Riot insurance can protect property owners

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — It was the heat of the summer in 2020 and it seemed every day, people were taking to the streets to protest the killing of George Floyd.

Tempers were high all across the city and in some cases they reached a boiling point. Protestors chanted, marched and some got violent, breaking windows and vandalizing stores.

Frank Jones’ South Memphis Barber Shop, Fade2DaMax, was caught in the middle of the melee.

“The shop was broken into. They went through my door. They came in and took some things and went through my storage room,” says Jones.

The window of his front door was shattered. Rioters pushed their way in and even rammed a hole in his storage room wall and broke into the cell phone business next door.

“It was like maybe $5,000 worth of damage,” says Jones. “It still kinda had me in shock.”

Frank called his insurance company and his worries eased.

“I told them all my damages and everything. They came out and took care of everything. They told me everything was fine. I was covered. They came out and they appraised everything and they cut me out a check to get everything done. I didn’t have no problem at all,” he said.

In two weeks the damage was repaired.

“A named peril or cause of loss that is covered is riot or civil commotion,” says David Morrison, an account representative with the Kathy Thurmond-Edwards State Farm Insurance Agency.

He says riot is covered under most home and business policies.

“Civil commotion would be something along the lines of a large gathering that results in property damage. It doesn’t necessarily have to become a riot,” said Morrison.

The insurance may be included in your overall policy. If you have it, all you need is a dollar amount for damage to your property.

Talk to your insurance company and then get an estimate or quote to have the damage repaired.

“Damage to the building itself will be covered under building coverage. Theft of contents of the building would be handled under the property coverage, and then fences, detached structures, sheds, garages will be covered under what we call here dwelling extensions,” says Morrison.

He says you should keep on top of your coverage and your deductible.

It saved Frank Jones thousands.

“When you have a business it’s very important to have insurance on your business cause things can happen. I would advise people to get insurance on anything, your house, your car, your business. Just to be on the safe end of everything,” says Jones. “I wouldn’t go without it. Not in these days and times.”

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