Event-Cancellation Insurance Issues During a Pandemic

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What insurance effects will those changes and cancellations have?

September 7, 2020
Lorelie S. Masters & Latosha M. Ellis - Hunton Andrews Kurth

As the effects of coronavirus continue, organizations and companies now are considering whether events in late 2020 and early 2021 can take place or need to be converted to virtual events. What insurance effects will those changes and cancellations have? Consideration of these important decisions requires a review of both event-cancellation insurance and a consideration of force majeure and other such issues.

On the insurance front, years ago, many policyholders purchased event-cancellation insurance for events in 2020, 2021, and even as far out as 2024. Such policies, purchased before the middle of March 2020, generally contain explicit coverage “buy-backs” for losses from “communicable disease.” That is, the policyholders paid an extra, specifically identified premium to remove any exclusion for communicable disease from these policies. Typically, these policies do not use the word, “virus”, but rather use “communicable disease”; and exclude neither. Those policies typically cover a specified amount of net profit and include additional coverages for “Cost of Remedial Action”, “Future Marketing Expense”, etc., over and above that specified amount of coverage.

Reprinted courtesy of Lorelie S. Masters, Hunton Andrews Kurth and Latosha M. Ellis, Hunton Andrews Kurth
Ms. Masters may be contacted at lmasters@HuntonAK.com
Ms. Ellis may be contacted at lellis@HuntonAK.com


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