Disclose All Material Facts When Comparing Business Insurance Online
If you are in business you will want the re-assurance that the business insurance policy you bought is actually going to cover your losses and pay out in the event of a claim.
It is an unfortunate fact that when then worst happens and your business makes a claim on the policy, that either the offer from the insurance company is nothing like what you lost or expected to receive to get the business flowing again, or worse still that the claim itself is contested or repudiated.
The majority of these problems occur at the proposal stage which translates in modern parlance to the quote stage.
All the information a business supplies when applying for business insurance quotes online, will eventually become part of the policy contract. All insurance contracts come under a class of legal contracts subject to the rule of ‘utmost good faith’ and this requires full disclosure of material facts. If mistakes are made when filling in online forms and comparing business insurance quotes, then this will cause problems for the policyholder when a claim is investigated.
The FSA is already investigating the use of default data in form fields for personal lines products sold online and the potential for these contracts to be missold. We asked Insurance Blogger to have a closer look at this increasingly occurring problem that will only be exacerbated by the increased popularity, particularly for small business insurance, of using an online business insurance supplier.
Get Your Business Details Correct When Applying Online For Business Insurance Quotes
Applying for business insurance quotes online has become a simple process and many of the five million small businesses in the UK are purchasing cover this way.
It is now easy to get both business property and liability insurance quotes and buy cover online from numerous outlets including commercial insurance brokers, direct business insurance companies and business insurance price comparison sites.
Every type of business cover can be bought online if your company does not employ more than fifty employees, and even these larger cases are handled today by helplines and callback facilities.
The practice of buying cover online is particularly of interest to small business and self employed tradesman, often working from home. An hours research and comparison of business insurance quotes could save a small business a significant amount in annual premiums.
There are however sometimes major problems that arise for businesses that buy online, further down the line, if they are unfortunate enough to have to make a claim against the policy.
The majority of the problems that can delay a payment or repudiate a claim, occur because of the information about the business that was supplied or given, when first getting a business insurance quote.
It is therefore imperative when getting quotes online that the correct information about the business is supplied.
In particular clams will be questioned when the business is either misrepresented by the information supplied or there has been an alteration to the business activities which was not declared when getting the quotes.
Misrepresentation can be either deliberate to avoid paying additional premiums or unintentional, however neither is an excuse and will be penalised.
Deliberate misrepresentation is for example a builder applying for builders liability insurance quotes,who uses heat and works at height but who declares he only works on single storey extensions. Another example would be a company applying for employers liability who only declare half of the workforce.
Unintentional misrepresentation is far more common but can still lead to disappointment when making a claim.
Get your sums insured right
The most common mistake made by business men and women when applying for business insurance cover online, is to declare the value of property at a level less than its true worth. This could apply to declared sums insured for commercial buildings and or contents insurance.
If the declared value of the sums insured is less than market value or the cost of re-instatement, whichever is applicable to a particular policy, then the claim will be subject to what insurance companies call ‘Average’. All properties will be subject to average if the market is inflationary and prices have risen over the period of the contract.
Average is applied to a claim and is a means by which the insurance company will reduce its liabilities. Average assume that the businessman will cover the loss for the difference between the declared sum insured and the true value and will reduce the claim amount proportionally.
Claims will also be repudiated and denied where it is found out that their has been an alteration to the original cover described at the quote stag which later went on to form the policy contract. For example if a motor trader has not declared that he also runs a taxi business with the same vehicles in the evenings for hire and reward.
To avoid disappointment and ensure that your business is properly covered be prepared with the correct and most up to date information about your business, when applying online for business insurance quotes.
When applying for business insurance quotes online it makes sense to use a company that can either offer fixed levels of cover so that you know that your business falls within these, or provide additional help and advice from an expert or broker on the phone.
At UK Commercial Ltd. you can compare business insurance quotes online from multiple suppliers who offer various levels of cover so that you can avoid losing out to average, at a claim.