Lightning Damage Insurance Claims

Lightning Damage Insurance Claim Assistance

Lightening damage insurance claims are unexpected, and lightening can hit a property unexpectedly.  There is no way to fully prepare for a lightning strike.  Following a lightning strike here may be evidence of arcing and charring of electrical equipment, char marks on a tree, chimney or scorched wiring.  Damage from a lightning strike can damage electrical components and may also cause fire damage as well.

Is Lightning Damage Covered By Insurance?

In most insurance policies lightning is a covered peril that falls under coverage in your policy.  Most insurance policies will also cover your contents.  Meaning if your electronics, like a TV, appliances or computer, were damaged due to a lightning strike, you can present a claim for this.  If the amount of damage is minimal you may not want to make a claim as your damages may not exceed the deductible.

Lightning coverage may also be available for other structures, like a shed, detached garage or barn on your property.  In the worst-case event that your property is uninhabitable you most likely have coverage for additional living expenses.  This coverage will cover the cost of you living elsewhere while your damaged property is being rebuilt.

How Do Insurance Companies Define Lightning Damage?

For insurance purposes lightning is typically defined as “naturally generated electricity from the atmosphere,” according to Leigh Needelman, CEO and president of Florida Assurers, Inc.

What Are Three Ways Lightning Can Be Classified?

Lightning Strike
A bolt of lightning that enters the property and passes through your home or other property on its way from the atmosphere to the ground.  This kind of lightning usually causes the most damage including fire and charring. “The damage is clearly visible,” says Needelman.

Near Miss
Lightning strikes near the property but does not hit the structure directly.  With these strikes, the damage is typically minimal.  It can be difficult for the insurance company to determine the cause of damage with these lightning strikes.  Artificially generated current, such as sparks or arcs from a power company’s electrical lines or transformers, can create similar damage.

Group Surge
When a lightning strike produces a spike in electricity throughout an area.  This is the most common lightning-related claim.  The presence of a ground surge from a nearby lightning strike can be difficult to prove, so fewer claims are paid out for this type of damage.  It’s important to hire a public adjuster to investigate the damage to ensure your claim is documented and covered.

Lightning Insurance Claims

According to the Insurance Information Institute, in 2022 more than $950 million in homeowners’ claims were paid out due to lightning to over 62,000 policyholders.

Top 10 States That Had Homeowners Insurance Lightning Losses by Amount of Claims in 2022

RankStateValue of claims
($ millions)
of Claims
Average cost
per claim
5North Carolina29.32,78010,550
7New York38.92,31516,817


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