COVID-19: We are here to help
Dear Friends & Family,
As the situation with COVID-19 continues to evolve, we understand that you may have a lot of unanswered questions regarding your commercial and/or personal insurance policy. Jones & Associates is currently taking every step to ensure that you remain up-to-date with the latest information as well as options for how to make changes to your policy while maintaining safe social distancing during this time.
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- Saturday: Closed
- Sunday: Closed
- Emergency Claims Contact List
- Claims Information
- COVID-19 and your Travel Insurance
- An Employer's Guide to Managing Remote Employees
- Managing Remote Employees During the COVID-19 Checklist
- Post-coronavirus Workplace Preparedness Checklist
- Unoccupied Commercial Property Checklist
- View our Staff Directory
Please see below for a list of frequently asked questions regarding the COVID-19 Pandemic and your Personal Insurance Policy.
The best way for you to stay in touch with your broker, and to receive the latest information about your insurance policies, is to provide us with an email address for communication.
Unlike postal or courier services, email is instant, contactless and accessible anywhere there is internet service available. Having an email on file with us also allows access to your policy documents, electronic liability slips, claims processing, billing statements and more with the Jones Client Portal. Visit the Jones Client Portal for more information.
Each company has to respond to COVID-19 - and they are all doing things differently. Some companies are issuing a rebate, while others are asking to make applicable amendments to the policies which in turn can result in a reduced premium. To find out more how your company is responding - reach out to your broker directly and we will be able to provide more information as well as how to take advantage of any necessary changes.
There are currently no specific adjustments being made to personal property insurance due to COVID-19. However, should you need to make changes to your home policy regarding working from home, or any home renovations you have been taking care of during this pandemic, please reach out to your broker to make sure you are adequately insured.
Both overall kilometres driven in a year and the primary reason for which the vehicle is driven account for part of the overall premium calculation. If you used to commute and are now working from home, no longer travel for business or offer u-ride services, or are no longer driving your kids to extracurriculars every day; these are all changes in how you use your vehicle. Whether you have reduced driving distances or are planning on parking a vehicle for the summer, premiums can be adjusted to reflect temporary changes in use.
Questions You Should Be Asking About Your Business
We understand the impact COVID-19 has had on businesses, and we are here to help. See below for a short-list of questions that are important to think about when evaluating the level of protection of your business.
Your vehicle use may have changed as a result of COVID-19. Maybe you had to park all or a portion of your fleet, or you are using personal vehicles to deliver products to your clients. These changes affect your coverage and premium.
We will work with your insurance carrier to make the appropriate changes to your policy. Contact your broker to learn more.
Vacant or Unoccupied Premises
Vacant and unoccupied premises are more susceptible to fire, water or theft losses. Most policies require you to notify insurers when premises are vacant or unoccupied for a certain period of time. Carriers are making special provisions during this time. However, you still have an obligation to protect your premises and conduct regular check-ins.
Talk to us to discuss your policy terms and to ensure you are protected while your business is unoccupied.
Working From Home
Some of the potential disadvantages of telecommuting:
- Disengagement — Many employers say that telecommuting interferes negatively with the relationship between workers and management, and can foster jealousy and rivalries between telecommuters and non-telecommuters.
Staying connected and supervising employees who work from home can also be a challenge for managers.
- Lack of collaboration — Innovation can be stifled when workers are not physically interacting with each other.
- Technology and security concerns — Not all employees are tech-savvy, and there can be problems trying to remotely access an office network or set up remote meetings. Sensitive company information carries the potential for greater risk of being compromised through unsecured home computers.
Other risks associated with telecommuting include:
- Work-related injuries and illnesses
- Property damage to premises or equipment
- Security issues
- Confidentiality/privacy issues
- Injuries to people who visit the worker’s home office
Change in Business Operations
You may be retooling your business to produce different products to meet current demands and help the efforts to fight COVID-19. Your current policy is likely specific to the type of operations and the type of products you are producing.
Talk to us if your operations have changed so that we can work with your carrier to endorse your policy accordingly.
Changes in Revenue
Commercial Liability policies are usually based on revenue. If your revenue has been impacted significantly due to closure or business restrictions as a result of COVID-19, you may be able to amend your projected revenue.
Some policies contain clauses that allow you to obtain some return premium if the results of the business are less than forecasted.
If you are unable to meet your premium payment, please contact us to discuss options.
We can work with your carrier or premium financing company to discuss deferral options or alternate payment plans
The majority of commercial policies do not provide coverage for business interruption due to a pandemic. However, not all commercial policies are created equal and some may provide special extensions. As your trusted advisor, we would like to understand how you have been impacted by COVID-19, so that we can review your coverages and assess all potential options available.
Frequently Asked Questions
While every policy is different and unique, most Business Interruption coverage in Ontario and Canada is triggered by bodily injury or property damage to the building and/or its contents.
Business Interruption cannot be triggered on its own. A slowdown in business, forced closure or quarantine are neither considered bodily injury nor property damage.
An extension in policy wordings called "interruption by civil authority" does exist but refers to bodily injury or property damage to a neighbouring or adjacent property where business closed by order of civil authority for clean-up, investigation, etc. Through the use of standard IBC wording, there is no coverage for business interruption due to an outbreak or disease.
Still Have a Question?
Reach out to your Broker today if you have any further questions about the impact COVID-19 has had on your policy (or policies), or if you would like to review and/or make any changes to your policy.
Getting Through This Together
As the coronavirus continues to spread, individuals, business, governments, and healthcare providers will see its impact and fallout throughout Thunder Bay, our region, and the Country.
For small businesses, the loss of traffic and sales can have significant, long-term effects. We will work with you to see about options, coverages, and what the next steps can be done to help you get back on your feet again.
We will continue to monitor Insurance companies' responses, the local Chamber of Commerce's advice and guidance, and the Federal government’s response to helping small and midsize businesses during this time. This is a fluid situation subject to daily changes. Please ask us whatever questions you may have, and know that we are here to help whenever you need us.
As always, we're with you…
Jeff M. Jones, CAIB | President
Jones & Associates Insurance
Tel: (807) 343-9444 | Fax: (807) 345-4955