Executive Summary

Does your company have a media insurance policy? Companies who create, publish or distribute media as part of their business should confirm that they have the necessary "media insurance" coverage in place before they find themselves needing it. Below are the key points to consider with regard to media insurance.

Background

Typically, general commercial liability insurance policies do not cover certain claims that are commonly asserted against companies who create, publish or distribute media as part of their business. Some of these claims can include IP claims (i.e. copyright or trademark claims), defamation related claims, invasion of privacy type claims, newsgathering torts or errors and omissions as to content. In our experience, many companies believe that their general liability or Director's and Officer's (D&O) policies cover all issues, and are very surprised to learn that these above types of claims are not covered by their existing policies. Conversely, we are relieved when we learn that the client does have the requisite coverage in place when they receive a claim. Some examples of companies that likely should have media liability insurance include publishers; broadcasters; film producers and distributors; record labels, publishers, artists and songwriters; media conglomerates; advertising agencies; and public relations (PR) firms. It is of course possible that one of your company's existing policies does cover these types of claims, but we recommend that you check to confirm.

What Action Should You Take?

Check with your insurance broker or agent, and/or your legal counsel, to determine whether and the extent to which your policies cover the likely types of media claims that could be asserted against your company. We recommend that you make this a priority before you are sued or receive any type of claim.