Covid-19 and your Church Insurance or Church Protection Policy

17 September 2020

In light of the easing of national lockdown restrictions previously brought in due to the outbreak of COVID-19, whilst there may still be an impact on your insurance needs, the issues caused by a full lockdown have reduced. In turn this affects the enhancements we voluntarily applied to our policies. We have updated the temporary cover enhancements previously applied as detailed below.

COVID-19 Temporary Cover Enhancements to your policy

Please see below the updates applicable to your church insurance policy from 1/10/20, which we trust will provide peace of mind.

Employees (including clergy, church officials and authorised volunteers) working from home

Your church policy includes as standard, cover for contents whilst away from the premises and/or specifically at the homes of employees.

Liability - health and safety

Resources for employers are signposted by the Health and Safety Authority on their website. As organisations look to different working models for continuity, they also have useful guidance on homeworking and working alone

Subject to the terms and conditions of the policy, both Employers’ and Public Liability policies provide an indemnity to the policyholder if they are held legally liable for accidental bodily injury or illness arising in connection with their business.

Church premises that are temporarily closed solely due to the COVID-19 outbreak 

We previously confirmed that temporary closure of your church buildings due to the COVID-19 outbreak would not result in us applying restrictions in cover or charging any additional premium. However, as church buildings are now able to reopen this no longer applies. 
 
Outstanding risk improvements, periodic conditions and maintenance conditions – will re-apply from 1/10/20 and all dispensations cease

We temporarily suspended compliance with risk improvements by the deadline specified by us, and other policy terms requiring regular maintenance or inspection, where these could not be completed during the COVID-19 lockdown because of the restrictions on movement and/or the lack of availability of contractors.
 
With effect from 1/10/20 the suspension of compliance will cease. Any policy term that requires regular maintenance or inspection re-applies from 1/10/20.

In respect of risk improvements, the deadlines for compliance are re-set as detailed below:

The period of time allowed for compliance/completion:
 
  • Will commence on the date we issued risk improvements to you and run to 12/3/20 
  • Will be suspended for the period from 13/3/20 to 30/9/20 – this period will not be counted
  • Will re-commence on 1/10/20
  • Will now include an additional 30 days in addition to the original period, to cater for the difficulties and interruptions caused by lockdown
For example, if the deadline set was 30 days from 1/3/20 the end date is now re-set as:
 
  • 1/3/20 to 12/3/20 (12 days elapsed with 18 days remaining of the original 30)
  • 13/3/20 to 30/9/20 does not count towards the deadline
  • Deadline period recommences on 1/10/20, so runs for 18 days to 18/10/20
  • Plus the additional 30 days now added makes the new deadline 18/11/20
 
If the re-set deadline is not sufficient for any reason please contact us immediately. Do not wait for the end of the allowed period to expire before contacting us.

Automatic cover beyond renewal date

We allowed for the situation where difficulties relating to the pandemic may have caused delays to agreeing renewal terms by introducing an automatic extension in cover for 30 days beyond renewal. This enhancement is being extended until 30/09/21. Prior to the expiry of this deadline we will review this further to consider if further extensions may be required.
 
We hope that this provides the reassurance you need in these unprecedented times. If you are unsure about any of the guidance or have any other questions relating to your church insurance please contact us on 01 619 0300.