Covid-19

Last Updated: 9th June 2020

The spread of Coronavirus is unprecedented in modern times and we understand this is an incredibly difficult time for families and businesses.

If you have any queries regarding the cover under your policy that are not answered by the information provided below then please contact the broker who issued your policy or if issued by SAGIC direct then please email commercial@sagic.co.uk.

Given the current circumstance, we are currently receiving a high volume of queries and will look to respond as soon as possible, however, there may be delays in replying to enquiries, therefore, please accept our apologies for this.

The following information should assist in answering queries specifically relating to cover provided by SAGIC’s insurance policies:-

Business insurance

Standard commercial insurance policies – the type the vast majority of businesses purchase – provide cover against a wide range of day to day risks including damage caused by fire, flood, theft and accidents involving employees.

Under SAGIC’s standard Business Interruption policy wording then there is very limited scope for cover to be provided for any loss relating to Coronavirus.

  • Business interruption insurance covers a business for loss of income during periods when they cannot carry out business as usual due to an unexpected event arising from a set of perils that will generally be specified in the policy (that has caused “damage” to the insured property). It aims to replace certain financial losses sustained by the business during the period of the disruption.
  • The insurance may compensate the business for any increased running costs and/or shortfall in profits as the result of the event, up to a certain limit that is set out in the policy.
  • Most policies will provide cover if the premises or equipment are damaged by a named peril, such as a fire, flood or storm.
  • Some policies may also cover business interruption as a result of people not being able to access the business in an emergency due to specific circumstances (such as the police cordoning off an area due to an event such as terrorism, a fire, or the risk of a collapsing building etc).
  • Standard business insurance policies are designed and priced to cover standard risks and therefore will not provide cover for the effects of global pandemics like Covid-19.
  • For a claim to be valid under the business interruption section of your wording then there must be physical damage to your premises. It would not cover reduced income as a result of Covid19. 
  • If you have closed your business as a precaution then again there is no physical damage to your business and there would be no cover provided by the policy.
  • SAGIC’s notifiable disease extensions do not specify certain diseases therefore business interruption cover for Covid-19 may apply if Covid-19 is medically confirmed to be present at the business premises.
  • However if you have already closed before it is identified there is no cover under this section of the policy.
  • All of SAGIC’s policies contain restrictions regarding properties being left unoccupied, given the recent government request to restrict all but essential travel we do understand that buildings may be left empty for longer periods of time than usual.
  • For an initial period up to and including the 30th June 2020 the following will not apply:-

    i. Restrictions relating to your building being unoccupied
    ii.The duty to inform us of changes to the occupancy of your building

    However to ensure that your building is protected we would remind you there is a Duty of Care condition on all of our policies and with this in mind we would strongly advise that where you are able to do so safely and within the current government guidelines that the following should apply:-

    a) the water, gas and electricity supplies are turned off at the mains (and all water tanks, pipes and apparatus are drained) unless required to operate an automatically operated central heating system used to maintain a minimum temperature of 58°F (15°C) at all times, and
    b) all external doors and all windows are securely locked, and
    c) all physical devices for securing and preventing access to the building are put into effect upon leaving the building, and
    d) your building is visited by a responsible adult every 14 days

    As travel restrictions have been eased from the 1st July we would expect policyholders to comply with the terms of their policy in relation to un-occupancy unless they are directly affected by government advice which prevents this.

  • The scope of the “bomb scare and emergency action” extension does not apply – and nor was it ever intended to apply – to the outbreak of a contagious disease, such as Covid-19.
  • The extension in question relates to a report of a bomb on particular premises and the “emergency” action taken by the police in direct response to that report of a bomb being present.
  • As such there is no cover under the policy if you have only closed because of government guidelines.

Home Insurance / Landlord Insurance / Residential Properties

There may be effects of Covid-19 that will alter the occupancy of your property and this may have implications on your insurance.
  • Working from home, due to the need to self-isolate will be covered as standard by SAGIC home insurance policies, assuming that the work is clerical in nature.
  • If you are working from home and receiving visitors then please check with us that there are no other implications on your insurance. In some cases, there maybe need to restrict cover, such as loss of money and theft being excluded unless there is evidence of forcible and violent entry to the property.
  • The business equipment used (e.g. Laptop) would not be covered, however, in most cases this should be the responsibility of your employer.
  • There is no cover provided by SAGIC home insurance policies to provide cover for the costs of cleaning a property.
  • SAGIC priority is ensuring the safety of our customer, and we will continue to provide cover for customers as promised in the policy – including funding the cost of alternative accommodation following an insured event
  • Please contact SAGIC to discuss this further in the event you have a claim of this nature, each one will be managed on a case-by-case basis to ensure that customer interests are best protected taking into consideration government restrictions and advice.
  • All of SAGIC’s policies contain restrictions regarding properties being left unoccupied, given the recent government request to restrict all but essential travel we do understand that buildings may be left empty for longer periods of time than usual.
  • For an initial period up to and including the 30th June 2020 the following will not apply:

    i. Restrictions relating to your building being unoccupied
    ii. The duty to inform us of changes to the occupancy of your building

  • However to ensure that your building is protected we would remind you there is a Duty of Care condition on all of our policies and with this in mind we would strongly advise that where you are able to do so safely and within the current government guidelines that the following should apply:-

    a) the water, gas and electricity supplies are turned off at the mains (and all water tanks, pipes and apparatus are drained) unless required to operate an automatically operated central heating system used to maintain a minimum temperature of 58°F (15°C) at all times, and
    b) all external doors and all windows are securely locked, and
    c) all physical devices for securing and preventing access to the building are put into effect upon leaving the building, and
    d) your building is visited by a responsible adult every 14 days

    As travel restrictions have been eased from the 1st July we would expect policyholders to comply with the terms of their policy in relation to un-occupancy unless they are directly affected by government advice which prevents this.

  • Your insurance policy does not provide any cover for cancellation either by yourself or the customers who are letting your property as a result of Covid-19.
  • The policy does not cover any loss of income or associated costs of letting out the property unless there has been an insured event which has caused physical damage to your property.
  • All of our landlord policies cover you for loss of rent following an insured event which has caused physical damage to your buildings.
  • Under the policy a tenant unable to pay their rent is not an insured event and therefore there is no cover provided.

Storage Insurance

  • Storage policies cover you for damage to the contents stored in the unit, this includes business contents or stock.
  • It only covers physical damage to the items in storage and does not provide any cover relating to your business.