Homeowner’s insurance is a kind of coverage that you may never need to make a claim against. Although people may need to use their health insurance every year, some people go their entire lives without ever making a homeowner’s insurance claim.
The coverage you carry probably reflects what you consider an optimal balance protection as opposed to the cost that you incur. People may carry coverage to protect the aesthetic appeal of their home if they need repairs or additional coverage in case they can’t live in their house for an extended amount of time. Other people just carry basic liability coverage and property damage coverage as required by their mortgage.
Whatever amount of insurance you have, you should be able to trust that your policy documents accurately reflect the protection you pay for and your financial obligations when making a claim. Can your insurance company increase your deductible or other costs as a result of your claim?
Insurance companies cannot retroactively change your policy terms
The coverage that you have paid for is what you deserve to receive. If the insurance company has charged you a higher premium for years because you have a low-deductible policy, you should not have to face an increase to your deductible as soon as you file a claim.
The terms you agreed to the last time you renewed and paid your homeowner’s policy will dictate your share of the costs during a claim. The deductible on your policy paperwork should not change just because you make a claim. Any changes the insurance company wants to make will have to wait until future policy renewals.
Otherwise, they might run afoul of Texas’ bad faith insurance laws. Providing inaccurate or misleading information about coverage or policy benefits violates state law and could lead to civil action against the insurance provider.
Claims may lead to increased future costs
Although your insurance provider can not increase your deductible or other expenses during a claim, they can increase what they charge you the next time that you renew. Recent claims do typically increase what you will pay for your policy for several years.
Understanding what changes are appropriate and what changes violate your rights as a consumer can help you stand up for yourself if you have issues with your homeowner’s insurance claim.