This update is intended to give our brokers and clients some piece of mind in these uncertain and unprecedented times caused by the outbreak of COVID-19.
As most employees are working from home, you may be concerned that our policies will regard insured business premises as unoccupied, untenanted, empty or disused resulting in the cover provided by our policies being restricted and/or subject to certain policy conditions.
We are pleased to advise that we have made the decision to extend the definition of “unoccupied” as shown in our policy wordings to 90 days effective immediately strictly for any risk that becomes unoccupied as a result of COVID-19 and the recent measures implemented by the government.
This coverage change applies to all commercial property business including landlords’ policies where unoccupancy occurs as a result of COVID-19.
As you will appreciate, when premises are no longer occupied this represents a greater risk of loss or damage occurring and it is important that our mutual clients continue to take measures to protect their property wherever possible.
Our decision to extend the definition of “unoccupied” is subject to all policyholders applying appropriate best endeavours to manage and protect their premises, including:
1) applying appropriate security measures including all available security devices being put into full and effective operation; and
2) inspection of the business/buildings internally and externally by an authorised person at least once per week to check the security and general condition of the premises in accordance with government advice and action.
We would advise customers to record any property inspections undertaken in writing and make such record available for our inspection should it be necessary in the event of a claim.
As matters develop, we will continue to monitor and review our unoccupancy terms along with all other relevant matters. It is important for you to note that this is not a permanent change.
All other policy terms, conditions and exclusions remain unchanged.
We hope this update will bring with it some relief to our customers and may we take this opportunity again to wish you and your families safety and good health during these difficult times.