Sink Hole or Catastrophic Ground Collapse? Know the Difference

Florida provides specific points to define the differences between sink hole and catastrophic ground collapse. Florida law requires homeowner insurance coverage to include catastrophic ground collapse but a separate sink hole policy would be needed to cover damage that doesn’t qualify.

There are 4 criteria for insurance coverage as written into Florida law for geological activity that results in catastrophic ground cover collapse.

1. There is a sudden collapse of the ground cover.

2. The ground cover has a depression clearly visible to the naked eye.

3. There is structural damage to the building including the foundation.

4. The insured structure must be condemned and an order to vacate must be issued by the government agency authorized by law to issue such an order for that structure.

A sink hole can meet all these criteria but odds are on the side of not all 4 criteria being met. By definition, a sink hole is the result of the ground cover sinking due to the erosion of the underlying supportive layer by the dissolving of the limestone or dolostone.

Every Florida insurance company and agent must have separate sink hole insurance available as an addendum or a rider for an additional charge to an existing policy. You should check your policy coverage with a trusted company such as North American Advantage Insurance Services.