Starting a new business can be terrifying. There are so many dynamics to consider and adding insurance to that list can be overwhelming. However, without sufficient cover your venture may crash before it has the chance to take off.
Theft, fire, liability, cybercrime and fraud by employees are only a few of the potential perils facing businesses.
The risk of being kidnapped may not be the most common risk but it is increasingly becoming a risk that foreign nationals, in particular, face in South Africa.
Aside from it being a hugely traumatic experience for anyone to go through, the people or business dealing with the incident may also potentially face tremendous losses. Costs can occur naturally as a result of paying a ransom but such an event may also result in legal proceedings, interruption of day-to-day business and possibly reputational damage.
The Cape Town drought has started having a substantial impact on the lives of Capetonians, with water saving measures being implemented and people stockpiling water to such a degree that the retailers can’t stay ahead with supply.
The question is how will Day Zero affect your insurance cover and what factors should you be aware of in terms of risk mitigation and keep your belongings covered and your assets protected.
Managing agents of bodies corporate need to make sure that all owners are supplied with copies of their building’s insurance policy wording so everyone concerned is aware of what is covered and what limits are in place.
A business can face enormous unexpected expenses should it be held liable for an environmental disaster. Particularly as this type of event is usually not covered by a general liability policy.
Environmental liability cover – also called environmental impairment cover – provides cover for the cost of cleaning up pollution and restoring the affected area to its pre-disaster state, after an accident caused by the insured.
We are immensely proud to announce that Highgrove Financial Services joined the Garrun Group with effect 1st March 2017.
Currently situated in Randpark Ridge, Johannesburg North they have a staff compliment of 4 very competent and loyal individuals, whom have gained many years of experience in different aspects of the insurance market.
The nature of risk facing directors and officers of a company has evolved dramatically over the last decade. Traditional directors’ and officers’ policies used to provide enough protection to cover the company and its CEO, but this is no longer the case. In the age of digitisation and social media, companies and their CEOs are more vulnerable to reputational crises than ever before.
As an industry that requires a large amount of data from each client, the insurance industry is learning to leverage this data and use it to their - and their clients’ - advantage.
In November 2013, hailstorms in the north of South Africa resulted in claims worth more than R2 billion. More recently, the devastating Knysna fires, fanned by winds in excess of 50km/h, caused major damage in the Garden Route region. More than 26 fires broke out in at least 12 suburbs in the area. 10 000 people were evacuated from their homes and at least 500 homes were destroyed in the inferno. These fires are being called an act of God. In this blog, we take a look at what this term means along with the associated implications.
According to insurance underwriter Camargue, more than a third of South Africa’s companies have experienced data breaches and a staggering 974 million company records were lost or stolen in 2014.
Have you noticed that car insurance can vary quite a lot for the same kind of car depending on the insured and the insurer? In this blog, we discuss the factors insurers consider when determining what your car insurance premium will be, and what you can do to keep it to a minimum.
Millennials have been on the receiving end of a lot of negative publicity. We take a look at this young generation from an insurance perspective. What kind of insurance consumers are they and what are they looking for in their insurer or broker?
Fleet management is the administration of a company’s fleet of vehicles that are used to transport goods in the business’ daily operations. The South African fleet management market is growing rapidly, it is estimated that the percentage of business fleet vehicles will increase from 21.5% in 2015 to 32.5% in 2020. In South Africa, the freight industry still largely favours road transportation, as opposed to rail transportation, which explains the robust state of the industry.
Over the last two weeks, there have been lots of questions about how South Africa’s downgrade to junk status will affect consumers. Businesses and individuals are bracing themselves for the knock-on effect of the ratings downgrade.
Essentially, the ratings downgrade activated the rand’s devaluation. There is an inseparable link between the rand’s value, the interest rate and the inflation rate. Downward pressure on the one, over time, almost always negatively affects the other two.
Your home - and its contents - should always be insured to the full replacement cost, to avoid the risks of loss or damage due to theft, burglary, fire, flooding and more. More importantly, your home should be insured at the current replacement value to ensure you have sufficient insurance should something happen. This replacement value needs to be calculated regularly – at least annually – so that the value is always relevant.
Many South African businesses are not prepared for the unpredictable and dynamic risk that cyber-crime poses. Out-of-date data and system protection policies keep businesses at a disadvantage, in a risk category that is already difficult to forecast or mitigate.
As awareness around this growing threat increases, it is imperative to stay informed about the latest breach attacks and the recommended mitigation strategies.
Remote jamming – or car jamming – has become an everyday occurrence in South Africa - and it is on the increase. The South African Insurance Association (SAIA) confirmed that remote jamming is the second most common way personal belongings are stolen from a car.
A renowned study analysing the risks faced by corporates on a global scale, was released recently. This blog focuses on the findings of that study, in the ever-expanding and dynamic area of business interruption and its far-reaching effects.
Several severe, seasonal fires have ravaged the Western Cape over the last two months, fuelled by high temperatures and strong winds. At the same time, the north of South Africa has been battling heavy floods. Both have left trails of destruction in their wake - with the insurance industry expected to bear the financial burden. These phenomena illustrate just how vulnerable we all are to weather and fire catastrophes.
As we dive into 2017 with renewed energy, here are a few important insurance factors you should consider to ensure you’re comprehensively covered this year. Many people are predicting that this will be another tough economic year, but with careful planning and preparation you can protect yourself, your family and your valuables.
The ratings agency downgrade South Africa narrowly avoided last week was a stark reminder of the challenging business environment South African businesses face. Business owners should continuously scan the environment they operate in for possible risks – new and old – because, as the old adage reminds us: prevention is better than cure.
In this blog, we focus on the important - and often misunderstood - difference between gradual and accidental damage. It is imperative that everyone with insurance understands this difference and is aware of their obligation in terms of maintaining their own property, as well as other key policy exclusions that may result in the non-payment of a claim.
To make the distinction between gradual and accidental damage ask yourself this simple question: How quickly did the damage occur – suddenly or over time?
One of the most severe risks facing South African businesses is the increasing shortage of water. We are used to taking this precious resource for granted but as water shortages become a global reality, water’s growing commodity value is making it the new oil. Prolonged drought could also have a negative effect on electricity generation, further interrupting business operations.
The increasing popularity of drones for commercial and recreational use, makes this the latest technological advancement to fundamentally impact many industries - including the insurance industry. Although drones have innumerable uses, which can include bringing cost-cutting and efficiency benefits to your business, they also pose substantial new risks.
As South Africa enters hail season - from October to January - we look at the cover you need to protect your personal and business assets against hail damage. We also explore some precautions you can take to limit hail damage to your property.
The purpose of a broker is to offer personalised advice, get the best deal for you and be available to help you after the sale. Recent changes in the regulation of the financial services industry have resulted in an even more professional service from brokers. This benefits you - the consumer - as now there are a number of recourse routes available if you don’t get satisfactory service from your broker.
In this blog, we address some of the most important reasons you should work with a broker.
As we head towards summer and the festive season, the probability of having a few drinks and then driving becomes higher. Aside from facing a huge fine, a potential prison sentence and a criminal record - it is important to remember that your insurance company is under no obligation to meet your claim if you are under the influence of alcohol when you’re involved in an accident.
These days, businesses are increasingly falling victim to data breaches - so it is safe to assume that your business is also at risk of a cyber attack at any time. Most office employees use email and the Internet every day, making them your first line of defence against cyber crime - but also a soft target for cyber criminals.
In a previous blog discussed 10 types of insurance you need to insure your business against. One of the key business insurance options we listed in that blog was Fidelity Guarantee Insurance. Fidelity Guarantee Insurance protects your business from theft or any financial loss incurred from fraudulent activities or theft by your employees while they are employed by you.
Being under-insured can have serious - negative - financial implications when something goes wrong. People are under-insured for various reasons, many do not even realise they are under-insured, while others only insure the bare minimum to save money. Unfortunately you’ll only discover the true impact of being under-insured when you submit a claim and find that only a fraction of the replacement costs you require can be covered.
Installing a burglar alarm will improve your home security. The alarm system may need to be stipulated on your insurance policy, so it is best to check with your broker. It is your responsibility to ensure that you fully understand all the warranty requirements for your alarm system, as this will be vital to the success of your future claims.
The South African transport industry is a sizable - and growing - industry. It’s a specialised industry with specific requirements that present unique risks. This makes selecting effective, comprehensive insurance cover quite a challenge but very important.
To most of us winter conjures up cozy images of snuggling up on the couch with a movie and a warm beverage. However, from an insurance point of view, winter presents a number of insurance risks that may cause damage to your home.
Liability cover is a necessity for any business owner as without such cover, it can potentially have a devastating effect on a thriving business. Liability insurance provides protection from an array of risks and as a highly specialised insurance field; it is advisable to partner with an experienced and knowledgeable broker.
As a state-owned company, SASRIA SOC Limited is a short term insurer that provides cover for people and business with assets in South Africa against extraordinary risks. There is no other insurer that provides this kind of cover in South Africa. Their mandate is to provide cover against special risks such as strikes, lockouts, riots, civil commotion, labour disturbance, public disorder and terrorism.
In this blog, we clarify a few commonly misunderstood insurance terms:
Farmers in South Africa are facing tough circumstances: the lowest rainfall since 1904 was recorded in 2015, resulting in a devastating drought affecting the entire economy, especially the farmers. The impact of the drought on crop production was felt immediately; for livestock, it will take a bit longer to have effect as the product-to-feed ratio slowly weakens over time. The most powerful El Nino phenomenon on record has been playing out over the recent summer months and is being held responsible for the current drought crisis by global scientists.
The game and wildlife industry in South Africa is booming and has proved to be a good investment as it can offer very lucrative returns, sometimes outperforming commodities. As a relative new class of insurance, game insurance requires specialist knowledge and skills.
The day you start a business is the day you should get comprehensive insurance. Your business continuity risk increases as the business grows in capacity and output. If you are the only employee in your business, your business risk is relatively small compared to having a few employees on your team. One unexpected event such as an issue with your health that takes you away from your business can impact the productivity levels and ultimately your revenue. A legal incident such as non-compliance with health and safety requirements may potentially result in the unexpected closure of your business. The right insurance will protect your business from such threats.
Here is a list of the most important business insurance types that you will need to consider:
An upgrade to your home will positively affect the value of your home which will affect the insured value of your home. Therefore, when you are planning any renovations to your home, be sure to first call your insurance broker.
With its high accident and theft rates, hijackings, poor condition of some highways and other related risks, the South African car owner can barely afford not to have comprehensive vehicle insurance. When your household budget is under pressure, you may be tempted to decrease, or completely eliminate, expenses which you think you can do without. Financial products such as savings, insurance and investments typically fall into this category, probably due to its intangible nature. You can’t touch or hold peace of mind or financial well-being. Yet, these very products will support you best when you need it most.
Marine insurance is a contract of indemnification against marine losses incidental to the daily operations of running such a business. It protects the owners of cargo, vessels and third parties against loss of capital investments.
High value assets such as marine equipment and machinery need comprehensive insurance to safeguard future business. Full disclosure of material facts and circumstances are required by the insurer when marine insurance is requested. A true representation of all material facts is of vital importance for accurate risk management and the corresponding comprehensive cover.
As the volatile rand continues to decline against the US Dollar, South Africans need to ready themselves for the impact on the insured value of their belongings. The depreciating rand will affect the sum insured especially for imported items.
As one of the fastest growing and inclusive sports in South Africa, cycling is the new golf favoured by corporate companies to entertain clients. According to a leading supplier, South Africa “has the highest per capita spend on cycling equipment in the world”.
Considering that the cost for a reasonable bicycle is upwards of around R30 000 and at the top end, the cost can be as much as R200 000, cyclists need comprehensive insurance to cover this investment in quality sporting equipment.
In most cases, a short term insurance contract automatically gets renewed annually and if you, like most people, do not thoroughly review your policy every year, you may find yourself in a position where your possessions are over- or under-insured. It is important that you are insured for the correct amount as the replacement value of some of your possessions can change year on year and this variance needs to be managed.
As we have officially entered the festive season, it seems like everyone is heading to a holiday destination or travelling to be closer to family. By taking a few precautions before embarking on your journey, you are making the road safer for yourself and everyone else.
Nobody wants to go through the effort of submitting an insurance claim and having it rejected by your insurer due to factors that were preventable or within your control. To ensure a successful claim, your insurance policy must firstly be up to date and very specific, and you need to adhere to the terms and conditions in your policy.
It’s important not to waste time in submitting your claim and to initiate the claims process immediately after the damage, theft or break-in. Most insurers have a time limit by which claims need to be submitted, so it’s best to start the process as soon as you can.
This blog provides some key tips to successfully submitting your homeowner’s and car insurance claims
Travel insurance is just as important to your travel planning as your passport and tickets. Unfortunately, things can go wrong at any time and any place. In order to have peace of mind while travelling, it is essential to put adequate travel insurance in place for the safety and protection of you and your family.
Summer brings lovely, warmer days and for most of us it is the final stretch to the end of year holidays. As a result, we are more inclined to spend time outdoors in summer, enjoying the warmer summer evenings by going for sundowners or enjoying a braai. Unfortunately, drinking and driving is more prevalent in summer due to increased social activities. As the driver of a vehicle, we have an obligation to ourselves, our family as well as the other people in your car and on the road. The reality of driving while intoxicated and being involved in an accident is that liability falls on the negligent party and as such, your claim may be repudiated if it can be proven that you were driving under the influence of alcohol. A car accident without proper insurance, or where insurance was denied based on gross negligence, can potentially ruin the driver financially. With affordable taxi services like Uber, there really is no excuse for drinking and driving.
It is important to ensure that your personal vehicle insurance is in place to protect yourself in the event of a car accident. In addition, spending more time outdoors means that your home is being left unattended more often, so it’s important to ensure that your household insurance is up to date and sufficient and security measures are in place.
Recently, we had an experience where one of our clients received an email notifying her of a change in our banking details. Thankfully, the client got suspicious and phoned us to check the information she received which was indeed fraudulent. This prompted us to provide some more information and tips on how to identify such fraudulent correspondence and what to do when you suspect that you are the target of such an email or letter.
There are many risks associated with traditional cash handling methods and if your business offers a cash payment service, you need to be aware of these measures to avoid such risks.
High levels of unemployment and huge inequality in South Africa have led to crime being an unfortunate reality in our lives. In 2014, 11,129 cases of carjacking and 989 cases of truck jacking were reported by the SAPS. The positive is that according to national statistics, hijackings in South Africa are declining.
It is estimated that a large number of South African businesses are estimated not compliant with basic fire safety requirements, as business owners are either unaware of regulations or only comply with minimum requirements in order to save money.
There is a growing trend for the agricultural industry to be under-insured, or not insured at all, particularly when it comes to crops and livestock. Agricultural insurance is one of those expenses farmers will cut in an effort to reduce monthly business costs which provides short term relief but endangers farming operations in the long term.
The short-term insurance industry is undergoing fundamental change which is primarily driven by information technology. Not too long ago, customers bought all their insurance cover during face-to-face meetings from advisers through paper-based systems. Today, consumers research products online and the next generation of insurance buyers will be buying more products online, including insurance.
As a business owner, you need to contemplate the worst case scenario to ensure that you are adequately prepared for all the challenges that may affect your business. Unforeseen events and natural disasters are one of the potential threats that you need to be prepared for as it can potentially spell the end of your business.
In November 2014, the Financial Services Board (FSB) initiated a Retail Distribution Review (RDR) to introduce some reforms to the regulatory framework that would ensure fair treatment of customers and responsible dispensing of advice by financial intermediaries. The review was a response to concerns regarding the role of broker consultants and financial advisers in giving financial advice and their motivation for recommending financial products. Part of the concern was that the needs of the consumer weren’t always the main motivating factor as lucrative incentives often played a distracting role.