OLD Mutual, in view of various court judgements with regard to Business Interruption claims instituted by policy holders as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, has accepted the necessary liability.
In a statement, the insurer said that it strongly objects to allegations that it is refusing to pay valid Business Interruption claims.
“Old Mutual remains committed to treat all customers fairly and will settle all valid claims,” the statement reads.
The insurer stated that the honouring of Business Interruption claims to clients with extensions for infectious and contagious diseases is complex.
The issue of clients that are entitled to cover for the COVID-19 pandemic has been the subject matter of a number of court cases.
“Guided by such court judgements, Old Mutual has decided to accept liability in those cases where the insured complied with the requirements of the policy, as interpreted in the relevant court judgments,” the statement reads.
According to Old Mutual, claims are subject to assessment to determined to what extent the insured event may have caused the loss and secondly, consideration of the quantum and related circumstances unique to each insured, bearing in mind that with different policies and factual circumstances underlying both liability and quantum, it will not be possible to adopt a one-size-fits-all approach.
Old Mutual said it will also have to consider these insured specific circumstances in the light of the fact that the relevant court judgments did not deal with all issues that might arise in relation to its policies. Every case is therefore being considered and decided on its own merits.
“Given a fair amount of guidance obtained from relevant court judgments and because Old Mutual recognises the urgency of the matter, we are in the process of engaging with all insured clients who believe that they have submitted valid claims in terms of their policies,” the company said.
The insurer made it clear that it is in the process of engagement and quantification of claims that has resulted from losses brought on by measures that were introduced by authorities to curb the spread of COVID-19.