Additional Living Expense Coverage Texas Attorneys

How Additional Living Expenses Coverage Works in Texas

No one wants or expects to be displaced from their own house, but if there’s a fire or a storm, the habitation may become unlivable, so the only option is to pack whatever you have left and leave. Finding temporary lodgings will put an additional strain on your finances — because who’s going to pay for that? In Texas, most standard homeowners insurance policies include additional living expenses (ALE) coverage. However, you should always read the policy carefully to understand what it includes.

What Is Additional Living Expenses (ALE) Coverage?

Additional living expenses, or ALE, is a form of coverage included in homeowners and renters insurance policies that allows you to live elsewhere while your home or apartment is being repaired or rebuilt after a covered disaster. 

ALE can be applied to the difference between normal living expenses and additional costs for hotel bills, restaurant meals, boarding costs for pets, storage fees, washer and dryer fees, mileage, and rent you would have collected from a tenant at a compromised property.

ALE may be subject to limits and generally won’t cover costs brought on by floods or costs over your usual standard of living.

How to Start the ALE Process

Like any insurance, the key to ALE is documentation and communication with your insurance provider. Experts recommend that in addition to such steps as keeping receipts, homeowners or renters should keep records of everything discussed with an insurance agent regarding ALE coverage and any ALE claim. This is partly due to costs that can rapidly amass daily when a family is displaced from their home and the tendency of insurance providers to seek loopholes to deny coverage (more costs equaling more chances for denials).

As always, the guidance of an experienced attorney is the best way to begin an ALE claim with your carrier and avoid common insurance adjuster tactics.

When in doubt, check with your insurer to ensure you don’t run up any bills the company won’t pay. On the other hand, if you believe that the company unjustifiably denied part of your ALE, don’t let it slide. You’re already under a lot of stress being forced out of your house — you shouldn’t have to put up with their attempts to cut costs at your expense.

Connect with an experienced Houston homeowners insurance claims lawyer and learn your rights. Remember that if your house needs to be rebuilt, you may be looking at years of living in temporary accommodations, and your family deserves to live comfortably.

Texas lawyers additional living expense insurance coverage

Are there limits to my additional living expenses?

That depends on the exact wording of your policy. If you cannot make any sense of what’s in there, ask an insurance claims lawyer. They understand legalese. Most standard homeowners insurance policies in Texas have time and monetary caps on ALE. For instance, if a storm destroyed your house and the contractors tell you it will be two years before you can move back in, the insurance company will give you ALE for 24 months. If there’s also a monetary cap, the total value of your ALE cannot exceed that.

What is included in additional living expenses?

First of all, the ALE will cover the rent for temporary lodgings. You need to remember that any expenses you make should keep with the lifestyle you had before. For instance, if you lived in a 2-bedroom house, you cannot expect the insurance company to pay the rent for a 4-bedroom home with a pool. Depending on where the new house is located, the ALE should cover the extra mileage to your place of work or your kids’ school.

Speaking of mileage, some policies allow you to be compensated for the trips to rebuild-related stores when you look for construction materials, flooring, fixtures, furniture, etc.; you may also charge them meal-related expenses. Moving the salvaged furniture to a storage unit should also be included in the ALE.

These are just some of the basics included in the ALE, but when you move to another place, you may have a lot of other expenses. Even the small ones still add up, and you don’t want to pay out of pocket for anything that your policy may cover. Talk to the insurance adjuster and see if they’ll cover things like sewer fees or IT fees to set up a computer system at the new home. This is vital for you if you work remotely, so they can hardly refuse to cover such expenses. 

What happens if my house is not rebuilt/repaired on time?

If you’ve used up your ALE and the house is not ready, you’ll have to determine whose fault it is. If the insurance company is to blame, you can ask for more money. They might refuse to claim you’ve reached the monetary/time cap, but since it’s not your fault, have your Texas insurance claims lawyers call them. Whenever an insurance company unlawfully denies a claim, you can sue them for acting in bad faith. They know that, and if they get a call from your lawyer, they’ll see that you know that, too.

Contact the Insurance Attorneys at MMA Law Firm,

When looking for a lawyer, you need to consider their knowledge, experience, and history of working with the ALE process. In addition, you need someone who understands all the nuances of the law.MMA Law Firm, ’s attorneys are well-respected insurance claims, coverage, and litigation strategists. Connect with the MMA team to get your free consultation.

Contact us online or call us at (844) 662-7552 to get started today.