Canada will legalize recreational marijuana next year and the legislation will have profound effects on the insurance industry. Auto insurance providers are tackling a debate on how to manage the introduction of cannabis, but it seems home insurance companies have already set out their stall.
Specifically, they want nothing to do with pot, or at least those who grow it in their home.
Growing marijuana in a home is already legal for medicinal purposes, but will be greenlit for recreational use. That means any Canadian can grow marijuana in their house. Home insurance providers are not covering people who grow pot in their homes and it is unclear whether they ever will.
If there are plans to introduce cannabis home insurance solutions, the industry is behind the curve. The Oliver Chronicle reports about one local resident who grew marijuana legally. Believing her insurance would cover her provided the pot did not cause the accident, the customer was in for a surprise.
Insurance companies are not paying out on home insurance claims, even if the damage caused was unrelated to the marijuana growth. In the specific case, the customer had insurance which is mandatory with the home mortgage. Considering the legal medical cannabis farm, she has been paying a void policy for years.
Once she discovered the problem, she looked for a policy that would extend to marijuana through Kelowna broker Eric Lock with AC&D Insurance. Lock was unable to find a Canadian provider that would cover home pot growth.
Lock’s only options was England’s Lloyd’s of London, which is noted for its diverse coverage options. The company agreed to the long distance, but the customers would pay more than double her previous coverage.
“The insurance industry is lagging behind what’s happening in the market,” Lock said. “I know people of all walks of life who use medical marijuana. It’s unfortunate that people are putting their futures at risk just to medicate themselves.”