Whether it’s a child’s birthday party, a corporate event, or a wedding, events of all kinds often depend on the help of party rental companies to make it an event to remember. Sometimes, people just need a few basic things like chairs, tables, or tents for a graduation party or a wedding reception. But in other cases, they might want other things to help make their party even more special, like inflatable bounce houses, photo booths, special furniture, and decorative elements.
For businesses that are part of the event industry, spring and summer are typically very busy seasons thanks to things like weddings and festivals. But as the coronavirus pandemic continued to spread, countless planned events were put on hold for the foreseeable future. Even annual events like proms and graduations weren’t immune from being cancelled in 2020.
How COVID-19 Impacted Event Rental Companies
When restrictions went into place limiting large gatherings, event rental companies saw several months of planned events being cancelled/postponed. In March 2020, a survey by Rental Equipment Register showed that all party and event rental businesses that responded were experiencing a loss of business to some degree because of the pandemic. About 55% of respondents said they were experiencing business losses of 60% or more compared to 2019.
At first, many people were optimistic that things might start to return to normal by late summer fall. But as things progressed, it became clear that events which had been planned for later in the year would be impacted as well. Given the amount of uncertainty surrounding the pandemic, it’s not clear when people who work in the events industry can expect things to return to normal. Once restrictions on large gatherings are lifted, it will likely take some time before people feel comfortable enough to go out and be part of them.
Even with restrictions in place for large gatherings, some event rental companies have been able to generate some revenue through tent rentals. As some types of activities resume, they’re often being moved outdoors, making places like restaurants and schools in need of outdoor tents to cover their open-air classrooms and dining areas. Some rental companies have also been able to carry on business to some extent by making their tents available for outdoor COVID-19 testing locations.
Some owners of companies that rent out inflatable bounce houses have still been able to keep business going to a limited extent during this time. Even if parties and other events are on hold for the remainder of the year, some parents have been renting bounce houses for their kids as a way to have fun at home after having so many of their plans for the year cancelled.
Branching into virtual events has been another option for some party rental companies. If they have a large selection of decorative items available to rent, it can be easy for rental companies to create sets for things like virtual fundraisers, webinars, and product launch videos.
What Rental Companies Should Know About COVID-19 Business Interruption Insurance Claims
Party rental companies can face a lot of risks to their business, between the possibility of employees getting hurt on the job, the potential for damage to company property, and the transportation of equipment to and from events. And when contracted events end up being cancelled, it can end up being a big financial loss for the company.
Companies that are part of the events industry know to expect some cancellations here and there, but even people who have been in the industry for decades have never had to deal with the amount of cancellations caused by the coronavirus pandemic To protect themselves in the event that they need to temporarily shut down their business, many companies have business insurance policies that include business interruption and/or civil authority coverage.
Business interruption insurance helps cover monetary losses and operating costs that come up during a temporary business closure. For example, if your warehouse and equipment were damaged by a fire, business interruption insurance would cover things like employee payroll, rent/mortgage payments, and utility bills. Civil authority insurance is very similar to business interruption insurance, but specifically applies when businesses need to close because of a government order.
Because of the pandemic, many business owners have been trying to make claims on their business interruption and/or civil authority insurance policies and are very often being denied. With the sheer volume of claims coming in, insurance carriers are trying their hardest to deny as many claims as possible. Some business owners have reported that their insurers have discouraged them from even trying to make a claim.
Help with California Business Interruption Claims
If you’ve tried making a claim for business interruption benefits and been denied, you definitely aren’t alone. Many lawsuits have already been filed over denied business interruption claims and that number is only going to keep growing the longer the pandemic continues.
We understand how difficult it can be to deal with insurance companies. And at a time like this, you need to focus on taking care of your business. Let us help with your claim. The Wallace Firm is now helping California business with business interruption claims for losses caused by COVID-19. Whether you’re still getting ready to make a claim or have already made a claim and been denied, we can help. We’re handling these cases on a contingency basis, so you won’t be charged anything unless we help you get the benefits you need. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.