Journalist Insurance

Journalist Liability Insurance

Professional journalists face numerous liability risks. A comprehensive journalist insurance policy is essential for protecting your career and finances.

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Insurance for journalists

Journalists gather, investigate, analyze, and report topical news and events to the public through newspapers, magazines, television, radio, websites and social media. They strive to provide unbiased and accurate information to keep the public informed and hold those in power accountable.

Journalists need liability insurance to protect themselves from potential legal and financial risks arising from their work. It helps safeguard them if they face lawsuits or legal claims related to their professional activities. Furthermore, the advent of artificial intelligence (AI) has brought significant changes to journalism, impacting the nature of their work and the liability risks they may face.

Journalists often report on sensitive and controversial topics, which can sometimes result in accusations of defamation, claims of privacy invasion, negligence, copyright infringement, or professional misconduct. 

A comprehensive journalist insurance policy can financially support journalists under such circumstances. Wherever you and your story go, your tailored journalist insurance policy goes with you.

Insurance for journalists covers a broad range of liability risks they face. It is a customized policy containing different coverages designed to support reporters, broadcasters, contributing freelance writers, columnists, correspondents, and copy editors with financial assistance if facing allegations of wrongdoing or lawsuits.

This type of insurance includes coverage for legal fees to defend claims of negligence, breach of confidentiality, copyright infringement, third-party bodily injury or property damage, and accusations of libel, slander, or defamation of character.

A journalist insurance policy typically includes the following coverages:

  • Errors and Omissions (E&O) Insurance: Also called professional liability insurance, E&O insurance protects journalists from allegations or claims of professional misconduct, negligence, mistakes, copyright infringement, and defamation. It offers financial support for your legal defence and any judgments or settlements against you.
  • Commercial General Liability (CGL) Insurance: CGL, or general liability insurance, covers reporters on the beat by safeguarding them from costs associated with third-party bodily injury or property damage claims or lawsuits. For instance, if, while visiting someone to interview for a story, you accidentally spill hot coffee on them, they could sue you. CGL provides coverage for an injured person’s medical expenses and legal fees.
  • Cyber Liability Insurance: Almost all news reporting is digital nowadays. Cyber liability insurance is vital to protect your finances if you experience a cyber-attack or data breach that exposes or compromises your sources’ confidential information or if a hacker takes over your blog, website, or email account. It provides funds for legal advice, crisis management, credit monitoring, and restoring or repairing your affected software systems.
  • Legal Expense Insurance: With legal expense insurance, your costs consulting an experienced lawyer for a range of issues from tax protection, employment disputes, and debt recovery to pursuing legal action against a third party for bodily injury or property damage may be covered. Legal expense insurance is significantly cheaper than hiring a lawyer without coverage.

Insurance providers determine the cost of an insurance policy by considering several factors unique to you, including:

  • Your office location
  • Where you work (journalists frequently travel outside their home provinces)
  • Your years of experience as a journalist
  • The equipment you use and their value
  • Annual and gross projected revenue
  • Your insurance claim history

Getting insured is quick and easy!

Complete our 5-minute online application for a free journalist liability insurance quote.

Common claims scenarios

Journalist writing error

Problem: A story you wrote and published about a public figure allegedly contains incorrect facts and omits crucial information. You are accused of professional negligence.

Outcome: Your E&O insurance may cover costs associated with defending yourself against the accusation and your legal fees if sued.

Writer making an error

Problem: A digital article you wrote for a blog includes a photo that does not provide attribution to the photographer who took the image. They sue you for copyright infringement.

Outcome: Your professional liability insurance may cover your legal expenses and any judgment or settlement against you.


Problem: Your email account is hacked, and all your contacts are sent a phishing email with a malicious link that compromises the security of the people who click on the link.

Outcome: Your cyber liability insurance may cover restoring your email account, notification fees, and credit monitoring services for those affected.

Frequently asked questions

Does journalist insurance cover me for content published on social media?

A journalist insurance policy can generally cover content published on social media platforms, provided it falls within the scope of your professional activities. However, reviewing your policy details and discussing any specific concerns with a Zensurance broker is essential.

Can journalist insurance help with legal costs if a reporter receives a cease and desist letter or lawsuit threat?

Yes. Journalist insurance can cover your legal costs if you receive a cease and desist letter or face a lawsuit threat related to your work. It can assist in covering expenses associated with responding to legal correspondence and seeking legal advice.

Can insurance for journalists protect against claims of biased reporting or unfair treatment?

Journalist insurance typically does not cover claims related to biased reporting or subjective opinions. However, it can cover a claim alleging defamation, invasion of privacy, copyright infringement, emotional distress, or negligence resulting from your reporting, regardless of whether it was biased.

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Ready to start? Let’s get a quote!

Before you tackle your next front-page story or publish your next opinion column, get the customized journalist insurance policy you need to protect your career and assets.

Fill out our online application for a free insurance quote. Our knowledgeable brokers can quickly find and tailor the low-cost coverage you need to safeguard your reputation and finances.