In response to the rapidly growing concern over the spread of the Coronavirus, on March 14, 2020, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper issued Executive Order No. 117 prohibiting mass gatherings, closing NC public schools and encouraging all North Carolinians to practice social distancing. This was quickly followed by Executive Order No. 118 restricting restaurants to carry-out, drive- through, delivery, and onsite consumption in outdoor seating areas, and ordering all bars to close.
Similar orders have been issued across the country in recent days. In an effort to combat the devastating impact such orders will undoubtedly have on many businesses, a bill was introduced in New Jersey on Monday that would require insurers to pay certain Coronavirus business interruption claims. That legislation, if successful, would essentially force a re-write of policies and require insurers to bear a risk that was not contracted for and for which they received no premiums. It may be only a matter of time before we see similar legislative proposals in other states. However, we are currently not aware of any similar proposals in North Carolina at this time.