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Business Interruption Claims Due to COVID-19

Has your business been impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic? Is your insurance company claiming that you won’t be able to collect payment through your policy – even though you specifically bought it with such an unforeseeable circumstance in mind? Such scenarios are becoming unfortunately commonplace in 2020, as business owners across the country grapple with a complete shutdown of normal operations and struggle to stay afloat. If you have questions regarding your business and its insurance policy, Altman & Altman LLP is here to help.

You may be able to file a claim that your insurance company wrongly denied your claim, and receive the money that you sorely need to maintain your operations and cover ongoing expenses.

Is Your Business Interruption Coverage not Being Honored?

Although business interruption insurance is not mandated in most states, many forward-thinking businesses exercise the option to purchase this coverage in the event that their operations are impeded by an unforeseeable occurrence. Most often, this coverage will pay out money to recuperate damages incurred from a natural disaster such as a fire, flood or tornado.

However, many insurance companies are now trying to avoid paying out interrupted business claims to businesses who have experienced unprecedented losses due to the pandemic. The reasoning is that policies may not specifically mention “pandemics” or “viral outbreaks” within their qualifying contractual language – and many have even put in specific exclusions for coverage of losses “Due to Virus or Bacteria” following the SARS epidemic in 2003.

That being said, this does not mean that the ongoing pandemic does not qualify as a “business interruption,” or that such policy can hold water when challenged.

To say that our normal way of life has been merely “interrupted” by the COVID-19 pandemic would be a dramatic understatement. Millions of people face uncertainty every day in our new normal of mandated mask wearing, social distancing and closed restaurants and shopping centers. Small business owners have been hit particularly hard, with many facing the difficult decision of laying off staff or shuttering their entire operation.

This means that the grounds for these denials may not be entirely legitimate – and many states are in the process of enacting legislation to try and protect businesses who have been affected due to the coronavirus pandemic. Our experienced attorneys can help you navigate this uncertain situation and find out any legal avenues available to help keep your business running and your staff employed.

This Issue Will Only get More Attention in The Months to Come

As more businesses face their ultimate closing, insurance companies will be in the spotlight as to how they respond to this crisis. Will they honor their policies’ true intent of protecting their clients from unforeseeable losses? Will they defer to a strict interpretation of their contractual language to try and omit a global pandemic as an unforeseeable business interruption? Undoubtedly, this issue will be determined by state and federal courts and will have tremendous consequences for many people.

If you are a business owner who has been denied an insurance claim – despite having a policy you believe was intended for an occasion like the one we’re living through right now – you have nothing to lose by picking up the phone and seeking legal representation from Altman & Altman. We have over 50 years of experience fighting on behalf of the little guy to get you the financial compensation necessary to pay your bills. We take special pride in being able to help in any way possible during such a difficult time for so many.

Even if you are only thinking about filing a claim through your insurance company at this point, it will only serve you beneficially to have the guidance and support of an experienced attorney by your side. We don’t collect payment unless we are successful, so call today for a free consultation.

Contact us online or call today at 617-492-3000 or toll-free at 800-481-6199. We are available 24/7.

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David was very aggressive and professional with the insurance companies in this settlement of this case. He kept me up to date on a regular basis through the whole process. I can't thank David and his staff enough and strongly recommend them to anyone. - Edward M. Newton MA
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