Chelsey Tucker graduated with a Bachelor of History degree from Metropolitan State University in 2019. She now writes about insurance with her specialty being life insurance and has been quoted on Help Smart Phone and MEL Magazine.

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years. He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like Reviews.com.

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Mar 19, 2020

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The lowdown...

  • If your vehicle is damaged during a flood, your car insurance policy may provide coverage for your loss
  • Before your car insurance can cover flood-related losses, you will need to carry the correct coverage option
  • Comprehensive coverage is a policy coverage option that you can choose; this option would cover your vehicle if it’s damaged during a flood
  • This coverage choice traditionally carries a deductible, which is the amount you are responsible for covering in any claimed loss
  • If you have questions about your coverage, you can speak with your insurance carrier about how your coverage applies in potential loss scenarios

A flood is one of the many natural disasters that can occur when you least expect it; there is often little or no time to plan ahead for this type of loss.

Floods are responsible for dangerous driving conditions as well as causing damage to your car when it’s stored at home.

Before a flood occurs, you should make sure you know how your policy protects you in the event of this type of loss; waiting until the event occurs is often too late.

Compare car insurance quotes today to find the best rate for your needs.

Policy Coverage for Flood Losses

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Damages or losses caused by flooding or flood-related incidents is normally covered under the comprehensive coverage of your insurance policy.

Comprehensive coverage is a policy option you can select when you purchase your policy or by contacting your provider to make a change to your coverage.

Comprehensive coverage is sometimes referred to as “other-than-collision” coverage since this coverage option applies to losses that are not due to a collision.

Comprehensive coverage covers losses that do not occur due to a collision, which means that weather-related events, such as a flood, would fall under this coverage.

When you’re searching for the best coverage to meet your needs, it’s important you understand what your policy covers. Each provider will offer different coverage choices based on your history and their standards.

There may also be time constraints on when the coverage must be in place before coverage applies.

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Conditions and Requirements for Coverage

Your car insurance policy is a combination of the following:

  • different coverage options
  • terms and conditions
  • exclusions

One of these conditions is an insurance deductible, and it is often a part of carrying comprehensive coverage.

The insurance deductible is a portion of your loss you are required to accept. This reduces the burden on your insurance carrier, ensuring that only true losses are claimed and settled.

Additionally, your insurance provider may have unique coverage conditions when it comes to floods or flood-related losses.

These events may impact a large number of vehicles in your area at once, which means your provider may have unique claim handling for these types of losses. This could include:

  • unique claim filing requirements
  • time requirements
  • specific inspection conditions

Although you may already carry your state’s minimum levels of coverage, these are often not enough to protect you from a flood loss.

If you have concerns about flood events occurring and damaging your vehicle, speak to your insurance carrier to review your coverage before a loss occurs. They can help you understand your coverage as well as what options you need to have to protect from flood losses.

Claiming Flood Losses on Your Policy

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Just because you carry coverage on your policy that protects you from flood losses does not mean you are required to file a claim; it may be in your best interest to avoid filing a claim.

Flood-related losses are often unexpected, so filing a claim may be your first instinct. Before you proceed with your claim, make sure to understand your policy limits, terms, and any deductible before making your decision.

The first step you should take is documenting the damages to your vehicle with photographs and notations as long as it is safe and the flooding has passed.

Your insurance carrier may have requirements for documentation, and you can speak with them about this before filing a claim. Looking at the damages caused to your vehicle can help you assess the extent of the damages.

You may also want to mitigate any future damages by taking some simple steps; this can include placing a tarp over your vehicle, boarding up damaged windows, or moving your vehicle to a safer location.

Insurance carriers appreciate when their policyholders act in the best interest of their property to help reduce the amount of loss.

Once you have taken these steps, you can speak with your insurance carrier about the claim process and how a claim may affect your policy.

Filing a claim can affect your policy in different ways, such as increasing your premium costs, reducing your available coverage options, or even causing your policy to be canceled or non-renewed.

Before filing your claim, make sure you know how your policy would be affected by your choice.

Conclusion

Flood events are a natural disaster many times, meaning it is not always possible to predict when one will occur.

Their unpredictability means that you should always be prepared for this type of loss, and that includes carrying coverage for your vehicles that protects you from flood-related losses.

Review your policy annually to check your coverage options and make changes to your coverage as necessary.

Remember that many insurance carriers are often unable to provide coverage for floods once flooding begins in an area; this means you must have the coverage in place before the incident begins.

If your vehicle is damaged by a flood or there is flooding occurring nearby, you can take steps to reduce the damages if possible. You may want to consider moving your vehicle to a higher or safer location, which can help mitigate a potential loss.

If your vehicle has already been damaged, you may want to ask your insurance carrier for guidance on ways you can limit the extent of the damages.

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