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Liability Insurance vs Malpractice Insurance Explained

Table of Contents

woman showing clients professional liability documents

As a beauty and bodywork professional, you know all there is to know about caring for your clients. But when it comes to navigating confusing insurance terms? That’s where things can get tricky. In this blog, we’ll explain the differences between professional liability insurance and malpractice insurance to help you understand what you need to protect your business.

In your industry, these two types of insurance are often confused with each other. To put it simply, professional liability insurance protects professionals like you from claims alleging your services have failed or caused harm to another person. Malpractice insurance is a type of professional liability insurance that protects professionals in the medical field from claims of carelessness or improper conduct.

Is Professional Liability Insurance the Same as Malpractice Insurance?

No, professional liability insurance and malpractice insurance are not the same. When differentiating the two, it’s helpful to focus on the “who.” In the context of your industry, professional liability insurance covers massage therapists, cosmetologists, and other beautywork pros like you. In contrast, malpractice insurance covers medical professionals.

Professional liability insurance is also called errors and omissions insurance (E&O). It covers professionals from allegations of negligence, improper service, or failure to perform. It is needed by professionals who make decisions that are not based on the physical health of their clients.

Malpractice insurance is used in the medical field, not the professional beauty and bodywork industry. It is designed for higher claim costs arising from medical claims against doctors, nurses, dentists, and other medical professionals.

Female doctor with stethoscope

Examples of Malpractice Insurance vs Professional Liability Insurance

While both policies have similar names, they vary in scope and coverage options. Remember that malpractice insurance covers medical professionals against claims of improper or negligent treatment, while professional liability insurance covers beauty and bodywork professionals against claims of mistakes or failure to deliver.

Here are some examples of what these types of insurance cover.

Malpractice Insurance Claim Examples

  • A doctor misdiagnoses a patient, which causes delayed treatment.
  • A dentist installs an ill-fitting crown on a patient’s tooth, which causes an oral infection.
  • A nurse fails to verify a patient’s medication allergies, which causes an allergic reaction.

Professional Liability Insurance Claim Examples

  • A massage therapist applies lotion on a client’s back, which causes an allergic reaction.
  • A hair stylist installs hair extensions for a client, which later causes hair loss.
  • A lash technician applies a set of eyelash extensions to a client, but the client suffers a chemical burn from the adhesive.

Now that you understand the difference between malpractice insurance and professional liability insurance, you can see how important it is to have professional liability insurance when you work in the beauty and bodywork industry! Costly claims can arise at any time, but you’ll have peace of mind with the right coverage.

What does Professional Liability Insurance Cover?

BBI’s professional liability insurance covers claims from your clients when they are dissatisfied or harmed by your work. It can help pay for claims of:

  • Bodily injury
  • Property damage
  • Negligence
  • Libel or slander

If a client decides to sue for damages caused by your professional services, professional liability insurance is what stands between you and costly legal fees.

What Type of Liability Insurance Do Beauty and Bodywork Professionals Need?

As a beauty and bodywork professional, it’s a smart choice to protect the business you’ve built. Despite all the care and expertise you offer, things can sometimes go wrong. At Beauty and Bodywork Insurance (BBI), we make it easy to get the coverage you need.

Our beauty and bodywork base policy includes both general and professional liability insurance. This means that general liability insurance will take care of third-party bodily injury, property damage, or advertising injury claims that may arise. In addition, professional liability insurance has you covered for claims like negligence, misrepresentation, or inaccurate advice.

Unlike association-based insurance programs, BBI policyholders never pay membership fees and are never required to complete additional coursework to qualify for coverage.

What Types of Claims Does Professional Liability Insurance Cover?

Professional liability insurance is a safety net that protects you from claims alleging that you haven’t performed your services well. It may cover you making a mistake, giving the wrong advice, or not delivering what you promised. Even though you’re diligent and act with the best intentions, a client may end up unhappy with your services, so professional liability insurance is crucial to have.

Imagine this: A client wishes to lighten their hair color dramatically. To achieve their desired look, you recommend a bleaching solution first. Unfortunately, the client suffers a chemical burn on their neck due to the professional service you’ve provided. They require medical attention and decide to sue you. Professional liability insurance would cover a claim like this.

Other examples of claims that can be covered by professional liability insurance include:

  • Rashes after waxing
  • Burns from hot hair tools
  • Reactions or irritations from facials
  • Accidental burns from hot stones
  • Skin discoloration from bleaches or dyes

Protecting Your Bodywork Business

To receive the best coverage for the work you do, you’ll want to purchase general and professional liability insurance versus malpractice insurance, which is meant for healthcare professionals.

Professional liability insurance has the coverage you need for your industry, whether you’re a practicing massage therapist, acupuncturist, esthetician, cosmetologist, or another beauty & bodywork pro. It will give you the peace of mind that comes with knowing your services are insured for the unexpected.

Apply for a quote or buy a policy in 10 minutes or less with BBI. Our online application makes getting insurance a breeze so you can get back to focusing on what you do best!

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a Whole Lot Easier?

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Our Customers Love Us, By the Way!
“What an easy experience online to get all set up and feel secure with starting up my new business. Thank you, BBI, for making this LMT one happy customer.” – Tiare L., Massage Therapist

Want to Learn More?

If you want to learn more about insurance for the beauty and bodywork industry, check out some of these helpful links:

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