Insurers COVID-19 support for SME and commercial customers
23 Apr 2020
Since early March, our members have worked proactively to support their customers facing the unique challenges New Zealand’s response to COVID-19 has presented. All have ensured they are fully open for business and have worked to keep New Zealanders and their assets protected by easing the financial pressures they faced.
ICNZ’s members have each implemented a range of measures aligning with the ten core principles announced by ICNZ and pledged to by our members, to support their customers and suppliers during the COVID-19 crisis.
These measures differ for each of our members, with support tailored to the changing needs and challenges being faced by their individual customers and suppliers. They also continue to explore further measures as appropriate.
We have seen the deferral of payments, changes to terms and excesses to alter and lower premiums and freezing standard premium increases. Additional specific support for businesses and commercial customers has also included:
- adjusting premiums based on lower risks for some classes of insurance e.g. motor for large vehicle fleets
- extending credit terms to brokers out to 120 days so they can extend this to their customers
- paying suppliers within 5-15 days instead of the 20th of the following month to support their cash-flows
- continuing cover for vacant property sites including construction sites
- extending policies and benefits that have expired
- extending policies for businesses that have moved from the workplace to home
- establishing a financial hardship fund and financial hardship triage team to support these customers.
ICNZ has also established a Broker Working Group alongside IBANZ to work directly with brokers on key areas of concern and to ensure measures are in place for clear communication to their customers of the support available.
For more information on support being offered see our COVID-19 section.