After Shane Pine, owner of The Community Oven restaurant located in Hampton, NH, calculated one weeks’ worth of losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic, he decided he needed relief, and he needed it fast. Pine told Fosters.com that during just one week, the pandemic cost him $75,000 in sales. Without much experience with handling losses of this degree, Pine contacted his insurance carrier, Acadia Insurance Company, for help.
To his surprise, Pine learned that his insurer wasn’t going to be covering his claim. Although the restaurant owner told the source that his business interruption policy includes coverage for up $10,000 in losses for “virus” in any one policy year, Acadia told him “he would not be reimbursed because neither his staff nor customers were infected with a virus.” Pine explained that “a statewide executive order banning dine-in service to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, did not qualify for the claim.”
Unfortunately, Pine isn’t the only frustrated business owner in New Hampshire who is struggling to get their insurer to cover their business interruption claim. The source also shared Scott Logan’s experience. Logan, who owns Logan’s Run on Route 1 in Hampton also filed a business interruption claim with his insurer for losses associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. His claim was also rejected. Logan was told that “his policy has an exemption for claims over losses from microorganisms.”
While Pine has tried to keep the revenue flowing by offering takeout and delivery services, he worries about “how long businesses like his can survive the pandemic, saying many restaurants cannot last on takeout and delivery alone.”
Although the source did not disclose whether Pine was taking any sort of legal action following the denial of his business interruption claim, the restaurant owner did say that he is hoping Gov. Chris Sununu “will enact an executive order intervening in claims related to coronavirus, similar to when he temporarily forbid landlords from evicting people over late rent or utilities turning off service.”
While it isn’t clear how long this pandemic is going to last and to what degree of damage it is going to cause, one thing that is clear is that insurance companies aren’t willing to provide policyholders with the coverage they are due. While most insurers are claiming that the business interruption policies they sell exclude viruses, bacteria, and pandemics, even those without these exclusions still aren’t getting their claims paid.
So, if you own a business in New Hampshire and your insurance company is refusing to cover your COVID-19 business interruption claim, its time you let USAttorneys.com connect you with a New Hampshire insurance claim denial lawyer who can help.