richmond station toronto

Toronto restaurant gets cheque from insurance company to cover some lockdown costs

Small businesses in Toronto have been hard hit this year with shutdown orders and multiple lockdowns slowing down business for each and every restaurant across the city.

Any help can go a long way, and Richmond Station was happy to receive some out-of-the-blue windfall just last week from an unusual gifter.

The Financial District restaurant's insurance company, Intact Insurance, mailed them a cheque for $2,047. 

"We were floored last week to get a cheque from our insurance company. This type of thing never happens to small business owners," read a recent LinkedIn post from the restaurant.

"The letter reads, 'We carefully considered the types of small businesses most affected by mandated shutdowns and public health restrictions due to the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic... The enclosed cheque represents the equivalent of 20 per cent of the annual premium of your property and casualty policy.'"

It was the restaurant manager, Ryan Donovan, who found the cheque in the mailbox a few weeks ago.

"[We were] surprised for sure. We didn't have a phone call first, there was no conversation about it all. They didn't even ask if we needed it. Thankful, also. It's always special to receive funds," Donovan told blogTO.

"Gestures like this one allow me and my team to focus on the important stuff, which, right now, is staying safe from COVID and getting better as a company."

The money has also left them a bit baffled as insurance companies issuing cheques without being asked or without a claim is pretty much unheard of.

"My own experience with insurance is that you pay regardless of if you use it. That is its nature. But then when you do have a claim to submit, it is like pulling teeth to get what you feel you are owed," Donovan says.

"To see money come from an insurance firm without prompt is, I think, a feel-good story."

The gift comes at a time when Richmond Station's volume is down 80 per cent, and with a challenging business horizon ahead.

"For us to return to the business we had before the pandemic, we need the whole economy to turn back on again. So, a lot has to go well for this to work going forward," Donovan says.

"But, as a company, we have never been more prepared. Our team is healthy, our food has never been better and the lights are still on. Hard not to be happy about all that."

Lead photo by

Jesse Milns

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