Small businesses in Ontario, particularly restaurants, bars, pubs, and banquet halls, have been through commercial insurance challenges since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC), through its Business Insurance Action Team (BIAT), has offered to support this group by providing viable insurance for small businesses.

IBC is the national industry association representing Canada’s private home, auto, and business insurers. Its member companies make up 90% of the property and casualty (P&C) insurance market in Canada. IBC has worked with governments internationally to help make a reasonably priced home, auto, and business insurance available for all Canadians. It supports the vision of consumers and governments trusting, valuing, and supporting the private P&C insurance industry. It backs essential issues and aids educate consumers on how best to protect their businesses, cars, homes, and properties.

Recent research shows that the challenges affecting commercial insurance availability are global and that the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has compounded this issue. IBC is working tirelessly with its team to bring insurers and their representatives to help struggling small businesses in Ontario’s hospitality sector amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. BIAT’s goal is to assist as many small business owners as possible who cannot secure insurance coverage in the hospitality sector find the insurance they need.

IBC President and CEO Don Forgeron said small and family-run businesses in Ontario’s hospitality sector faced extraordinary challenges. It’s incumbent upon all of them to try and do what they could to help. Besides, he said the hospitality industry was a significant contributor to the Ontario economy. He also recognized that the current pandemic-related restrictions created difficult economic conditions. Hence, IBC and a group of insurers in Canada had to deploy an innovative solution to help small businesses get protection. Furthermore, Forgeron said despite the challenging market conditions, Canada’s insurers were pulling together to find creative solutions to ensure that Canadian companies could access the insurance they needed.

The property and casualty insurance industry has provided over$1 billion in personal and commercial insurance relief to aid Canadians affected by COVID-19 and an additional $200 million in deferred premiums to private and commercial customers. The small business owners who qualify should visit or call the Business Insurance Helpline at 1-844-2ask-IBC. The group will work with their insurance representatives to apply for BIAT. A risk director will then assess the submission to determine eligibility and provide loss prevention recommendations.


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