2020 – A boom in business interruption claims?

The-Oath-March-2021-Accuracy-Insurance

COVID-19 is having a devastating impact on the financial position of countless businesses worldwide. Can insurance provide relief under a claim for business interruption?

As the novel coronavirus pandemic develops, the financial impact on business remains uncer­tain. Indeed, whilst some sectors of the econ­omy – for example, technology and pharma­ceuticals appear to be thriving, others such as hospitality, retail are suffering greatly. Despite the vast stimulus packages offered by govern­ments across the world to support businesses through this difficult time, many continue to fall through the net, succumbing to an environment of uncertainty that currently pervades the glob­al economy. But are these businesses using all the tools at their disposal to survive this crisis? One potential solution that may have been over­looked is insurance.

Making the most of insurance

The purpose of insurance is to reduce a busi­ness’s exposure to the effects of particular risks. Policyholders may be unaware however, that such risks may well include a pandemic that has brought global economies to a halt. Whilst a pan­demic may not fulfil the property damage provi­sion of a standard business interruption policy, which would typically cover perils such as fires and floods, it may fulfil provisions within the cov­er for non-damage extensions. Assuming that the non-damage extensions are not otherwise excluded from the insurance programme, claims could be pursued under the following clauses: notifiable/ contagious disease, contamination, loss of attraction, cancellation of events, public authorities and more. Of course, since no one business interruption policy is the same, each claim must be assessed on its own merits. It is essential for policyholders to review their policies in detail to determine the indemnity to which they may be entitled.

Using experts to bolster claims

When it comes to preparing business insurance claims, third-party experts can provide critical support. This can range from legal advisers ad­vising on policy coverage and determining the most relevant and most promising course of ac­tion, to financial advisers assisting in the quanti­fication of financial damages.

Looking at the case of financial advisers more closely, specialist forensic accounting and in­surance expertise can enhance the quantifica­tion of financial losses sustained. Over the past twelve months, we have been supporting pol­icyholders with quantifying the financial losses resulting from business interruptions due to the pandemic. Appointing independent expertise in assessing the claim provides a level of comfort that ensures economic losses are fully substan­tiated which will help to satisfy insurers of the ve­racity of the claim. Indeed, the very independent nature of these experts testifies to the objectivity of the claim.

Conclusion

As the financial impact of the coronavirus pan­demic continues to be felt by many businesses across the world, it is essential that they avail the tools at their disposal to sustain their businesses. One such instrument of importance is insurance, which can throw a lifeline to those businesses that continue to struggle. Independent claims preparation experts can prove indispensable in the interactions between insurance provider and policyholder, facilitating the claims process and even going so far as to increase the chances of success.

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The-Oath-March-2021-Accuracy-Insurance-Sareena-Bamrah

 

 

 

 

 

Sareena Bamrah, director, Accuracy

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