UK COVID-19 claims at least £1.7bn, says ABI
Insurers in the UK expect to pay at least £1.7 billion in claims arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, including claims stemming from business interruption and travel insurance, says the Association of British Insurers (ABI).
ABI director general Huw Evans said that nearly £900 million would go to businesses and £275 million to people claiming travel insurance.
Responding to a letter from small business owners and representatives, Evans noted that the association recognises the "extremely challenging circumstances" for many small businesses as a result of measures to combat COVID-19, and seeks to address concerns raised by the sector with regards to the response of the insurance industry and business interruption cover in particular.
He also highlighted the work undertaken to insurers to process claims worth millions of pounds from businesses throughout the country.
"Far from failing our customers, insurers in the UK expect to pay at least £1.7 billion in claims as a result of COVID-19. This includes over £900m to businesses and £275m to people claiming on travel insurance," said Evans.
"The international insurance market, Lloyd’s of London has said it expects this event globally to have more impact on the financial position of insurers than the 9/11 terrorist attacks or the 2005 hurricanes, with the global and systemic nature of this crisis challenging our industry in a way we have never seen before."
He added: "We take pride in paying claims quickly and providing a safety net against some of the most common risks you face. No country in the world routinely provides affordable standard insurance cover against the risks of a global, viral pandemic but we will continue to look for future insurance solutions, while ensuring we fulfil the promises we have made to protect your businesses against the risks included in your insurance contract."