Temporary closure, unoccupancy & working from home arrangements
As we struggle with the consequences of COVID-19 it is important to highlight some of the effects on insurance arrangements with temporary closures, working from home & unoccupied buildings. So, with this in mind, we have some general advice below to assist you. Please note, it is absolutely vital you contact your Centrewest Broker, 08 9126 9151, for clarification if this applies to you.
Temporary closure of your business:
Most business package or industrial special risks policy will have an exclusion to their policy which states that if the property is unoccupied for 90 days (this may differ from insurer to insurer, it may be 30 days, 60 days) then cover will be excluded for most claims. This can be extended by notifying the insurer (via your broker) & having the insurer agree to an extension.
Unoccupancy of buildings or premises owned by you:
Same as per above. Please notify your broker if the building is unoccupied for a prolonged period.
The same exclusions may apply as per the above. Insurers may automatically apply a higher excess on unoccupied units. Some insurers guidelines also require a percentage of units to be occupied. Again, please talk to your broker for advice.
The same exclusion applies, please notify your broker if the premises are unoccupied for an extended period.
Again, if unoccupied it is essential you notify your Centrewest Broker. Please also note that insurers have begun to exclude cover for Rent Default & you need to factor this into your considerations.
Below is a useful tool to assist with risk management of properties that are unoccupied, it contains a checklist of the issues you should review.
Finally, occupancy is a broad term. If for instance you have an office or workshop and skeleton staff is present, then your premises would generally be considered occupied, but clarification should be sought from your broker. Clearly the key here is communication. Our brokers are working hard for the best possible outcomes for Centrewest clients. Even if working from home our brokers have the resources to still assist you. As a leader in a risk management business, we remain fully committed to supporting you and your company through these challenging times. Stay safe and well, if you have any questions please contact us. Please note: This advice is general and does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider whether the advice is suitable for you and your personal circumstances. Before you make any decision about whether to acquire a certain product, you should obtain and read the relevant product disclosure statement.