How do I make a claim on homeowners for mold and rusted gas heater in a basement caused by a broken pipe and weather

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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: Nov 19, 2018

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Insurance Question from Central Islip, NY

Asked on 11/19/2018

How do I make a claim on homeowners for mold and rusted gas heater in a basement caused by a broken pipe and weather Extensive mold and broken heater

Answer given on December 22, 2018

Homeowner insurance covers damages to a home for “sudden and accidental” damage to the home. If your gas heater was rusted due to a broken pipe it would be considered a maintenance issue. The ensuing mold would also be considered a maintenance issue since you did not repair the broken pipe that caused the rusty heater, and probably the mold. Mold is a very limited coverage under the homeowner policy now and the maximum limit is around $5,000.   It is very unlikely that your insurance company will honor any claim you file for these damages unless you can provide additional explanation of the damage to the home.

You also indicate “weather” as a cause of loss. If the heater was inside, it doesn’t make sense that weather would be a factor in the claim. If the home was vacant and these damages occured, there would be an exclusion since the home was not properly maintained while unoccupied or vacant. 

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