The Ontario Underwater Council dive club liability insurance program was replace for SOS by our own policy/program in 2015. The OUC still offers an insurance program for dive clubs and is ideal for small, local organizations / club.
Our corporate liability insurance protects the corporation, it's executive and the members from litigation resulting from a number of possible scenarios, including; accidents, board decisions, corporate assets, etc.
Our current policy is a 3 million dollar per occupancy policy.
The policy is comprehensive and covers the board of directors, chapter executives, employees, all members in good standing and volunteers.
The coverage started in early 2015 and is in force at all times for all sanctioned provincial as well as chapter events / activities.
Previously the insurance was an optional item provided through the OUC at an additional cost and significant administrative overhead for SOS organizers / volunteers. The insurance is now a corporate cost and is part of the operational budget for the corporation.
The SOS policy is underwritten by GameDay Insurance who provides many sports organizations with liability insurance, including historically the Ontario Underwater Council.
The OUC program is intended for individual/local clubs and works well for those, especially if made mandatory for all members. SOS is a provincial wide organization with many chapters as well as a board of directors overseeing the corporation and hundreds of members and as such is not the best fit for the program as outlined below.
As of January 2015, the only appreciable difference in coverage is that the OUC has increased their coverage to 5 million per occurrence. From an administrative perspective; previously insurance coverage was optional with low enrolment and so not all participants were covered. Now all members are covered (see above).
Previously, events/activities had to be registered with OUC or they were not covered. Due to the nature / size of our organization, on most occasions, events/activities were not registered and therefor not covered. Now, all corporate and chapter activities are covered at all times (see above).
Previously our web based membership system was extremely complicated and added many hours of work for the webmaster and membership coordinator. In addition, the cost of customizations for our website were significant and would continue to stay high as we upgrade / improve our website. Now, SOS members are automatically all covered and our volunteer staff do not have these complex programs to administer.
Previously the cost burden was passed on to the member, which added another $30 per year to an average SOS membership (would have increased to $40 per year in 2015). Now, liability insurance is part of the corporate budget and is automatic for all members.