Does your insurance policy provide loss of business income due to the coronavirus?
At this time you can not buy insurance protection for the threat of a virus but does your current policy give you coverage?
I had a recent call from a restaurant owner asking if customers no longer go out to dinner due to the spread of the coronavirus would he have any loss of business income to help sustain his business
The business owners policy (BOP) like any insurance policy has policy exclusions
The one event that triggers loss of business income is the property must sustain property damage
A virus does not cause property damage
The first exclusion is the CP 01 40 07 06 Exclusion of loss due to virus or bacteria
What about civil authority prohibited access to your business?
Once again this coverage was intended to give you coverage if you could no longer gain access to your property due to damage to another property sustaining damage
an example is a building fire up the street and the entire block is closed for days
What can you do now?
If the virus affects your community and people are advised to stay inside you can make a claim under your business owners policy to let the insurance company investigate the claim and more than likely issue a denial letter
Keep your denial letter on file in case the government provides small business assistance as a result of the virus
They will probably require a denial letter from your insurance company to release funds
Hopefully it will not come to this but small business owners are going to be affected and at this time your insurance policy more than likely is not going to provide loss of business income due to this virus outbreak