Demand Business Interruption Payout

Demand Business Interruption Payout

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Pamela Schropp
Pamela Schropp signed this petition

We demand that all optometry insurers honour/approve our claims for business interruption losses.

As you know, our respective self-regulatory authorities and provincial health authorities issued directives in mid-March “strongly recommending” the suspension of non-urgent care. The aim is to stem the spread of COVID-19 and support government calls for social distancing.

We complied. We cancelled all routine care and closed our doors. Our incomes dropped by 90-100%.

We have broad all-risk insurance policies, including business interruption coverage for 12 months. In addition, we have extended insurance coverage for 2-4 weeks of business interruption in the event of “outbreaks”, “civil orders”, “emergency orders” or “interruptions by civil authority”.

But our claims are being denied because:

  • The viral spread does not constitute “physical damage”, even though there is case law stating that the presence of foreign substances in the air may constitute physical damage;
  • We closed “preventatively”, despite provincial orders for the mandatory closure of non-essential services; and
  • The civil or emergency orders do not “prohibit” access to our premises, as we are still required to provide emergency care.

Our livelihoods have been taken away. We have had to lay off our valued employees. We are stretched to our limits trying to manage the crisis.  

We have paid hefty insurance premiums in good faith for decades. When asked, we did the right thing for the health of our patients, our employees and our communities. Now we are asking you to do the right thing and honour/approve our claims for business interruption losses.