Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Window Damage?
Posted in Insurance on November 24, 2020
A broken window is a common type of home repair. It does not take much for a fragile glass window to shatter. From bad storms to a stray baseball finding the window, you may need to replace multiple windows while you live in your house. Depending on your homeowners insurance policy, you may or may not have to pay out of pocket for window damage. Your insurance company may replace a cracked or broken window depending on the event that caused the damage.
Was it a Covered Peril?
The main question to ask when considering if your homeowners insurance policy will cover window damage is, “What caused the damage?” The cause of the damage must be a covered peril under your homeowners insurance policy if you wish to obtain benefits for window repairs. The average homeowners insurance policy covers natural disasters and acts of God. This can include storms, hail and fallen trees. If something outside of your control, such as a bad storm, broke your window, you will most likely have a valid homeowners insurance claim for repairs.
If a person broke your window, such as a burglar, this should also be covered under your homeowners insurance policy. Most policies cover damage due to criminal activity. The coverage available will depend on your plan. If you chose an open-peril homeowners insurance policy, this will cover many different types of risks, improving your odds of damage coverage. If you paid for a named-peril policy, however, your damages will only be covered if the peril that broke your window is a specific type of event included on your policy.
Were You to Blame for Breaking the Window?
If, on the other hand, your own mistake or act of negligence caused the window damage, your homeowners insurance policy most likely will not pay for repairs. If you were trimming a tree and a branch went through the window, for example, insurance will not pay for damage repairs. The same may be true for other types of accidents, such as a houseguest accidentally breaking a window during a stay. In general, a named-peril policy will not cover specific types of accidents.
A broken window due to negligent home or window maintenance is also not a covered peril on most insurance policies. If you had not replaced your windows in 30 years, for instance, and ignored known issues, you may not have a case for damages if one breaks. If poor maintenance led to a leaky window and storm damage, this will also not be a covered peril due to your own negligence contributing to the cause. Contact your homeowners insurance company to find out if the peril in question is on your policy.
How to File a Homeowners Insurance Claim for a Broken Window
If the source of your window damage is listed as a covered peril on your homeowners insurance policy, begin the claims process immediately. First, if a storm damaged your home, take steps to mitigate further property loss. Your insurance company may not fully cover your damages if you did not take steps to prevent further destruction, such as covering broken windows to prevent flood damage.
Take photographs of your broken or cracked window to use as evidence. Then, contact your homeowners insurance company to make a claim. Follow the insurance agent’s instructions for filing your claim. Fill out all paperwork fully, completely and honestly. Submit your claim with any available evidence before your insurance company’s deadline.
Be prepared to pay a deductible before receiving compensation for your broken window. The price of your deductible will depend on your specific policy. You must meet your deductible before you can receive any reimbursement for damages caused. If you need assistance filing a homeowners insurance claim for a broken or damaged window in Tampa, contact a Tampa insurance attorney. A lawyer can make sure your company handles your case fairly and in good faith.