Liability Coverage

I am a University health care provider (e.g. physician, registered nurse, physician assistant, etc.). Am I covered for medical malpractice claims?

The State Self-funded Liability Program provides funding for payment of liability claims brought against all University officers, employees and agents, whose negligent acts while acting within the scope of their employment result in bodily injury or property damage to a third party.

As a University of Wisconsin-Madison health care provider (e.g. within the School of Medicine and Public Health, School of Nursing, University Health Services, etc.) with a paid appointment, you are covered under the State of Wisconsin Self-Funded Liability Program for any lawsuit brought against you while you are acting within the scope of your employment. 

Are there coverage limits?

The amount of coverage provided is unlimited.  However, the amount that a claimant may recover in damages by a state employee may not exceed $250,000 per claimant, per defendant.The amount of coverage you have is unlimited.

How do I initiate the coverage?

You are covered by the State for liability purposes from the first day of your employment. No action needs be taken by you for the coverage to become effective.

Please note, faculty physicians should request confirmation of coverage for activities in another state or country (e.g. to participate in a “hands-on” training program), or to provide medical services outside the normal course of practice (e.g. volunteering at a sporting event or a summer camp); You will need approval from your department stating that the activity is within the scope of your UW employment in order for coverage to extend to this type of outside activity.

What type of coverage is available?

The liability coverage provided by the State is what is often referred to in the insurance industry as “occurrence based.” This means that you are covered by the State for any claims arising out of any acts or omissions during your employment, regardless of when a claim is made. This is true even if the claim is made after your employment with the University ends.

How do claims arise under the liability coverage?

Because you have liability coverage through the State of Wisconsin, any lawsuit filed against you is a suit against you as a State employee when it pertains to acts or omissions that are within the scope of your employment.  If you are served with a summons and complaint, or if you believe a process server is trying to serve you with a summons and complaint, contact the UW-Madison Office of Legal Affairs immediately at 608-263-7400.