Recourse when homeowners insurance policy is nonrenewed for claims?

Illinois law requires insurers to adhere to specific nonrenewal notice requirements. For example, the company must send the policyholder written notice identifying when coverage ends and the reason for nonrenewal. Specific claim dates must be listed if the nonrenewal is based on loss experience. Policies in effect five or more years are entitled to 60-days advance notice. Those in force less than five years get a 30-day forewarning.

Your first move upon learning your policy is nonrenewed is to get in touch with the local agent. Ask if coverage can continue with a higher deductible or other policy change. Build a case for renewing based on supporting policies, payment history, a good credit-based insurance score, property maintenance, etc.

Next, check with other insurers. Hundreds of companies offer property insurance, so thoroughly explore the possibilities. Be upfront about your claim history and request a high deductible.

Finally, ask a local agent about the Illinois FAIR Plan if you run out of options. The FAIR Plan is an association that operates like an insurance company. Rates are higher, but coverage is similar to what private insurers offer. To be eligible for the FAIR Plan you must be unsuccessful getting homeowners insurance from traditional companies and your house must meet basic fire, loss prevention and safety standards.

Try to remain claim free in the months ahead as this is the best way to expand your homeowners insurance options and obtain lower prices.