stow your phone. Turning off the phone and putting it in “do not disturb” mode can help remove the temptation to browse online at a red light or respond right away to a text message.
  2. Vow not to multi-task. Anything that occupies your mind or vision can be a distraction behind the wheel. Make time at home to eat meals or put on makeup, so you can focus on the road.
  3. Don’t be a distraction. Avoid calling or texting family members and friends when you know they are driving to avoid distracting them.
  4. Talk to your employer. Responding to texts or taking calls for work while driving can be dangerous. Encourage your employer to have a distracted driving policy that includes waiting to talk with employees until they are safely parked.
  5. Keep kids and pets safe. Make sure kids are in proper car seats and that pets stay secured in their zone in the back of your vehicle. It can also help reduce distractions if pets are not roaming about the car.
  6. Set a good example. Parents can model good behavior for their children by demonstrating attentive driving. Avoid texting, eating, grooming or calling someone while behind the wheel.
  7. Plan your route before you go. Programming your navigation system while you drive can take your eyes off the road. It’s better to ask a passenger to do it or to enter your destination before you leave home.
  8. Speak up. If you see someone texting or otherwise driving while distracted, say something and let them know that you are not comfortable with that behavior. Encourage your children to do the same when they are passengers in a friend’s car. It could save a life.
  9. Set rules of the road. Consider restricting the number of passengers until your teen or new driver gains experience behind the wheel.
  10. Avoiding reaching. Resist the urge to reach for items if they fall while driving.

Taking your eyes off the road to search for an item can make you more likely to have an accident.

Share these tips to help keep others safe. For more on ways to reduce distracted driving, check out Every Second Matters, Travelers’ conversation starter on reducing distracted driving risk.

Source:
1 National Safety Council, NSC Motor Vehicle Fatality Estimates.
www.nsc.org/NewsDocuments/2017/12-month-estimates.pdf

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In the Event of a Claim

Take action quickly.

When the unexpected happens, report your claim right away to put yourself in the surest position—and best enable us to help. It’s not just smart practice; letting us know about a claim is your responsibility as an insured, so don’t get in the way of your recovery by skipping this important step.

Note: In most cases, Heather Cox is your first point of contact when you have a claim. But for an emergency, please call Cindy Stellhorn.

In the event of a claim:
Heather Cox

317-805-7598
heather.cox@mjsorority.com

Complete this form if you prefer to submit your claim online.

In an emergency:
Cindy Stellhorn

317-374-5039
cindy.stellhorn@mjsorority.com

Getting in touch with us won’t be the beginning and end of your response. Here’s a list of actions to take for various kinds of claims.

  • Property: First, do whatever is necessary to prevent further damage from occurring. Then call Heather with the date and description of your loss, and estimates for repair or replacement of your damaged items.
  • Injuries to Employees: Within five days of the injury, fill out an Employer’s First Report of Injury Form and e-mail it to Heather.
  • Injuries to Members or to the Public: Make no statements accepting blame, treat any potential or actual claim or lawsuit as a high priority item, and immediately notify your organization headquarters and MJ; contact Heather with names, date of loss, and details of incident.
  • Embezzlement or Forgery: When you have reason to suspect financial foul play, your first step is to remove all financial responsibilities from the person in question. After you’ve done that, give us a call to discuss moving forward with a claim.
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