As the world continues to address the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, an important aspect of managing the response to COVID-19 includes a comprehensive review of insurance with an eye toward identifying coverage that may be available to mitigate losses incurred due to the pandemic and government orders arising from the pandemic.

Right now, players on both sides of the insurance debate (insurer counsel and policyholder counsel) are writing articles and posting alerts that make definitive – and, too often, misleading – pronouncements about coverage, or the lack thereof, for losses arising out of COVID-19. A more measured approach is needed. There are no clear cut answers and there are many difficult and nuanced issues. Reed Smith’s Insurance Recovery Group is here to help navigate these challenges.

The legal landscape for insurance coverage for losses associated with COVID-19 will evolve as the outbreak progresses and claims are submitted. Reed Smith’s Insurance Recovery Group is monitoring all critical developments, including insurer responses, lawsuits, and proposed legislation that may prohibit insurers from raising certain exclusions. As is always the case, the terms and conditions of policies vary from insurer to insurer and client to client. Although many “standard” policy forms may contain exclusions for viruses, others will not. It is critically important to carefully analyse all potentially available insurance with a focus on each client’s particular circumstances and specific terms of coverage.

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