COVID-19 updates

We wish to be proactive in our response to the challenges of COVID-19.  Please read our latest updates.

Cover during difficult times (updated)

In light of the changing situation and the most recent government advice about the outbreak of COVID-19, we have reviewed our position to ensure we can continue to help and support you at this difficult time and to provide you with some additional advice and support.
 
Employees working from home
We understand that the employees of our customers may be working from home, like our own.
 
With that in mind, we would like to remind our customers that most of our charity, faith and commercial products provide an extension for property temporarily away from the premises. Where we provide cover for contents, this includes property held by an employee at their home, under the Temporary Removal of Contents extension.  The amount we cover is usually £2,500 or £5,000 depending on the policy you have bought.  
 
This cover is not available under our Charity Protect, Small Charity Connect, Community Group Connect or Event Connect products.  However, if you have All Risks then this will cover such property at the home of an employee.  
 
 
Unoccupied properties  
As more and more employees are working from home, and no longer at the insured buildings, you may be concerned that the policy will regard your buildings as unoccupied, untenanted, empty or disused and your cover then restricted.  
 
For an initial period up to and including the 30th June 2020, we will withhold the: 
• restrictive policy cover for unoccupancy, and 
• policy General Condition that requires you to inform us of the buildings being, or expected to be, unoccupied 
should your employees be forced to work from home as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. 
 
However, if your building is no longer occupied this represents a greater risk of significant damage which could delay your organisation getting back up and running, once the current COVID-19 outbreak has passed.
 
With this in mind we would advise, where you are able to do so safely and within the current government guidelines, you try to ensure that:
 
1. the buildings are inspected internally and externally by an authorised person once a week to check the security and general condition of the premises;
2. all waste, refuse and other disused combustible materials is cleared from the buildings and any grounds adjacent to it;
3. all external doors must be securely locked and all opening windows closed and locked (where fitted with locking devices);
4. all tanks and pipes must be drained down and when you are able to do this, all taps, stopcocks and mains supply valves turned off.  If this is not possible, because you need to maintain a central heating system, a minimum temperature of 7C must be maintained.
5. a) gas supplies should be switched off unless to maintain a central heating system.
    b) electricity supplies should be switched off unless to maintain a central heating system or existing intruder alarm systems, fire protection systems, CCTV, security lighting or sprinkler systems. 
6. all existing physical devices for securing, or preventing access to, the buildings must be kept in full and effective operation at all times and to have all keys removed from the locks and kept in a secure place away from the premises;
 
We recognise that you may not be able to complete all of the items listed above, either partially or in their entirety but we would encourage you to consider anything you can do, to reduce the risk of damage or loss, particularly through escaping water from heating systems and security of the premises generally. Your cooperation during this difficult time is very much appreciated.
 
Outstanding risk improvements, periodic conditions and maintenance conditions
 
Any policy term that requires regular maintenance, inspection or where we have specified completion of a risk improvement by a specified deadline that cannot be fully complied with or fully completed, solely due to the COVID-19 outbreak causing travel restrictions or the lack of availability of contractors, will be held in automatic abeyance until: 
• the expiry of the current outbreak, or 
• the availability of contractors, or 
• the date the temporary cover enhancement expires
whichever is the sooner provided all reasonable steps have been attempted to comply with the policy terms or complete risk improvements in part or in whole given the circumstances at the time.
 
Additional Activities
 
We recognise that as the situation develops, certain organisations may look to support their local community by mobilising their organisation to support those finding it most difficult. Examples of this work, could be delivering shopping for vulnerable people not able to get out of their homes.
 
At Ansvar, local communities are at the heart of what we do and we are keen to give organisations the peace of mind they require in carrying out this work. As such, we would also like to remind our customers that we provide cover for such work:
 
Under our Church Connect and Church Fellowship Connect products:
• Community work (including domestic work and domestic gardening)
• Pastoral Care
 
Under our Charity and Community Connect (and Small Charity Connect where endorsement E216 shown) the following apply automatically but only where the organisations main activities and aims are based on the same work (ie Community Work, Work with vulnerable people, etc):
• Collection and delivery work
• Domestic work, including domestic gardening
 
If the charity is not currently working in such an area (ie clerical training based activities) but would now like to provide support out in the community during this time, we will need to review this, so we can ensure you have the correct cover in place.
IMPORTANT: Cover for any of these activities on any of our products, is subject to your organisation complying with local authority and/or government advice. Following the government’s recent announcement, you should only be providing support services where you can do so within the rules issued and where it is safe for your employees, volunteers and the people you are trying to support.
 
All other policy terms, conditions and exceptions are unchanged. 
 
We will review these changes towards the end of June.
 
We hope that this provides the reassurance you need.  If this is not enough to meet the current crisis, or if you are unsure in any way, then speak to your Business Development Manager or one of our underwriters to discuss further.
 
Helpful information 
 
Arson Prevention Forumwww.stoparsonuk.org

The selection and use of electronic security systems in empty buildings

Risk Control. Arson Prevention. The Protection of Premises from Deliberate Fire Raising

www.riscauthority.co.uk
HM Government COVID-19 Advicewww.gov.uk/coronavirus

 
Risk advice line
(provided by Ecclesiastical professionals or external specialists)
Phone: 0345 600 7531 
 
Risk specialists are on hand to advise you on a range of topics, including: 
• property protection, security, business continuity planning
• health and safety, food safety, environmental management 
• construction safety, fire safety, occupational health, water safety or asbestos. 
 
Available Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm (excluding public and bank holidays).
 
For further information speak to your insurance advisor or call us on 0345 60 20 999.

Changes due to COVID-19

Following advice from the government, with effect from today, 17th March the majority of our staff will be home-working.  
 
We have been working on solutions to enable our teams to work from home for some time, and are confident we will continue to provide you and your customers with the great service you’re used to. This includes our underwriting teams in our Eastbourne office and our claims team who are situated in our Gloucester office.
 
You can still call our offices and speak to one of our underwriters directly, we would encourage you to use our generic team group numbers and email addresses as per the below.
 
New Business - 01323 744198


Existing Business - 01323 744199


Online Team - 01323 744289


Ansvar Accounts - 01323 744130

 
Our claims team has also been relocated but you can contact them in the usual way using the main claims’ telephone number and the usual email which is ansvarclaims@ansvar.co.uk
empty
These are challenging times for all of us and our thoughts are with all of you and your people.
 
We will check in with you from time to time to make sure you are getting everything you need. If you do have any concerns then please pick up the phone to your Business Development Manager or any member of the Ansvar Leadership Team.
 
We will keep you updated and informed if anything changes but in the meantime, please keep safe and well.

Cover information regarding COVID-19

There has been a lot of confusion concerning COVID-19 and whether cover is provided under our current products, so we would like to clarify our position for you so that you can address these concerns directly with your customers.     
 
Specified disease definition
 
In short, there is no cover for COVID-19 under the specified disease definition, as the disease in question is not specified in that list, nor is it related to any of them. Even if made notifiable, and we understand that the Government has already made an announcement about this, there is no cover unless the definition is amended and we have no plans to extend cover to include this. 
 
Employers Liability
 
From a liability perspective in particular EL, there could be some exposure as specified diseases are not excluded. However, the insured would have to be proven negligent in some way, before any such claim could be considered under the policy. For example if an employer permitted staff to travel to areas which are against World Health Organisation (WHO) or Government (Foreign Office) advice.
 
Business Interruption
 
For cover under BI, it would have to fall under the ‘Specified Diseases’ extension, and as already stated, COVID-19 is not one of these diseases nor is it related to any of those noted under the policy and as such, no cover will be provided.
 
If you require further clarification, please speak to one of our Underwriting team.

Claims

During this unprecedented period, we expect to continue servicing our customers as usual and you should continue to contact us in the usual way. If you experience any problems with the telephone network, you can email us on ansvarclaims@ansvar.co.uk and we will respond to you as soon as we can.