Is it Possible to File a Business Interruption Claim Due to COVID-19?
COVID-19 presents an uncertain situation for large and small businesses alike. With government orders and a smaller customer base during the pandemic, many businesses have seen a decline in sales. Businesses nationwide have filed disputes against their insurance companies for COVID-19 compensation. Given the differences in state law, these cases offer no guarantee of similar results for businesses in North Carolina. Regardless of your situation, it is important to know there are other business owners and lawmakers alike fighting for increased Coronavirus business protection. Since each business has a different insurance plan, you should reach out to experienced business insurance attorneys for help.
What Types of Insurance May Cover COVID-19?
Some companies may have business interruption insurance. This type of insurance typically covers issues preventing normal operating procedures. Instances like loss of income caused by natural disasters typically fall under this criteria. In North Carolina, this coverage usually pertains to a business disruption caused by physical damage. Since business interruption claims may require physical damage, this insurance may not necessarily cover voluntary or government-ordered closure due to COVID-19.
Additionally, insurance companies may have strict guidelines for filing Coronavirus physical damage claims. Although business closure may not be covered under an insurance plan, physical damage or essential Coronavirus renovation efforts may be eligible for compensation. Possible claims could cover costs associated with removing equipment contaminated by COVID-19 or sanitization-required closure costs. In these instances, claims would be made for a direct loss of business by Coronavirus.
Some insurance companies may also have specific clauses preventing viral-related business interruption claims. Since each insurance plan is different, there are no guaranteed criteria for compensation.
What is Being Done
Even if an insurance clause does not include viral protection, there is still hope. In the past month, members of the U.S. House of Representatives have discussed the issue with major insurance companies. These talks focus on extending insurance coverage and providing aid for America’s businesses. While such changes may or may not happen, there are federal lawmakers fighting for expanded Coronavirus insurance coverage.
Like everything else during the Coronavirus outbreak, business interruption and insurance claims may be difficult to decipher. Your business needs help during this difficult time but you may learn your insurance cannot meet your current needs.
For more insight regarding your existing insurance coverage and any potential claims, contact our experienced attorneys at Whitley Law Firm. Each insurance policy is different, so make sure you talk with a committed professional to help outline your COVID-19 insurance options. We want to help NC businesses get through this difficult time and gain the compensation they need from their insurance policies.