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A Roadmap to Finding and Negotiating Pollution Coverage for Covid-19

Mar 20, 2020

As we grapple with the human and personal effects of COVID-19, the pandemic is forcing companies to closely examine their corporate insurance programs to determine where, if at all, coverage can provide some relief to the economic losses that COVID-19 will cause. One of the best places to start is by reviewing your pollution legal liability (PLL) policies, which may have been placed recently, or as long as 10 years ago, but which may still provide coverage for some elements of loss related to COVID-19. One distinction of PLL coverage is that, unlike most property policies, there need not be physical damage to the structure or contents of the building for coverage to apply. We have already experienced PLL claims activity on behalf of our clients, the results of which will shed more light on how and where PLL coverage may be afforded to clients.

To determine if you have coverage under your Pollution Liability program, we have outlined several key terms and conditions in the attached publications to help analyze where coverage may be available.

  • Is COVID-19 a release of a pollutant?
  • How is the concept of pollution addressed in PLL policies?
  • If COVID-19 is a release of a pollutant, what could be covered?
    • Business Interruption?
    • Contingent Business Interruption?
  • What about other costs like disinfection and evacuation of your property?

If your existing insurance portfolio includes PLL coverage, it should be analyzed in conjunction with your other corporate insurance program to determine what you can do to protect yourself from the economic effects of COVID-19. If PLL is not part of your current risk management program, you should conduct a top to- bottom review of your operations to determine if you have exposures and whether those exposures warrant the procurement of a PLL program.

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