To say we are living in unprecedented times in the insurance and reinsurance world, and everywhere else, would be a gross understatement. While we continue to work from home, insurers and policyholders are litigating whether commercial property policies cover business interruption losses resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, and now there is the prospect for coverage disputes arising from the recent riots, vandalism, and looting. But, for policyholders, there appears to be more favorable wording in more policies than is the case with business interruption loss for the pandemic that could cover losses from the recent protests.
As you may have seen in the media, the protests arose after George Floyd was killed on May 25, 2020, while in the custody of the Minneapolis police department. A recording of a police officer fatally kneeling on Mr. Floyd’s neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds was posted on social media and then shortly thereafter reported on by numerous news and media outlets. Protests calling for police reform and an end to institutionalized racism arose throughout the World, including Washington, DC, New York, and Philadelphia. A few of these protests erupted and gave way to significant looting and vandalism of stores, buildings, and vehicles on May 30 through June 2, 2020, causing damage and losses.