Granting additional insured status is different from granting additional named insured status. A named insured receives the full policy coverages and limits. An additional insured receives policy coverages and limits restricted to their vicarious liability. One small word means a big difference in coverage.
There are hundreds of additional insured endorsements in circulation so determining the right fit can be difficult. And in some situations, more than one endorsement may be needed. Additional insured status for ongoing operations is often accompanied by additional insured status for completed operations. Additional insured status for vendors is a different endorsement than additional insured status for managers or lessors of premises which is different from additional insured status for engineers, architects, or surveyors. When requesting or providing additional insured status, make sure to double check which kind is needed.
A scheduled additional insured endorsement will specifically state to what entity(ies) the additional insured status applies. While a blanket additional insured endorsement doesn't lay out specifics, it doesn't necessarily apply to anyone. Often, blanket additional insured endorsements will include clauses requiring there to be a written contract or agreement between the parties requiring the additional insured status prior to the loss occurring. If additional insured status is required, make sure there is a contract in place stating this requirement to avoid unpleasant surprises if there's ever a claim.
As we've seen, not all additional insured endorsements are created equal. Even the endorsements with the same form numbers aren't the same. A CG 2010 (additional insured for ongoing operations) provides different coverage depending on its edition date. A CG 2010 10-01 does not provide the same coverage as a CG 2010 04-13. Again, when certifying additional insured status, make sure you know exactly what is being required.
Primary and noncontributory status is an additional requirement to insured status. Many third parties who request additional insured status will also want this coverage grant to be primary to and not contribute together with any other insurance available to them. This coverage grant makes it clearer which insurer is responsible if a claim materializes. Otherwise, if a claim comes in, the insurers could have a prolonged battle over who is responsible for defending and/or paying while the claim itself sits unpaid.
Additional insured status is complicated enough when it applies to one policy, but sometimes it can apply to more than one. If an umbrella or excess policy is needed to fulfill the limits required by the underlying policy (Automobile Liability, Commercial General Liability, etc.), it's important to make sure the additional insured status also applies to the umbrella or excess policy. Whether the umbrella/excess policy is a true follow form or has a specific endorsement for additional insured status, make sure the coverage is in place or else a claim may not be covered.