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The November town hall was held on Thursday, Nov. 12. Watch the video to hear answers to questions about the claims process, the rebuilding process, why it is important to consider flood insurance after a wildfire, and insurance scams.
Watch the October town hall to hear answers to questions about filing a claim, additional living expenses, and debris clean-up.
If you are affected by the Oregon wildfires, contact your insurance company as soon as possible to discuss your current situation and learn about next steps. If you still have questions or concerns, the division’s consumer advocates are here to help. Call 888-877-4894 (toll-free) or visit
dfr.oregon.gov/help to connect with the Advocacy Team.
Recovering from wildfire takes time, but the information below will help you save time, money, and stress at each stage of the recovery process.
Many homeowners and renters insurance policies help pay for extra expenses
if you are unable to live in your home. This payment is called additional living
expenses, or ALE. Every company handles these expenses differently. Check with
your company for specifics.
ALE fact sheet
If you receive an advance payment from your insurance company, be sure to
understand what it covers.
Advance payments usually cover additional living expenses or a portion of
the personal property settlement.
Regardless of what it covers, the payment is not a grant. Your final payment
will be reduced by the amount of the advance. It is OK to accept an advance payment.
It will help cover some early expenses, just be sure to understand what it covers.
Wildfire debris cleanup can be very expensive. On Oct. 23, 2020, the Oregon Legislature’s Emergency Board approved funding to begin ash and debris removal. Homeowners and businesses may want to consider this option to reserve insurance benefits for rebuilding. Visit
wildfire.oregon.gov/cleanup to learn more about the state coordinated effort.
Before you do any cleanup, or hire anyone to clean up wildfire debris,
review the guidance from the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality .
If you have questions, you can call the wildfire debris cleanup hotline at 503-934-1700 or email email@example.com.
Remember to work closely with your county officials and insurance company in this cleanup process.
Every policy has deductibles. This is the amount you pay to help cover the
claim. Everyone’s case is unique, so contact your insurance company for the
details of your specific policy coverage. Be sure to understand how your deductible
applies to your claim.
Damage to most vehicles is not covered under a homeowners policy. Comprehensive
coverage on your auto policy will pay for damage (minus any deductible) caused
by fire, smoke, or ash.
If your insurance company needs your car title and you no longer have access
to it, your insurance company should work with Driver and Motor Vehicles (DMV)
or your auto lender to get proof of ownership. You may need to sign a DMV power-of-attorney
form to release your car title to your insurance company.
Oregonians in and around wildfire affected areas face an increased risk of
flooding and mudflows for several years. Most insurance policies do not cover
flood damage. It takes 30-days for a new National Flood Insurance Program
(NFIP) insurance policy to go into effect, so consider buying flood insurance
For more info visit Floodsmart.gov and
talk to your insurance agent.
For more information about this increased risk, visit Oregon wildfires: Flood risk and fraud awareness
Many manufactured home insurance policies are based on the actual cash value
of the home. The settlement for a total loss of a manufactured home will typically
be either the limits of the policy or the current sales price of a similar
manufactured home (same year, make, and model). The policy may also have
contents coverage for personal belongings and some additional living expenses.
To find a title to a manufactured home, visit the Oregon
Building Codes Division website .
Do not be a victim of scammers. The Oregon Construction Contractors Board
licenses construction contractors. Before hiring a contractor, check the license and
review the board’s Buyer
You can also check
the license of the person or company you are working with on new
investments, buying insurance, or applying for a payday loan.
Press the avoid scams button below for more information.
You should not be rushed or pressured during your insurance claim process.
You have a right to see the full settlement evaluation, look at the bid, get
comparable value information, and take your time.
If you are feeling pressure from your insurance company to settle, you have
a right to file a complaint online at dfr.oregon.gov. To talk to a consumer
advocate, call 888-877-4894 (toll-free).
Do all that you can to help the process. Take time to do your inventory. Details
will come back to you at any time, so carry a note pad and a pen to jot down
the items as you remember them. Ask friends, family, and neighbors to help you
remember details. As you walk through stores or drive through a commercial area,
you may be reminded of items like kitchen utensils or hand tools. Keep building
your inventory list with more details.
Your mortgage still has to be paid. Inform your mortgage servicer that you
have been affected by wildfire. Your mortgage servicer can work with you and
your insurance company to manage insurance payments. Checks may be written
to both you and the mortgage company. Make sure your insurance company has
the correct mortgage servicer on file.
Before hiring a public adjuster:
Four questions to ask before hiring a public adjuster
The wildfire season has been extreme, and insurance companies are doing the
best they can to serve their customers. Be patient, do the best you can, keep
trying, and know that your settlement could take months while bids and estimates
are gathered. If you believe you are not making progress with your insurance
company or have an unresolved issue, call our consumer advocates for help at
The temporary wildfire emergency order was in effect until Nov. 16, 2020. It provided short-term relief to Oregonians following the recent wildfires. The order did not relieve the obligation to pay premiums. This means transitioning away from the order allows consumers to work with their insurance companies to catch up on their premium payments. Use the links below to review the order and related guidance that was provided to insurance companies. Talk to your insurance company if you need additional time to pay premiums or report your claim.
If you have questions about your insurance coverage, contact your insurance company or agent. If you have questions or need to
file a complaint on an insurance company or agent, contact the division’s advocacy team at 888-877-4894 (toll-free) or
Press the buttons below to learn more about building a home inventory, gathering important documents, and preparing your family and finances for disaster.
File a complaint online or contact us:
Always verify that the company or individual you are working with has a license.
Check a license now.
Find licensed payday and title lenders.
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