Wyoming has fewer physicians and fewer medical malpractice claims compared to many states. This leads to lower medical malpractice rates in the state. Wyoming also has a physician-friendly climate. For example, the state patient compensation fund helps patients while limiting the liability of physicians, which further helps keep insurance rates low, even for higher-risk specialties.
When you are looking for medical malpractice insurance in Wyoming, you have many things to think about. There are different policies and terms to consider, as well as various types of companies offering coverage. In addition, there are different rates and policy components. Trying to determine your needs with claims-made or occurrence policies and trying to decide how much coverage you need can be a challenge. The wrong coverage could harm your career if a problem occurs.
That is why more than 60,000 physicians and surgeons across the country have turned to Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. to help them find the right medical malpractice insurance at the right price. Gallagher Healthcare considers your needs, finds discounts you may qualify for and explains all your options in a time-effective and clear manner. Why spend weeks looking for medical malpractice insurance on your own when Gallagher Healthcare can present you with more options than you would likely find on your own?
Wyoming Medical Malpractice Insurance Fast Facts
If you are a doctor who is new to the state, you likely have many questions about Wyoming's medical malpractice insurance requirements. Does state law require you to obtain malpractice insurance? If so, how much coverage do you need? How much is medical malpractice insurance in Wyoming? We have the answers to these questions below:
1. Are You Required to Carry Malpractice Insurance in Wyoming?
In Wyoming, there are requirements in place to be eligible for the state's liability reforms. If you are a physician in Wyoming, you will need to maintain a minimum amount of coverage to take part in the state's program that is designed to help you deal with malpractice claims.
In states with these programs, damages are either capped or a patient compensation fund is provided. Through a patient compensation fund, the state strives to provide doctors extra malpractice insurance or coverage for certain injuries. In states without malpractice insurance carrying requirements, hospitals and other health care facilities may require visiting providers to have coverage. Additionally, even with liability limits and tort reform, a malpractice lawsuit can be costly for physicians.
With this essential coverage, you can avoid losing a significant amount of your assets in a lawsuit and prevent a hit to your professional reputation.
2. How Much Malpractice Insurance Do I Need in Wyoming?
Physicians in Wyoming are required to carry a $50,000 minimum liability limit per claim as part of their professional liability policy. The patient compensation fund covers claims over $50,000, but not more than $1M. Doctors in the state also must pay a surcharge to the patient compensation fund.
Beyond the minimum level of coverage required by this patient compensation fund, you may want to consider how much coverage you may need based on your specialty and location. Medical professionals who practice higher-risk specialties like emergency room doctors and neurosurgeons often need more coverage than physicians with lower-risk specialties.
3. How Much Are Medical Malpractice Insurance Rates in Wyoming?
Wyoming malpractice insurance rates tend to vary based on your specialty, county and history of malpractice claims. Since physicians with higher-risk specialties tend to need more coverage, they may also have a higher cost for insurance.
The policy type you select can impact your rate. You can choose from claims-made policies and occurrence policies, and you may want to add on tail or nose coverage. A claims-made policy covers the claims made during your policy's active period, while occurrence policies cover incidents that happen while your insurance policy is active, no matter when the patient files their malpractice claim. Since an occurrence policy offers you more protection, you may also pay a higher rate than you would for a claims-made policy.
Tort Reform in Wyoming
Wyoming created a patient compensation fund to limit the liability of physicians. The state has also enacted attorney fee limits and has mandated that medical panels review malpractice claims before legal claims can be filed. Later, the state also had requisite arbitration on all such claims, but this rule was eventually deemed unconstitutional.
The presence of the patient compensation fund in Wyoming, as well as a smaller population of doctors, means the state sees few large medical malpractice awards, which in turn helps keep medical malpractice insurance rates low. Even with low insurance rates, however, physicians need to be careful to select the right policy for their practice, especially in higher-risk specialties where the risk of a larger award is possible.
Statute of Limitations
Many states place a statute of limitations on medical malpractice claims to restrict when patients can file a claim. Most medical malpractice claims in Wyoming are limited by a two-year statute of limitations. This limit is either two years after the discovery of the injury or two years after the claimant would have reasonably discovered the injury with due diligence.
The liability of physicians in the state is limited to the amount of insurance the physician carries, or $50,000, whichever is greater. Noneconomic damages are limited to $750,000 per claimant. If the negligence results in death, the noneconomic damages cannot exceed $1.5M.
Despite this, medical malpractice payouts tend not to be high. Since different policies can affect liability limits, it is important for physicians and surgeons to discuss their insurance needs with a professional to ensure the right fit.
Top Carriers in Wyoming
In many states, the top medical malpractice insurance carriers change frequently as companies merge or new insurers enter the market, and Wyoming is no exception. We have nationwide connections at Gallagher to top carriers, so we can help you find the best provider and policy for your situation.
Medical Malpractice Insurance Companies in Wyoming
Since there are many insurance companies that serve the state, you may experience some difficulty finding the right insurance provider on your own in Wyoming. Fortunately, with a trusted advisor on your side, you can more easily navigate the various companies and policies available to you. At Gallagher, we aim to be a partner you can depend on for expert assistance.
Wyoming Medical Malpractice Insurance Rates by Specialty
Your medical malpractice insurance rates in Wyoming are greatly influenced by your specialty. If you are a physician who provides high-risk care, you may pay a higher price for your insurance. Your location and claim history can also impact your rate, so if you want a quote that is more specific to your circumstances, speak with an insurance expert at Gallagher.
Why Partner With Gallagher in Wyoming
Gallagher Healthcare is here for Wyoming physicians. No matter your specialty, we can find cost-effective medical malpractice coverage designed to meet your needs. We offer more insurance carriers, policies and choices so you can choose what is best for you. Our large network means we have the negotiating power it takes to get you a better rate. We can have insurers competing for your practice, and our exceptional customer service means we are always only a phone call away when you have questions.
Gallagher Healthcare is your one-stop solution for medical malpractice insurance in Wyoming. Even if your renewal date is not near, we can look at your current insurance to determine whether you are getting the right coverage for your needs at the right price. We can start working to lower your costs and improve your coverage so you enjoy more protection and peace of mind.
Resource for Physicians in Wyoming
Though you are not required to purchase medical malpractice insurance in Wyoming, you may want to carry this essential coverage to participate in the state's patient compensation fund. Without coverage, you may not be able to work in your preferred health care facilities, and you may be putting your personal assets and professional reputation at risk.
At Gallagher, we can help you find the medical malpractice insurance policy that will protect your reputation and assets in the event of a malpractice claim. Our connections to major insurance companies across the country will allow us to find the best coverage terms and rates available to you.
Do you need medical malpractice insurance in Wyoming? Contact us at Gallagher Healthcare today with your medical malpractice questions or to start getting quotes on this essential insurance.
This chart compares the range of possible state filed medical malpractice premium rates by admitted markets and a few Gallagher Select markets broken out by the top 15 specialties in Wyoming.
The map below provides a visual display of the nation and compares what a typical primary care physician might pay compared to each individual state and county. This research is based on the average rate for a single specialty, the most common limits in that state, and the mature claims made premium. The darker the blue, the higher the average premium, see how Wyoming compares to other states.