Since 1989, waiving insurance policy deductibles has been common place in Texas (and came about as the result of a poorly worded statute passed that same year). Contractors who have broken the 1989 law by waving deductibles (specifically roofing contractors) have been putting homeowners at risk, too. Homeowners are lured into signing contracts with these “deductible eaters” based on promises of a “free roof” or “lower deductible”. And then, homeowners/policyholders are duped into committing insurance fraud when in submitting a request pursuant to their policy for replacement cost (RCV) hold-back, they failed to tell their insurance company that the deductible part of the claim had not been incurred.
In May 2019, the 86th Texas Legislature passed two bills pertaining to the roofing industry. HB 2102 – Prohibition Against Waiving of Deductibles is extremely important to read and understand for contractors and homeowners alike.
SECTION 2. Section 27.02, Business & Commerce Code:
|(b) “Texas law requires a person insured under a property|
|insurance policy to pay any deductible applicable to a claim made under the policy. It is a violation of Texas law for a seller of goods or services who reasonably expects to be paid wholly or partly from the proceeds of a property insurance claim to knowingly allow the insured person to fail to pay, or assist the insured person’s failure to pay, the applicable insurance deductible.”|
(d) An offense under this section is a Class B misdemeanor.
This Act will take effect September 1, 2019.
It is extremely important to be educated on the matter so that you do not find yourself in trouble due to misinformation. If your contractor does not have Section 2 of this bill in the contract, BEWARE.