by Amy Bach

 

In early August, 2019 at a national meeting of insurance regulators and stakeholders from across the country, United Policyholders helped set the stage for the important conversation that needs to be happening about the increasingly large gap between disaster recovery  costs and the amount of those costs that insurance policies are covering.   

We know that two thirds of wildfire victims are coming up short on insurance funds to pay for replacing their destroyed assets.  

We know that insurers have raised deductibles for catastrophic losses which means property owners are carrying more of the risk themselves.

We know standard home insurance policies exclude flood and earthquake and provide only limited coverage for mold, earth movement and many types of water damage.

We know that less than 6 million American homes have insurance for flood damage, and fewer for earthquake damage.

So where are disaster victims getting the funds to pay for what insurance won't cover?  Goverment aid? Charitable aid?  Or are underinsurance disaster victims just not restoring their assets?  If that is the case...what is the economic impact on property values, real estate sales, local and state tax bases and the economy at large?

Those are questions that we as a country would be wise to know the answer to.

UP thanks and appreciates Rhode Island Insurance Commissioner Elizabeth Dwyer and the National Association of Insurance Commissiners for giving UP this important opportunity. See page 5 of the minutes of the Property and Casualty C Committee from this meeting.  At the next NAIC meeting in December, 2019, representatives of the Property Casualty industry will present their views on this same topic.  

About The Blogger

Amy Bach

Amy Bach has been a professional advocate for insurance policyholders since 1984 and an attorney since 1989. She co-founded United Policyholders in 1991 and serves as the organization's Executive Director and primary spokesperson; shaping and overseeing the Roadmap to Recovery™, Roadmap to Preparedness, and Advocacy and Action programs. She is a nationally recognized expert on insurance claim and legal matters; frequently interviewed in print and broadcast media, and the author of numerous publications including "The Disaster Recovery Handbook", "WISE UP: The Savvy Consumer's Guide to Buying Insurance" and consumer tips and guides in the UP Claim Help Library.  Recognized by Money Magazine as a Money Hero, Bach is in her eighth consecutive term as an official consumer representative to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, and is a member of the Federal Advisory Committee on Insurance.  In 2019, Bach was appointed to a 3 year term as a member of the American Bar Association Standing Committee on Disaster Preparedness and Response.