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Rainwater versus floodwater — what does my policy cover?


Why is my policy important?

The policy states the risks your insurer has agreed to pay for. The insurer cannot go outside the policy wording. It can only refuse to pay a claim for floodwater damage if flood cover is not included in the policy.

There may also be other exclusions in the policy that you should be aware of including no cover for damage to fences or retaining walls or no cover if you have failed to maintain your property.

Your insurance policy document will state specifically what risks the insurer has agreed to pay for. Your insurer will be able to give you a copy of your insurance policy document. It is important to check you have been provided with the right copy of your policy.


Business contents insurance policies may provide cover for loss caused by floodwater. If you were working from home, you may have a business insurance policy and not a domestic building policy.

Many, but not all, insurance policies provide cover for damage caused by a flood. You should seek legal advice if you are uncertain about whether you are covered, opted out of flood cover or disagree with the amount the insurer is paying you for your claim.

If your insurance policy does not cover for flood, the insurer is likely to ask a hydrologist to do a report to determine where the water came from which damaged your property.

You should get legal advice about your insurance claim once the insurer has determined where they believe the damage came from.

Last updated 22 March 2022

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