Legal benefits overview

The ATPE Protection Program consists of the Educators Professional Liability Insurance Policy and ATPE Member Legal Services.

Highlights of the insurance policy include:

  • Professional liability coverage*, which protects your personal assets in the event of a lawsuit. View more details.
  • Employment rights defense coverage*, which can pay the costs of defending yourself against specific claims—including dismissal and certification claims. View more details.

Note: Insurance coverage only applies to an insured’s activities that begin during the policy period. View more details.

The ATPE Member Legal Services Department boasts more staff attorneys than any other Texas educators’ association. Our legal team may provide eligible members with quick, confidential assistance with employment-related legal concerns**—in English or Spanish—at no additional cost. You can arrange an after-hours call if it’s inconvenient to speak during regular business hours.

Coverage you can understand and count on

Because a detailed summary of ATPE’s liability insurance policy is published on atpe.org, you know exactly the level of coverage provided—it’s spelled out in the policy summary. ATPE’s underlying employment rights defense insurance is guaranteed to cover eligible costs, whether you win or lose.

In contrast, many other organizations offer defense funds or insurance policies that provide inferior coverage. If a member requires legal assistance, he or she must apply for it and wait for the organization to decide how much assistance, if any, will be granted—based on criteria the member might not know ahead of time. Access to those funds might not be guaranteed, win or lose. Defense funds might also run out, leaving applicants stranded.

Support that’s secure and confidential

Attorneys are bound by attorney-client confidentiality. They represent the client’s best interest, even if your conflict involves another ATPE member.

If you have a legal problem involving another ATPE member (such as another teacher or supervisor), you can rest assured. If attorneys are needed, each eligible member may retain a separate attorney from a panel approved by the insurance company. Each attorney is ethically bound to provide counsel in the best interest of his or her client. Legal costs for covered claims are simply paid through the insurance policy.

  • Covers damages assessed by a court of law against an eligible member for covered claims arising out of his or her activities in a professional capacity. (In other words, for claims specified in the policy and arising out of the member’s duties of employment in Texas public education.)
  • The coverage consists of a maximum of $8 million in professional liability coverage per insured member, per occurrence, per year. This is subject to a $2 million limit per insured member per occurrence for violations of students’ civil rights.
  • Defense costs are covered in addition to the policy limits.
  • This insured benefit pays up to $10,000 per claim in legal costs, win or lose, subject to $20,000 aggregate per insured. Examples of covered claims include dismissal and certification.
  • Members must contact ATPE for assistance at (800) 777-2873.
  • If criminal actions are brought against you that arise out of your professional activities, your ATPE insured benefit may pay up to $15,000 per covered claim and aggregate in attorney fees for your defense. In certain circumstances, this is subject to $10,000 win or lose. Up to $5,000 per bail bond is also available. You must be an eligible member at the time of the activity that led to the action against you.
Our Educators Professional Liability Insurance Policy applies to occurrences during the policy period and activities of an insured that begin during the coverage period.
  • The effective date of insurance begins EITHER:
    • On the member’s date of membership OR
    • After a 30-day waiting period for those members who join after Sept. 30 and were eligible to join from August through September.
  • In no event is coverage provided for acts prior to membership.
 



*THE EDUCATORS PROFESSIONAL LIABILITY INSURANCE POLICY IS UNDERWRITTEN BY NATIONAL UNION FIRE INSURANCE CO. OF PITTSBURGH, PA. ALL COVERAGE IS SUBJECT TO THE EXPRESS TERMS OF THE MASTER INSURANCE POLICY ISSUED TO ATPE AND KEPT ON FILE AT THE ATPE STATE OFFICE. Coverage applies to an insured’s activities within his/her professional capacity and does not apply to activities that predate the coverage period. View a detailed summary. Eligibility for ATPE membership benefits is contingent upon ATPE’s receipt of the entire annual membership dues amount for your appropriate membership category. A disruption in payments to an authorized payment plan may result in discontinuation of such benefits, including cancellation of insurance coverage for the entire membership year retroactive to Aug. 1 or your membership date. ATPE reserves the right to determine the appropriate membership category. The ATPE membership year runs from Aug. 1 to July 31.

**The insured member services and staff attorneys’ assistance are offered through separate programs.