Queensland floods: A full guide on what you can claim on insurance
Residents of south-east Queensland and northern NSW are in the midst of severe flooding – find out where to get help, and what to know about insurance claims.
The Bureau of Meteorology has issued major flood warnings following catastrophic rainfall totals between 400-800mm over just 4 days.
Here are some resources where you can access immediate support and information:
- Queensland SES has information on severe weather events. For life-threatening situations, call Triple Zero (000).
- The government has announced a Disaster Recovery Allowance for those who've lost income due to the floods.
- Services Australia's Disaster Assistance phone line (180 22 66) is available for those who are unable to claim online.
- To track the latest weather warnings, visit BoM's website or Weatherzone.
Do insurance policies cover flooding?
Yes, many home insurance policies include cover for flooding. If your home is damaged by rainwater that's leaked in, you should be able to make a claim with your insurer.
That said, flood insurance is usually offered as an optional cover – meaning not all home insurance policies include it as standard. Start by giving your insurer a call, or search for terms like "flood" or "flooding" in your policy's Product Disclosure Statement (PDS).
To be able to claim on home insurance, you'd need to have had a policy in place at least 72 hours before the floods. Find out more about home insurance restrictions and exclusions.
Keep in mind, even if you don't have flooding insurance, you still might be able to claim for storm damage. Give your insurer a call to see if it's worth making a claim for this weather disaster.
What does flood cover include?
Common things you can claim for with flood insurance include water damage, damage from fallen trees, temporary accommodation, the temporary storage of contents, the removal of debris, and food spoilage costs in some cases.
Which other insurances might I be able to claim for?
Many comprehensive car insurance policies will cover loss or damage caused by storms (including floods). When it comes to repairs – be it for floods, hail or other storm damage – you should only carry out work on your vehicle once you have authorisation from your insurer.
If your business has been disrupted by floods, you may be able to claim on business insurance. But as with home insurance, damages from flooding aren't always included automatically. It will depend on the specifics of your policy.
We reviewed 13 business insurance policies, and none included cover for floods as standard – in fact, just 3 providers mentioned flood cover as an optional cover (meaning you'd need add it to a policy for a fee).
How do I make a claim on my insurance?
If your home has been impacted by the flooding, start by securing your property to make sure it's safe. Then follow these steps:
Give your insurer a call
Your insurance provider will be able to talk you through the full claims process. Also, it may be able to send out an emergency tradesperson if needed.
Take photos of the damage
You could gather receipts for any white goods or other items that will need to be replaced. Details of these will need to be included in your claim.
Submit your claim
You can do this online or by mail. For severe weather events where there are multiple claims, your claim may take longer than usual.
Compare home and contents insurance that can give you protection against loss or damage for future events.