Gobble Up These Risk Management Resources

Do you want to start managing your organization’s risk, but you’re not sure where to turn? You have many free resources available!

On the Learning Center:

The Nonprofit Risk Management Center:

  • Log on as an affiliate using these instructions for free and discounted risk and insurance resources.

Reminder: You still need resources to hire experts (see reserve calculator) and it is smart to get a preapproval from your board to spend up to the $5000 deductible on disputed violations and trespass and challenges.

We’re here to help! If you have any questions about risk management resources or anything else, please let us know. You can email us directly or call 202-800-2219 for Lorri, 202-800-2248 for Hannah, or 802-262-6051 for Leslie.

Thanks,
Hannah

 

P.S. The Terrafirma enrollment and update period begins December 1st. The 2016 Risk Management discount can be attained via webinar attendance or our online course

 

Keep Your Cool in a Hot Headed Encounter

Working with a land trust, you will encounter all sorts of landowners and neighbors and others. Some will be more engaging than others. How can you be most effective with someone who isn’t as skillful or poised as you?

  • Stay calm. If you feel yourself getting angry or upset, step back mentally from the situation, take a breath and remember what you want to accomplish. Your kindness and calmness can refocus the tone of the situation.
  • Be clear. Subtleties of words can lead to confusion. Emotional finesse however is essential.
  • Stay aware of consequences. If done calmly and clearly and without rancor, stating the direct consequences of the individual’s actions may be enough to lead to collaboration.
  • Give it a rest. Diplomacy is critical. Come back another day to revisit the conversation.
 

Remember you are the pro! Demonstrate your compassion, confidence and determination in all you do.

 

Back to School Savings for Land Trusts

School supplies can be expensive — but the Legal Defense Reserves Calculator is free! Get a better forecast of the adequate legal defense reserve you need with the Land Trust Alliance’s new calculator. The calculator enables you to calculate reserves tailored to your specific situation. The Alliance worked with independent actuaries to develop the calculator using actuarial analysis and data collected from hundreds of land trusts across the nation, building upon previous studies of basic thresholds for defense funding. The tailored results can help you survive significant legal challenges or a series of challenges.

Access the calculator in The Learning Center or contact us by email to receive the calculator as an Excel file.

 

Whose Bill Is It Anyway?

It is a common misconception that the losing side of a lawsuit pays the legal costs for both sides. In fact, the general rule in the U.S. is that each party pays its own fees. But carefully worded conservation easements can prevent land trusts from incurring excessive legal costs when defending lasting conservation.

When drafting an easement, one can include a clause saying that in case of a lawsuit, the landowner pays for all legal fees, including all experts, attorneys and costs. Since the land trust is responsible forever for upholding the public interest in the land and is a charity, this is an equitable arrangement. Be sure to talk to your attorney and read this practical pointer for more details.

 

So Much to Discover: Keep in Line When You're Online

Social media posts, texting and online chats are part of everyday life for many - but did you know that lawyers can use that information against you in court? If opposing counsel files a written demand (called a discovery request), you must give them everything you have ever posted or written about that dispute.

Check out this horror story about a father-daughter Facebook post and settlement. Lawyers can request copies of text messages from your phone company - and you can be sanctioned for thousands of dollars for erasing texts and video posts before a lawsuit.

Our advice: Pick up the phone. Be careful who you share your thoughts with and how. Even if you aren’t posting online, information may be demanded and obtained from your private email.

We’re here to help! If you have any questions about social media or anything else, please let us know. You can email us directly or call 202-800-2219 for Lorri, 202-800-2248 for Hannah or 802-262-6051 for Leslie.

 

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

Last month we wrote about Lyme Land Conservation Trust and their major victory for land trusts everywhere. What turned the tide in their favor? Persuasive Baseline Documentation Reports, which can include maps, descriptions, and photographs. President John Pritchard said these photographs were "critical to their case"--the judge was visibly moved by the before and after pictures that clearly displayed extensive damage. As you make your own plans for managing the property that your land trust holds, don't forget this crucial component.

We’re here to help! If you have any questions about Baseline Documentation Reports or anything else, please let us know. You can email us directly or call 202-800-2219 for Lorri, 202-800-2248 for Hannah, or 802-262-6051 for Leslie.

Thanks,
Hannah

 

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A duty and a plan


“We have a duty and we couldn’t shirk it.”

Executive Director George Moore spoke the truth when a reporter asked about Lyme Land Conservation Trust’s decision to go to court to uphold lasting conservation. For conservation organizations, upholding the spirit of conservation easements and protecting land that they own isn’t optional. It is a duty owed to neighbors, members, funders, the public, regulators, and the land itself. This is why Terrafirma insures land trusts when they need to sue as well when someone sues a land trust. Read the full story on this heroic defense of a rural community’s land ethic.

We’re here to help! If you have any questions about filing claims or anything else, please let us know. You can email us directly or call 202-800-2219 for Lorri, 202-800-2248 for Hannah, or 802-262-6051 for Leslie.

Thanks,
Lorri

P.S. You can now visit the Terrafirma website to download your policy, view the 2014 financial documents and Annual Report to Members, or *NEW* add newly acquired parcels to your policy any time during the year.

 
May 05, 2015 | Tags:

A rose by any other name

The Terrafirma policy states that one deductible and one limit of liability applies to each claim or set of interrelated claims - but what does it mean for claims to be interrelated? Interrelated claims are based on the same facts or circumstances. Let’s say your land trust files a claim in 2014 for a landowner in violation of its easement, incurs $300,000 in legal costs, and then incurs an additional $250,000 in costs for the same issue in 2015. Unfortunately, you could not file an additional, separate claim for $250,000 - you would be limited to the $500,000 cap for all interrelated claims stemming from the violation. But there is a bright side!  So long as these thorny issues stem from the same branch, you only have to pay one deductible for all interrelated claims.  And that rose smells quite sweet.

We’re here to help! If you have any questions about premium calculations, filing a claim, or anything else, please let us know. You can reply to this email, email us directly or call 202-800-2248 for me, 202-800-2219 for Lorri, or 802-262-6051 for Leslie.


Thank you,
Hannah

 

The early bird never misses a claim

Under some insurance policies, merely filing a claim can drive up your premium rate. Terrafirma is different—it never penalizes land trusts for doing their jobs of conservation defense! While your Terrafirma policy requires immediate filing of a claim, it does not increase your premium. Most importantly, failure to file immediately might result in the claim being denied. Timing counts, so if you have something now, please file a claim by March 1, 2015. We will help you sort out the details and are always available to assist you. It's easy: go to the Terrafirma website, login and click on “Submit a Claim.”

 We’re here to help! If you have any questions about premium calculations, filing a claim, or anything else, please let us know. You can reply to this email, email us directly or call:

202-800-2219 for Lorri

202-800-2248 for Hannah

802-262-6051 for Leslie

 

Free webinars for Affiliates

Every January, millions of people across America make a New Year’s resolution to volunteer more and give back to the community.  To truly benefit from these good intentions, your organization should have a plan for how to support volunteers and handle the risks that come with them.  From preventing injuries to preventing lawsuits, there are a lot of pitfalls that you can avoid with careful planning.   To help you with this planning, the Nonprofit Risk Management Center is offering a FREE webinar for “Affiliates Only” on Myths of Volunteer Management.  The webinar is on Wednesday, January 28 at 2pm ET.  If you miss it, you can view the recording on the Nonprofit Risk Management Center.  Registration is simple.  Just email Kay Nakamura and ask for instructions.  Be sure to mention that you are a member of the Land Trust Alliance and therefore a Nonprofit Risk Management Center Affiliate.

We’re here to help! If you have any questions about Nonprofit Risk Management Center Affiliate benefits or anything else, please let us know. You can email us directly or call 202-800-2219 for Lorri or 802-262-6051 for Leslie.

 
January 27, 2015 | Tags:

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