Business Insurance & COVID-19


The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted businesses across Australia, and many will look to their insurance to mitigate loss.

Below we highlight some potential ramifications of the pandemic to note in relation to your Business insurance. Please note that this is a generic assessment of insurance policies but specific policies may vary from one to the other.

Business Interruption


Business Interruption cover is designed to respond to claims that result from material (i.e. physical) damage. Physical damage may include business closure or evacuation of a premise upon infectious or contagious disease manifested by any person whilst at the business premises. Where there is no material / physical damage and loss, a claim for business interruption is not applicable.

Unfortunately for insured businesses, it is usual for a policy to exclude claims which are caused by an event that the World Health Organisation has declared a pandemic, such as COVID-19. In certain circumstances there may be exceptions.

Actions you can take

Speak with your CBN authorised broker to determine what key coverage applies in relation to an infectious disease outbreak. If unsure, you can lodge a claim, and it will be reviewed by the insurer’s legal advisers to determine if coverage applies

Unoccupied Property Cover


With many businesses being forced to temporarily close, there are a rising number of unoccupied commercial premises. Insurers see unoccupied premises as posing a higher risk due to heighted exposure to break ins, fires, vandalism and water damage. If the insured does not advise the insurer of a change in the risk (i.e. vacancy) this can affect insurance coverage in a claim
Generally, insurers provide a full 30 days of continued unoccupancy cover before they require notification. At that point, they generally apply additional terms and conditions to manage the risk. Note: this can vary between insurers.

Actions you can take

Alert your CBN authorised broker, or insurer if your business or your tenant’s business occupancy circumstances change. Refer to your property insurance policy wording and / or check with your insurer(s) as to the terms and conditions, and when insurers must be notified of this change.

Cancellation Or Abandonment Of Events Insurance


This cover is designed to protect the insured for loss of expenditure or gross revenue (including profit) that results from the interruption, cancellation or abandonment of an event due to circumstance outside the organiser’s control e.g. COVID-19 pandemic.

Actions you can take

Check with your CBN authorised broker or the insurance provider regarding cover exclusions applicable for pandemics. While coverage would depend on the terms and conditions of the policy, unfortunately it is likely to be excluded.

Public Liability


Public Liability Insurance is designed to cover third party damage or loss as a result of your alleged negligence. Public Liability insurance would likely respond to applicable claims relating to COVID-19, as long as there is no cover exclusion stipulated in the terms and conditions of the specific insurance policy. However, if an event was held in defiance of a government order, there is likely to be no cover.

Actions you can take

Check with your CBN authorised broker or your insurance provider regarding the specific policy terms and conditions attaching to your insurance policy.
A change in business activities

A Change In Business Activities


In order to cope with the government ordered shut-down of specific businesses i.e. pubs, gyms and restaurants, many have sought to diversify their business activities to continue trading / turning a profit.
It is crucial to note that a change in your ‘normal’ business activities as defined in your schedule of insurance may mean you are without cover in a claim. We have addressed some examples of amended business activities below:

Pubs – cooking and selling takeaway food, and / or delivery.
Gyms – running outdoor classes to comply with social distancing guidelines.
Distilleries/wineries – producing hand sanitiser in addition to normal alcohol products.  

Actions you can take

Immediately check with your CBN authorised broker or insurance provider to ascertain whether your changed or extended business activities are still covered by your existing insurance policies. If not, it is essential to obtain cover as quickly as possible to ensure appropriate protection is in place.

Business Continuity Planning


All businesses, regardless of size, should prepare or review their Business Continuity Plan (BCP) during this time.

It is paramount to ensure your staff understand self-isolation processes, how to work from home and where to find company information. This information will help to keep your business running efficiently during this time.

Actions you can take

Speak to your CBN Authorised Broker who can guide you in the right direction, or consult a professional business advisory company who can provide you with the necessary advice.

Premium Funding


Premium funding enables businesses to pay insurance premiums in easy to manage monthly instalments, helping maintain cash flow in the business.

Actions you can take
Speak to your CBN authorised broker about arranging premium funding for your insurance program.

For professional insurance advice, connect with a CBN Authorised Broker.

Connect with a CBN Broker

This article provides information rather than financial product or other advice. The content of this article, including any information contained in it, has been prepared without taking into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider the appropriateness of the information, taking these matters into account, before you act on any information. In particular, you should review the product disclosure statement for any product that the information relates to it before acquiring the product.  The information provided in this article is not to be taken as legal advice. Information is current as at the date the article is written as specified within it but is subject to change. Community Broker Network Pty Ltd and Community Broker Network Authorised Brokers make no representation as to the accuracy or completeness of the information. Various third parties have contributed to the production of this content. All information is subject to copyright and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of Community Broker Network Pty Ltd.


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