This page updated May 14, 2020.
The Delaware Department of Insurance has compiled information in response to several frequently asked questions. Select a question below to view responses. This page will be updated.
General Insurance Questions
Several types of insurance have provisions and exclusions that may be triggered as a result of COVID-19, including health, travel, life, annuities, business interruption, event cancellation, worker’s compensation, general liability, and directors and officers liability. As with all insurance policies, you should review your policy documents, contact your insurance agent or broker for assistance, or connect with with the Department of Insurance if you have questions. View the NAIC COVID-19 and Insurance guide
for more information.
You should contact your insurance company.
Governor John Carney issued his sixth modification to the State of Emergency on March 24, 2020
requiring companies to be flexible with requiring premium payments and defer cancellations. Delaware’s insurance carriers are required to freeze cancellations and nonrenewal of policies that might have otherwise occurred due to non-payment of premiums through the duration of the Delaware state of emergency for individuals who have been laid off or fired due to the state of emergency or organizations who have had to close or significantly reduce business. More information is available in our bulletin to the insurance industry, Bulletin No. 116
If you have scheduled automatic payments through your insurer or your bank, be sure to turn them off if you have negotiated a payment grace period with your insurance agent/broker or insurance company.
If you are having trouble communicating with your insurance company, call the Department’s Consumer Hotline at 1-800-282-8611 or 302-674-7300 or file a complaint online
Visit the Coalition Against Insurance Fraud webpage to learn about about COVID-19 scams and how to protect yourself and your family from them. If you suspect you are the victim of an insurance scam or fraud, call our Fraud Hotline at 1-800-632-5154 or 302-674-7350, or email email@example.com.
Federal agencies have also shared information, including:
The following Federal Communications Commission (FCC) websites also contain additional information on scams:
For assistance, call our Consumer Hotline at 1-800-282-8611 or 302-674-7300, or email firstname.lastname@example.org
. At this time, we are not taking in-person meetings.
For complaints, you can also fill out our complaint form and upload any relevant documents, and one of our investigators will contact you as soon as possible after you submit your form.
Some prescription drug plans are relaxing the way customers can order their prescription drugs, including allowing 90-day refills and expanding mail-order or delivery options. You can find your health insurance company in AHIP’s archive of company commitments
to find out more. Additionally, insurers may have information on their FAQ pages:
If a change in income or insurance coverage is impacting your ability to manage your diabetes, you can reach out to Healthy Delaware
‘s Delaware Helpline, which provides referrals for residents in need of diabetes services, medications, or supplies. The Delaware Helpline phone number is 1-800-560-3372.
You can use telemedicine and telehealth to contact your doctors, including your primary care provider, mental health care providers, and other doctors whom you would normally see in person. You do not have to have seen a provider in-person or before relevant services may be provided, per the Governor’s orders, and if you are a Delaware resident who is out-of-state for some reason, you can still receive these services.
If you had employer-sponsored health insurance but are no longer covered because your employer has permanently closed, you may be eligible to enroll in the health insurance marketplace
. Loss of group insurance can create a qualifying enrollment event. You must enroll within 60 days from when your employer-issued health insurance ended. You can contact a local navigator,
, or call (800) 318-2596.
You can contact a local navigator,
, or call (800) 318-2596 to see if you are eligible for cost sharing and premium tax credits based on your income. In some cases, you may also be eligible for Medicaid. Depending on your 2019 tax return and your income to date, you may have to estimate what your income will be for the tax filing year of 2020. If you are eligible for tax credits and cost sharing, it will be reflected in reduced premium and deductible amounts.
If you already contacted a local navigator,
, or called (800) 318-2596 and found out that you are not eligible for cost sharing and/or premium tax credits, there are other alternatives for health insurance that cover a three month period. While we do not often recommend short-term limited benefit health insurance policies, during this time it may be an option for you. Please be aware these plans do not provide coverage for pre-existing medical conditions – anything that you have been diagnosed with or sought treatment for within the past five or more years. These plans only cover a limited number of doctor visits for a limited dollar amount, and may have very high deductibles and copay requirements. These plans do not qualify for or replace a major medical, ACA-approved health insurance policy. These types of policies are only effective for three months and are not renewable.
If you bought your own health insurance and are now unable to make your monthly premiums due to being out of work or working fewer hours, your insurance company may not terminate your coverage during the Delaware State of Emergency. The Governor and Insurance Commissioner have informed insurance companies that they are not permitted to terminate or not renew your insurance during the Delaware State of Emergency due to payment-related issues without a court order. Please note that you will need to contact your insurance company to explain why you are suffering a hardship and cannot make your premium payments in full or on time.
Once you return to work or start and new job, and your employer tells you the date that they will start offering health insurance to employees, you may want to sign up for coverage under your employer’s plan. If you choose to enroll in your employer’s plan, avoid duplicate coverage by notifying your insurance company that you are terminating your individually purchased health insurance on the date your employer-sponsored policy will become active.
You may be able to continue to cover your employees, depending on whether there are minimum-number-of-employee requirements on your plan. Reach out to your insurer to discuss options.
You may be able to use your personal vehicle during the COVID-19 crisis to deliver goods, but check with your auto insurance company before beginning to do so. While auto insurance policies typically limit coverage for commercial uses of a personal vehicle, like delivering goods, some insurers have decided to remove that exemption during the pandemic to help residents who need the income. Contact your auto insurer to see what actions they are taking, and review our April 1 press release
and Auto Bulletin No. 32
for more information.
As fewer vehicles are on the road and accident rates are decreasing, Insurance Commissioner Trinidad Navarro has urged insurers to take action to decrease consumer auto insurance costs. Many auto insurers are enacting discounts and premium payback programs. While programs by participating companies may differ from insurer to insurer, most will go into effect without any action from you. Review more information in our April 7 press release
, check our auto insurer action list
, and talk to your insurer about their programs.
Yes. If you are a driver of a motor vehicle and complete an approved defensive driving course, you may receive 10 percent off a portion of your auto insurance for three years. If you take a refresher defensive driving course within 180 days of the end of the three-year period, you may receive a 15 percent discount. While in-person classes may not be available during the Delaware state of emergency, online defensive driving classes
are still available, and may be taken in lieu of in-person classes.
Please read your travel insurance policy carefully to determine your coverage, and contact the company you bought it from to discuss, or to file a claim. If the claim is denied, you can ask if the insurer provides an internal appeal process to further dispute the denial.
Seasonal Personal Property Insurance
You can and should take precautionary measures for your seasonal property, just as you would during any period where you would not be visiting the property. For example, make sure your pipes and wiring are in good condition, and consider turning off your water and installing water leak detection devices. You might think about installing surveillance devices. Your insurance policy should reflect that this property is not your primary residence, and policies sometimes have requirements for the property to be continuously insured for sixty days in order for coverage to apply. Contact your insurance company if you have coverage questions.
Information for Businesses
Many companies have had to shut down temporarily due to the COVID-19 pandemic with little time to prepare. Still, a lack of on-premises work activity does not mean reduced risk. Improper action or negligence when decommissioning facilities can bring risk for companies, as can idle premises.
Consider reviewing general security and prevention measures to help avoid physical damages, such as regular checks of fire protection systems, and storing all materials safely. You may want to access a security provider, and implement remote monitoring technologies. Allianz Global Corporate and Specialty (AGCS) provides suggestions in their Safety Measures for Businesses Forced to Temporarily Close their Premises publication
Make sure to read your insurance policy, and understand coverage for your business property. Contact your insurance company with any coverage questions.
Business interruption insurance protects against losses sustained due to periods of suspended operations, and pays loss of revenue that would have been earned if the business operated continuously. Typically, policies require physical damage to the property for payment, and many policies have specific exclusions for viral infections, like COVID-19.
Contingent business interruption policies similarly protect against losses due to disruptions in the supply chain, but these policies may require physical damage to the property for payment, and many policies have exclusions for communicable diseases, like COVID-19.
We urge you to read your policy carefully to determine the initial scope of coverage that your policy provides for business interruption and associated expenses, and carefully review exclusions or conditions that would limit the coverage. Consult your insurance company with any questions.
We’ve stopped allowing public entry to our offices to protect our employees, but are always happy to help. If you’re experiencing an insurance issue related to coronavirus, call our office at 302-674-7300 or email us at email@example.com.
Individuals who have lost their jobs and no longer have employer-sponsored insurance may be able to purchase a healthcare plan on the marketplace. Go to choosehealthde.com to learn more.
If you think you may be experiencing symptoms, contact the Division of Public Health hotline at 1-866-408-1899. Visit de.gov/coronavirus for more information.
If you are an insurer who would like to provide information for inclusion in our FAQ’s, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.