UPDATE: Water Utility: Lateral insurance offer not affiliated with the City of Madison

By: Britni McDonald Email
By: Britni McDonald Email

UPATED Monday, March 24, 2014-- 5:40 p.m.

"These letters are making them worried, and that's what they're meant to do," said Madison Water Utility representative, Amy Barrilleaux.

It's a letter claiming to have important information regarding your water service line, saying you are not covered, and explaining how you can do so. Madison water utility wants you to know this letter is not from them.

"This is not a service that we're pushing in any way," said Barrilleaux.

It's a widespread sales campaign from a company based in Connecticut that offers insurance for lateral lines, which is the pipe that runs from the main under the street to a home-- not to be confused with sewer lines.

"There's something about these letter makes they look really official that has our customers confused," said Barrilleaux. "They're asking us who are these people, are they legitimate, why am I getting this."

Water service line repairs are a homeowner's responsibility, but make sure to read the fine print before buying any insurance policy.

"Lateral issues aren't all that common, but it's up to each individual to get insurance," said Barrilleaux.

Also check with your current homeowner's insurance company to see if lateral damage is already covered.

"A lot of those folks, if they were going to have a problem, they had it this winter, and hopefully it'll be another three or four decades before we have another winter like this one," said Barrilleaux.

Some homeowners may have recently purchased sewer line insurance through a company called service line warranties. That company was selected by the city to sell optional coverage for sewer line service, repair or replacement.

Madison water utility does offer one free thaw to your lateral lines if you need it.

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UPDATED: Monday, March 24, 2014 --- 11:45 a.m.

The Madison Water Utility says they've received many calls today from confused customers who have received apparent sales pitches from a company that offers insurance for lateral lines.

From the Madison Water Utility today:

Water lateral insurance offer not affiliated with City of Madison

Homeowners across Madison have been receiving official-looking letters from a company called HomeServe USA offering insurance for water service lateral lines (the pipe that runs from the main under the street to a home). However, the company is not affiliated with the City or with Madison Water Utility, and the letters are simply part of a wide-spread sales campaign.

While it is true that water service line repairs are a homeowner's responsibility, it's a good idea to read the fine print before buying any insurance policy. You can also check with your current homeowner's insurance company to see if lateral damage is already covered by your current policy.

Some homeowners may have recently purchased sewer line insurance through a company called Service Line Warranties. That company was selected by the City to sell optional coverage for sewer line service, repair or replacement.

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Posted Wednesday, March 19, 2014 --- 12:03 p.m.

The Madison Water Utility says homeowners have been receiving sales campaign letters from HomeServe USA across the Madison area.

The campaign offers insurance for water service lateral lines, which are the pipes that run from the main under the street to a home.

A Utility spokesperson says HomeServe USA has no affiliation with the City or with Madison Water Utility.

The Utility reminds residents that before buying insurance, they should read the fine print or check with their current homeowner's insurance company to see if it's already covered by a current policy.

Some homeowners may have recently purchased sewer line insurance through a company called Service Line Warranties. That company was selected by the city of Madison to sell optional coverage for sewer line service, repair or replacement.


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