Why Won’t My Insurance Cover Them?
A Rocklin woman says bats invaded her home twice. Her homeowner’s insurance paid for the removal the first time around. But when they denied her the second time, she called Kurtis.
Bats between her walls… dying and decomposing! And their droppings stinking up the entire house. Insurance is meant to cover the unexpected so why won’t Allstate help here?
“It’s got quite the medieval look to it,” says Alexandra Nicholson, Granite Bay resident.
Alexandra moved into her Granite Bay home on Halloween 18 years ago.
“It’s almost castle like, I fell in love with it,” says Alexandra.
And apparently so did the bats.
Thousands of them made a home in between her walls.
“See how it’s coming out, the guano,” Alexandra shows us.
Yes, bat droppings. Many of the bats got stuck in her walls, died and started decaying, creating a less-than-desirable odor.
“It was like smelling dead animals and I describe it as a dead horse decaying in the middle of the living room,” says Alexandra.
Allstate paid $3,841 to have the bats removed in 2006 but when she called this time around, they denied her claim, saying bats aren’t covered! Her policy says they don’t cover any loss from “rodents” and Alexandra says Allstate told her bats are rodents.
“Bats are not rodents, they’re not closely related to a rodent at all,” says Corky Quirk, founder of NorCal Bats.
Corky should know. She’s a bat expert.
“Bats are animals with wings — mammals with wings,” says Corky.
Once Alexandra called us, our volunteer Chuck tried for months to get Allstate to re-examine the case.
“They weren’t very cooperative to take a second look at it,” says Chuck.
So why did Allstate cover it the first time? They tell us paying the first claim “was a mistake” and that the “policy excludes bats.”
Although, we can’t find the word “bats” anywhere in this policy. But isn’t insurance meant to cover the unexpected?
The Department of Insurance investigated this case but didn’t want to get involved, classifying the stances of Alexandra and Allstate, as a difference of opinion. They admit it’s a unique case.
“Who would know to ask about that coverage in an insurance policy?” says Dave Althausen, Deputy Press Secretary, California Dept. of Insurance.
“I feel like a desperate homeowner being bullied by major company,” says Alexandra.
After spending about $6,000 out of pocket, the bats are now gone from her medievel looking home.
New netting is up, but the stench scared her away from trusting her insurance.
“I will find another insurance company because I don’t feel like I am in good hands with Allstate at all,” says Alexandra.
Alexandra says it would cost another $200,000 to tear down her walls and remove all the droppings inside. Her only recourse now is to take her insurance company to court.