When you operate a business, you likely depend on revenue to pay for property taxes, equipment, office supplies, and rent. If something causes you to lose necessary income – as COVID-19 has done to so many businesses across the nation – you might have to shut down your business. To avoid closing your business permanently, you’ll need the help of a qualified Champaign business interruption insurance attorney from Spiros Law, P.C..
Based on the policy provisions of your business interruption insurance, you may be entitled to payments from the insurance company for your losses. Many times, however, insurance companies will try to withhold payments or deny your claim entirely. Most people don’t realize they have the right to fight those decisions and pursue the money owed to them.
Our Champaign business interruption insurance attorneys understand the importance of continuing to pay your employees and keeping operations going as much as possible when disaster strikes. Contact us at (217) 328-2828 to find out how we can help you recover the money you deserve so your business doesn’t fail.
What Coverage Is Available Under a Business Interruption Insurance Policy?
Numerous business owners carry business interruption insurance. The policy is supposed to cover certain expenses and losses that result from a business interruption event, such as a natural disaster. Following are some of the losses you might expect to cover with your business interruption insurance:
- Temporary relocation: If you’re able to continue operating your business elsewhere until your original location gets back up and running, you can apply for payments to cover rent, moving costs, and leases to use certain equipment, such as computers.
- Loss of revenue: Our Champaign business interruption insurance attorneys will review your accounting records, tax returns, profit and loss statements, and other documentation to determine your business’s value.
- Employee wages: You can use payments from your insurance carrier to pay your employees while you’re making repairs or restructuring your business, so they don’t lose their jobs.
- Retraining expenses: You might need to retrain your staff to use new computer software or machinery you need to purchase.
- Technology costs: Your insurance might cover the cost of paying your IT team or a consultant to keep your system running or repair any issues.
- Fixed costs: Business owners still have to pay fixed costs even if they have to temporarily close their business. Your policy could provide payments for your mortgage, taxes, insurance, and other necessary fees.
Depending on the type of policy you purchased, there could be exclusions that prevent you from receiving payments based on the issue that slowed down or stopped daily operations. Other exclusions could prevent payments for specific equipment or supplies. An attorney can help you review your policy, so you understand the coverage available to you.
Should I Hire an Attorney to Help Me with My Claim?
Yes. In a perfect world, insurance claims would always result in fair settlements. Unfortunately, insurance companies care about saving money whenever possible. The adjuster assigned to your claim might issue a denial or pay you much less than the amount listed on your policy. When that happens, you need an experienced Champaign business interruption insurance attorney to help you.
If it’s your first time filing a business interruption claim, you probably don’t know your rights or understand the provisions and exclusions outlined in your policy. We can help you review everything to ensure the insurance company treats you fairly and doesn’t try to take advantage of you by denying your claim without a valid reason.
There are also strict deadlines to adhere to, and if you miss one, that could result in a denied claim. We know what actions we need to take first to make sure you’re able to pursue the payments the insurance company owes you. We’ll work efficiently and diligently to file the claim on your behalf, submit documentation, and get full payments for all expenses as outlined in your policy.
Why Did the Insurance Company Deny My Claim?
The most common reasons why an insurance company might deny a business interruption claim include:
Exclusions: You would think that paying into an insurance policy every month entitles you to complete coverage. Unfortunately, most people don’t realize there are exclusions listed on the plan that prevents them from collecting payments for specific problems. If you had to cease operations because of a cockroach infestation and one of the exclusions is damage from cockroach infestations, you probably won’t be able to pursue payments to cover the damage they caused.
Physical Damage: Many business interruption insurance policies require there to be actual damage that resulted in losses for business owners to qualify for coverage. If you had to shut down your business to deal with a personal family matter, that doesn’t constitute a valid business interruption, and your insurance carrier will likely withhold payments.
Bad Faith: When an adjuster denies your claim or delays their investigation, that could be an act of bad faith. Examples of bad faith include:
- Refusing to issue payments for a valid claim
- Intimidating the policyholder into accepting inadequate payment amounts
- Offering damages below the coverage listed on the policy
- Delaying investigating the claim
- Tricking policyholders into signing their rights away
- Misrepresenting state laws
Civil Authority: Some policies include coverage for any losses that result from a civil authority forcing a business owner to close. If you’re unable to access your commercial property because a government entity ordered a closure due to physical damage to an adjacent business, you should receive payment.
Deadlines: There are deadlines you must follow when filing your claim and submitting evidence of your losses. If you miss any deadlines, that could result in a denied claim. Review your business interruption policy immediately after you need to shut down your business to ensure you submit your claim on time.
Why Choose Spiros Law, P.C. in Illinois
At Spiros Law, P.C., we have an experienced team of Champaign business interruption insurance attorneys dedicated to helping clients like you. We understand the challenges you’re facing as a result of your business closure. When you can’t operate your company, you end up losing profits and risk closing for good. We want to help you prevent that from happening.
When you hire us, we’ll prepare your case to ensure your insurance company doesn’t unfairly deny your claim or issue payments much lower than you deserve. We have experience reviewing business interruption policies to figure out the money you’re entitled to so you can pay for your losses.
If you need help filing your claim or appealing a denial, call us at (217) 328-2828 today for a free consultation with one of our Champaign business interruption insurance attorneys.