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Businesses Facing Coronavirus Related Insurance Claim Denials.


  • By
  • | 12:00 a.m. July 24, 2020
  • Manatee-Sarasota
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Business interruption insurance helps cover lost income and expenses when a company unexpectedly has to close because of a large-scale event like a pandemic or government shelter in place orders. You can use the insurance money to pay rent, taxes, payroll, and loans.

Filing a claim for a coronavirus-related business interruption can be complicated. Claims may get denied even though they’re legitimately covered by the insurance policy. You should file your claim as soon as possible. Even if you’re denied, you may still have legal options to fight that decision. If you do not file a claim in time, you won’t have any legal recourse.

Here are some steps you can take to file a business interruption claim or fight a wrongful claim denial:

Review your policy in detail: If you don’t have a full copy of your policy, call your agent or insurance company and ask for it. It is important that you understand the coverage limits, coverage time frames, type of losses covered, policy exclusions and limitations.

Determine the notification period: Many policies require the policyholder to notify the insurance company of a loss within a certain time frame. Typically, it’s between 30-90 days. It’s important that you strictly adhere to these time frames. If you do not file within the time frames indicated in the policy, your claim can be denied.

Document your losses & practice careful record keeping: Be prepared to give the insurance company evidence that shows how much you’ve lost. Document expenses such as cleaning, hiring security, buying protective equipment, additional advertising to announce a closure, or any other extra costs related to your business closure. Keep records of your lost income and payroll expenses. Keep track of all cancelled or lost business as a result of Coronavirus or shelter in place orders.

Document employees with symptoms of COVID-19: Document if any employee demonstrated symptoms of COVID-19 or had a confirmed case of the illness. If it can be shown that the employee’s illness required your business to be closed, you may have an argument that there was physical damage to your business space to qualify for coverage under your policy. If confirmed COVID-19 cases in close proximity to your business forced a closure, you will want to document this as well.

Document governmental orders: Document any governmental order which prevented your access to our business or forced a shut down. In April, Florida issued a Shelter in Place order for all non-essential businesses. You can find a copy of that order on the www.flgov.com website.

Denials: It is very likely that your claim will be denied. You have a right to know why your insurance claim has been denied. Denials may be for a valid reason. However, if you receive a denial letter with no explanation or if the explanation does not seem right, it could be that the insurance company has wrongfully denied your claim.

Low settlements: It is not uncommon for an insurance company to offer a low settlement in hopes that an insured will not contest the true value of their claim. You have the ability to contest the insurance company’s valuation of your claim. 

If your claim is denied, you should ask an attorney to review a copy of your insurance policy. You have the right to dispute a wrongful claim denial.

CONTACT US AT 888.952.5242 or learn more about our firm at www.mctlaw.com.

About Maglio Christopher & Toale, P.A. Maglio Christopher & Toale, P.A. is a national trial law firm with a reputation for successfully litigating against huge U.S. corporations. Trial attorneys Michele Stephan, Altom Maglio, and William Christopher head up the Coronavirus Business Interruption Insurance Litigation team out of the Firm’s Sarasota office. Maglio Christopher & Toale, P.A. also has offices in Washington, D.C. and Seattle, WA

 

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