COVID-19 – Can you Claim?
The COVID-19 spread has had a catastrophic impact on UK business. Since March 5th the Government made COVID-19 a notifiable disease and as of March 20th effectively shut all but essential businesses. Consequently many businesses have had to consider alternative methods to carrying on working but the hospitality industry has been decimated.
It is natural to consider to what extent existing insurance arrangements can respond to the near catastrophic losses that many UK businesses now face. It is not easy to find answers because there is considerable confusion with insurers and insurance brokers. If you want an independent opinion, please contact us now on 0161 872 9999.
The primary source of cover will be the Business Interruption (BI) which is usually provided as part and parcel of a comprehensive insurance package that also covers property and liabilities.
Most BI sections provide an extension to provide cover under the above. COVID-19 was notifiable on 5th March 2020 in the UK. Same should be enough to trigger cover under a Notifiable Disease clause. If the BI cover was written on the basis of ‘Specified Disease’ it is virtually certain to be the case that COVID-19 would not be so specified in order to trigger cover. However, it is as well for the wording to be examined.
Denial of Access/Loss of Attraction
BI policies usually have by way of extension cover for losses arising to the business as a result of wider area issues. In 2009 there was widespread flooding in Cockermouth, Cumbria so that businesses in that area whether they were directly affected or not could not trade because the town centre was effectively a building site for 6 months. There were legitimate claims for denial of access and/or loss of attraction. In a similar manner it can be argued that since the spread of COVID-19 there has been damage to the wider area preventing access to the respective business.
What we will need
Please forward your policy, policy schedule and any correspondence from your broker or insurance company. We can offer a fixed price appraisal of your claim and in appropriate cases we can act on a no win no fee basis.