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Drilling practices demand specific earthquake insurance question

On Behalf of | Mar 3, 2017 | Insurance Disputes

As you know, there are multiple kinds of insurance that Oklahoma residents will utilize in their lives. There is car insurance, health insurance, homeowner’s insurance, life insurance, etc. And many Oklahomans in particular now regularly consider another special type of insurance: earthquake insurance.

After the state’s biggest earthquake on record last year, this specific kind of insurance is on the minds of more residents here in Oklahoma City, as well as the minds of insurance regulators and providers. A hot topic in terms of earthquake insurance is how “man-made” earthquakes fit under the scope of insurance protection.

This insurance blog does not give specific and complete legal advice. What is sound advice no matter what, however, is for someone who perceives the real risk of their property being damaged by an Oklahoma earthquake to fully understand the details of a potential earthquake insurance policy.

Part of that understanding now has become learning what it means for an earthquake to be man-made. Reuters reports that in the past decade, there has been a “boom” of drilling in Oklahoma. Since that “boom” the rate and risk of earthquakes has increased dramatically. The quakes that are tied directly to this drilling and related processes are considered human-caused.

As someone in Oklahoma simply trying to go about your life, work and raise a family, you probably wouldn’t care whether the damage to your property is caused by drilling or by forces of nature. You are likely concerned about restoring what you need to feel safe and protected and getting your money’s worth in the insurance protection you’ve paid for.

How can you learn what you need to know about a potential or current policy? Oklahoma’s Insurance Commissioner John D. Coak advises residents to ask their insurance agent specifically whether man-made earthquakes are covered in a policy. If your doubts continue or are causing you great anxiety, talk to an insurance lawyer who can advise you of your rights and potential pitfalls.