Homeowners in PEI planning to renew their insurance coverage may find a new exclusion for communicable diseases like COVID-19.
According to Amanda Dean, Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) Atlantic vice president, a communicable disease exclusion will protect insurance companies from any claims related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Homeowners may or may not find a lot of difference, because typically pandemic risk is not something that is covered,” Dean told CBC News.
“Because every corner of the globe is experiencing a pandemic, it’s the same thing as fire, you can’t necessarily purchase fire insurance when your entire subdivision is on fire.”
Dean added that the endorsement is something the industry is still working through, in terms of how it is being impacted by the pandemic, also noting that the industry wants to protect the policies of policyholders at the same time.
“As long as we all continue to do what we should be doing, wearing masks, social distancing, complying with the guidelines and the numbers with respect to getting together with family and friends then we should all be OK,” Dean said.
The IBC leader also said that communicable disease exclusions started showing up in home insurance policies last summer. Primary insurance providers started adding the exclusions when the international reinsurance market made similar changes.
IBC previously warned Canadian homeowners that their policies could soon have virus exclusions last year.
“If the reinsurance companies are adopting these exclusions, it’s then a business decision for these insurance companies domestically to adopt that same wording,” Dean said.
The vice president told CBC News that the exclusion does not put any homeowners at any elevated level of risk, but anyone that notices the exclusion on their policy has been advised to contact their insurance provider to find out why it has been added, and what it means for their policy.