Rumor: I heard there is a blanket waiver that allows me to purchase flood insurance with just a one-day waiting period, because the wildfires started on federal land.
There is no blanket waiver. Generally, by law, there is a 30-day waiting period from the date of purchase until flood insurance coverage takes effect with very few exceptions. There is an exception called the Post-Wildfire Exception, and it only applies in narrow situations on a case-by-case basis. This exception is relevant when a new policy (or additional coverage) is within the standard 30-day waiting period and a loss is experienced qualifying it for the Post-Wildfire exception and resulting in a 1-day waiting period.
In order to be potentially eligible:
- The insured property must be privately owned and experience damage caused by a flood that originated on federal land;
- Post-wildfire conditions on federal lands caused or worsened the flooding; and
- The policy holder purchased the new, additional or increased coverage either before the fire containment date or during the 60-calendar day period following the fire containment date.
It’s important to know that the Standard Flood Insurance Policy does not insure damage from a flood that began before a new policy’s waiting period (or coverage, if no waiting period) began, even if the flood did not damage the insured property until after the waiting period (or coverage) began. So, if you purchase flood insurance after a flood is already in progress, you won’t be able to be covered for a loss.
If you purchase flood insurance (or additional increased coverage), are in your waiting period, and experience a flood loss, ask your insurance agent or adjuster if you may be eligible for this 1-day, Post-Wildfire waiting period exception.