Answers for policyholders and partners around coverage and other issues related to the COVID-19 Pandemic.
- PREMIUM PAYMENTS
Q: If I deferred a payment during NORCAL’s premium relief grace period, when is it due?
A: We have established a 12-month payment plan for premiums deferred due to the COVID-19 emergency. NORCAL policyholders who have outstanding premium with an original due date on or after March 13 through June 30 (or as otherwise required by state regulatory guidelines) can pay their balance in full or be automatically enrolled into the payment plan.
- If you’re enrolled in our annual or quarterly payment plans, your deferred premium will be automatically divided into equal quarterly payments.
- If you’re enrolled in AutoPay for monthly payments, your deferred premium will be automatically divided into equal monthly payments.
Please note that any regularly billed premium due on or after the end of the COVID-19 grace period must be remitted by the invoice due date to avoid an interruption in policy coverage.
Q: My practice has been temporarily closed due to the COVID-19 emergency. Can NORCAL adjust my premium as a result?
A: Yes. NORCAL can reduce the premium for eligible practices temporarily closed due to the COVID-19 emergency through a suspension of coverage. Your policy coverage would be suspended through the policy renewal date, unless you contacted us sooner to reinstate. There is no waiting period to initiate a coverage suspension—the suspension would start upon our notification. To discuss this or any other changes to your policy coverage, please call your agent or contact us at 844.4NORCAL (844.466.7225) or email@example.com.
Q: I have significantly reduced the hours that I practice due to the COVID-19 emergency. Can NORCAL adjust my premium as a result?
A: Yes. NORCAL can consider an immediate premium credit for eligible practices reduced to 20 hours or less due to the COVID-19 emergency. This credit would be in effect until your policy renewal date, unless you contacted us sooner regarding return to full-time practice. In order to initiate a practice reduction credit, we ask that you complete a Part-Time Practice Discount Questionnaire. Please call your agent or contact us at 844.4NORCAL (844.466.7225) or firstname.lastname@example.org to start this process or discuss any other changes to your policy coverage.
Q: I have changed my practice profile (e.g. in a surgical specialty but not currently providing surgical care) due to the COVID-19 emergency. Can NORCAL adjust my premium as a result?
A: Physicians who have changed or significantly reduced their practice profile due to the COVID-19 emergency should contact NORCAL or their agent immediately. We can discuss changes in your practice that may result in a premium reduction. Please call your agent or contact us at 844.4NORCAL (844.466.7225) or email@example.com.
Q: My state has a patient compensation fund (PCF). Do I need to pay this surcharge or assessment?
A: We are monitoring state regulatory changes and adjusting accordingly. States with PCFs may make changes to their surcharge, assessment, and coverage requirements; until that time, we’re required to collect these amounts so please continue to remit PCF surcharge and assessment payments.
Q: Is NORCAL offering premium relief due to the COVID-19 emergency?
A: In order to support our policyholders throughout the COVID-19 emergency, we will be suspending cancellations due to non-payment of premium until June 30, 2020 for active policies with invoices due on or after March 13, 2020. Any Notices of Cancellation issued on or after March 13 will be rescinded. Additionally, we will continue to align with Department of Insurance guidance in individual states that have premium relief beginning before or ending after our own grace period.
This grace period extension provides additional time for you to submit payment so you’re able to work through this emergency time without disruption of coverage. Please note that the due date on your invoice will not change, and any accounts enrolled in automatic payment withdrawals via ACH will have payments continue as scheduled unless you contact us.
We are unable to postpone due dates relating to premium finance contracts as they are not affiliated with NORCAL Group. Please contact your premium finance company directly to discuss your options.
Q: If I’m mailing a payment to NORCAL Group, where should I send it?
Please send payments to:
P. O. Box 398054
San Francisco, CA 94139-8054
Please send any other correspondence to:
P.O. Box 2080
Mechanicsburg, PA 17055
For overnight mail service:
1700 Bent Creek Blvd
Mechanicsburg, PA 17050
Q: I am going to administer COVID-19 immunizations. Am I covered for this exposure under my NORCAL policy?
A: Generally speaking, your policy provides coverage for professional health care services such as inoculations, including the COVID-19 vaccine. That said, whether you are covered for a specific claim is dependent upon the corresponding facts of the claim and upon the specific terms of your policy. For example, if you are insured under your medical group’s policy for services provided in the course and scope of your employment with the group, but you administer vaccines on behalf of a different entity, your administration of vaccines in that scenario would not be covered. If you have questions about the provisions of your policy, please call your agent or contact us at 844.4NORCAL (844.466.7225) or firstname.lastname@example.org.
As you continue to navigate these challenging times, rest assured that NORCAL is here to help you protect your patients and staff while mitigating liability risks. To learn more about COVID-19 vaccines and proactively prepare to implement a vaccine program, we encourage you to visit NORCAL’s online Risk Management vaccination guidance and resources.
Q: If I provide services in a state in which NORCAL is not licensed (such as New York), am I covered?
A: Yes, NORCAL policies cover professional services regardless of where they are performed as long as any resulting claim is brought in the U.S. and its territories. Please notify us about such temporary changes in writing as soon as practicable at email@example.com.
Q: If I am asked to provide services across state lines to treat patients affected by COVID-19, will NORCAL extend my coverage?
A: Yes, NORCAL’s policy will extend coverage to insureds who need to cross state borders to provide medical care for COVID-19 so long as the insureds confirm that they can cross state lines and provide care without violating any state-specific licensing requirements. You do not need to worry about your NORCAL coverage. We do ask that you notify us of any services provided across state lines in writing as soon as practicable at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: If I need to expand my scope of practice (outside of my specialty) to care for patients impacted by COVID-19, am I covered under my NORCAL policy?
A: Yes, practicing outside your specialty in response to the COVID-19 emergency does not impact coverage under your NORCAL policy. We ask that you notify us of the change in writing as soon as practicable at email@example.com.
Q: I am going to volunteer to treat patients affected by COVID-19. Am I covered for this exposure under my NORCAL policy?
A: Yes, your NORCAL policy will respond if you volunteer to deliver care in support of the COVID-19 emergency. We ask that you notify us of your volunteer work in writing as soon as practicable at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: If I conduct telehealth/virtual office visits in lieu of in-person care for my patient encounters, how is my NORCAL medical liability coverage affected and does this require a coverage change?
A: Yes, you can provide care via telehealth. This does not require a coverage change, and it will not impact your premium. NORCAL Risk Management resources and guidance on COVID-19 pandemic communications and telemedicine are available online.
Q: I am a former NORCAL member (retired) and am returning to practice to help in the emergency. Will this impact my tail coverage?
A: If you are returning to practice because of the COVID-19 emergency and are not getting compensation other than reimbursement of expenses incurred in rendering such services, this will have no impact on your extended reporting period, or tail, coverage or the premium waiver with NORCAL.
Q: What risk management resources and recommendations are available for healthcare providers to respond to COVID-19?
A: In order to help policyholders and the broader medical community prepare for and respond to the challenges associated with COVID-19, NORCAL Group has developed online resources to support preparation and response to the pandemic, and the protection of both patients and healthcare personnel. The NORCAL COVID-19 Exchange includes bundled and individual educational risk management resources, coverage of relevant and timely topics, company updates, and answers to your coverage questions—in a mobile-friendly format so you have easy access.