Local news for southwest Florida including the Naples and Fort Myers areas, reported that business closures and other protective measures due to the coronavirus were having a huge impact on the area’s economy

Local university finds that businesses were devastated by the virus and government restrictions

Florida Gulf Coast University conducted a study and found that over 63% of small businesses in Lee, Collier, and Charlotte counties saw demand drop by over 50% in March of 2020. Many of these businesses may not be able to utilize business interruption insurance or a similar claims process to recover losses, because there was no physical damage to their property. If the business has under 25 employees, the drop in demand was usually at least 70% for most of the companies studied. 

This research was requested by Lee County’s government to get a clearer picture of how the coronavirus and business restrictions affected the area, and justify the region’s requests for additional government funding. An economist from the university said that these findings are a big deal because so much of the region’s economy depends on small businesses providing products and services. He believes that the impact on the region’s economy and small businesses in particular could be the main lasting legacy of the virus for a few southwest Florida counties, who mostly avoided large outbreaks.  

The record low levels of demand and concerns about safety even caused the temporary closure of some businesses that were not required to do so. Some figured it was better to close for a few weeks rather than risk infected employees or lawsuits. Local business experts estimate that a large portion of these companies simply will not survive the closures. The region may depend on the attractive environment of the Gulf Coast of Florida to bring in new business owners after the pandemic ends. 

There is widespread agreement that larger firms and national chain locations in the area will be able to sustain losses more easily. However, Florida’s tourism industry was greatly affected statewide, and it will essentially be impossible to make up for an entire lost season without some kind of government assistance. 

Getting help after a claim denial

Many standard business insurance policies may not cover losses related to coronavirus. Even in situations when there is property damage due to hurricanes and flooding in Florida, insurance companies still try to find excuses to avoid paying claims. It is important to talk with a legal professional to make sure that these companies are acting within their rights and not denying legitimate claims

Insurance attorneys in your city can help

There are lawyers in Florida who can assist you with dealing with the insurance process, including claim denials and any other foul play from your provider. To learn more, contact:

The Law Offices of Michael M. Raheb, P.A.

2423 First Street, Fort Myers, FL 33901

866-949-0888

www.michaelraheb.com 

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