In the aftermath of the recent riots even those businesses and commercial property owners not directly affected would be wise to check the terms of their insurance policies and Leases to establish that they are adequately protected in the event of any repeat occurrences. Issues to consider include:-
checking the amount of the uninsured excess. Most policies include an excess in order to reduce the premium, but it is worth checking that the excess would not be unaffordably high in the event that a claim had to be made;
if you are a business owner, are you covered for business interruption?
is the plate glass insured? This risk usually has to be specifically added to the main buildings insurance and a supplement paid. Some leases place the responsibility for organising and paying for this on the tenant and others on the landlord, so careful consideration should also be given to how this is dealt with in the lease;
is there loss of rent insurance in place? A well drawn business lease will normally contain provisions allowing a tenant to stop paying rent during any period when their premises cannot be occupied due to damage by an insured risk. A landlord will in turn want to ensure that he is covered by loss of rent insurance during this period;
up to now property insurance policies have normally automatically included cover for riot (other than some policies in Northern Ireland). Be on the look-out in upcoming months to see whether some insurers start excluding riot from their cover, or only include it for an additional premium.
For further information, please contact:
Direct Dial: 020 7644 6098
Direct Dial: 020 7644 6091