Riot, Terrorism and Civil Disorder Insurance

Most standard home insurance policies will not cover damages or loss caused by riots, civil disturbances, or terrorist attacks. This makes riot, terrorism, and civil disorder insurance a necessity for some homeowners. Learn about the possible limits of your coverage below and start shopping for civil disorder insurance quotes with our free comparison tool.

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Natasha McLachlan is a writer who currently lives in Southern California. She is an alumna of California College of the Arts, where she obtained her B.A. in Writing and Literature. Her current work revolves around insurance guides and informational articles. She truly enjoys helping others learn more about everyday, practical matters through her work.

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Laura Walker graduated college with a BS in Criminal Justice with a minor in Political Science. She married her husband and began working in the family insurance business in 2005. She became a licensed agent and wrote P&C business focusing on personal lines insurance for 10 years. Laura serviced existing business and wrote new business. She now uses her insurance background to help educate...

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Reviewed by Laura Walker
Former Licensed Agent

UPDATED: Nov 22, 2020

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Since the incident on 9/11, terrorism and civil unrest have become important considerations for homeowners, especially in dense population centers. And since most home insurance policies do not include riots, terrorism or civil disorder by default, it is up to each homeowner to determine if they need such coverage and to purchase it separately.

Another man-made disaster that your insurance may not cover is the possibility of nuclear radiation or fallout, even if it caused by a power plant rather than malicious intent. Coverage for these types of things, where widespread damage is caused directly or indirectly by men, is often hard to find, and may only be available from high risk insurance companies. In some cases, the only home insurance available for these perils is through government monitored agencies, where all home insurance companies contribute proportionate shares into a fund that is available to all homeowners at premiums graded to match the possibility of the disaster occurring.

Regardless of the cost, having insurance to protect against civil disorders or man-made disasters is far cheaper than the cost of rebuilding a home out of pocket, even before you consider the many thousands of dollars of personal property that the average family would stand to lose. So the odds of such a situation may be small, but the benefits are actually enormous if such a claim becomes necessary.

In addition to adding this coverage, look at the limits for your family’s personal property as well. Most policies only provide for a percentage of the total policy value to replace lost or damaged property and often fall short of the total value of your property. You can increase those limits, and to make a property claim easier to settle, keep a video record, called a home inventory of your property that can be referred to in order to prove the extent of your losses.

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