Law change regarding force majeure

flood flooding force majeure plotFlooded housing area. Photo:

Law on compensation after force majeure enters into force

The legislation regarding compensation for force majeure (natural damage) changes from January 1, 2018. Finance Norway regards the change as a step to adapt to a changing climate.


As of January 1, 2018 it will be possible to get compensation for the value of a plot, in order to rebuild in a safer place.

Finance Norway, which is the main organization for the financial industry in Norway, has worked with the insurance industry for a legislative change. The organization says in a press release that they together with the industry have long pointed out that “it is unwise to rebuild homes or cottages on land where there is a high probability that they may be affected by additional natural damage.”

The amendment also entails that even if a building is only partially damaged, the full value of the house and plot will be reimbursed if there is no permission given to rebuild on the original plot.

Finance Norway sees the measure as one of many steps society needs to make in order to adapt to a rougher climate.

Success story

Director of damage Insurance in Finance Norway (Finans Norge), Hege Hodnesdal, says to NTB that for them the amended legislation is a success story.

– We are committed to provide security and predictability. We saw that the nature damage scheme, as it was, did not fully cover that ambition, says Hodnesdal, and elaborates on the changes:

– If you are so unfortunate to be exposed to a force majeure, such as flooding, and afterwards is notified that there is too much risk to rebuild on the plot, you will then get reimbursed for the value of both house and land, enabling you to relocate to a safe place. As the case has been before now, you got compensation for the damage done to the house, but not for the plot and therefore might not have the economy to move elsewhere.

Hodnesdal says that although there are not necessarily so many cases in which the amendment will apply to, it is a drastic change for those affected.


There are two conditions that allow customers to claim compensation for a plot of land. The first is that housing or vacation homes are damaged by a force majeure and the second is that the soil beneath a fire insured house or holiday home has become unstable due to a natural incident.

If the incident only affects the plot, it does not automatically entitle you to a replacement. The law also opens up for the alternative that, instead of replacing the sales value of the plot, the insurance company can secure it as an alternative.


© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today