Vandalism Endorsement

What is 'Vandalism Endorsement'

A vandalism endorsement is an optional insurance coverage that can be added to basic hazard or property insurance providing remuneration if the property is intentionally damaged by criminals.

BREAKING DOWN 'Vandalism Endorsement'

A vandalism endorsement was created to protect property owners and tenants from damages caused by breaking and entering or graffiti undertaken as a criminal act. This insurance coverage is a good option for buildings to be unoccupied for long periods of time, such as vacant commercial properties and schools. These cases are more susceptible to vandalism and more likely to need this supplemental coverage.

Insurance coverage can be expensive for both policyholder and insurance company, and the needs of the policyholder vary widely depending on their needs, so the solution was to create various specific riders, or endorsements, to supplement insurance. Riders provide a specific coverage the policyholder needs. Riders vary widely and require additional premiums depending on the type of extra insurance coverage being provided. Examples of property coverage unlikely to be included in a basic policy but eligible for purchasing riders include coverage for stolen jewelry, broken glass and damages caused by a built-in sprinkler systems.

Losses to property by vandalism or malicious mischief are not typically covered if the dwelling has been vacant for more than 60 consecutive days, so be sure to check and get the coverage needed.  

What’s Not Covered?

The term malicious mischief is used to describe damages to a property, including personal property.  If someone destroys your laptop computer within the covered premises, that’s vandalism.  If someone destroys your bicycle or sound system, that is vandalism.  In each instance, coverage would apply after the deductible has been met.

Vacant means you are not living there and the insured property is substantially empty of personal items necessary for normal use. If you’re not living in the dwelling, there are additional precautions against vandalism that should be taken, such as having someone trustworthy keep an eye on the property and using timer lights and Internet-monitoring home protection products.

Vandalism committed by anyone insured for the property is not covered.  For example, if a couple has a policy together and one partner moves out in a dispute only to return and damage the other partner’s personal property, the vandalism endorsement would not apply. When life circumstances change, it is prudent to check existing legal documents and update them to reflect the current realities.

Adding a vandalism endorsement to an insurance policy can be a smart move and protect you from malicious damages.