Coronavirus: Factors for the Insurance Industry to Consider − Liability and Workers’ Compensation Insurance

 Friday, March 6, 2020

Given the risk to life and the economic impact of coronavirus, policyholders and the insurance industry alike are watching and considering whether business interruption, event cancellation, or liability and workers’ compensation insurance benefits may be available while similarly assessing liability risks.

In response to the thousands of reported new cases of COVID-19 in countries around the globe, the World Health Organization (WHO) has upgraded their Risk Assessment for China, Regional Level and Global Level to Very High (the highest risk level). There are more than 90,000 confirmed cases of the virus. The United States is now reporting more than 100 infections as of Tuesday, March 3, 2020.

If the coronavirus continues to spread worldwide, insurers are likely to confront liability claims that span the spectrum of their insurance product lines.

Workers’ compensation policies generally extend insurance benefits to employees for injuries “arising out of or in the course of employment.” Workers’ compensation actions concerning the language often address whether the claimed injury is truly work-related, focusing on such factors related to the loss as its nature, the injured employee’s activity, the time and the location. Consequently, employees and employers whose work is related to coronavirus should maintain detailed records identifying potential exposures.
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