Law firms more likely to protect their printers than their people

Law firms are more like to insure easily replaceable assets such as printers and mobile phones than they are their people, according to new research

The research, commissioned by Income Protection specialist Unum, reveals that almost a third (30%) of companies in the law sector have insurance for easily replaceable assets, such as printers. This is despite less than a quarter (23%) admitting they would be extremely concerned if these were to break.

Conversely, despite 98% of legal firms recognising that employees are one of their company’s most important assets, over a third (36%) believe that they only offer adequate employee benefits packages or that they could do more to protect their staff. A further 12% – more than one in ten – admit to not offering any form of benefits package to their staff, highlighting a mismatch in what companies value versus what they protect.

Sickness absence costs around £620,000 each year for a typical business with over 500 employees[1], and 92% of law businesses admit that long term sickness absence is a concern for them. However, only 13% of companies in the law sector protect against long-term sickness by offering Income Protection as part of their employee benefits package.

The research, which polled 102 senior business people in the law sector, found that:
·         More than one in three (34%) have buildings insurance
·         Just under one in three (30%) have contents insurance
·         More than one in five (21%) have comprehensive insurance for their company cars
·         Only 13% provide Income Protection for their staff
·         More than  one in ten (12%) of law companies don’t offer any form of employee benefits to their staff

Linda Smith, HR Director at Unum, said: “Whilst law companies do understand the importance of employees to their business, there is clearly a mismatch between what they value and what they spend their money on protecting.

“Around one in ten employees will go on long-term sick leave during their working lives, so it is concerning to see so many employers without a plan in place to protect against this eventuality. Employee benefits are an important differentiator when it comes to recruiting and retaining staff, so we are calling on companies to do more to protect their most important asset.”

About Unum
Unum is one of the UK’s leading providers of financial protection, with more than 40 years’ experience in the industry. We specialise in forward-thinking, innovative benefits, and work with advisers and their clients to protect staff members from the consequences of serious illness, injury or death.
As a market leader in Income Protection, we aim to provide a back-up plan to all UK employees, offering a wide range of cover plans to suit every business and budget.
Income Protection offers extra business benefits, including a built-in Employer and Employee Assistance Programme at no extra cost, plus expert Vocational Rehabilitation Consultants to help people rejoin the workplace.
Our US parent company, Unum Group, traces its history back to 1848 and is one of the leading providers of employee benefits products and services, and the largest provider of group and individual disability insurance in the United States.
For more information, visit www.unum.co.uk