The COVID-19 outbreak was unexpected. BC business owners are left scrambling for a way forward despite making dramatic operational changes and shutdowns.
Businesses protect themselves from unexpected events by purchasing Business Interruption Insurance. If a business has insured itself against a particular risk, it could be compensated for any disruption. The most typical are fire, flood and earthquake insurance.
We all can picture a fire shutting down a business; but what about a pandemic? Does a commercial insurance policy cover for risks associated with COVID-19? Does a policy cover an owner if the local, provincial or federal government forces the business to temporarily shut down?
There are insurance policies that offer such coverage. These policies may cover business interruption from “virus” or “disease,” or where a government order has forced a business to close because of safety concerns. They are typically add-ons to a standard commercial insurance policy.
If you have purchased this coverage, we recommend that you first check your insurance policy. Keep in mind that each insurance contract and each term is different. Words within your policy such as: pandemic, epidemic, virus, disease, advisory warnings and lockdowns will be carefully interpreted and scrutinized to determine whether your losses will be covered. These terms are all viewed differently, and it is all about the finer details.
If you are unsure about your policy or you have been denied coverage from your insurer, contact us for a complimentary consultation. We can review your policy and make sure your insurance company provides you with the coverage that you paid for.
Written by: Douglas Chiu