LONDON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--ACE Europe (ACE) (NYSE:ACE) has announced the launch of the Elite IV Entity Extension – an endorsement to its Elite IV Directors & Officers (D&O) cover, which provides increased protection to private companies facing heightened exposures as a result of the recently introduced Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007*.
The ACE Entity endorsement provides up to £1 million protection for the insured company, in addition to that provided to the directors and officers. For many small to medium sized companies this protection is vital in providing better security to the directors, officers and employees who are likely to have a substantial financial interest in the company.
The extended cover includes protection for claims of wrongful acts committed by the company. In addition, cover is also extended to include legal expenses in respect of corporate manslaughter, corporate homicide and health and safety investigations.
With the introduction of Publicity Orders, which require organisations to publish details of their convictions, ACE will also provide cover for public relations expenses that can be used to limit the damage of negative publicity on an organisation’s reputation, specifically as a result of prosecutions under the Act.
Commenting on the increased exposures, Dan Holloway, ACE’s UK D&O Product Manager said: “The Act makes it easier to bring lawsuits against organisations. As a leading D&O insurer, ACE believes it is time to respond to ensure that our insured’s are not left unnecessarily exposed. This extension has been developed to offer broad and effective protection for the insured entity in addition to the cover we provide to the directors and officers.”
Under The Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007, organisations whose gross negligence leads to the death of individuals face prosecution for manslaughter.
ACE’s Entity cover is part of their Elite IV portfolio, designed to provide more relevant and appropriate protection to individuals and their personal assets.
Notes to editors:
* The Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007
The Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007 creates a new offence of corporate manslaughter in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, and corporate homicide in Scotland. From 6th April 2008, companies whose gross negligence leads to the death of individuals will face prosecution for manslaughter.
Although individuals will be exempt from the corporate manslaughter charge, health and safety officials will still be able to draw on the existing health and safety at work regulations to prosecute executives and employees who are found to have contributed to a fatality. In addition, the court can make a remedial order and a publicity order.
The remedial order requires the company to take specified steps to remedy the breach or any perceived deficiency in policies, systems or practices.
Guilty firms will be unlikely to escape public scrutiny. The law can compel them to publish details of their convictions, and the amount they were fined, via a publicity order; a measure intended to stimulate tough scrutiny of health and safety procedures by shareholders. Annual reports could also be used to shame offenders. If the company ignores health and safety, or fails to manage the risks inherent in their business, and this gives rise to a fatality, the company can be prosecuted, leading to an unlimited fine with the potential for reputational damage from a publicity order.
ACE European Group has established branch offices in 19 countries across Europe, Freedom of Services permission to provide insurance services to clients in 30 European countries and affiliates in Egypt, Bahrain, Pakistan, Russia and South Africa.
Part of the ACE Group of Companies, ACE European Group comprises the operations of ACE Europe, ACE Global Markets and ACE Tempest Re Group. ACE Europe provides a range of tailored Property and Casualty, Accident and Health and Personal Lines solutions for a diverse range of clients. ACE Global Markets (AGM) is ACE’s specialty international business, underwriting through ACE’s Lloyd’s Syndicate 2488 and ACE European Group Limited. Specialty lines include excess and surplus lines business, Marine, Aviation, Energy and Political Risk as well as Property, Financial Lines and Accident and Health. Additional information on ACE European Group can be found at www.aceeuropeangroup.com.
The ACE Group of Companies is a global leader in insurance and reinsurance serving a diverse group of clients. Headed by ACE Limited (NYSE:ACE), a component of the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index, the ACE Group conducts its business on a worldwide basis with operating subsidiaries in more than 50 countries. Additional information can be found at: www.acelimited.com