Does Homeowner Insurance Cover Suicide Cleanup?

07/01/2021 - Articles

Following a traumatic event, such as a suicide, nobody ever wants to have to decide who’s going to clean up the affected area. Suicide is one of the most traumatic experiences a person can witness and they deserve time and space to recover. 

However, suicides also leave potentially hazardous environments behind that require professional cleaning services. Luckily, technical cleaning companies can provide a safe, ethical, and professional service to those suffering during these challenging times. 

These companies work with homeowners’ insurance companies to ensure the victims’ families and loved ones don’t have to bear a financial burden in addition to their emotional burdens. This blog discusses how you can tell whether your homeowners’ insurance policy covers suicide cleanups. It also examines the various guidelines for technical cleaning services and how you can choose a homeowners’ insurance company. 

Valor Technical Cleaning services is a bioremediation company that treats its clients’ situations with sensitivity and passion. Our GBAC-certified technicians handle biohazard cleanup with professionalism and expertise.

How Do I Know if My Policy Covers Trauma Cleanup?

If you are unsure whether your homeowners’ insurance covers crime scene cleaners, the best thing to do is to directly contact your insurance adjuster. Crime scene cleanup companies can take care of everything in the aftermath of a crime, but insurance companies don’t guarantee who pays, and there might be certain guidelines for coverage.  

Remember that you need to speak with your adjuster, not your insurance agent. You should contact the adjuster because agents handle prospective clients while adjusters handle existing claims, policies, and benefits. They will understand the gray areas in your policy and help you know what exactly is covered.

Should I Clean the Scene Myself if Insurance Doesn’t Cover It?

If your insurance company doesn’t cover crime scene cleanup, you still shouldn’t clean it yourself. Crime scene cleanup companies need to possess technical skills and cleaning chemicals that aren’t available to the public. When you clean crime scenes independently, there’s no way of testing your proficiency and whether you completely removed all the harmful pathogens.  

Just because you cleaned the scene doesn’t mean the scene is clean. Working with a bioremediation company ensures your environment gets restored to its original state, taking all liability off your hands. 

You can also enlist the help of financial assistance from organizations such as the National Association of Crime Victim Compensation Boards (NACVB). You also need to watch out for companies that claim they have free services. 

Do Insurance Companies Recommend Bioremediation Companies 

Insurance companies are unable to recommend crime scene cleanup companies because it is considered a conflict of interest. This process is known as steering and it’s illegal. So if your insurance is supposed to cover premium crime scene cleanup services in your policy, they can’t direct you to a company of their choice. 

Why Do I Need Crime Scene Cleanup Services?

If your home is affected by a crime scene and you clean it yourself, will you be confident enough to let your children into the house? The last thing you want is to live with constant doubt about whether you cleaned your place thoroughly enough to make it safe. 

Companies that follow OSHA guidelines and have GBAC-certified technicians will be able to give you peace of mind. They also take all the liability off your hands if you’re the property owner. However, if you hire a sub-par bioremediation company, you will be liable for any health issues that arise. 

There’s simply no reason to take that risk when your health, and the health of others, is at stake. 

What Is Death Cleanup Coverage?

When accidents and tragedies occur, grief isn’t the only thing that gets left behind. Someone has to clean the aftermath. And the damage might be significant such as damages to structural foundations. 

Death cleanup coverage takes care of the following areas: 

Body Removal

Death cleanup coverage pays for biohazard cleaning services to safely remove corpses from the house following a crime. Bioremediation companies typically honor homeowners insurance as payment and they can even handle claims on your behalf. 

Cleaning Bodily Fluids 

Corpses often leave behind blood and other bodily fluids. These fluids can damage carpeting, walls, and even the structural foundation. Therefore, coverage cleanup can also cover secondary cleanup services after the initial incident. 

Property Damage

Death cleanup coverage accounts for any property damage, such as broken windows or physical harm. 

How Do You Find the Best Homeowners’ Insurance?

To ensure you have crime scene cleanup coverage, you should go with an insurance company that is upfront and clear about its policy terms. Independent homeowners’ insurance agents likely won’t have access to the most comprehensive coverages. 

Consider your needs when choosing homeowners’ insurance companies. You can even make a list of your priorities before you discuss potential policy options. 

Unattended Death Cleanup Cost Factors 

Two primary categories come into play when determining the overall costs of an unattended death.

Cause of Death-

  • Natural causes 
  • Overdose 
  • Suicide 
  • Homicide 
  • Accidental death 

Circumstances 

  • Time since death 
  • Property location 
  • Violent death 
  • Climate 
  • Pests 
  • Hoarding 
  • Severe saturation 
  • Pre-death health conditions

 After the biohazard remediation company factors all of these examples, they can estimate the job’s total cost. After that, all they need to do is decide how they receive compensation. 

Who Pays for Suicide Cleanup?

When thrust into a suicide cleanup scenario, the last thing someone wants to handle is financing the cleanup. Luckily, there are a few options that make the process easier. 

Homeowners Insurance

Most technical cleaning companies will work with your homeowners’ insurance company directly to facilitate the claims process. 

Crime Victims Fund 

The Victims of Crime Act collects funds for crime scene cleanup from federal offenders. They currently have 12 billion dollars and the proceeds go to victim assistance programs around the country. 

Renters’ Insurance 

If you have renters’ insurance, there’s a chance that you can get them to cover the costs of biohazard cleanup services. 

Credit Cards

If you don’t have homeowners’ or renters’ insurance, you may be required to pay out of pocket. In this case, bioremediation companies accept all major credit cards.

Financing 

Technical cleaning companies sometimes offer financing options for individuals struggling to meet their payment requirements.

4 Guidelines for Handling Suicide Cleanup

The primary reason for hiring a technical cleanup company to clean up after a crime scene is because they have to strictly adhere to guidelines laid forth by the CDC and OSHA. The following five examples provide some of the restrictions for crime scene cleanup companies:

  1. They have to wear PPE. Personal protective equipment includes coveralls, disposable gloves, respirators, safety shoes, and goggles. 
  2. They use biohazard bags. Crime scene cleanup companies make sure to dispose of debris in safe containers. 
  3. Technical cleaning companies use biohazard bags to clean the affected areas with 1:10, registered disinfectant products with broad-spectrum kill claims. 
  4. Technical cleaning companies decontaminate reusable equipment such as brooms, buckets, and other equipment to ensure cleaning equipment safety. 

Conclusion- Does Homeowners’ Insurance Cover Suicide Cleanup?

You should check with your homeowners’ insurance company before you commit to a policy. In the unfortunate case that you find yourself in a crime scene cleanup environment, the last thing you will want to deal with is figuring out how to pay for a company’s services. 

You also don’t want to shoulder the cleaning burden yourself. In suicide cleanup situations, you should focus on healing and processing, not worrying about cleaning up. 

Valor technical cleaning is a veteran-owned, Colorado-based technical cleaning company that takes our clients’ needs and emotions into account for every job. Our GBAC-certified technicians handle suicide cleanups with empathy and professionalism. 

Contact us at any hour of any day if you find yourself needing our services. 

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