Be prepared going into a BI/EE renewal. Work with a
broker to determine the best strategy to approach the carrier.
Consider BI/EE risks moving forward and determine
the precise amount of coverage that’s needed leading into
Workers’ compensation insurance
As businesses begin to bring non-essential employees back
to work, there is potential for a different type of workers’
compensation claim to arise. The Canada Labour Code and
provincial regulations allow employees to refuse work if
they don’t feel safe. The language varies by jurisdiction, with
British Columbia’s regulations referring to an “undue hazard”
and Ontario’s mentioning “danger.”
This kind of claim is traditionally filed when an employee
was exposed to an unsafe condition and lost a limb – or
even a life – and alleges the employer was negligent in some
form. In dealing with COVID-19 return to work exposures,
if employees are required to work without proper physical
distancing or personal protective equipment (PPE) and are
exposed to COVID-19, the employee may have a pathway
to allege negligence on the part of the employer and trigger
These kinds of claims tend to be drawn out and litigated
for years. Businesses will need to hire a specialized attorney.
While these cases are rare, they are likely to increase as the
Canadian workforce returns to their operations.
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“COVID-19: Workplace Health and Safety Guide” and document
all safety practices/meetings while making all forms
of PPE available to employees at all times. Work to ensure
proper workers’ compensation claims reporting and monitoring
procedures and keep all employees’ health information
regarding COVID-19 highly confidential.
Employment Practices Liability Insurance
An employer who treats certain employees unfairly as it
relates to their fear of the COVID-19 work environment
and/or an ongoing workers’ compensation claim could be
exposed to discrimination lawsuits. These allegations could
trigger a business’s Employment Practices Liability Insurance
(EPLI). In certain allegations such as class action lawsuits, a
business’s directors and officers (D&O) coverage may be triggered
Make sure appropriate limits are on EPLI and D&O policies.
Ensure the human resources department understands
the importance of safety compliance and is prepared to deal
with work-related risk, safety and special accommodation
requests from employees. Be sure to have access to an attorney
that is approved by the EPLI carrier and specializes in
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to employees working from
home, vastly increasing the attack surface available to criminals.
When employees use company laptops or take home
company desktops, they are often outside of the defensible
B U S I N E S S