Coronavirus outbreak

We are here to help you

We understand that this is a very challenging and unsettling time for our customers and are closely monitoring the Coronavirus outbreak. We will continue to update this website with information and answers to our most frequently asked questions as it develops.

Risk management guides

We have created a suite of guides that cover some of the ways to manage risk during the outbreak. These include reopening of buildings and schools and helping customers return to operation.

Risk insights podcast series

Listen to the latest risk podcasts we've posted to support you and your business through the Coronavirus pandemic.

Will you continue to undertake Engineering Inspections?

We want to reassure you in these uncertain times that our teams are working hard ensuring we support critical business, services and infrastructure, and vulnerable individuals. The current situation is changing daily and we are constantly reviewing information and guidance from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and the Government and aligning closely with other Safety Assessment Federation (SAFed) companies. We have taken time to ensure we are able to provide a safe and sustainable service to our customers in the current climate, we are reviewing our capacity daily to ensure we can maintain this service and have a prioritised approach, when or if, this becomes an issue.

The HSE has provided high-level guidance on prioritisation and the list below is based on this, we support the HSE’s advice and will undertake our inspections in the safest way possible.

  • Hospitals, Frontline Health Care, Nursing homes, Care homes, Emergency Services and Key infrastructure
  • Supply chains to above
  • Multi occupancy domestic type property, Housing Association/local authority work
  • Other industry and commerce open for business
  • Other industry and commerce currently closed for business

Currently, and only due to the COVID-19 issue and safeguarding of individuals, in agreement with other SAFed members we will not enter single-occupancy dwellings (private houses or flats etc.).

Useful guides


What is your advice specifically for schools and educational institutions?

We know that you will undoubtedly be under a significant strain at the moment with schools facing a myriad of questions following the announcement by the Secretary of State for Education over the closure of schools. We want to reassure you that, as your insurer, we continue to work to support you.

Trip Cancellation

We are here to support you when you need us most, no matter the size of the event. Following Government (UK and Scotland) announcements and action, for any school trip (foreign or domestic) that is scheduled to depart on or before the 24th July 2020 (coinciding with the end of the summer term), you will be covered for the unrecoverable or non-transferable cost of cancellation.

At this stage, as we monitor the situation as it develops, if your trip is scheduled to start beyond that date, you would need to consult with Zurich before cancelling to check if cover will be available. If you have specific issues concerning trips commencing beyond that time and into the summer holidays, please contact us.

Next Academic Year Trips

Due to the need to concentrate on supporting customers with claims arising from upcoming journeys and in recognition that Government advice regarding educational journeys may change as the situation develops, it is the case that we will not be able to consider claims relating to trips which involve a departure date on or after 1st September.

We will update this advice as new information and official guidance emerges.

Here are a few things to bear in mind:

  • We would suggest pausing before booking any new trips at this time.
  • Have you booked using a travel agent / credit card? These institutions should be the first point of contact for the recovery of funds.
  • Unsure? Please don’t cancel trips (domestic or overseas) without speaking to us first – we want to discuss your specific circumstances fully.

If in doubt, get in contact on this number 0800 302 9053. We promise to treat all enquiries as high priority and deal with them as soon as possible.

Temporarily Closed School Premises

We are committed to treating our customers fairly and so we accept that where our customers are making appropriate provisions to mitigate their unoccupied risk as a result of Coronavirus, the temporary closure of your building should not prejudice any claim made.

It is our intention that where buildings are temporarily closed due to the Coronavirus outbreak, our Unoccupied Conditions will not apply, and we will not be taking any further measures to restrict coverage.

Zurich Municipal recognise the challenges faced by our customers as buildings are forced to close or operate on a limited basis going forward. Customers should continue to follow the risk management advice below and where possible the existing provisions of physical security and monitoring should remain in place.

We would encourage continued/daily onsite presence and if provisions exist for building closures already, i.e. procedures taken during holiday periods, then these procedures should be taken forward during this unprecedented time. Where a site usually has a 24/7 presence and there are not adequate measures on site in the event of unoccupied closure (such as the absence of an intruder alarm) then please refer this to the relevant Zurich Municipal underwriting department.

If we have made a specific requirement of you with regards to security and as a result of the ongoing situation you are unable to comply with these measures, please get in touch with your usual Zurich Municipal contact/underwriter and we will be happy to work with you to address the issue.

We will continue to monitor the situation and will inform you of any further updates regarding our stance on temporarily closed buildings in due course. You can find further guidance on security during a school closer here.

Where can I find guidance on temporary or partial building closure?

To support you in this uncertain time, we have developed a range of guides to help to manage your risks if you have partially or temporarily closed your premises. You can download the guides here

Where can I go for general risk management guidance?

Our in-house experts from our Risk Engineering practice have produced a series of risk management guides. You can view the topics, from home working to building management click here.

Risk management advice can also be found on our News & Views website.

You can also get in touch with your usual contact should you have concerns about your organisation.

For items you would normally post to us, please use email instead at this time.

What is Zurich Municipal’s position on Business Interruption cover?

We understand these are extremely difficult times for businesses of all sizes. Where our policies cover losses from the coronavirus outbreak, we are settling them swiftly.

Unfortunately, the vast majority of business interruption policies across the industry are intended to cover physical damage at a property and do not include protection for a global pandemic, or measures required to contain the disease.

We are reviewing every case individually and are committed to paying all valid claims quickly. For advice about your cover, please contact your Risk Insurance Consultant or usual Zurich Municipal contact, or if you would like to make a claim, you can submit one here.

What is your current operational position?

Zurich have asked all colleagues to work from home until further notice and are using the latest technology to connect with one another and importantly with you, ensuring we are open for business as usual. We are uniquely positioned as much of our business already operates to a fully flexible manner and fortunate to be a financially strong and resilient business, both globally and in the UK.

Our business continuity plans are activated and are confident that we have the right arrangements in place.

Where can I get the latest information about Coronavirus?

We suggest our customers use the following sources for the latest information about the virus:

General government advice on coronavirus

www.gov.uk/government/publications/wuhan-novel-coronavirus-background-information

www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public

www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019


Scotland

This site has guidance on the virus, specifically in regards to Scotland:

www.hps.scot.nhs.uk/a-to-z-of-topics/wuhan-novel-coronavirus


Travel

www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice


Schools

www.gov.uk/government/collections/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-for-schools-and-other-educational-settings

Information specifically for residential educational settings:

www.gov.uk/government/news/isolation-guidance-for-residential-educational-settings

Information specifically for schools in Scotland:

www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus---school-and-elc-closures-guidance-on-critical-childcare-provision-for-key-workers/

Information specifically for residential educational settings:

www.gov.uk/government/news/isolation-guidance-for-residential-educational-settings

Information specifically for schools in Scotland:

www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus---school-and-elc-closures-guidance-on-critical-childcare-provision-for-key-workers/


English and welsh local government

www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-for-local-government

These sites contain LGA and WLGA positions and advice on different Council service areas and Coronavirus

www.local.gov.uk/our-support/coronavirus-information-councils

www.wlga.wales/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-councils


Health and safety

www.hse.gov.uk/news/coronavirus.htm

Information specifically related to homeworking including information on DSE assessments and Mental Health.

www.hse.gov.uk/toolbox/workers/home.htm


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