What Does the New Sinkhole Law Mean to Me?

In Residential Blog Posts by John Topa

sinkhole law

Under the new Florida sinkhole law, your insurance company can take one of the following actions:

  • Drop your sinkhole loss coverage altogether.
  • Force you to pay for sinkhole testing before they will continue to cover your home.
  • Impose significantly higher fees for sinkhole loss coverage than they ever could in the past.

Any one of these possible options may make you take a closer look at your policy and think, “Maybe I don’t really need to keep my sinkhole coverage.”

What kind of advice can I expect to get from an insurance adjuster?

Some insurance adjusters may tell you to examine your policy to determine how much you are paying for sinkhole loss coverage. This number varies depending on your risk level. You could be paying as little as $150 or as much as $750 per year for coverage. For example, if you live in an area where sinkhole occurrence is more prevalent, your rate will be higher. In some instances, if your rate is high, the adjuster may advise you to drop coverage entirely to save money. This advice seems counter-intuitive, but you may think to yourself, “There hasn’t been a sinkhole around here in years. Why wouldn’t I want to save money?”

Should I keep or drop my sinkhole coverage?

Before you rush into making a decision, consider the following point. Dropping your coverage and deciding later that you want it back, can be a costly proposition. Your insurance company will demand that you have your property tested. That means you’ll have to pay an engineering company to test for sinkhole activity. The cost of testing your property varies greatly; (you must ask your insurance provider for the exact amount). Bottom line, you’ll be responsible for paying the bill. Ultimately, the insurance company is putting you in a contradictory situation. You must pay for testing to determine that you don’t have sinkhole or settlement activity before they will give you insurance to cover it. So, in this scenario, if testing reveals sinkhole activity, the insurance company won’t cover your home. If you test negative for sinkhole activity why would you continue paying for coverage? Confused? You’re not alone. This scenario is similar to the patient with a bad heart who visits a doctor after he or she has lost health insurance coverage. No insurance company will cover a patient with a preexisting condition; everyone knows that. If you live in an area of Florida known as sinkhole alley (Pasco, Hernando, and Hillsborough counties) you have a “preexisting condition.” Keep your sinkhole loss coverage! If you have a sinkhole claim and are looking for a reputable sinkhole repair company, contact the experts at Helicon. We specialize in Compaction Grouting, Underpinning, Chemical Grouting, Helical Piers, and Injection Piers. Click here to listen to what our customers have to say.