The role insurance plays in reducing risk to farms
As you prepare for summer, here are some vital insurance tips for farmers to consider to reduce risk.
Spring has sprung and summer is just around the corner. For many, this is a time when crops are harvested and preparations are made to protect farms from the threat of bushfire. If past seasons are any guide, the threat from bushfire is apparent earlier and earlier each year and it lasts longer – well into autumn in some cases.
This threat is not new and most farmers these days have bushfire plans in place, fire breaks attended to and other mitigation in place. Fuel loads should be monitored and reduced, if at all possible, with particular attention paid to areas around homes and farm buildings. Machinery maintenance should be a priority to reduce the threat of ignition and, of course, care must be taken when using machinery in hot or dry conditions. Apart from being sensible practice, it is often a requirement for your insurance policy to respond (see below).
Most farmers are on top of these things these days but what role can insurance play to reduce the risk to a farmers’ assets and livelihood?
Insurance is all about risk transfer – what you retain yourself and what you choose to transfer to an insurer.
Firstly, most policies have conditions that require the insured (farmer) to take all precautions to care, maintain and protect their property, and to comply with any laws, by-laws, regulations, statutory obligations imposed by public authorities.
If a fire or harvesting or movement of machinery ban is in place, for instance, your policy may not respond if you are operating machinery or lighting a fire in contravention of that ban. You must also maintain machinery and property in good condition.
Secondly, it is a great idea to run your eyes over your current policy schedule. Pay particular attention to sums insured for Farm Buildings / Contents. Do they represent the current replacement cost?
Also, look at Machinery and Homes including Contents. Review your Motor / Machinery schedule and make sure any recent additions (or deletions) have been noted. Review sums insured.
Often, there are seasonal increases in Hay and Grain (and sometimes Livestock) stored on farm at this time of the year. The values are up, so please make sure the sums insured reflect what you have on the farm. Most policies will compensate you for the market value of the hay, grain or livestock at the time of the loss, providing your sum insured is adequate.
You do not need to wait until your policy falls due to make any changes or increases.
A modest investment now could pay dividends in the event of a fire or a storm damage claim. Consider scheduling a review meeting with your trusted Insurance Broker to discuss.
If you have a current insurance policy, whether it be with Ausure or somewhere else, we invite you to contact us to discuss your insurance questions or concerns. Ausure advisers take the time to understand your individual circumstances and provide you with tailor-made insurance solutions that work for you. Contact Ausure today by calling us on 1300 587 225, completing the form below, or finding a broker here.
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