A client called us today because of water damage. She had promptly called her insurance carrier to report the problem. The insurance company asked, "How long has the water been leaking?"
This is a question designed to produce a generic response from you that may be used against you later in your claim.
Be Careful How You Respond
The insurance company representative responded, "Since you told me that the water has been leaking a long time, it MIGHT not be covered." The homeowner took “Might” as “Not Covered”, because after all, the water must have been leaking for some time to create the damage that was present. Never describe your loss as “lots of water” or “flooded” or "it's been leaking for a long time".
“Enough Water to Cause My Problem”
Describe your loss as “enough water to cause my problem” or something along that line. You really don’t know HOW MUCH water has leaked nor just how long it might have been leaking. It is not always important that a leak has been ongoing or that there were many gallons of water, it's important that you do something about it as soon as you find it! That's the key for an event like this to be considered a covered peril. It was acted upon as soon as it was noticed!