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Insurance Firms Must Honour COVID-19 Claims

Insurance Firms Must Honour COVID-19 Claims

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This petition has been created by James O. and may not represent the views of the Avaaz community.
James O.
started this petition to
The Association of British Insurers and the UK Government
I am an owner of a small business, a hair salon, that is closed due to the COVID-19 lockdown. We support the lockdown, but our insurance company is refusing to honour claims for business interruption even though the policy includes compulsory closure of our premises due to infectious disease outbreaks.

Thousands of small retail and hospitality businesses are in the same position . Many have sensibly taken insurance to cover this rare eventuality, but the companies who sold it to us are trying to wriggle out of paying. This risks the survival of thousands of small businesses and the loss of the thousands more jobs they support.

I believe that insurance companies should honour the policies they have sold . If they did, it would help to protect small businesses, jobs, and reduce the costs of this pandemic to taxpayers.

I am starting a campaign to pressure insurance companies into playing their part as we all fight COVID-19. I will write an open letter to the insurance industry on behalf of the salon industry, and all small businesses, asking insurers to honour all claims for policies that include business interruption cover in the event of compulsory closure due to a notifiable disease. This petition will form part of this campaign, so your signature will help to right this wrong.

Thank you for your support.

See below for more details about the situation:
  • Thousands of firms have business interruption cover that applies when their premises have been compulsorily closed by a public body due to a notifiable disease.
  • When policies were purchased, COVID-19 did not exist. However, on 5 March 2020, the government added COVID-19 to its list of notifiable diseases.
  • On 17 March, the Chancellor of the Exchequer stated: “Let me confirm that, for those businesses which do have a policy that covers pandemics, the government’s action is sufficient and will allow businesses to make an insurance claim against their policy."
  • Most insurance companies have not added COVID-19 to their own list of notifiable diseases and will therefore not accept a claim. It is wrong that any insurer is able to choose which officially notifiable diseases it will recognise.

Posted (Updated )