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Riots

Rioting in LondonRiots can affect people's lives, livelihoods and businesses.

Damage (such as fire or looting) resulting from riots or civil disturbance is covered as standard by your home insurance, or by your business insurance if you own a commercial property.  

The riots in August 2011 caused widespread damage to homes and businesses across England. Insurers responded quickly to the situation, paying out approximately £200 million in claims. 

If your home or business suffers loss or damage as a result of a riot contact your insurer immediately. If you don’t have insurance you may still be able to receive compensation from police compensation schemes under a piece of legislation called the Riot Damages Act. 

The UK Riot (Damages) Act does not apply in Northern Ireland. However, under the Criminal Damage Compensation Scheme you may be entitled to claim compensation for loss suffered as a result of damage caused by acts of terrorism or an unlawful assembly of three or more persons.

Riot (Damages) Act 1886

In August 2014, the Government’s consultation on reform of the Riot Damages Act closed. This followed an independent review of the Act in May 2013. The ABI has a number of concerns with the Government’s proposed reforms, which could leave many businesses and motorists without the support that they need and is calling for support for riot victims to be maintained and not curtailed. Under the Government’s new proposals all but the smallest of firms would be able to claim compensation, with the vast majority of vehicle damage also excluded. The ABI estimates that for every £10 paid out in compensation after the 2011 riots, only £1 would be paid out under the reformed Act.

See the ABI's response on the Government’s proposals to reform the Riot Damages Act.

Recovering after Riots: ABI Guidance for Property Owners and Businesses

The insurance industry recognises that events like the riots in 2011 can be traumatic for those affected, especially if homeowners and businesses are left with devastating losses.  It is vital that compensation is paid out as quickly as possible.

This guide outlines the options available to people and businesses to get compensation depending on whether their home or business is insured, under-insured or has no insurance at all.  It also explains how your insurance company will respond in an emergency riot situation and the support that policyholders can expect from their insurer in the days, weeks and months after a riot.

For more information, see: