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Filing a COVID-19 Business Interruption Insurance Claim with Farmers: What You Need to Know

The Coronavirus outbreak has significantly impacted the quality of life for millions of California residents, with a shelter in place order mandated to prevent the further spread of the deadly disease. As a result, many businesses have been forced to either shut down or alter hours of operation, immediately putting the livelihood of millions of business owners in the state in financial trouble.

Fortunately, owners who have property insurance policies with providers such as Farmers may secure compensation for any lost income via business interruption insurance. Many questions remain, however, regarding what is and is not qualified under these policies — especially under such unprecedented circumstances.

If you are seeking financial relief from Farmers due to the Coronavirus outbreak, please contact Bentley & More, LLP today to discuss your situation. Our California business interruption insurance lawyers can help answer any questions you may have regarding compensation during this difficult time and assist in filing business interruption insurance claims while you can focus on the health and safety of your family.

What Businesses May Qualify for Business Interruption Insurance for COVID-19?

Generally, businesses who have been impacted in one or more of the following ways may be eligible for compensation through their business interruption insurance coverage:

  • Those who have closed down due to COVID-19 and any state mandates
  • Those who have reduced hours of operations significantly to curb the spread of Coronavirus
  • Those who have significantly modified their business model in order to comply with state mandates
  • Those who have had to devote time and money to cleaning and disinfecting their premises due to suspected exposure to COVID-19
  • Those who may have reduced their staff or fired any members they have previously deemed essential

Does Farmers Business Interruption Insurance Cover Losses Due to Coronavirus?

Farmers Insurance has not officially declared that they will explicitly deny business interruption claims made due to the impact of COVID-19. However, according to them, business interruption insurance (known as “business income coverage” under their policies) is typically reserved for physical losses stemming from a fire, severe weather, or another covered event. This coverage may offer compensation for up to three years, depending on the coverage you elected to add to your existing property insurance policy.

Because there is no explicit mention of COVID-19 in their policies, claims may be summarily denied or approved on a case by case basis. Therefore, in such circumstances, it may be recommended to consult a lawyer experienced in insurance law for more information.

Contact Information for Farmers Insurance

If you do not already have an agent assigned to your business property, you can contact Farmers Insurance in multiple ways:

  • Call them with any questions or concerns at 1 (800) 435-7764
  • File claims online
  • Contact them with the Farmers Mobile App

Is a Lawyer Necessary for COVID-19 Business Interruption Claims?

Due to the unprecedented nature of the Coronavirus outbreak, we highly recommend consulting an attorney before filing a business interruption claim with Farmers. This is a relatively new situation for both policyholders and providers, one that is evolving every day. Therefore, it may require more deliberate case planning and proper procedure in order to get a claim approved.

An attorney can help you gather the facts and information necessary to build a compelling, comprehensive case for your claim. Additionally, a lawyer can negotiate directly with insurance providers to ensure that you get the eyes necessary on your claim.

If your claim does not fall under traditional business interruption insurance coverage, an attorney can look over your policy to see if your losses can be covered by another provision in your policy. If your claim was otherwise rejected despite being a valid insurance claim, an experienced business interruption attorney can help fight to ensure your provider is not acting in bad faith against a rightful claim.

What Do I Need to Make a Business Interruption Claim Due to COVID-19?

At Bentley & More, LLP, our insurance attorneys recommend having all pertinent info on hand before consulting with a lawyer or filing a claim. This includes:

  • A copy of your property insurance policy
  • Any operating expense statements or P&L documents from the past year, at minimum
  • Any financial information that effectively conveys the impact of COVID-19 on your business. This includes receipts, invoices, and other documents
  • Any documentation of state mandates that have had a clear impact on your business during the Coronavirus outbreak
  • Any other unexpected expenses or losses as a result of COVID-19

Contact Us If Coronavirus Disrupted Your Business Operations

We understand the stress and suffering that a sudden loss of income can have on a family — especially under these current circumstances. If you need financial compensation through Farmers Insurance, please contact us today and we will figure out a way to help you through these difficult times.