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FSCA calls out insurers for rejecting business claims because of lockdown

Many businesses in the hospitality and tourism industry have been battling for payouts, with insurers claiming it's the lockdown and not the actual pandemic causing the losses.

Picture: 123rf.com

CAPE TOWN - The Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) said insurers were wrong to reject business interruption claims because of the COVID-19 lockdown.

Many businesses in the hospitality and tourism industry have been battling for payouts, with insurers claiming it's the lockdown and not the actual pandemic causing the losses.

Policyholders take out the cover to protect themselves against events like a notifiable disease outbreak.

After studying various business interruption insurance policies, the insurance regulator has slammed companies for deliberately avoiding payouts.

Insurers have argued it was not the pandemic causing the harm, but a government-imposed lockdown.

The Financial Sector Conduct Authority said this conduct went against the principles of treating customers fairly and broke down confidence and trust in the insurance sector.

The regulator said if a client had a policy that covered infectious disease and could prove they suffered a loss because of measures taken to prevent the spread, including a lockdown, they had a valid claim.

It has warned action would be taken against insurers that continued to treat customers unfairly.

Insurance Claims Africa, who is representing 500 businesses battling to get their payouts, said this was a massive step in the right direction.

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