Do I need California earthquake insurance?


If you live in the state of California, you must make sure that you have adequate insurance protection against losses that an earthquake may cause. If an earthquake strikes, your Homeowners policy will not pay for any damages to your dwelling and personal property because home insurance specifically exclude this peril.

Why Buy California Earthquake Insurance

To raise awareness of the high earthquake-related risks that California residents are exposed to, The California Earthquake Authority (CEA) has issued a warning: "Every Day Is Earthquake Season In California".

Being a high-risk earthquake zone, California can be shaken by a destructive earthquake virtually any day. This is why you should have adequate financial protection in case an earthquake damages or completely destroys your personal property.

Since Homeowners insurance policies do not provide earthquake coverage, you need to make sure you have such if you live in a high-risk seismic zone. The home insurance companies offering earthquake endorsements are few, but you can purchase a separate earthquake insurance policy. One way to do this is through the CEA participating companies - certain insurance providers that work in cooperation with the California Earthquake Authority.

Characteristics of Earthquake Insurance

The majority of earthquake insurance policies are expensive, especially if your home is located in a high-risk earthquake zone. Home owners usually have to carry prohibitively high deductibles. However, this shouldn't discourage you from getting the necessary coverage if your home is exposed to this peril.

If you find earthquake insurance policy prices too steep, you can opt for a "mini-policy" - a more affordable version of earthquake insurance providing coverage limited to the essential homeowners necessities. The earthquake mini-policy was introduced in 1996 to help residents of the state of California avail of insurance protection against catastrophic loss that may result from earthquakes.

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