ICMIF member NFU Mutual (UK) has today launched a GBP 32 million support package for customers and communities affected by Coronavirus, including updates to pricing, cover and claims, and increased charitable funding allocated to local organisations via their agencies.
In addition, NFU Mutual will continue to reward customer loyalty through the organisation’s Mutual Bonus discount, despite the financial impact of the Coronavirus outbreak. They will offer an estimated GBP 250 million in premium discounts to general insurance customers who renew between July 2020 and June 2021.
Among the key features of this support package, NFU Mutual announced that it would include coverage for COVID-19 on Personal Accident and Group Personal Accident, available for new and existing home and business insurance customers. They also announced various other extension of coverage for home, motor, travel and commercial policies to help customers and businesses adapt to the ever-changing situation. In total, these changes in insurance cover amount to GBP 24 million.
NFU Mutual will also be providing GBP 5 million to support their 300 local offices across the UK, enabling them to remain open and continue to serve their communities. It has also brought in new procedures to enable claims to be processed and paid quickly and easily, and without the need for unnecessary contact.
In addition, NFU Mutual announced a GBP 1.8 million charitable donation increase to local communities. This includes setting up a GBP 1 million Emergency Coronavirus Fund to be released through NFU Mutual’s agency network to help local charities and communities across the UK; an additional GBP 750,000 donation to the NFU Mutual Charitable Trust (which will give the Trust GBP 1 million to support national organisations reaching the isolated and vulnerable families facing financial challenges due to Coronavirus); and a GBP 50,000 donation to affiliated charity, Farm Safety Foundation, to support and extend its mental health work during this period of isolation.
Finally, NFU Mutual announced that it would be continuing to provide funding (totalling GBP 7.5 million in 2020) for the UK's main farming unions as they work with government to keep agriculture running.
Lindsay Sinclair, Group CEO of NFU Mutual, said: “The Coronavirus pandemic has had a huge impact on everybody, including our customers and their local communities, which is why we have committed to this unique package of support.
“Not only are we significantly increasing our charitable donations and utilising our local Agency network to help those most in need, but we are also in the process of making real changes to our insurance products that will benefit our customers.
"We have committed to £32m of support, and are already looking at what more we can do.
“On top of that, despite the challenges we are also facing, we have decided to continue to offer a high level of Mutual Bonus, because we recognise this is a difficult period for all. This is expected to save our loyal customers £250m in the form of premium discounts.
“Many of our customers have been affected by this outbreak and a significant number of them are key workers, responsible for helping to feed and support the nation in difficult circumstances.
"On behalf of NFU Mutual, I would like to personally thank you for all you are doing for the country and assure you we will continue to look at more ways to support our customers.”
Jim McLaren, Chairman of NFU Mutual, said: “For over a hundred years we have stood by the side of farmers and we are determined to do everything we can to support our customers and the countryside through these difficult times. Our wide-ranging GBP 32m support package includes financial support for rural charities, together with additional insurance cover to help our members. Our 300 Agent offices, based in the heart of our rural communities, will also be distributing funds to local causes. British farmers and growers are playing a vital role in the national effort, despite facing enormous challenges themselves. Adding protection for farmers will support the agricultural industry when the nation needs it most. Despite the challenges we are also facing, we will continue to offer a high level of Mutual Bonus this year, saving our loyal customers GBP 250m in the form of premium discounts, because we recognise this is a difficult period for all. Streamlining our claims process is also making it easier for our members to get the payments they need, quickly and safely at this critical time.”
For more information on this Coronavirus Support Package or for the latest information on NFU Mutual’s response to Coronavirus, please visit the NFU Mutual Coronavirus Information Hub.
Lindsay Sinclair, Group Chief Executive, NFU Mutual with Stephanie Berkley of the Farm Safety Foundation