Can a sewer smell be a loss on an insurance claim when the pipe is broken under the slab?

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Jun 28, 2014

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Insurance Question from Hartsville, PA

Asked on 06/28/2014

Can a sewer smell be a loss on an insurance claim when the pipe is broken under the slab? No physical damage is evident nor has any construction been performed.

Answer given on August 04, 2014

If there is a broken pipe or sewer line under your slab, and there is no damage to the home, the homeowner insurance will not cover the broken pipe.The homeowner policy is to protect the property owner from sudden and accidental direct damage to the home or its contents. A broken pipe is not covered unless there is actual damage to the home. Otherwise it is considered a maintenance issue only.Contact a plumber to see if they can repair the broken pipe without tearing up the slab. There are plumbers who can run a “sleeve” into the existing line that will repair the break without having to tear up the old pipe or dig up the slab. This is sometimes more expensive but well worth the time savings and avoiding additional construction and mess.

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