Massachusetts Insurance and Heating Laws Changing September 30, 2011

NEW YORK - JANUARY 12:  Marion Dantzler of Sou...Image by Getty Images via @daylife

(Massachusetts) Tomorrow Friday September 30th, 2011 there are some major changes coming for homeowners who use fuel oil to heat their homes. Due to the risk to health and public safety the state enacted new law Chapter 453 of the Acts of 2008, as most recently amended in 2010 to address the potential hazards that a fuel oil leak can cause.

Home heating oil is a common heating source here in New England. The new law requires that backflow valves be installed on tanks and/or the fuel lines be encased in a protective sleeve. Typical costs are quoted by the state as $150 - $350 (including labor, parts, and local permit fees). Homeowners of single family and 1-4 unit multi-family properties are encouraged to have their fuel supplier and/or licenced heating contractor inspect their systems to make sure they are in compliance.

Due to the large financial and health costs associated with a fuel oil leak there are also changes to the insurance laws covering homes with fuel oil heating systems. Coverages for localized leaks (smaller) and for external contamination leaks have been addressed. Due to the expense of these issues it's recommended that homeowners check with their insurance professional to make sure they are properly covered and meet the minimum requirements for coverage.

The state has a great informational page for homeowners to read further on these issues Here. It also has additional resources and links to approved contractors as wel as further links to other items to consider & review.
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