In response to requests from the City of Malibu, the California Department of Insurance (CDI) provided important information on insurance protections in place for victims of the Woolsey Fire and other wildfires since September 21, 2018.
CDI Commissioner Ricardo Lara issued two notices in September and November 2019 to insurance companies, adjusters, and brokers regarding State law on residential property policies related to a declared State of Emergency. The notices explain that California Insurance Code Section 2051.5 includes two subsections providing wildfire victims with 36 months, plus extensions, for getting both Replacement Cost and Additional Living Expenses.
The Insurance Code specifies that, effective September 21, 2018, in the event of a covered loss relating to a state of emergency declared by the Governor, coverage for additional living expenses must be for at least 24 months from the date of the loss. In addition, insurers are required to grant an extension of up to 12 additional months, for a total of 36 months, if the insured encounters a delay(s) in the reconstruction process as a result of circumstances beyond their control. Additional extensions of six months must be provided to policyholders for good cause.