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States Issue Guidance on Civil Unrest Claims

For businesses and individuals suffering damage from a riot or civil commotion.
June 17, 2020

While many of the recent protests against police violence have been peaceful, businesses across the country have been affected by looting or vandalism. The New York State Department of Financial Services issued an emergency regulation requiring state-regulated insurers to accelerate the claims process for businesses and individuals suffering damage from a riot or civil commotion, and the Illinois Department of Insurance (DOI) similarly issued a bulletin to insurers requesting them to expedite claims filed by looted businesses.


The Illinois DOI also requests insurers to advance claim payments and “err on the side of the policyholder” when paying claims as a result of riots, civil commotion, or vandalism. Guidance released by Pennsylvania Insurance Commissioner Jessica Altman aims to help business owners understand the terms in their policies and how and when to file claims. Altman called on carriers to help “the commonwealth and expedite claims processes to the extent possible to help businesses and communities in need.”

 

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