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Risks you’d rather direct elsewhere, but can’t

Directors and Officers (D&Os) of companies face a lot of responsibility. The game has changed in light of Covid-19, with many new risks arising.


Landscape for loss

Many jobs have been lost due to the economic fall-out we’re facing. Even though a lot of this has been unavoidable, a disgruntled former employee could decide their process of termination wasn’t fair. They could allege that your planning in the crisis was unsatisfactory, and that this negligence was actually the root cause of the company having to downsize the workforce.

As you may have to retrench or reduce salaries, litigation can come your way. In terms of the companies act, stakeholders may try to recover any losses and could even seek remuneration from a D&O. 

D&Os must also have awareness about cyber risk as we continue to balance the working-from-home revolution. It is their responsibility to consider this when making the call to work remotely or not. 

Any new risks on the horizon that could affect the business should also be communicated to shareholders. It’s essential to articulate how a cyber-related mistake can impact your business, as a key example.



Here are FIVE more ways to mitigate risk. 

1) Prioritise director training

Just because D&Os are generally at the top of the food chain, doesn’t mean they don’t need training. Be sure that all risks are properly considered, that training takes place as to how a risk will be managed, and that a plan is in place for any eventuality. 

2) Keep a record

Minutes from meetings (even online) and record-keeping must be prioritised too. These steps will have a direct impact on protecting your reputation, and are a useful reminder that bad behaviour can go on record too!

3) Get expert insight

Seeking the advice of your financial adviser, as well as health and safety compliance professionals can make all the difference in a pandemic world. You might not be able to truly consider the risks you are facing without some third-party insight. 

4) Be strict

Strict governance and communication needs to be in place. A good example would be a robust cyber policy with rules that everyone has to follow. Cyber related claims due to a lack of security in remote working environments, or when some employees are at home and some at the office, are becoming more common in the new working world we find ourselves in.

5) Get covered

There is incredible responsibility resting on the shoulders of a D&O, which is why short-term insurance cover can really assist to ease some of the burden. D&O liability insurance is one aspect that can become critical to have in place, and should be addressed with your adviser. Like an invisible safety net, it can make all the difference in a time when no one is really sure what could happen next.

 For any assistance or advice regarding Directors and Officers Liability please contact us on
031-5021922 or visit our website www.esbrokers.co.za




 We would like to thank PSG for writing the article on behalf of  Digital Cover magazine.

Risks you’d rather direct elsewhere, but can’t

Directors and Officers (D&Os) of companies face a lot of responsibility. The game has changed in light of Covid-19, with many new risks arising.


Landscape for loss

Many jobs have been lost due to the economic fall-out we’re facing. Even though a lot of this has been unavoidable, a disgruntled former employee could decide their process of termination wasn’t fair. They could allege that your planning in the crisis was unsatisfactory, and that this negligence was actually the root cause of the company having to downsize the workforce.

As you may have to retrench or reduce salaries, litigation can come your way. In terms of the companies act, stakeholders may try to recover any losses and could even seek remuneration from a D&O. 

D&Os must also have awareness about cyber risk as we continue to balance the working-from-home revolution. It is their responsibility to consider this when making the call to work remotely or not. 

Any new risks on the horizon that could affect the business should also be communicated to shareholders. It’s essential to articulate how a cyber-related mistake can impact your business, as a key example.



Here are FIVE more ways to mitigate risk. 

1) Prioritise director training

Just because D&Os are generally at the top of the food chain, doesn’t mean they don’t need training. Be sure that all risks are properly considered, that training takes place as to how a risk will be managed, and that a plan is in place for any eventuality. 

2) Keep a record

Minutes from meetings (even online) and record-keeping must be prioritised too. These steps will have a direct impact on protecting your reputation, and are a useful reminder that bad behaviour can go on record too!

3) Get expert insight

Seeking the advice of your financial adviser, as well as health and safety compliance professionals can make all the difference in a pandemic world. You might not be able to truly consider the risks you are facing without some third-party insight. 

4) Be strict

Strict governance and communication needs to be in place. A good example would be a robust cyber policy with rules that everyone has to follow. Cyber related claims due to a lack of security in remote working environments, or when some employees are at home and some at the office, are becoming more common in the new working world we find ourselves in.

5) Get covered

There is incredible responsibility resting on the shoulders of a D&O, which is why short-term insurance cover can really assist to ease some of the burden. D&O liability insurance is one aspect that can become critical to have in place, and should be addressed with your adviser. Like an invisible safety net, it can make all the difference in a time when no one is really sure what could happen next.

 For any assistance or advice regarding Directors and Officers Liability please contact us on
031-5021922 or visit our website www.esbrokers.co.za




 We would like to thank PSG for writing the article on behalf of  Digital Cover magazine.

Risks you’d rather direct elsewhere, but can’t

Directors and Officers (D&Os) of companies face a lot of responsibility. The game has changed in light of Covid-19, with many new risks arising.


Landscape for loss

Many jobs have been lost due to the economic fall-out we’re facing. Even though a lot of this has been unavoidable, a disgruntled former employee could decide their process of termination wasn’t fair. They could allege that your planning in the crisis was unsatisfactory, and that this negligence was actually the root cause of the company having to downsize the workforce.

As you may have to retrench or reduce salaries, litigation can come your way. In terms of the companies act, stakeholders may try to recover any losses and could even seek remuneration from a D&O. 

D&Os must also have awareness about cyber risk as we continue to balance the working-from-home revolution. It is their responsibility to consider this when making the call to work remotely or not. 

Any new risks on the horizon that could affect the business should also be communicated to shareholders. It’s essential to articulate how a cyber-related mistake can impact your business, as a key example.



Here are FIVE more ways to mitigate risk. 

1) Prioritise director training

Just because D&Os are generally at the top of the food chain, doesn’t mean they don’t need training. Be sure that all risks are properly considered, that training takes place as to how a risk will be managed, and that a plan is in place for any eventuality. 

2) Keep a record

Minutes from meetings (even online) and record-keeping must be prioritised too. These steps will have a direct impact on protecting your reputation, and are a useful reminder that bad behaviour can go on record too!

3) Get expert insight

Seeking the advice of your financial adviser, as well as health and safety compliance professionals can make all the difference in a pandemic world. You might not be able to truly consider the risks you are facing without some third-party insight. 

4) Be strict

Strict governance and communication needs to be in place. A good example would be a robust cyber policy with rules that everyone has to follow. Cyber related claims due to a lack of security in remote working environments, or when some employees are at home and some at the office, are becoming more common in the new working world we find ourselves in.

5) Get covered

There is incredible responsibility resting on the shoulders of a D&O, which is why short-term insurance cover can really assist to ease some of the burden. D&O liability insurance is one aspect that can become critical to have in place, and should be addressed with your adviser. Like an invisible safety net, it can make all the difference in a time when no one is really sure what could happen next.

 For any assistance or advice regarding Directors and Officers Liability please contact us on
031-5021922 or visit our website www.esbrokers.co.za




 We would like to thank PSG for writing the article on behalf of  Digital Cover magazine.

Revealed – Marine insurance losses for Beirut blast



Insurance claims for damages to ships, goods and the port of Beirut following a warehouse explosion there last week are likely to total less than $250 million, according to an estimate from reinsurance broker Guy Carpenter.

Total insured losses, including property damage, from the August 04 event – in which more than 2,000 tons of ammonium nitrate exploded – could reach around $3 billion, Reuters reported. The explosion killed at least at least 163 people and injured more than 6,000.

Guy Carpenter said that its vessel-tracking data showed that 10 ships were within 1.6 kilometers of the explosion, Reuters reported.

“We expect those vessels would have incurred damages,” Guy Carpenter said. “Many other vessels were within a radius where sporadic damage may have occurred.”

While there was still “substantial uncertainty” about insured losses, early analysis indicated that hull, cargo and port facility losses would be less than $250 million, Reuters reported. While insurance penetration in Lebanon is low, commercial and industrial properties near the Beirut port were likely covered by international insurers, the report said.


Most of the insurance losses from the explosion would likely be related to wider property damage in Beirut, the newswire said. Liberty Mutual said it expected claims of between $25 million and $50 million.

Are your assets covered against the risks of Explosion?
For professional advice on tailor made insurance policies visit our website and leave your details
www.esbrokers.co.za


Article courtesy of Insurance business America written by Ryan Smith

These are the safest cars to drive in South Africa for under R200,000

The Automobile Association has published its Entry-Level Vehicle Safety Report for 2020, highlighting the budget cars with the best safety features in South Africa.

The 27 vehicles surveyed were evaluated against the number of active safety features they have including anti-lock braking systems, electronic stability control, and passive safety features such as airbags.

Points are awarded to vehicles for the existence of each of the active and passive safety features. Additional points are awarded to vehicles crash tested under the NCAP system, in this case Global NCAP’s #SaferCarsforAfrica programme.

The 27 vehicles were then categorised into three groups based on their safety ratings.

In terms of true safety points attained, points of 20 or less are considered as having ‘poor’ safety. Safety points between 20 and 50 can be considered as having ‘moderate’ safety, and safety points of 50 and above can be considered as having ‘acceptable’ safety.

In 2020, seven vehicles fall under the ‘poor safety’ category, 16 vehicles fall under the ‘moderate safety’ category, and ten vehicles fall under the ‘acceptable’ category.



Toyota (two cars), Volkswagen (one car), Kia (one car), Honda (one car) and Peugeot (one car) had all their entry-level vehicles score within the acceptable range.

The Peugeot 108 received the highest safety rating of 110 points. The Peugeot 108 was the only entry-level vehicle to include a curtain airbag, and it was also the only vehicle to include all safety features considered in this report.

The vehicle would probably have obtained a higher score had it been crash-tested, the AA said.



The association said it is encouraging that 26 of the 27 vehicles are equipped with Anti-lock Braking Systems (ABS) and that 26 vehicles have front driver and passenger airbags.

The least common safety feature was curtain airbags (only one vehicle) and side airbags (only three vehicles).

“We repeat the call we made then for the government to urgently review current minimum standards which are simply not good enough and to press for the mandatory inclusion of these technologies in all vehicles, including those at the entry-level,” the group said.

“A significant finding of this year’s report is that only three of the vehicles are equipped with Electronic Stability Control.

“This is particularly concerning as ESC is a proven technology which can reduce road crashes. It’s astonishing and discouraging that so few vehicles come equipped with this technology as standard for entry-level vehicles.”

 

 

Article courtesy of Businesstech
(This article is posted with the intention of the safety features and test results and not promoting any one particular vehicle brand)

5 Reasons fleet maintenance is so important for your business



 

It makes business sense to have in place a regularly run fleet maintenance management system. It has a direct influence on how smoothly a business runs – and that ultimately impacts the bottom line.

Fleet maintenance is all about preserving the condition of the vehicles you use for business purposes. Keeping these assets in tip-top condition is an integral part of maintaining business processes.

A maintenance hiccup (unscheduled downtime) could result in interruptions that ultimately cost your business valuable time and money. Such losses impede the ability for growth, so having a smoothly run fleet maintenance plan stands to benefit the overall productivity of a business.

So, what does fleet maintenance entail?

A maintenance management system should factor in two key areas – a proactive and reactive approach:

Proactive: Preventative maintenance needs – By regularly checking the condition of business vehicles, the likelihood of ad-hoc repairs or breakdowns can be reduced. This helps to minimise the need for emergency expenditures, which can become costly.  Preventative maintenance can be conducted annually or according to vehicle mileage – whichever best serves a business’ purposes while keeping vehicles in good condition.

Reactive: Immediate / emergency maintenance needs – This helps to take care of problems as they arise. Having a plan to take care of immediate needs allows for necessary fixing to be done as needed so that the usual flow of work can be resumed within a short period of time. Having regular preventative maintenance can help reduce the frequency of emergency maintenance and save money over the long term



How regular fleet maintenance saves you in the long run

Fleet maintenance done well has the following benefits for a business:

Extends the lifespan of business vehicles

Proactive maintenance of the mechanical function of vehicles ensures that fewer breakdowns occur. This helps to reduce the need for repair downtime. The longer a vehicle is in for repair and not operating, the more opportunities are lost to conduct business and make money. Regular maintenance is like a health check for business vehicles – ensuring that they are always in roadworthy condition and perform as they are supposed to.

A well-maintained vehicle means that its lifespan can be extended and can better serve business objectives more often, without incurring additional, oftentimes unplanned, costs. Certain problems requiring attention can also be picked up early and repaired sooner. Preventative measures are thus a better investment for business, where money is spent productively without experiencing unnecessary losses.

Reduces operating costs

Vehicles that are well serviced and maintained are more roadworthy and thus, less likely to be involved in road accidents as a result of mechanical faults or electrical failure. This can quickly accumulate additional costs including vehicle repairs, legal expenses, productivity losses, medical care for staff or even property damage expenses and the cost of damaged products.

This, in turn, has an impact on car insurance cover as businesses with fewer claims can pay lower premiums and cover remains affordable for them.

Ensures the safety of drivers

It goes without saying that vehicles in good working order are in a safer condition to be driven. By ensuring that vehicles are in their best operational condition, risk for mechanical- or electrical-related accidents can be significantly reduced.

Maintenance checks ensure that things like tyres are always in good condition too, thereby avoiding blowouts while on the road. Steering and suspension problems can also be avoided with regular checks, and this can avoid unnecessary road accidents and keep drivers safe.  Such risks are, in essence, preventable.

Enhances business productivity

Interruptions to business operations means that requirements and objectives aren’t fulfilled as needed. Deliveries or appointments which may be missed or have to be rescheduled due to interruption can have an impact on the overall product or service delivery of a business.

Failure to fulfil these obligations due to interruptions which could have been better prevented can ultimately impact customer relations and brand reputation.

Retains customers

If a business develops a reputation for non-delivery of product or service expectations, this can have a negative impact on its customer base. If customers or suppliers begin to distrust a business, they could look to competitors for better service.

Customers can become the fall-out consequence of poor maintenance operations if a business’s focus is more consistently on “fixing what’s broken” than establishing growth and a favourable reputation within its respective market.



 

How to save more with proper maintenance

Maintaining business vehicles doesn’t come without a cost. The costs of replacing vehicle parts such as tyres can quickly add up. A proactive approach to vehicle maintenance minimises unnecessary business interruptions, but what if you could save on these costs of vehicle maintenance?

Speak to us about mechanical and electrical breakdown for your vehicles older than 3 years, thats a good starting point.
www.esbrokers.co.za




Article produced by Discovery Business Insurance

THE DO'S AND DONT'S OF MAKING A CLAIM

Claiming on home insurance is often a straightforward process, especially with smaller claims. However, if a claim is larger and more complicated, you’re going to need to put in a fair amount of effort in to be certain it turns out in the way you hope.

insurances naturally want to ensure a claim is fair and that the claimant has met the policy requirements. Depending on the nature of the claim this can be anything from meeting the minimum required standard of home maintenance to not being unduly careless with possessions when inside or away from the home.

When a claim involves larger sums, the insurer usually sends out a loss adjustor to make an assessment, so following procedures and getting together as much evidence as possible in support of a claim is crucial.


What to do, and what not to do


Do:

  • Check your insurance policy carefully before making a claim – This will help you avoid unnecessary disappointment and effort if you’re not actually covered for whatever has gone wrong. Check exclusions, claim limits and your excess level particularly carefully.
  • Contact your insurer as soon as possible – You should contact your insurer as soon as you possibly can after an incident has occurred. There are deadlines in most home cover policies for how long you have before a claim becomes void and can’t be made.
  • Have all your details to hand – Try and get together all the home insurance documentation you have when you contact your insurer, it will help avoid unnecessary delays and misunderstandings.
  • Take photographs – Photographs can provide some of the most powerful evidence in support of a claim. Whether you’ve had something stolen, or part (or maybe all!) of your home damaged, take plenty of photographs. And if you can also get your hands on photographs from before the incident, if relevant, it will give the insurer a clear comparison.
  • Keep receipts – If you have any emergency work done which can’t be avoided without first contacting your insurer, make sure you keep the receipts and invoices. Likewise, if you have items valued, keep the valuations in a safe place as they can act as both proof of ownership and a good reference for replacement value.
  • Be clear and don’t embellish – It might be tempting to embellish on what actually happened in the hope of strengthening your claim, and while you might not be lying as such, it would impact negatively on your claim if the insurer felt you were deliberately pushing for more than you’re perhaps due.
  • Contact the police if it’s a crime – If you’ve been robbed, or had your property damaged by malicious behaviour, you should contact the police immediately (again, delaying could negatively impact on a claim). You’ll be given a crime reference number which you need as part of any claim you subsequently make.

Don’t

  • Accept a claim settlement if you’re not happy with it – Contact your insurer and ask how they arrived at the settlement. If you’re not happy with the outcome, write to the insurer and explain why you’re not happy with the offer, and what you want them to do. If they don’t make you a new offer, you should take it to the financial ombudsman.
  • Organise non-emergency repairs without checking with your insurer – If you organise repairs which couldn’t be considered ‘emergency’ in nature without first consulting with the insurer and getting their agreement, you risk invalidating any claim (e.g. a big hole in a supporting wall would be an ‘emergency’, but a hole in a ceiling might not be).
  • Dispose of damaged goods before the insurer has seen them and agreed it – It might be tempting to start clearing up and throwing away spoiled items as soon as you can, but these will probably form part of a claim, and an insurer needs to see the items first. Keep them somewhere safe until your insurer confirms you’re ok to throw them away.
  • Claim for small sums which spoil your no claims bonus – Some claims just aren’t worth making if they ruin your no claims bonus, or no claims discount as it is also called (this builds up over a number of years if you don’t make a claim). A claim might be for, say, £200, but this may be less than the no claims bonus is worth.
  • Claim for small sums which are less than your excess – It’s common sense really, but there’s no point making a claim if it’s for the same or less than the excess you have to pay (the ‘excess’ being the first part of any claim that the insured has to pay).

Gas installations should be safe for your Home, family & workers



All of us have probably at some point experienced load shedding and power failures, and having an alternative power source available can certainly make life easier.

It is exactly the unpredictability of a continuous electricity supply and the high cost thereof, that lead to people obtaining electricity from alternative power sources. As a result, the use of gas appliances, solar panels and generators in homes and on farms has become increasingly popular and has increased considerably over the past few years.

One of the cheaper options is the use of Liquefied Petroleum (LP) gas for heating and food preparation. While gas is generally a safe product to work with, it can pose a risk (just like any fuel) when used or installed incorrectly.



Dangers

Gas incidents occur due to human error, such as incorrect use and faulty installation, as well as the lack of maintenance, which can result in explosions, fires and the inhalation of carbon monoxide.

Other possible causes of these LP gas risks include:

·       Poor pipelines and connections.

·       Damaged or rusted cylinders.

·       A cylinder too close to a heat source, and

·       Cylinders that are stored incorrectly.

If gas does not burn properly or is used in an area without adequate ventilation, it produces excess carbon monoxide. When inhaled, oxygen is reduced in the blood and this can lead to dizziness, headaches, nausea, chest and abdominal pain, unconsciousness, and in extreme cases, even death.

That is why it is very important to be aware of these dangers, as well as the legislation and regulations that apply to fixed gas installations, such as a built-in gas stove, hot water system, gas fireplaces and gas burners etc.


Applicable law

The specific legislation regulating gas installations is contained in the Occupational Health and Safety Act of 1993 (as amended).

Certificate of conformity (CoC)

Since October 2009, it has been mandatory for a certificate of conformity (CoC) to be issued for fixed gas installations by an authorised person registered with the Liquefied Petroleum Gas Safety Association of South Africa (LPGAS) as a gas practitioner for the specific gas installation.

The certificate confirms that the gas installation complies with the requirements of the legislation and meets the necessary South African National Standards (SANS) regulations, and is, therefore, safe.

The South African Gas Qualification and Certification Committee (SAQCCGas) is authorised to register gas practitioners as competent within a specific scope of work.

Possible implications

An LP gas installation without a valid certificate will make the installation illegal and possibly unsafe, and can lead to serious consequences, especially in the event of injuries or death.

If a fire or explosion should occur due to a gas leak, incorrect/faulty installation or maintenance, and there is no up-to-date conformity certificate available, your insurance company may also repudiate your claim.

Be proactive

Protect yourself, your family, workers and visitors by being proactive and make sure you comply.

For further information or assistance pertaining to Gas installations please visit our website
www.esbrokers.co.za.

This article is intended to provide information and not any advice or legal advice. Written by Liza De Beer Old Mutual Insure

 

Latest hijacking trends: Motorists warned about ‘ATM’ method

Since June, a significant trend has emerged in hijacking incidents, where criminals essentially try to 'double-up' on their illegal activity.



Although hijacking isn’t a crime that is unique to South Africa, it’s prevalence in this country has made it an important part of the national discourse. Motor vehicle crime may have decreased during lockdown, but a loosening of restrictions has invited the crooks back onto our streets – and a new ‘trend’ is emerging.

Anti-crime advocate Yusuf Abramjee has made a name for himself in the world of law enforcement. According to the activist, a recent spate of hijackings suggests that these opportunistic thugs are no longer satisfied with just stealing the motor and any personal possessions. But rather, they are now taking victims to ATM machines, adding to their criminal rap sheets.

LATEST HIJACKING TRENDS IN SOUTH AFRICA

Once the targets have been driven to the nearest cash point, they are being forced to take cash out of their bank and hand it over to the robbers. Although this isn’t strictly a new ‘method’, the trend itself has spiked since June, putting authorities and motorists on high alert. Abramjee told Pretoria Rekord:

“We are observing dramatic increases in hijackings and motor-vehicle theft – criminal syndicates are at work. We’re also seeing more hijackers taking victims as hostages and forcing them to withdraw cash from ATMs before freeing them.”

“This is extremely concerning and it is bound to get worse. Our unemployment rates are soaring due to the effect that the lockdown has had on our economy and criminals are getting desperate.”



HOW TO AVOID GETTING CARJACKED

All vehicle owners are being implored to keep valuables out of sight when parked, ensure that their doors are locked even while in transit, and avoid stopping at the side of the road for long periods. Motorists must stay vigilant at all times, and in the month of July, we’ve seen hijackings reach new extremes:

§  Driveway carjackings surged, as criminals adapted to the new “work from home” culture created by lockdown.

§  A pair of criminal suspects hijacked a van carrying COVID-19 samples, causing a testing backlog in PE.

§  And, just this week, another hijacking attempt at a petrol station was recorded.

Visit our website for more details www.esbrokers.co.za

 

Article courtesy of The South African on-line

Validity of Licenses pertaining to vehicles following lock down



We have received numerous questions relating to the “validity” of licenses pertaining to vehicles during the “lock down” period and how claims are being dealt with.

 

Regulation 6 [Validity period of licences] of Notice 544 of Government Gazette 43339 of 20 May 2020 [Extending the validity of learners’ licences, driving licences, licence discs, professional driving permits, and registrations of motor vehicles] has been amended, as follows:

 

1)     All learner’s licences, driving licence cards, temporary driving licences and professional driving permits that expire during 26 March 2020 up to 31 August 2020 are deemed to be valid and their validity period is extended for a further grace period ending on 31 January 2021.

 

2)     All motor vehicle licence discs, temporary permits and roadworthy certificates that expired during 26 March 2020 until 31 May 2020 are deemed to be valid and their validity period is extended for a further grace period ending on 31 August 2020.

 

3)     Motor trade number licences that expired during 26 March 2020 until 31 May 2020 are deemed to be valid and are extended for a further grace period ending on 30 November 2020.




These extensions have been signed off by the Minister of Transport, Fikile Mbalula and Gazetted on 22 July 2020.

 

All motor claims will be dealt within the scope provided above and will not be delayed due the “expiry” of mentioned licenses.

We trust that this will clarify the uncertainties regarding the renewal process of the various licenses mentioned above and the claims handling process.

 

If you have any questions feel free to visit our website www.esbrokers.co.za
A copy of the gazette is also available on request.

Article courtesy of our Business partners,  Brolink Administrators