Educators Employment Liability Program
Legal Actions Against Education Support Professionals (ESP)–Who Pays?
The National Education Association (NEA) believes it is the responsibility of your employer to provide you with insurance to protect you from personal financial liability stemming from employment-related lawsuits.
NEA supports state "hold harmless" legislation which requires that the employer pay for your defense or related damages in case you are sued. However, since this not always available -- and because the liability potential can be so serious for individuals employed by schools and other educational units -- NEA provides all eligible association members with professional liability insurance through the NEA Educators Employment Liability (EEL) Program.
Eligible association members include the following membership categories: Active, Life Active, Substitute, Student, and Retired.
What is the Educators Employment Liability (EEL) Program?
The EEL program is a professional liability insurance program which NEA provides as a benefit of membership. The program is totally dues-funded; members pay no separate fee. It is designed to protect association members -- whether classroom teachers or support professionals -- from personal financial liability for most incidents arising out of their educational employment activities or duties.
The EEL Program provides insurance coverage for a variety of situations which result in injury to someone other than members. For example:
- student injuries
- charges of educational malpractice
- corporal punishment
The EEL Program is administered through your NEA state affiliate association. Liability and insurance laws vary in each state. If you want more information on the specific provisions of EEL coverage in your state, contact your local UniServ representative or state affiliate association.
Additional Advantages of the EEL Program
Your coverage is worldwide, includes coverage on and off school grounds, and is in force 24 hours a day, as long as you are performing your educational employment activities.
Also, you should know that NEA's policy is an "occurrence policy." This means that your coverage is linked to when the "occurrence" took place. For example, if you are sued for a 2001 incident, coverage would be available to you if you were a member at the time of the "occurrence," even if such claim or proceeding arises against you in the current year or in the future.