What Risk Managers Should Know About Avoiding Costly Jail Claims

A Trident Public Risk Solutions study found that hundreds of claims made against jails resulted in millions of dollars in losses.

Although you may never spend a day in jail, the consequences of a county or town operating a poorly run facility can be far-reaching, especially for taxpayers. The amount of tax dollars a local government spends defending itself in a lawsuit, for example, could more than offset the amount of money saved by cutting corners on jail design or maintenance.

Poor jail conditions are a big risk factor

At Trident Public Risk Solutions, which insures local governments, we conducted a study over a 7-year period that showed hundreds of claims made against jails resulting in millions of dollars in losses. Poor jail conditions, negligence and a lack of proper medical care gave rise to most of those claims.

Jails pose a huge financial risk for governments

Jails pose one of the greatest financial risks facing public entities large and small. Not doing everything you can reasonably do can prove to be extremely costly for local governments.

What you should do now to reduce risks

With the right policies, training, procedures and other best practices in place, government officials can better avoid incidents, claims and being named as defendants in lawsuits.

Read my team’s jail claims study, which includes the most common losses in jails, the largest monetary losses and ways you can reduce risks.

About the author

Ashley Bonner is a senior risk control consultant for Trident Public Risk Solutions, a member of Argo Group. She has over 30 years of safety and risk management experience with 23 years devoted to working exclusively with governmental operations. 

About Trident

Learn how Trident Public Risk Solutions has public entities covered when it comes to risk management at www.argolimited.com/trident.

For more timely articles and insights into public entity risk, follow us on LinkedIn.

The insurance policies, not this descriptive article, form the contract between the insured and the insurance company. The policies contain limits, exclusions and conditions that are not listed in this article. All coverages are subject to individual underwriting judgments and to state legal and regulatory requirements. This article is provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Policies for this program are issued by one or more insurance companies of Argo Group International Holdings, Ltd. Trident is a registered service mark of Argo Group International Holdings, Ltd.

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