Deadlines: All policies require homeowners to report their loss as soon as is reasonably possible. Your policy probably has a deadline for submitting your contents inventory. Ask in writing for extensions of time and if your insurer refuses, get help from the Department of Insurance and/or a qualified professional.

Description: There are laws and rules that give you rights. Use them to negotiate and recover the full benefits you’re entitled to under the policy you paid for. Start by reading your policy’s “declarations page”. It shows how your policy is divided into coverage categories: Dwelling (“Coverage A”), Other Structures (“Coverage B”), Personal Property (“Coverage C”), Loss of Use/Additional Living Expenses (“Coverage D”), as well as other categories such as liability and medical payments. You may also have additional “Endorsements” or extras that may be listed on your declaration page.

Eligibility: People who have purchased insurance

How to file: Contact your insurance company. Here is an alphabetical list

Phone CA Dept. of Insurance: (800) 927-4357

Personal Info: Address of insured property, current phone number, address to receive mail (to replace ID and other important documents, see link here

Notes: Start a claim diary and take notes on: who you talked to, the number you called, date and time, what was said. Keep your paperwork organized.  Talk with your insurance adjuster regarding cash advances for: living expenses replacing personal property. Keep all receipts while you are displaced. Request a complete and current copy of your insurance policy. Take photos of your property before any cleanup is done.  Do not rush into signing contracts. Get copies of ALL paperwork you do sign.

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