Coronavirus: Insurers risk becoming the new bankers

Grab your helmets, insurers. You are going to get stoned, and not in a happy way

Insurers’ widespread refusal to pay up for business losses caused by Covid-19 lockdowns has made them the targets of opprobrium from governments, businesses and the general public. Photograph: Dave Meehan

Insurers’ widespread refusal to pay up for business losses caused by Covid-19 lockdowns has made them the targets of opprobrium from governments, businesses and the general public. Photograph: Dave Meehan

No way, we won’t pay. This has been the refrain from insurers in Ireland and across the globe for the last six weeks. Their widespread refusal to pay up for business losses caused by Covid-19 lockdowns has made them the targets of opprobrium from governments, businesses and the general public. That spells a reputational death trap.

Insurers will argue that most business interruption policies, even those with infectious diseases clauses, do not cover Government-mandated closure orders due to a global pandemic. Many small businesses, with their finances as well as their owners’ hopes for the future all hollowed out, believed otherwise.

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