The severity of the COVID-19 crisis cannot be overstated, and it will have an impact that will undoubtedly be felt for generations.
In times like these, where hundreds of thousands of people are falling ill and businesses are shuttering around the world, many are reconsidering their futures and how they can prepare for potential upcoming crises. Conway is proud to be assisting in this process, doing everything we can to ensure businesses can continue to be covered during these uncertain times while making sure coverage is able to adapt as a business adapts.
At Conway, we know that difficulty can both present new opportunities and reveal previously unaccounted for risks. As both of these elements come to the fore, it is advisable to follow up on businesses to ensure that they have appropriate coverage as the crisis continues.
For example, the news has been flooded with stories about manufacturers repurposing their facilities to manufacture goods to assist in the fight against coronavirus, such as protective gear or medical machinery. While this is without question a positive thing, it means that manufacturers are now creating something they were not previously designed to create, leaving considerable gaps in their current coverage. It is important to be communicating with your manufacturing insureds and checking their current production to make sure it is still compliant with their present plans; for example, some policies exclude medical products or have specific product endorsements.
As more people are now either working from home or forced to remain inside to contain the spread of the virus, companies offering delivery services are seeing a rise in usage, with other companies beginning to deliver or increasing their delivery capabilities to get in on the action. This means that Hired/Non-Owned Auto exposure may increase as more employees use company vehicles to deliver or make deliveries using their own vehicles. Check with your insureds to see how their vehicle usage has changed or how it may change if this crisis continues for longer than currently anticipated.
Increase in Cyber Risk
While we’re discussing remote work and its impacts, an increase in remote work means more reliance on the Internet than ever. This in turn means increased efficacy for Internet-based attackers, and companies are now more vulnerable to attacks such as hacking, phishing, or other means of intercepting data than ever. Insureds need to be confident that they have proper cyber coverage, as any internet attack could result in dramatic consequences in an already trying time. Get in touch with your insureds to be certain that they are adequately covered in case of cyberattacks or other Internet-related issues.
Finally, in some areas, the government has mandated temporary shutdowns for what they determine to be non-essential businesses. In other areas, having employees work from home has left facilities vacant. No matter what the reason is for a building’s vacancy, having a property go unoccupied for more than 30 days may trigger a vacancy clause in the property policy. Policies should be reviewed and shutdowns accounted for moving forward.
These are just some of the areas that may be impacted by this current event. While more areas of concern may soon present themselves, for the time being, checking in on your insureds’ current manufacturing output, Hired/Non-Owned Auto exposure, cyber coverage, and vacancy clauses are good starting points to making sure they have proper coverage during this uncertain time.
At Conway E&S, we are closely tracking the news surrounding the current pandemic and keeping up-to-date about any concerns that may arise within the insurance marketplace. We understand that both insurers and insureds may not be able to track this information as closely as we can, or may not be aware of all of the implications a pandemic like this may have. Want to learn more? Contact Carrie Chappie for more information.