Five years after the BP oil spill, USA Today reported that many areas of Florida continue to feel the effects. Many businesses, even in regions that did not experience the direct effects of the spill, continue to suffer losses because tourism is particularly susceptible to bad regional news. Many businesses believe they have no right to file property insurance claims in these situations. However, our Broward County insurance claim lawyers encourage insured businesses to review their coverage. Claim compensation may be available when companies suffer indirect impact from a regional disaster.
Disasters Can Leave Few Unaffected Areas
Local disasters commonly make national news. Oil spills, hurricanes or heavy storms can have a profound effect on geographic regions well beyond the disaster area. For example, in Collier County, with a coast that remained pristine after the oil spill, some business owners believed they were safe from losses. They soon learned that they sustained major business losses, such as the following:
- Loss of business income when customers changed their vacation or convention plans, including direct losses by hotels and convention centers and reduced income experienced by ancillary tourist restaurants and retail businesses;
- The inability of remote manufacturers to obtain essential parts or services from businesses located in the heart of the disaster area;
- The high cost of running extra advertising to help ease customer concerns and bring them back before the loss of business is too extensive to continue operations;
- Transportation business reductions, including air, public transportation, taxis and rentals;
Sometimes these types of losses become obvious just a short time after a local disaster. Other times, they reveal themselves slowly as business slows down over time. The best way to protect against unexpected losses is to anticipate and insure against them long before disaster strikes. Just as important, however, is to take early action after disaster by seeking the legal advice needed to initiate appropriate claim preparation.
Business Property Insurance Claims Can Be Complex
When winds and rains diminish after a hurricane or storm, it is undoubtedly a great relief to find your business’ physical property avoided damage. However, a lack of physical damage does not mean you will not suffer losses to your business income that can extend for months or even years past the date of the disaster. Proper business interruption insurance covers some or all of these losses. However, because of the variances between policies, you might be unsure if your business is covered for this type of loss.
Always seek legal advice to make sure you leave no claims dollars on the table. Call us at (954) 928-9568 or use our convenient online contact form to get your questions answered and take advantage of all available legal options.