Insurance lapse, leading to up to $10K out of pocket repairs?

6 Replies

Some unexpected situation occurred this week in one of my rental properties in Tucson, AZ.

I was about to file a claim for the house restoration (leaking / flooding issues) only to discover I had a lapse on my home owner insurance. This is due to a "missing signature" on the policy, according to my home insurance broker. 

However, things did not sound right.. because:

7/2: I received full landlord insurance policy via email --> can this happen with a missing signature? 

7/12: I closed the property with insurance policy in escrow --> can this happen with a missing signature?

7/20: I received full confirmation of the policy payment from CSE via email --> AGAIN, can this happen with a missing signature?

I have not received any email or notification that my policy was invalid till 8/10. The broker admitted that didn't see the request from the insurance company that they needed another signature, and they didn't inform him as well". As a result, "I need to proceed as if there is no coverage."

Any people had such experience? Any advice of how I can proceed this? 

What's your copy of the contract look like, have you verified the missing signature? I'd as for them to show you the problem and cross check it on your executed copy...

@Ting Lai how long had the policy supposed to be enforce?

I'm an insurance broker and would be happy to help you in anyway I'm able to for you.  Sounds like your broker does not look at the details and misses things when its his job.

Hope things work out!

@Ting Lai If you were not informed of the error until after the loss, then your agent is most likely at fault.

Tell the agent you want to file a claim with the agents Errors and Omissions insurance policy.  If they refuse to give you any info, file the claim directly with the AZ Insurance Commissioners office.

Filing this claim will get everyone focused on this claim and reimburse you if it was the agents fault. 

Good luck with it.

Thanks all for your help and sharing your expertise with me! 

The policy is supposed to be in effect since July 12 and I have filed a claim (regardless whether I have an effective policy) last Friday. The loss occurred in mid Aug after the tenant moved in and started using the washing machine.  

@Jason Bott that is a really good point that you mentioned - I know the insurance broker is still trying to negotiate with the insurance company (on behalf of me) to seek coverage. When would you recommend that I file the claim? I assume it's when they've decided NOT to cover, but let me know if you disagree. 

@Matt K. I have a copy of policy saying I have policy effective since July 12 but in mid August they said I don't due to "a missing signature"...My house was also able to close without issues and the insurance premium / coverage was in escrow.  

@Matt Moylan Thank for you offering your help. Hope things are turning out well!

@Jason Bott Thank you for your advice. Things have come to a happy ending and they have decided to cover mitigation and repair fees. However they also decided not to reinstate my policy and my home owner insurance rate has jumped to 60% higher than before...Still I am very grateful that the bulk of expenses were covered and now I am on my journey to search for lower cost insurance providers...Thank you!