can your deductible go up to $5000.00 after 2 claims 10 years apart?

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Jun 23, 2017

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Insurance Question from Oakland, CA

Asked on 06/23/2017

can your deductible go up to $5000.00 after 2 claims 10 years apart? I filed claims with my insurance State Farm 10 years apart. Each claim paid out was $1,600. Fence repair and the other roof repair. Next time I called was due to a crack in the roof of my garage that was getting larger. State Farm informed me that my deductible has gone up to $5,000 and I would have to pay the deductible first before I would be helped.

Answer given on June 25, 2017

Each insurance company reviews loss history on a homeowner policy. While the time between losses is considered, the size of the claim and type of claim are also factors. Smaller claims actually are considered more than large claims.  Sometimes the company will non renew the insurance, but often they will increase the deductible in an attempt to avoid smaller, “nuisance” claims.  However, the insurance company or your agent must inform you of the decision to increase the deductible. Before taking any action, you should get an estimate of the cost to repair the roof of the garage and to try to determine why it happened.  If it is a construction defect, there would be no coverage for the damage.

If you were not aware that your deductible was increased you should speak with your agent and ask them when the deductible was increased and provide evidence that you were advised of the increase. If you were not advised, you can direct a complaint with the Dept of Insurance, but it is unlikely it will help you in this instance.

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