If you spread COVID-19 to a client or co-worker, and you are sued as a result, will insurance cover you?
Several salons we have spoken with have chosen to stay open, despite knowing the dangers of spreading what could be a deadly virus. We know insurance coverage is designed for the unexpected - things like vandalism, fire, and injury to clients as the result of an accident. However, with the widespread news coverage of COVID-19 and the danger this virus poses, it is difficult to claim you didn't understand the dangers involved.
We asked the Insurance Council of British Columbia if salons would be covered for liability if sued after spreading COVID-19. Gene Paulsen, Consumer Information Officer at the Council wrote back:
"Your members could certainly face exposure to business liability, professional liability and Directors and Officers Liability.
However, as coverages and wordings vary from company to company, we would suggest your members contact their insurance representatives to review their individual policies to see how they would respond."
Our guidance continues to be close your salons (including at-home salons and spas) and wait until the province announces it is safe to resume services without having to be 6 feet from your client.