My Car Was Damaged in a Riot – Now What?

If a riot breaks out in your town, your first thought probably has to do with the safety of your belongings. Acts of vandalism can be very costly to repair, and if your vehicle is parked in an area where there is rioting, you may wonder if your auto insurance policy would pay for damages.

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Civil Disturbances and Riots: What Is the Difference?

A civil disturbance is any disruption –peaceful or otherwise – to normal social behavior in a community. In most cases, a civil disturbance is in response to a circumstance or system that individuals believe to be unjust and includes marches, strikes and protests.

A well-planned protest is unlikely to turn violent, but sometimes, after the organized event ends or if calm conversation is overwhelmed by anger, riots and rebellions may break out. A riot occurs when a mob is out of control and violent. Riots generally involve the destruction of personal or public property, including stores, restaurants, religious buildings, state-owned buildings and vehicles.

Riots and Auto Insurance

No one wants to be victims of property damage resulting from rioting, and fortunately, auto insurance companies already have provisions for this risk in their coverage options. In fact, there is no need to purchase separate riot, vandalism and civil commotion coverage; if you have comprehensive auto insurance, you most likely have this coverage.

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It is important to note that if you want your vehicle to be covered in the event of riot-related vandalism, you need to purchase the necessary auto insurance coverage before your vehicle is vandalized, not after. Auto insurance coverage is not retroactive, meaning that it does not cover damage that occurs before you sign up for the policy. Wrongly claiming that your car was vandalized while it was insured when it was actually damaged before your policy date is insurance fraud, which can have very serious consequences.

Does My Auto Insurance Cover Damage from Riots?

If you have state-minimum coverage, then your auto insurance policy does not cover you for damage done to your vehicle during a riot. In Nevada, only liability coverage is required, which only covers damage physical bodily harm and property damage done to the other driver if you are responsible for an accident. If you have comprehensive auto insurance, also known as “comp”, your policy covers losses that do not result from a collision, such as fire, wind, flooding, hail, theft or vandalism, including vandalism related to rioting. With this type of auto insurance coverage on your policy, your policy covers vandalism from riots, minus your deductible, up to your policy limit.

Getting Comprehensive Auto Insurance with Nevada Insurance Enrollment

If you do not have comprehensive auto insurance coverage, you may end up paying for damage to your car completely out of pocket, even if the damage is not your fault. At Nevada Insurance Enrollment, our auto insurance agents specialize in helping you recognize coverage gaps in your policy. We can help you review your auto insurance coverage and add affordable comprehensive coverage if necessary so that you can avoid unexpected expenses.

Related Articles:

Automobile Insurance Comprehensive Coverage

Property Damage Liability Insurance: What Does It Cover?

Accidents/Vandalism: Does Auto Insurance Cover Personal Belongings

Auto Insurance – Comprehensive vs. Collision: What’s the Difference?

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DISCLAIMER: It is important to note that the information contained herein is made general for the purpose of explanation.  You should consult your policy for exclusions or other language that may alter your policy.

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