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What type of insurance coverage is available for COVID19?

STAFF EMPLOYMENT SUPPORT – HR & OHS

What type of insurance coverage is available for COVID19?

The questions center around a possible shutdown of a business due to quarantine or Government actions to prevent spread of the virus and whether or not there may be coverage available for lost profits, employee wages etc.

The short answer is no. An insurance policy on property insures property and not the health and wellbeing of persons.  

What does business interruption insurance cover?

Business interruption loss, which insurers a business’s profits, is only triggered and can pay when a risk insured against (or peril) occurs and is covered under your policy of insurance.  Perils such as fire, water damage are typical losses which, if covered, trigger business interruption loss coverages.

Although unfortunate for most businesses should they have to shut down because of this current COVID 19 health situation, this is not insurable. However, recent announcements from our Canadian Federal  Government will provide some relief for employees and businesses with $1,000,000,000 being made available for this initiative. More details will unfold over the next days and weeks on this. 

Coverage under workers compensation or benefit insurance may apply and you may wish to assess your sickness/disability coverage.

Prevention

Prevention and mitigation are the best steps at this point.  Below is a white paper and checklist prepared by one of the insurers that might be helpful in your efforts of prevention and mitigation. 

Disease Prevention Checklist

COVID19: A guide for businesses and organizations

For more information, contact Mark Johnson, Commercial Risk Advisor of BCFB's Affinity Partner, Reliance Insurance, at mjohnson@reliance.ca or 1-877-354-2623