Monday, February 11, 2013

"My homeowners insurer canceled me because I made two water claims in three years. Is that legal?"

Yes, it often is. Insurers are required to send you a written, advance notice listing the reason why they're canceling your coverage, but they're not prohibited from canceling (or not renewing) coverage due to claims.

What can you do? Well, you can talk to your agent, who may be able to work with the insurer to keep your coverage, albeit possibly with some changes.

The insurer might want you to take on a higher deductible, for example, or might want a home inspection report by an outside consultant.

If it's the latter, they'll likely be paying particular attention to the overall condition and care of the home and condition of the utilities.

If you like your insurer, it's worth at least asking the question.

Also, if you have questons like this and you live in Washington state, we're happy to contact your insurance company on your behalf and ask for an explanation of their decision. You can file a complaint online 24/7 or give our consumer advocacy staff a call at 1-800-562-6900.

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