• Vincent Maranda

Flood insurance


YLJ FILE PHOTO/JAMES ARMSTRONG

Q. Insurance coverage for flooding remains unclear… can you clarify it?

A. Most insurance policies offer comprehensive protection against a wide range of losses.

Typical coverage is accidental damage from water inside your house. Paying for additional coverage will include water damage from external sources such as sewer backup. Unfortunately, in these policies, floods are excluded when caused by snowmelt runoff or rivers overflowing.

The Insurance Bureau of Canada states such flood coverage only became available in mid-march 2017 with some insurers.

It is unavailable in areas where flooding becomes a regular occurrence – insurers are not in that business. Other areas will undoubtedly have higher premiums considering our recent experience.

Questions will arise. Without flood insurance some will argue sewer backup coverage should apply. The insurer may wish to exclude the damage because it was the Ottawa River that just submerged your basement. Banks may start adjusting mortgage conditions depending on insurability.

Still, a few positive things are coming out of this.

The human spirit rose up to levels way above the water line and it was a beautiful thing to see people helping others.

Hudson, Île-Perrot, and Vaudreuil-Dorion have been added to the list of those eligible for the province’s disaster aid program that covers damage up to maximum amounts.

If the flood damages a car, contrary to homes, you are probably covered for flooding damage if your contract had collision coverage.

Whether to buy flood insurance or not for next year is an important financial decision. Of the 36 numbers on a roulette wheel some do appear twice in a row. Insurers, not being skeptics on global warming, will adjust premiums accordingly.

Lets hope flooding compensation will move increasingly to the insurance sector and towns will rethink issuing building permits in flood zones, lessening the burden on government thereby improving our society in the same way volunteers carrying sandbags were doing throughout the ordeal.

Please send your legal questions to editor@yourlocaljournal.ca

For legal advice please go to: vmaranda.com

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