June 28, 2017

Damage from fireworks may not be covered by your insurance.

Independence Day celebrations are kicking off this week around the state and with that comes an increase in the use of fireworks. Hoosiers are reminded that Indiana has several laws governing fireworks and many towns and cities have additional ordinances that Hoosiers must follow. The Indiana Department of Insurance is warning Hoosier homeowners and renters that accidental damage caused by fireworks that are banned in their counties may not be covered by their homeowners or renters insurance policies. Many insurance policies contain provisions disclaiming coverage for illegal acts committed by the insured. However, consumers who experience injury or property damage due to another person’s use of fireworks may be able to claim benefits under their homeowners or renters policy.

“It’s important for Hoosiers to consider the consequences before using fireworks,” said IDOI Commissioner Stephen W. Robertson. “If someone using fireworks accidentally starts a fire, to their own property or that of their neighbors, they may not be able to turn to their insurance company for coverage.”

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), fireworks start an average of 18,500 fires per year, including 1,300 structure fires, 300 vehicle fires, and 16,900 outside and other fires. These fires caused an average of three deaths, 40 civilian injuries, and an average of $43 million in direct property damage.

ABOUT THE INDIANA DEPARTMENT OF INSURANCE
The Indiana Department of Insurance (IDOI) protects Indiana’s insurance consumers by monitoring and regulating the financial strengths and market conduct activities of insurance companies and agents. The IDOI monitors insurance companies and agents for compliance with state laws to protect consumers and to offer them the best array of insurance products available. The IDOI also assists Hoosiers with insurance questions and provides guidance in understanding how insurance policies work.