During the spread of this pandemic, we sit in the midst of a moving landscape for employers affected by state and local stay-at-home orders, business closures, and business kept open for society’s “essential operations.” Across the United States and here in Colorado, many small and large businesses are fully closed to customers, only open for a few staffers to perform essential tasks (like checking mail, performing payroll procedures and similar crucial functions). An employer’s commercial liability insurance policy may cover physical and/or financial losses related to COVID-19 business closures.
It would be prudent to read through your company’s property insurance policy(ies) to familiarize yourself with coverages, risks, and potential liabilities that may relate either (1) to the closure of the business or (2), for those businesses still open to customers or to essential staff, to the spread of disease at your place of business or through employee work-related duties.
As you read through your policy(ies), look for language including the following terms and phrases:
- exclusions for viruses or other biological contaminants;
- “special risks”;
- business income coverage;
- business interruption or contingent business interruption coverage;
- civil authority coverage;
- employee work-related travel; and
- physical loss or damage requirements in order to file a claim under one of these covered conditions.
The attorneys at Sears & Associates, P.C. are available to review your business insurance policy(ies) with you. Our office is open, working remotely, and available to speak with you by telephone or video chat.
No one knows the full scope of what will occur in the coming days, weeks, and months, nor knows how the law will change to meet the rising workplace challenges presented by this novel coronavirus. As a result, the attorneys at Sears & Associates, P.C. encourage all business owners to stay informed, daily, about changes in Colorado and Federal laws that interpret workplace matters in the light of COVID-19, such as insurance exemptions, insurance coverages, and lawsuits or federal policies that may address business insurers and their coronavirus coverages (or lack thereof).