SASRIA Cover: A Guide for Business Owners

This is a simple explanation for small business owners in South Africa on SASRIA, including frequently asked questions and information on claims
A picture of a book with the words SASRIA Cover on top
Simon P.
Business Manager

The recent riots and protests that have gripped South Africa have had a devestating effect on small business owners across the country.

In the wake of this destruction, small business owners have been trying to find out what they’re covered for, and what SASRIA is all about.

This is a simple explanation for small business owners in South Africa on SASRIA.

Please note: The information provided here is done so for informational purposes only. For a full understanding of your SASRIA cover, please contact your insurance provider.

What is SASRIA

SASRIA SOC Ltd is a state-owned company that is there to limit job losses and maintain the livelihoods of South Africans, in the event of a “special risk event” - also defined as a peril event -  like riots or protest.

SASRIA is fully owned by the State of South Africa and reports directly to the National Treasury.

What does SASRIA Cover

SASRIA provides special risk cover to individuals and businesses in South Africa that own assets, who have opted in for SASRIA cover in their insurance policies.

The cover extends to the following situations, defined as “peril events”:

  • Public Disorder
  • Strikes
  • Riots
  • Political
  • Non-political
  • Terrorism

Is Looting Covered by SASRIA?

Looting is not covered by SASRIA as a standalone event.

However, looting is covered by SASRIA when it forms part of an event that SASRIA classifies as a “peril” event. These peril events are listed above.

Is Fire Damage Covered by SASRIA?

Fire damage is not covered by SASRIA as a standalone event.

However, when fire damage is as a result of any of the peril events listed above, there is cover available for your assets, depending on the specific products chosen.

SASRIA Cover Limit

SASRIA’s total loss limit for any claim is R1.5 Billion.

This is made up of R500m initial primary cover and R1 billion excess cover. This excess cover needs to be specifically included in a policy and will be charged for.

Types of SASRIA Cover

SASRIA has different types of products and policies that you can opt-in for when choosing your policy terms through your insurer.

These specific products are applicable to business owners.

These cover that these products supply apply specifically to the peril events listed above.

These are the different types of SASRIA products available:

Material Damage

This product provides cover for tangible assets like:

  • Property (domestic and commercial)
  • Equipment & Machinery
  • Containers
  • Agri-assets (Crops, farming equipment, livestock)


Money cover is for your cash, or cheques, on hand or while in transit.

Goods in Transit

This covers any goods owned by you or your business that are in transit in any form of transport.

Two important considerations here:

  1. This only applies within the borders of South Africa, or
  2. Temporarily in Namibia (for a period which must not exceed 60 consecutive days)


This product provides cover for:

  • Cars,
  • Light delivery vehicles
  • Heavy commercial vehicles
  • Motor dealers
  • Mobile plants
  • Buses, and
  • Trailers

Business Interruption

Business interruption cover gives you protection against consequential or indirect financial losses that your business has suffered as a result of any fires, or looting, which occur during any of the peril events listed above.

Construction Risk

This is cover offered to principal contractors and subcontractors construction sites during the duration of a building project.

The cover includes:

  • Temporary works
  • Existing structures
  • Temporary buildings
  • Construction plant and equipment.

Can I Claim from SASRIA?

Step 1: Are You Covered?

The first thing to determine is whether you or your business have SASRIA cover.

SASRIA cover is issued by your insurance provider/broker acting as an agent of SASRIA. It would form part of your monthly premium that you pay your insurer.

In general, most insurers or brokers will suggest that SASRIA cover is included in your different policies for premises, vehicles, etc.

The first thing you need to do is check with your insurer whether your policy includes SASRIA cover.

Step 2: Check What is Covered

SASRIA cover is split into different products and policies, and it is not ‘blanket’ cover for all types of assets.

As the policy owner, you would have to stipulate what types of cover are required for different assets and situations when you took out the policy.

Speak to your broker or insurer about what assets are covered.

Step 3: Is it a “Peril Event”?

In order for your SASRIA cover to come into effect, there needs to have occurred a Peril event, as listed above.

Your broker or insurer would have received communication from SASRIA regarding any significant peril events that have occurred, and they will be best placed to advise you on when your SASRIA cover can be utliized.

How to Claim from SASRIA

All claims to SASRIA are facilitated through the insurance provider or broker that issued your policy.

The claims process will progress as follows:

  1. Insured issues claim to insurance intermediary (broker)
  2. Broker submits claim to the agent company (insurer who sells SASRIA’s cover)
  3. Agent companies communicate directly with SASRIA regarding claims.
  4. Successful claims are paid directly from SASRIA to the insured.

If you think you have a valid SASRIA claim, please get hold of your Insurance Broker to start the claim process.


Does SASRIA charge an excess at the time of loss or claim?

No. SASRIA does not charge an excess during the claim stage, except in the case of Contract works claims.

Does SASRIA provide liability cover?

No. SASRIA does not cover liability.

Does SASRIA cover extend beyond the boundaries of South Africa, even if the underlying policy does?

No. SASRIA cover is only valid within the boundaries of South Africa, or Namibia (as explained above).

Does SASRIA cover the effects of a pandemic?

No. Pandemic events are not included in SASRIA’s valid peril events and these circumstances are not covered.

Is SASRIA cover compulsory?

No. It is cover with a policyholder can opt-in for.

Can I claim costs for security employed to avoid looting and burning back from SASRIA?

Security cost cover for imminent danger can be activated if there is an active peril event within a 10km radius of the insured premises. Each claim will be assessed individually.

Does SASRIA have enough money to pay claims?

SASRIA have issued a communication to insurers and brokers indicating that the company is in good-standing and has a strong balance sheet and reinsurance.

They are confident in their ability to pay valid claims and losses as a result of the riots and looting which have occurred during July 2021.

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