As property owners shift their focus to repairing damages from Hurricane Ida, they should not lose their focus when it comes to the less apparent concerns that come with engaging contractors. Entities, like the Louisiana State Contractor Licensing Board, provide a certain level of protection to the consumer; however, caveat emptor (“let the buyer beware”) should still always be in the back of the minds of property owners as they navigate the path to recovery. The checklist below is provided to assist in this process.
Commercial enterprises doing business in Texas and surrounding states are beginning their recovery from recent power outages and associated water damage. Many face significant property losses, often accompanied by business income losses due to a complete cessation of business activities. Many business owners had the foresight to purchase business interruption insurance; however, the complexity of a business interruption claim, coupled with demands on operating capital, creates a difficult scenario for business owners. Jones Walker is ready to assist clients in navigating this process, and we offer the following “golden rules” to provide some guidance in the preparation of business interruption insurance claims.
Continue Reading Golden Rules for Preparing a Business Interruption Claim
Commercial enterprises doing business in Louisiana are beginning their recovery in the wake of Hurricane Laura. Many face catastrophic property losses, often accompanied by business income losses due to a complete cessation of business activities. Fortunately, many business owners have had the foresight to contract for business interruption insurance (also called “business income” insurance or time-element coverage). While having coverage offers some relief to affected businesses, the complexity of a business interruption claim coupled with a pressing need for operating capital creates a difficult scenario for business owners. Jones Walker is ready to assist clients in navigating this process, and we offer the following “golden rules” to provide some guidance in the preparation of business interruption insurance claims.
Continue Reading Golden Rules of Preparing a Business Interruption Claim
Has your business been affected by the current coronavirus crisis? Perhaps your clients, customers, and patrons stay at home, either because of a governmental order or just because they are afraid to mix with the public. Maybe your business itself has been ordered closed by authorities. Business owners wonder whether their insurance policies can provide any relief from these monetary losses.
Commercial property policies typically provide coverage for business interruption losses that result from “direct physical loss or damage” to the insured premises. Some policies also extend “civil authority coverage,” which provides coverage when access to a business is prohibited by governmental order due to physical damage within the vicinity (a specified radius from the premises), whether or not the business itself is damaged.
In light of the widespread effects of the coronavirus, there are several possible claims under business insurance policies that business owners should consider.
Commercial all-risk property policies and inland marine policies generally require direct physical loss or damage to the insured property as a prerequisite to business interruption coverage. Depending on policy language, there may be an argument that if the presence of the virus on the insured’s property renders the property unusable, the requirement for physical loss or damage may arguably be satisfied. On the other hand, if the use of the property is limited only because of the presence of the virus in the community, there generally would not be a physical loss or damage.
Maritime contracts for services generally include clauses for performance, demurrage, deviation, termination, and suspension. Performance may be affected by an Act of God or Force Majeure clause and event. A typical Force Majeure clause reads as follows:
Except for the duty to make payments hereunder when due, and the indemnification provisions under this Agreement, neither Company nor Contractor shall be responsible to the other for any delay, damage or failure caused by or occasioned by a Force Majeure Event as used in this Agreement. “Force Majeure Event” includes: acts of God, action of the elements, warlike action, insurrection, revolution or civil strife, piracy, civil war or hostile action, strikes, differences with workers, acts of public enemies, federal or state laws, rules and regulations of any governmental authorities having jurisdiction in the premises or of any other group, organization or informal association (whether or not formally recognized as a government); inability to procure material, equipment or necessary labor in the open market acute and unusual labor or material or equipment shortages, or any other causes (except financial) beyond the control of either Party. Delays due to the above causes, or any of them, shall not be deemed to be a breach of or failure to perform under this Agreement.…
Continue Reading Hurricanes and Act of God Defenses
A federal disaster declaration has been issued in Louisiana for Orleans and Livingston Parishes following the tornadoes and severe storms that hit South Louisiana on February 7, 2017. The declaration was issued on February 11, 2017, by President Donald Trump upon the request of Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards.
FEMA individual assistance will be available…
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (“FEMA”) has issued another extension to policyholders under the National Flood Insurance Program (“NFIP”) to file a proof of loss with supporting documentation for claims related to the August 2016 flooding.
Under the new extension, announced by FEMA on December 2, 2016, policyholders will now have a total of 180…
The Louisiana Recovery Task Force has outlined programs that may help Louisiana companies get back to business following the historic August 2016 flooding.
More than 14,000 businesses were affected by the flooding. The concepts outlined by the Louisiana Task Force include providing banks with certain guarantees to incentive lending; compiling data on consumers and client…