Coronavirus: what insurance cover do I have?
It's important to plan ahead. So, with this fast-moving pandemic you are likely to want to know what insurance will cover you if you are affected by coronavirus.
Here is a summary of the types of insurances that our members hold and the coverage for coronavirus events.
What if you get sick?
If you own an NZDIS Accident and Sickness Policy or Disability Income Protection Policy you are able to claim for loss of income while you are off work sick. For the NZDIS Accident and Sickness policy you have to be off work for at least one week before you would be entitled to make a claim. For any loss of income cover your policy's wait period (stand down period) would apply before a payment would commence and a doctors' medical certificate is a standard requirement for the supporting paperwork.
There is no cover for self-quarantine or other quarantine requirements if you are not sick. And, there is no cover for any staff or associates being sick and off work unless they have their own policy.
What if the business has to be closed temporarily?
Business owners will have commercial insurance plans and will likely have business interruption cover.
In broad terms the business interruption cover is to protect the business from losses as a result of “physical loss or damage”. Therefore, we would not anticipate coverage for coronavirus related issues within the commercial insurance plan.
What about other insurance cover: life, total permanent disablement, trauma?
In general, as Covid-19 is not excluded, as long you meet the definitions and the terms and conditions of your policy, you would be able to claim.
How will my business cope with this?
The enquiries we have been receiving from our clients have very much been focussed around how their business will be able to weather this coronavirus storm.
Unfortunately, we (all businesses) are all in the same position when it comes to potential closures or staffing issues. We will have to deal with what we are faced with at that time. What we can do now is follow the best practices as put out by organisations such as the Ministry of Health. And, keep updating our forward planning of the estimates of the impact to the business with a view to being as ready as possible to face the challenges ahead (eg. working remotely, holding staff meetings to brainstorm the outlook and how best to manage, and following best practices to keep staff well).
Some good news is the Government released its Economic Response Package and helpful information can be found on the Work and Income and Employment New Zealand websites.
Please contact us if you would like specific details of your insurance covers either on firstname.lastname@example.org or phone us on 0800 650 149.
We are living in unprecedented times! Let's all look out for each other and get through this together.