Chapter 407

Section 407:1

    407:1 Form of Policy. – The form of policy for fire insurance prescribed by this chapter shall be known and designated as the Standard Fire Insurance Policy for New Hampshire, hereinafter known as the Standard Fire Policy. There may be inserted before and after the words "New Hampshire" the state in which such form of policy is standard.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:2

    407:2 Use Required. – No policy or contract of fire insurance, except for motor vehicle insurance, marine insurance, inland marine insurance, and policies used to effect reinsurance between insurers, shall be made, issued or delivered by any insurer or by any agent or representative thereof, on any property in this state unless it shall conform to all the provisions of the policy form prescribed herein. The insurance commissioner may, after hearing, revoke or suspend the license of any insurer using any other form of such policy.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960. 2020, 37:50, eff. Sept. 27, 2020.

Section 407:2-a

    407:2-a Combination Coverages. –
Any policy or contract otherwise subject to RSA 407:2, which includes either on an unspecified basis as to the coverage or for a single premium coverage against the peril of fire and substantial coverage against other perils, need not comply with the provisions of RSA 407:2, provided:
I. Such policy or contract shall afford coverage, with respect to the peril of fire, not less than the coverage afforded by such New Hampshire Standard Fire Policy;
II. That such coverage as to the peril of fire shall be made subject without change to the same general provisions and stipulations as those of such Standard Fire Policy;
III. The provisions in relation to mortgagee interests and obligations in such Standard Fire Policy shall be incorporated therein without change;
IV. Such policy or contract is complete as to all of its terms without reference to the standard form of fire insurance policy or any other policy;
V. The insurance commissioner is satisfied that such policy or contract complies with the provisions hereof.

Source. 1981, 345:1, eff. Aug. 16, 1981.

Section 407:3

    407:3 Other Material Required. –
I. There shall be printed at the head of said policy the name of the insurer or insurers issuing the policy, the location of the home office thereof, a statement whether said insurer or insurers are stock or mutual corporations or are Lloyd's underwriters; and the insurer or insurers may add thereto such device or devices as may be approved by the insurance commissioner.
II. If the policy is issued by a mutual or cooperative insurer having special regulations with respect to the payment by the policyholder of assessments, such regulations shall be printed upon the policy, and any such insurer may print upon the policy such regulations as may be appropriate to or required by its form of organization.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:4

    407:4 Change of Arrangement. – The insurance commissioner is authorized to change the shape, size and general arrangement of the Standard Fire Policy as he may think the public good requires.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:5

    407:5 Combination Form. –
Two or more insurers authorized to do in this state the business of fire insurance, may, with the approval of the insurance commissioner, issue a combination standard form of fire policy which shall contain the following provisions:
I. A provision substantially to the effect that the insurers executing such policy shall be severally liable for the full amount of any loss or damage, according to the terms of the policy, or for specified percentages or amounts thereof, aggregating the full amount of such insurance under such policy.
II. A provision substantially to the effect that service of process, or of any notice or proof of loss required by such policy, upon any of the insurers executing such policy, shall be deemed to be service upon all such insurers.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:6

    407:6 Temporary Insurance. – Binders or other contracts for temporary insurance may be made, orally or in writing, and shall be deemed to include all the terms of such Standard Fire Policy and all such applicable endorsements as may be designated in such contract of temporary insurance; except that the cancellation clause of such Standard Fire Policy, and the clause thereof specifying the hour of the day at which the insurance shall commence, may be superseded by the express terms of such contract of temporary insurance.

Source. 1959, 163:1. 1986, 157:3, eff. May 28, 1986.

Section 407:7

    407:7 Forms for Other Insurance. – Appropriate forms of other contracts or endorsements, insuring against one or more of the perils incident to the ownership, use or occupancy of said property, other than fire and lightning, which the insurer is empowered to assume, may be used in connection with the Standard Fire Policy. Such forms of other contracts or endorsements attached or printed thereon may contain provisions and stipulations inconsistent with the Standard Fire Policy if applicable only to such other perils. The pages of the Standard Fire Policy may be renumbered and rearranged to provide space for the listing of rates and premiums for coverages.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:8

    407:8 Use of Forms. – A copy of the forms or endorsements providing coverage to be used with the Standard Fire Policy shall be filed with the insurance commissioner. The commissioner is given authority to disapprove any such form if he shall find it to be unfair or inequitable or if it does not comply with the requirements of law or conform to the filings made under the law relating to the regulation of rates.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:9

    407:9 Descriptions Not Warranties. – Descriptions of property and statements concerning its value and the title of the insured thereto in an application for insurance or in an insurance policy shall not be treated as warranties.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:10

    407:10 Agent's Knowledge. – If a company shall issue a policy upon an application prepared by a third person assuming to act as its agent or otherwise, it shall be charged with his knowledge of facts relating to the property insured as if they were stated in the application.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:11

    407:11 Policy Value. –
I. If a building insured for a specified amount, whether under a separate policy or under a policy also covering other buildings, is totally destroyed by fire or lightning without criminal fault on the part of the insured or his assignee, the sum for which such building is insured shall be taken to be the value of the insured's interest therein unless overinsurance thereon was fraudulently obtained.
II. If an insured building is only partially destroyed by fire or lightning, the insured shall be entitled to the actual loss sustained not exceeding the sum insured.
III. Nothing contained in paragraphs I and II of this section shall be construed as prohibiting the use of coinsurance, or agreed amount.
IV. When a building is insured not for a specified amount but under a blanket form with one amount covering 2 or more buildings or one or more buildings and personal property, the provisions of paragraph I of this section shall not apply.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:12

    407:12 Adjustment and Payment of Loss. – The company shall begin the adjustment of the loss within 15 days after receipt of notice of loss. The amount of loss under a fire insurance policy shall be due and payable in 60 days after receipt by the insuring company of proof of loss, and the insured may commence an action after the expiration of that time to recover the same.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:12-a

    407:12-a Payment of Incidental Costs. – In the event that an insured sustains a loss covered under the policy with respect to payment of undisputed incidental costs, including but not limited to rent, the insurer shall make payment for such costs within 15 days after receipt of a valid proof of loss. The insured may commence an action after the expiration of the 15 days to recover such costs.

Source. 1992, 133:1, eff. May 4, 1992.

Section 407:13

    407:13 Rebuilding. – If the company decides to rebuild or repair the property destroyed or injured, it shall begin to do so within 20 days after adjusting the loss, and shall prosecute the work with reasonable diligence until it is completed.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:14

    407:14 Neglect of Insurer. – If the company neglects to adjust the loss within 15 days after receiving notice of it, or to begin to rebuild or repair the property destroyed or damaged within 20 days after the adjustment of the loss, the insured may proceed to rebuild or repair at the expense of the company, which shall be liable for the reasonable expenses incurred in so doing and for the loss sustained by its neglect, not exceeding the amount insured; or the insured may commence an action upon the policy.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:15

    407:15 Notice to Insured. – The insurer shall provide written notice to the insured of any denial of coverage. The notice shall inform the insured that any action based upon the denial shall be barred by law if not commenced within 12 months from the date of the written denial.

Source. 1959, 163:1. 2014, 31:6, eff. July 26, 2014.

Section 407:16

    407:16 Judgment, etc. – If, upon trial, the insured recovers more than the amount determined by the insurers, he shall have judgment and execution immediately therefor, with interest and costs. If he recovers no more than such amount, the court may allow interest thereon, and such costs to either party as may be just; but execution shall not issue against the company within 3 months, unless by special order of court.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:17

    407:17 Suit Against Foreign Company. – A person having a claim against an insurance company not organized under the laws of the state, arising from a transaction with an agent of the company in the state, may sue therefore in the courts of the state. Service of any process pertaining to such action upon the insurance commissioner shall have the same effect as if the company were a domestic corporation and the service were lawfully made within the state upon its officers.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:18

    407:18 Non-payment of Judgment. – If in such action the plaintiff shall recover a judgment, and the company does not pay it within 30 days after notice of it is given to the commissioner, he may suspend the authority of the company to do business in the state.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:19

    407:19 Policies Written During Suspension. – If the company or any of its agents shall issue a policy during such suspension, the company and agent shall each forfeit $200 for each policy so issued; but the policies shall be valid and binding, nevertheless.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:20

    407:20 Action by Assignee. – If a policy has been transferred or assigned by the insured to a person to hold absolutely or as collateral security, with the assent of the insurer, the assignee may bring an action thereon in his own name or in that of the assignor, and may recover the full amount due upon the policy for the benefit of whom it may concern.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:21

    407:21 Chapter Controlling. – Every provision and stipulation in a contract to which this chapter is applicable in conflict with this chapter shall be void and no waiver of any part thereof shall be set up by the insurer.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:22

    407:22 New Form Adopted. – The Standard Fire Policy (with permission to substitute for the word, company, a more accurate descriptive term for the type of insurer) shall be in the following form:

Standard Fire Insurance Policy for New Hampshire

No. Type of Company
 Renewal of Number 
Space for Company Name, Insignia and Location

Insured's Name and Mailing Address
 Space for
 Name and
Inception (Mo. Day Yr.) Expiration (Mo. Day Yr.) Years

It is important that the written portions of all policies covering the same property read exactly alike. If they do not, they should be made uniform at once.
Insurance is provided against only those perils and for only those coverages indicated below by a premium charge and against other perils and for other coverages only when endorsed hereon or added hereto.
Space for policy amounts, rates, premium, description and location of property covered.
Subject to Form No(s). attached hereto.

Insert form number(s) and edition date(s)
Mortgage Clause: Subject to the provisions of the mortgage clause attached hereto, loss, if any, on building items, shall be payable to:
Insert name(s) of mortgagee(s) and mailing address(es)
Agency at
Countersignature Date. .........................Agent

If any conditions of this form are construed to be more liberal than any other policy conditions relating to the perils of fire, lightning or removal, the conditions of this form shall apply.
In consideration of the provisions and stipulations herein or added hereto and of the premium above specified, this Company, for the term of years specified above from inception date shown above at 12:01 AM (Midnight, Standard Time) to expiration date shown above at 12:01 AM (Midnight, Standard Time) at location of property involved, to an amount not exceeding the amount(s) above specified, does insure the insured named above and legal representatives, to the extent of the actual cash value of the property at the time of loss, but not exceeding the amount which it would cost to repair or replace the property with material of like kind and quality within a reasonable time after such loss, without allowance for any increased cost of repair or reconstruction by reason of any ordinance or law regulating construction or repair, and without compensation for loss resulting from interruption of business or manufacture, nor in any event for more than the interest of the insured, against all direct loss by fire, lightning and by removal from premises endangered by the perils insured against in this policy, except as hereinafter provided, to the property described herein while located or contained as described in this policy, or pro rata for 5 days at each proper place to which any of the property shall necessarily be removed for preservation from the perils insured against in this policy, but not elsewhere. Assignment of this policy shall not be valid except with the written consent of this Company.
This policy is made and accepted subject to the foregoing provisions and stipulations and those hereinafter stated, which are hereby made a part of this policy, together with such other provisions, stipulations and agreements as may be added hereto, as provided in this policy.
Concealment, fraud.
Coverage under this policy shall be void for the insured who, whether before or after a loss, has intentionally concealed or misrepresented any material fact or circumstance; engaged in fraudulent conduct; or made false statements relating to this insurance.
Notice requirements.
In the event that a company or filing or rating organization eliminates or reduces coverages, conditions or definitions in its policies issued under this section other than at the request of a policyholder, the company must attach to the policy a printed notice in each such policy explaining clearly what coverages, conditions or definitions have been eliminated or reduced. If explanations of such reduced or eliminated coverages are not contained in the printed notice attached to its policies, then such coverages, conditions or definitions shall remain in full force and effect without such reductions or eliminations. The requirements of this section shall apply only to such policies renewed or endorsed with the same company.
Uninsurable and excepted property.
This policy shall not cover accounts, bills, currency, deeds, evidences of debt, money or securities; nor, unless specifically named hereon in writing, bullion or manuscripts.
Perils not included.
This Company shall not be liable for loss by fire or other perils insured against in this policy caused, directly or indirectly, by: (a) enemy attack by armed forces, including action taken by military, naval or air forces in resisting an actual or an immediately impending enemy attack; (b) invasion; (c) insurrection; (d) rebellion; (e) revolution; (f) civil war; (g) usurped power; (h) terrorism; (i) order of any civil authority except acts of destruction at the time of and for the purpose of preventing the spread of fire, provided that such fire did not originate from any of the perils excluded by this policy; (j) neglect of the insured to use all reasonable means to save and preserve the property at and after a loss, or when the property is endangered by fire in neighboring premises; (k) nor shall this Company be liable for loss by theft.
Other insurance.
Other insurance may be prohibited or the amount of insurance may be limited by endorsement attached hereto.
Conditions suspending or restricting insurance.
Unless otherwise provided in writing added hereto this Company shall not be liable for loss occurring (a) while the hazard is increased by any means within the control or knowledge of the insured; or (b) while a described building, whether intended for occupancy by owner or tenant, is vacant or unoccupied beyond a period of 60 consecutive days; or (c) as a result of explosion or riot, unless fire ensues, and in that event for loss by fire only.
Other perils or subjects.
Any other peril to be insured against or subject of insurance to be covered in this policy shall be by endorsement in writing hereon or added hereto.
Added provisions.
The extent of the application of insurance under this policy and of the contribution to be made by this Company in case of loss, and any other provision or agreement not inconsistent with the provisions of this policy, may be provided for in writing added hereto, but no provision may be waived except such as by the terms of this policy is subject to change.
Waiver provisions.
No permission affecting this insurance shall exist, or waiver of any provision be valid, unless granted herein or expressed in writing added hereto. No provision, stipulation or forfeiture shall be held to be waived by any requirement or proceeding on the part of this Company relating to appraisal or to any examination provided for herein.
Cancellation of policy.
This policy shall be cancelled at any time at the request of the insured, in which case this Company shall, upon demand and surrender of this policy, refund the excess of paid premium above the customary short rates for the expired time. This policy may be cancelled at any time by this Company by giving to the insured a 5 days' written notice of cancellation with or without tender of the excess of paid premium above the pro rata premium for the expired time, which excess, if not tendered, shall be refunded on demand. Notice of cancellation shall state that said excess premium (if not tendered) will be refunded on demand.
Mortgagee interests and obligations.
If loss hereunder is made payable, in whole or in part, to a designated mortgagee not named herein as the insured, such interest in this policy may be cancelled by giving to such mortgagee a 10 days' written notice of cancellation.
If the insured fails to render proof of loss such mortgagee, upon notice, shall render proof of loss in the form herein specified within 60 days thereafter and shall be subject to the provisions hereof relating to appraisal and time of payment and of bringing suit. If this Company shall claim that no liability existed as to the mortgagor or owner, it shall, to the extent of payment of loss to the mortgagee, be subrogated to all the mortgagee's rights of recovery, but without impairing mortgagee's right to sue; or it may pay off the mortgage debt and require an assignment thereof and of the mortgage. Other provisions relating to the interests and obligations of such mortgagee may be added hereto by agreement in writing.
Pro rata liability.
This Company shall not be liable for a greater proportion of any loss than the amount hereby insured shall bear to the whole insurance covering the property against the peril involved, whether collectible or not.
Requirements in case loss occurs.
The insured shall give immediate written notice to this Company of any loss, protect the property from further damage, forthwith separate the damaged and undamaged personal property, put it in the best possible order, furnish a complete inventory of the destroyed, damaged and undamaged property, showing in detail quantities, costs, actual cash value and amount of loss claimed; and within 60 days after the loss, unless such time is extended in writing by this Company, the insured shall render to this Company a proof of loss, signed and sworn to by the insured, stating the knowledge and belief of the insured as to the following: the time and origin of the loss, the interest of the insured and of all others in the property, the actual cash value of each item thereof and the amount of loss thereto, all encumbrances thereon, all other contracts of insurance, whether valid or not, covering any of said property, any changes in the title, use, occupation, location, possession or exposures of said property since the issuing of this policy, by whom and for what purpose any building herein described and the several parts thereof were occupied at the time of loss and whether or not it then stood on leased ground, and shall furnish a copy of all the descriptions and schedules in all policies and, if required, verified plans and specifications of any building, fixtures or machinery destroyed or damaged. The insured, as often as may be reasonably required, shall exhibit to any person designated by this Company all that remains of any property herein described, and submit to examinations under oath by any person named by this Company, and subscribe the same and, as often as may be reasonably required, shall produce for examination all books of account, bills, invoices and other vouchers, or certified copies thereof if originals be lost, at such reasonable time and place as may be designated by this Company or its representative, and shall permit extracts and copies thereof to be made.
In case the insured and this Company shall fail to agree as to the actual cash value or the amount of loss, then, on the written demand of either, each shall select a competent and disinterested appraiser and notify the other of the appraiser selected within 20 days of such demand. The appraisers shall first select a competent and disinterested umpire; and failing for 15 days to agree upon such umpire, then, on request of the insured or this Company, such umpire shall be selected by a judge of a court of record in the state in which the property covered is located. The appraisers shall then appraise the loss, stating separately actual cash value and loss to each item; and, failing to agree, shall submit their differences, only, to the umpire. An award in writing, so itemized, of any 2 when filed with this Company shall determine the amount of actual cash value and loss. Each appraiser shall be paid by the party selecting him and the expenses of appraisal and umpire shall be paid by the parties equally.
Company's options.
It shall be optional with this Company to take all, or any part, of the property at the agreed or appraised value, and also to repair, rebuild or replace the property destroyed or damaged with other of like kind and quality within a reasonable time, on giving notice of its intention so to do within 30 days after the receipt of the proof of loss herein required.
There can be no abandonment to this Company of any property.
When loss payable.
The amount of loss for which this Company may be liable shall be payable 60 days after proof of loss, as herein provided, is received by this Company and ascertainment of the loss is made either by agreement between the insured and this Company expressed in writing or by the filing with this Company of an award as herein provided.
No suit or action on this policy for the recovery of any claim shall be sustainable in any court of law or equity unless the requirements of this policy shall have been complied with, and unless commenced within 12 months next after inception of the loss.
This Company may require from the insured an assignment of all right of recovery against any party for loss to the extent that payment therefor is made by this Company.
In Witness Whereof, this Company has executed and attested these presents; but this policy shall not be valid unless countersigned by the duly authorized Agent of this Company at the agency hereinbefore mentioned.
Insert signatures and
titles of proper officers

Source. 1959, 163:1. 1981, 349:1. 2000, 260:5. 2001, 224:3. 2003, 144:7. 2006, 196:5. 2009, 215:3, eff. Jan. 1, 2010.

Section 407:23

    407:23 Nuclear Perils. – The Standard Fire Policy prescribed by this chapter is not intended to cover loss or damage caused by nuclear reaction or nuclear radiation or radioactive contamination, whether or not directly or indirectly resulting from an insured peril under said policy. Insurers issuing the Standard Policy pursuant to this chapter are authorized to affix thereto or include therein a written statement that the policy does not cover loss or damage caused by nuclear reaction or nuclear radiation or radioactive contamination, all whether directly or indirectly resulting from an insured peril under said policy. Provided, however, that nothing herein contained shall be construed to prohibit the attachment to any such policy of an endorsement or endorsements specifically assuming coverage for loss or damage caused by nuclear reaction or nuclear radiation or radioactive contamination.

Source. 1959, 163:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.

Section 407:23-a

    407:23-a Flood Damage; Notice to Policyholder. –
I. Every insurer issuing a homeowner, condominium unit owner, residential tenant, and residential fire insurance policy that does not cover damage caused by flood shall notify the policyholder that the policy does not cover damage caused by flood. The notice shall also inform the policyholder how to contact the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) or the NFIP's agents. The notice may be included with other materials sent to the policyholder, as a separate document or included on the declarations page of the policy. The notice shall be provided:
(a) At the time the policy is issued; and
(b) At the time the policy is renewed.
II. The following statement, or language substantially similar, when combined with current information about how to contact the NFIP or its agent, satisfies the notice requirements of this section:
"This policy does not cover damage to your property caused by flooding. The federal government offers flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance Program to residents of communities that participate in its program. You can learn more about the National Flood Insurance Program at www.floodsmart.gov or by calling (888)379-9531."
III. The failure to comply with this section shall not invalidate a flood exclusion, or any other exclusion, in an insurance policy subject to this section.

Source. 2014, 52:1, eff. Jan. 1, 2015.

Section 407:24

    407:24 Conflicting Acts. – Any act or parts of acts which may be construed as providing for a form different from the one herein prescribed are hereby repealed.

Source. 1959, 163:2, eff. Jan. 1, 1960.