March 23 2020 — Ohio Governor Mike DeWine ordered that all non-essential businesses will close tonight (Monday, March 23) at midnight until April 6th. Consistent with federal guidance, the property and casualty insurance industry is deemed essential. At zinc, all staff started working from home last week so we will remain open and ready to help you during our usual hours: 8:30a - 4:30p EST. We are happy to support you in any way we can during this confusing time. Please don't hesitate to reach out to us!
As always, feel free to send us a message at email@example.com.
March 17 2020 — When anything sudden or accidental occurs we’re trained to think about insurance as the solution. The recent public health crisis and the related consequences of governmental restrictions has done more than just inconvenience us all. For many business owners, it has had a serious impact on their ability to operate.
In an effort to provide thought leadership in a time of crisis, we wanted to provide you with some basic context that will allow you to think through your business’ situation, and whether or not insurance coverage might apply.
Given the name, many people draw the conclusion that “Business Interruption” coverage might be a solution in times of public health crisis. “Business Interruption” coverage was designed to help cover ongoing expenses that arise out of covered physical loss that negatively affects a business, until operations are restored and revenue has returned to normal.
Business slowing down or stopping all together as a result of the most recent outbreak would not on its own be covered. Why? For ”Business Interruption” coverage to apply, your business must be unable to operate due to a “covered physical loss” of the property—think fire, tornado, lightning strike, etc. A public health crisis does not constitute a “physical loss” to the business’ property, and therefore we can generally say, there would be no coverage that applies.
Every business is different though, and given the constantly changing situation and responses by governmental authorities each potential claim would have to be considered individually. Coverage is ultimately decided by policy language, the cause of loss, and the determination of the insurance carrier.
Workers Compensation is another possible area where claims could arise as a result of the recent public health crisis. Should an employee contract COVID-19 while in the course and scope of their employment, there may be coverage in place to help offset an employee's loss of wages. Careful documentation and proof would be required as part of qualifying coverage, so please be meticulous in the documentation surrounding employee health and interactions with the public on behalf of your business. Customers with employees located in the states of Ohio, Washington, North Dakota, or Wyoming should contact their Bureau of Workers’ Compensation for further detail.
If an employee were to allege their employer was at fault for exposing them to COVID-19, some states allow them to sue their employers over and above Workers Compensation coverage. In that case, “Stop Gap” coverage endorsed on a commercial insurance policy would cover the expense to your business related to the defense and settlement of the suit. Again, meticulous documentation surrounding employee health and interactions with the public on behalf of your business is critical to a good defense.
Just like you, we are focused on being here for our customers, and are prepared to maintain our high standards for customer care in a critical moment for all businesses. We are working from home Monday-Friday 8:30 to 4:30 EST. With crisis in mind, our systems are hosted in cloud based environments which allows us to operate remotely. We are happy to continue giving you the reliable service you're used to.
As a result of the most recent developments related to the COVID-19 outbreak, zinc is cancelling all face to face customer and insurance company meetings until further notice. We encourage all our clients to make payments online or by phone. And should you like to discuss your business insurance policy please contact:
And as always, feel free to send us a message at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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