6 Types of Liability Insurance for Nonprofit Board Members: Navigating Claims and Costs

6 Types of Liability Insurance for Nonprofit Board Members

In the intricate tapestry of nonprofit governance, board members play a pivotal role in steering the organization toward its mission-driven objectives. However, the noble pursuit of altruism doesn’t render them impervious to legal challenges.

This article delves into the realm of liability insurance for nonprofit board members, shedding light on the risks they face and the diverse types of coverage available to shield them from potential lawsuits.

6 Types of Liability Insurance for Nonprofit Board Members

  1. Directors & Officers (D&O) Liability Insurance

    Description: Directors and officers (D&O) Liability Insurance is a safeguard against the storm of lawsuits and allegations that may target nonprofit organizations and their board members. It offers coverage for defense expenses, settlements, and judgments arising from wrongful act claims.

    Claims: The tempest of lawsuits can originate from various fronts—vendors alleging contract breaches, donors pointing fingers at mismanagement, competitors raising antitrust concerns, employees filing wrongful termination claims, and governmental regulators challenging decisions.

    Cost: The financial climate of D&O insurance varies greatly. Nonprofits traverse this landscape with median monthly premiums of approximately $70, although this figure can fluctuate based on the nonprofit’s scope and sector.

  2. General Liability Insurance

    Description: Much like a sentinel guarding a fortress, General Liability Insurance stands as a shield against bodily injuries and property damage resulting from the nonprofit’s operations.

    Claims: This vigilant guardian confronts claims arising from accidents on the nonprofit’s premises, the aftermath of activities or events organized by the nonprofit, and other unanticipated skirmishes.

    Cost: The treasure required to secure this sentinel’s watchful eye varies with the nonprofit’s stature and endeavors, a reflection of its size and the nature of its activities.

  3. Professional Liability Insurance

    Description: The armor of Professional Liability Insurance offers protection against the arrows of claims originating from professional services provided by the nonprofit or its members.

    Claims: This armor repels claims brought by those who allege mistakes, negligence, or misrepresentation in the services rendered by the nonprofit. It safeguards the reputation and integrity of the services provided.

    Cost: The financial weight of this armor shifts according to the services extended by the nonprofit, with the premium reflective of the uniqueness of its offerings.

  4. Employment Practices Liability Insurance

    Description: Employment Practices Liability Insurance acts as a fortress against claims arising from the intricate terrain of employment practices, including accusations of wrongful termination, discrimination, and harassment.

    Claims: This fortress stands resilient in the face of lawsuits brought forth by present or former employees, insulating the organization against the tremors of employment-related legal battles.

    Cost: The price of this fortress varies, contingent on the workforce size and the historical landscape of employment-related claims.

  5. Cyber Liability Insurance

    Description: In the realm of evolving threats, Cyber Liability Insurance emerges as a shield against the digital onslaught of data breaches and cyberattacks.

    Claims: This shield intercepts claims emanating from the loss of critical donor or member data, the siege of ransomware attacks, and the perils of digital vulnerabilities.

    Cost: The investment required for this shield fluctuates in accordance with the nonprofit’s digital footprint and the strength of its cybersecurity fortifications.

  6. Special Events Liability Insurance

    Description: Special Events Liability Insurance unfurls its protective cloak over the tumultuous terrain of events hosted by nonprofits.

    Claims: This cloak shields the nonprofit from claims arising from accidents during fundraisers, galas, and other special events, securing the organization against unexpected missteps.

    Cost: The financial outlay for this cloak wavers is based on the size, significance, and intricacies of the event it envelops.


As the sun sets on this exploration of liability insurance for nonprofit board members, a clear panorama emerges. The trail toward organizational resilience and the protection of board members’ personal assets is illuminated by the array of coverage options.

By investing in the right shields to counter potential lawsuits, nonprofits ensure not only the preservation of their mission but also the security of their guardians—the dedicated board members.

The counsel of insurance professionals is a compass guiding them on this journey, ensuring that each step taken is one of prudence and preparedness.


Q1: Are nonprofit board members personally liable for the organization’s actions?

While nonprofit board members generally enjoy limited liability, they can still be held accountable for certain actions or decisions. Liability insurance provides an added layer of protection for their personal assets in case of lawsuits or claims against them.

Q2: Can nonprofit board members be sued individually?

Yes, nonprofit board members can be sued individually if their actions or decisions are deemed negligent or harmful. Directors & Officers (D&O) Liability Insurance is designed to cover such scenarios and provide financial protection.

Q3: Is Professional Liability Insurance necessary for nonprofits that don’t provide traditional professional services?

Even if a nonprofit doesn’t offer traditional professional services, it may still benefit from Professional Liability Insurance. This coverage can extend to claims arising from advice, recommendations, or actions taken by the nonprofit or its members in the course of their activities.

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