Louisiana ranks 4th in the United States for hurricanes making landfall. The state sees a hurricane on average once every three years. These hurricanes cause serious damage and destruction. (Source: Universal Property, 10 U.S. States Where Hurricanes Hit Most Often)
When disaster strikes, insurance policies take center stage. People suffering damage need fair payment for their claims.
Did you know that there are special hurricane deductible insurance laws in Louisiana?
You may be surprised to learn that you must pay a higher deductible for hurricane damage than for a typical homeowner’s insurance claim. The Insurance Claim HQ legal team explains hurricane deductible insurance laws in Louisiana.
What Are the Hurricane Deductible Laws in Louisiana?
Special deductibles may apply to claims resulting from hurricane damage. For claims based on hurricane damage, these deductibles apply instead of the regular homeowner’s deductible amount. Louisiana’s hurricane deductible insurance laws are found in Louisiana Rev. Stat. § 22:1337.
When Do Hurricane Deductible Insurance Laws Apply in Louisiana?
In Louisiana, hurricane deductible insurance laws apply when there is a named storm, hurricanes, wind, and hail damage, subject to the terms of the written insurance policy.
Is there a specific dollar amount for hurricane deductible insurance in Louisiana?
Hurricane insurance deductibles in Louisiana may be a specific dollar amount or a percentage of the insured value. The policy determines the exact amount, but a typical amount would be 2-5% of the home’s insured value.
How Do Hurricane Deductibles Work in Louisiana?
For example, the home’s insured value is $200,000. The hurricane deductible amount is 3%. That makes the hurricane deductible $6,000. At the same time, the policyholder’s typical homeowner insurance deductible is $1,000.
A hurricane strikes. The National Weather Service has named the hurricane. The homeowner sustains roof and water damage in the storm. Their damages total $20,000.
Rather than the $1,000 deductible applying, the $6,000 deductible applies. The homeowner receives compensation in the amount of $14,000, or the amount of their damages minus the $6,000 deductible.
How does the Louisiana hurricane deductible insurance law define a hurricane?
A hurricane is a storm system that has been declared a hurricane by the National Weather Service National Hurricane Center. Other named storms are also determined by the declaration of the National Weather Service. (§ 22:1337(A)(1),(2)).
What if there is more than one storm during the year?
The hurricane deductible applies on an annual basis. If the homeowner suffers two or more losses in the same calendar year, they may total their losses and apply the deductible only once.
Do special deductibles apply to subtropical storms in addition to hurricanes and tropical storms?
Whether or not subtropical storms are included in the definition of a named storm depends on the wording of the insurance policy. Some policies cover them, others do not. What remains consistent is that the National Weather Service decides if a storm is named or if it falls within a specific category. Then, the policy language determines whether that category triggers the special deductible. See Louisiana Department of Insurance Advisory Letter 2018-01.
Is Louisiana the Only State to Have Hurricane Deductibles?
No. Most states that have frequent hurricanes have hurricane deductibles. At least 19 states and Washington D.C. have them. (Louisiana Department of Insurance, Hurricane Resource Center)
Where can I find my hurricane deductible amount?
You’re likely to find your hurricane deductible amount on the declarations page of your insurance policy. (Louisiana Department of Insurance, Hurricane Resource Center)
Being Prepared for Your Louisiana Hurricane Deductible
A hurricane deductible can significantly raise the amount that you must pay out of your pocket for hurricane damage. It’s important to review your policy to see if it’s meeting your needs. If the damage has already occurred, understand that a hurricane deductible may exist. Be sure to evaluate the application of the deductible to determine if the insurance company is treating you fairly as they process your claim.
Attorneys for Hurricane Insurance Claims in Louisiana
If you have questions about your hurricane insurance claim and the applicable deductible, we invite you to contact Insurance Claim HQ. We hold insurance companies accountable. Let our team review your claim, examine your deductible and focus on maximizing your recovery. Contact us today.