First, I can’t thank you enough for taking the safety and health concerns so seriously to protect our communities. The recent events and actions surrounding the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) are evolving by the hour. My Team and I have witnessed the measures you have taken over the course of the last couple weeks. I know most are very anxious about being able to provide the necessities for themselves and their families, and your teams have not missed a beat and have been on point to safely feed many patrons under these difficult conditions.
I wanted to take a moment to address the insurance-related questions that we are fielding from many of our clients.
Business Interruption Coverage
There is no business interruption coverage for pandemics, even with a mandated government shut down. The insurance carriers have a disease and virus exclusion which is common for specific exposures that can’t be accurately underwritten. When a situation like this occurs, there is usually government assistance, and eventually a government insurance program is set up similar to how terrorism insurance and flood insurance have been addressed to protect individuals and businesses from a large adverse financial event.
We will continue to do everything we can on our end and talk with carriers about how we can think outside of the box to trigger coverage. We have discussed every angle we can think of to date with our insurance carriers. If there is any financial help to come, it will most likely be direct funds distributed by the government or the government could roll out funding to the insurance carriers to cover the business interruption losses to businesses. If this happens, it will unfortunately be down the road before any relief is received.
At POWERS, we have been busy coordinating with our insurance carriers to help provide billing relief for businesses most impacted by COVID-19. I’m happy to say that the majority of our partners are suspending payments for at least 30 days, and we have asked them for a longer suspension if the panic and quarantine protocol continues. Illinois Casualty Company is one of our top partners for the hospitality industry and they have willingly and promptly stepped up to help our clients. We will do our best to keep you updated and most carriers will email or mail notices directly to you as well. Please let us know if you have any questions about your insurance program or suspending payments.
We know this is a very challenging time for all individuals and businesses especially in the retail and hospitality industries. The POWERS staff of 35 will continue to serve you as needed with many of us working remotely from home. We still need to eat and will continue to patron your establishments for curbside and delivery … and we can’t wait to walk through those doors again and break bread together! Many thanks again to you and your teams for working hard to feed our communities.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out. Wishing your team, you, your family and friends good health!