What is professional liability insurance, and why do I need it?
The Ontario College of Pharmacists (OCP) has mandated that everyone who is registered in Class A with the College must carry individual professional liability insurance (PLI). PLI provides financial reimbursement in situations where a law suit is brought against you (for example, if a mistake is made in dispensing medication), and it is required for pharmacists, pharmacy students, pharmacy interns, and pharmacy technicians.
Members of the Ontario Pharmacists Association who participate in this program are insured under a certificate that is drawn under a master policy that is issued to OPA on the behalf of members. The descriptions that are set out above are for purposes of summary description only. As with any insurance policy, the master policy wording must be considered paramount, since it alone contains all terms, definitions, exclusions, and conditions that govern the manner in which the coverage will be applied. A certified true copy of the master policy can be accessed under the Forms tab by OPA members.
Why should I choose the Ontario Pharmacists Association’s professional liability insurance?
There are many reasons to trust the Ontario Pharmacists Association as your professional liability insurance (PLI) provider.
Our program offers outstanding coverage by reputable insurers. It was developed by a leading Canadian insurance expert and is considered the gold standard. This means you can be confident that you have the most reliable and thorough program available.
Because our program is administered by the Ontario Pharmacists Association, you receive personalized service from us. If you have questions about your coverage or if you ever need to make a claim, we’ll be here to help.
When compared with PLI coverage sponsored by an employer or other purchasing group, or coverage that is purchased individually, OPA’s PLI leads the way in providing a unique and critical range of individual insurance benefits. Coverage limits are dedicated to your personal interests, and the agreement to defend you against civil suits is for your benefit alone — other programs may share limits among members of the group or co-workers, or may be more interested in the reputation of the group as a whole.
In addition to meeting the coverage requirements of the College, our broad coverage — developed by pharmacists, for pharmacists — includes enhancements that are structured to meet your unique professional needs. For example, our coverage:
- is fully portable and will follow you to each employer and location throughout the policy period, including to other provinces (other programs may not provide this portability). However, if you permanently moved to another province, before renewing your PLI please ensure the scope of practice is similar to Ontario’s as OPA professional liability insurance covers all professional activities that are within the scope of practice authorized by the Ontario College of Pharmacists (OCP).
- automatically covers any broadening or change in your scope of practice immediately when such changes are approved by the OCP
- covers personal corporations for pharmacists who incorporate themselves with the intent of providing for liability relief, freelancing flexibility, or for income tax advantage, when the corporation is named on the certificate
- covers you for suits alleging liability brought by U.S. residents, provided that the alleged “wrongful act” that gives rise to the claim took place in Canada and is extended to include suits brought against you that result in a judgement by a U.S. court that awards damages, when such a judgement is enforceable in Canada (dispensing operations in the U.S. and mail orders to the U.S. are excluded from coverage)
- Preferred Lawyers Program (PLP)- panel of legal firms experience in dealing with College complaints on behalf of many professions, including pharmacy (legal fees paid to lawyers directly by PLI program no need for OPA members to finance the interim expenses). Note that members will also continue to have the option of choosing their own legal representative with conditions applied.
- provides an option of increased limits for professional liability coverage — up to $5 million available
- provides an option of increased limits for Tribunal Legal Expenses and Criminal Action Extension coverage, which covers you with legal defence expenses at OCP disciplinary hearings or complaints to OCP, as well as expenses if you are charged with criminal offences and the trial fails to result in a conviction
- includes full prior acts coverage that will respond to any claim of which you have not yet been made aware, arising out of your practice as a pharmacist since the beginning of your professional career
- Extended Reporting Period (ERP) coverage is available for claims that are first discovered and filed after you have retired and no longer practice (this is a non-cancellable extension that also protects your estate).
- As at June 30, 2019, includes a 3-year extended reporting period available to OPA members retiring or moving to Part B of the register.
How much coverage will I have with OPA’s professional liability insurance program, and are there any limits?
Compare OPA PLI program with other policies
Download the PLI checklist.
Who manages the professional liability insurance program?
The Ontario Pharmacists Association’s professional liability insurance program is managed by HUB International Limited.
Who underwrites the PLI program?
The Ontario Pharmacists Association’s professional liability insurance program is underwritten by Northbridge General Insurance.
Who do I contact for more information or forms?
For more information or forms, contact:Ontario Pharmacists Association
Phone: 416-441-0788, 1-877-341-0788 option 2
How can I obtain a quote?
Please refer to the following forms:Intern Form (PDF)
Pharmacy Technician Form (PDF)
If you are not a current member and require additional information, please contact:
Ontario Pharmacists Association
Phone: 416-441-0788 ext. option 2
Toll free: 877-341-0788
How do I apply online?
Simply visit our Membership Types page to apply for or renew your OPA membership and insurance. Online professional liability insurance applications and renewals are not yet available.
Can I fill out an application and mail it in?
Simply go to the Forms tab, download the professional liability insurance application, print it out, and complete the form.
Mail the completed form, along with a premium payment by Visa or Mastercard, cheque, or money order, payable to the Ontario Pharmacists' Association to:
Ontario Pharmacists Association
155 University Avenue, Suite 600
Toronto, ON M5H 3B7
If paying by Visa or Mastercard, you may fax the completed application to our confidential fax line at 416-441-0474.
What forms of payment do you accept?
You may pay premiums by Visa, Mastercard, cheque, or money order, payable to the Ontario Pharmacists' Association.