Friday, August 14, 2009


California Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner is reminding residents who have been evacuated due to the Lockheed Fire in Santa Cruz County and the La Brea Fire in Santa Barbara County that they may be eligible for reimbursement for additional living expenses due to mandatory evacuations. Poizner also encouraged all Californians to make sure their insurance policies are updated and to conduct a home inventory today.

"I urge everyone who has been evacuated from their home to check their insurance policies," said Poizner. "Many homeowners policies cover additional living expenses incurred as a result of a mandatory evacuation. Coming up with extra money for hotel stays, extra food and other additional living costs are the last thing fire evacuees should have to worry about. Check your policy, and if you have any insurance questions, call the Department of Insurance at 800-927-HELP."

For the most recent information about these fires, including containment and evacuation information, visit the CAL FIRE Web site at

Many residential homeowners insurance policies cover what is known as ALE, or additional living expenses. This permits homeowners to maintain their normal standard of living by covering the increased living expenses incurred as a result of damage caused by the fire or a mandatory evacuation. ALE coverage typically includes extra food costs, increased housing costs, furniture rental, relocation and storage costs, telephone installation and extra transportation costs to and from school or work, after the deductible is reached.

A free home inventory guide is available on the Department of Insurance Web site at, or by calling the CDI Consumer Hotline at 800-927-HELP.

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