News

Rapid response to Bushfires by Insurers

News >>

Rapid response to bushfires but costs linger

by Meenal Kumar | Broker Buzz 30 Oct 2013

The insurance industry is earning plaudits for its response to the NSW bushfires, with some small business claims being paid within an incredible one-hour timeframe.

Broker Buzz spoke to one Penrith-based broker who put in a general property claim on behalf of a client at 9:45am on Monday morning and had the final paperwork settled on the claim by 10:45am the same day.

“The claim was worth $5000 and covered tools the client uses in their business,” the broker says.

“The insurer responded swiftly to ensure our client was back on his feet as quickly as possible.”

This response and many like it have earned the industry high praise by NSW Bushfire Recovery Co-ordinator Phil Koperberg, who says: “The insurers are doing the right thing. They’ve been more than reasonably helpful in the main and I’ve not heard of any exceptions.”

“They have been very, very responsive. I know that a number of claims have already been settled.”

Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) CEO Rob Whelan says insurance assessors have already visited nine out of 10 damaged properties, with well over 1000 claims made so far.

“Insurers have responded incredibly quickly and we believe this is in the best interests of residents and business owners affected by the bushfires,” he says.

The ICA is holding a second insurance forum for Blue Mountains policyholders on November 12 in Springwood, involving insurance companies, the Financial Ombudsman Service and NSW Legal Aid.

The Blue Mountains Council will also be present to discuss rebuilding standards.

Although the claims cost tallied so far is more than $145 million, the costs to thousands of business in the Blue Mountains and Southern Highlands region is likely to be far higher, as the do the math on their lost trade.

Evacuations, road closures and supply disruption have all taken their toll on earnings, creating a situation where business interruption cover can be a business saviour.

After the Black Saturday fires in Victoria in 2009, many businesses with business interruption cover were able to claim losses even if there was no physical damage to their premises.

However, selecting the right cover for clients is essential. Business interruption extensions such as loss of attraction or prevention of access are vital to helping physically unaffected business weather any downturn in trade caused by road closures or evacuations.

Meanwhile, the NSW Government has also announced new measures to protect financially fragile businesses in the aftermath of the disaster by deferring Workers Compensation insurance payments.

Minister for Finance and Services Andrew Constance says: “Any eligible business affected by the bush fires who have an insurance premium due to be paid from between 14 October 2013 and 31 March 2014, will have that payment period extended until 30 June 2014.”

“This is an initiative which has the potential of helping more than 15,000 businesses in the Blue Mountains and Hawkesbury, and more than 24,000 businesses across the entire state.” 

Last changed: Oct 30 2013 at 1:17 PM

Comments

  1. None Found

Add Comment

Latest News

High Court dismisses Business Interruption Test Case

Today the High Court dismissed appeal by Insurers on the Business Interruption test case. Even the big insurers make silly mistakes! But you the policy holder may benefit if you were one of the 40% of Business Pack policy holders that added Business Interruption cover to their Business Pack. While it was never the intent of insurers to cover policyholders for the loss of income from a pandemic, the fact that insurers never factored in a risk premium for it, and the fact there is supposed to be a material or physical loss to trigger the Business Interruption section, none of that matters according to the highest Court in the land. So what was the mistake? Simply that when insurers defined what they considered to be the definition of an infectious disease, they referred to the Quarantine Act of 1908 which since was superseded by the Biodiversity Act of 2015. Because the Quarantine Act of 1908 no longer exists, apparently you cannot draw on this for a definition of an infectious disease? Not one of the insurers picked up on this! Shows how much interest we take on the business of Governments, except what is reported in the media.

read more

Three Years running - Insurance Brokerage of the Year 1 to 5 staff

Mandy and Robert Cooper were extremely honoured and astounded to once again win, Insurance Brokerage of the Year for 2020 from Insurance Business Australia magazine. This is the third year running.

While this year has not been the easiest of years for the business with Covid 19, the Recession, the hard market and issues at Lloyds of London, we are literally all in this together as an Insurance Industry.

CPR Insurance Services continues to make our clients the number one focus of our business while managing our relationships with Insurers, who we need more than ever in this market climate.

CPR Insurance Services are a highly ethical Brokerage with a reputation as a trusted advisor who always acts in the Client's best interests. Their experience, knowledge and expertise is amongst the highest in the industry.

CPR Insurance Services is now ten years old as a business and is proud of being an Authorised Representative of Ausure and their partnership with Steadfast, giving CPR the strength and backing to match it with any Broking firm in the Insurance Industry, but remain focussed on supporting the Small to Medium business segment.

Memberships of the National Insurance Brokers Association, Australia and New Zealand Institute of Insurance and Finance, Australian Insurance Law Association, Australian Professional Indemnity Group and the Australian Institute of Company Directors, ensures CPR Insurance Services maintains the high standard of knowledge and expertise required to be one of the best Brokerages in Australia.

CPR Insurance Services also plays a strong role in their local community supporting other Sporting Clubs and Community organisations. They also support and promote local businesses with their operation of the Kedron Brook Business Group who meet regularly and has 174 members.

We are truly honoured to receive this National award once again for the third year as a recognition of CPR Insurance Services contribution.

read more