The guarantee against storms is present in many auto contracts. Also called “weather event cover” or “hail insurance”, it covers damage to your car caused, for example, by strong winds, a hurricane, a hailstorm or snowstorm.
For an event to meet the definition of a “storm” in insurance, it must meet a few conditions. The storm must, in particular, have affected a substantial area. And therefore, that many vehicles are also damaged within a radius of 5 km around you.
A guarantee not always present
When you take out your “all risks” car insurance contract, you are systematically covered. Certain contracts, known as “third party +” or “third party maxi” include this guarantee, to be checked with your insurer.
In the case of a “Civil liability” or “simple third party” contract, you are only insured for the damage you cause, not for that which has been caused to you; no compensation for damages in this case. Pursuant to Article L 126-2 of the Insurance Code, the “storm” guarantee is associated with that of “attacks and acts of terrorism”.
What situations are covered?
It is the car insurance contract and therefore the insurer who must define the situations covered by the storm guarantee, such as the intensity at which the wind has been detected. It can be a hailstorm, an earthquake, a tidal wave, a subsidence or a landslide, a flood caused by climatic events or even a ‘an avalanche.
In the case of the wind, it must have blown at more than 100 km/h. In the context of strong wind peaks, the insurer may ask to produce a bad weather certificate, which can be ordered from Météo-France for a sum of approximately 70 euros and which will be reimbursed.
The storm is not a natural disaster
However, there is a main difference between storm cover and natural disaster cover. In the case of storm cover, the location and/or intensity of the climatic event concerned does not justify the authorities publishing an interministerial order stipulating that it is a natural disaster.
The “storm” warranty generally covers all damage to your car after a hurricane or high winds. You must notify your insurer by registered letter within 5 days of the loss.
Beware of exclusions
Damage may not be reimbursed if you were driving during the height of the storm; the insurer will consider that you were reckless and that he does not have to assume. Same situation if your vehicle was parked outside while you have a covered garage.
To support your compensation file, do not hesitate to provide newspaper extracts, testimonials or photos of other vehicles affected.