February 15, 2017

Mudslides and Landslides: Think you have insurance coverage?

In rain saturated Northern California, mudslides are occurring in hilly and mountainous areas.  Here is a recent mudslide into a hillside home in nearby Orinda, California.  The home was red tagged.  At the time of the slide, 5 neighboring homes were also in danger.

Home destroyed by mudslide in Orinda, California, February 2017.
Photo credit:  Eastbaytimes.com

Mudslides and Landslides
Does your insurance cover home and business property damage?

If you assume you have insurance coverage for mudslides and landslides, check your coverage very ... very ... carefully.  Standard homeowners and business property insurance policies do not provide insurance coverage for either mudslides and landslides, as these events are classified as earth movement, much like an earthquake.  An additional insurance policy known as a "Difference in Conditions" policy must be be purchased to provide insurance for mudslides and landslides.

Insurance, Tax, or Financial Concerns?

Mary Rae Fouts, EA assists clients who have complex or technical insurance, tax, and financial concerns, including those related to homeowner and business-related insurance.  For more information about Mary's Tax, Consulting, and Expert Witness Services visit Fouts Financial Group.

Mary Rae Fouts


  1. What about if the mudslide does not start on your property but damages your home. Does you homeowner insurance cover the damage?

    1. Good question! The answer is: No. Does not matter if the slide originates from your property or someone else's property. No coverage under general homeowners insurance.

  2. What if my car is buried in a mudslide, does my car insurance cover that?

    1. Another good question. The answer is: maybe. If you have comprehensive coverage on your vehicle, mudslide damage to the vehicle is generally covered. Of course, check your policy for any exclusions to comprehensive coverage to be certain. Also, your car insurance comprehensive coverage only pertains to the vehicle itself, and not the contents of your vehicle, such as tools, clothes, CDs, etc.


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