FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Kim Kirchner, Coburn Communication: (212) 536-9837; Kim.Kirchner@coburnww.com
New York Press Office: (212) 346-5500; firstname.lastname@example.org
NEW YORK, September 18, 2018 — Reporters covering Hurricane Florence’s aftermath are encouraged to contact the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.) for insurance coverage insights.
Insurance adjusters and insurer mobile claim centers have been deployed to North and South Carolina to begin the recovery process for impacted policyholders, said the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.). The I.I.I. offers these seven tips to policyholders reporting Florence-caused property damage to their insurers:
- Contact your insurer as soon as possible Provide your insurer with your auto, homeowners, and/or renters’ insurance policy number and the best phone number and email address for the insurer to reach you. After a major storm, insurers visit those with the most severe damage first. Be prepared to provide an accurate description of the property damage. If you have a flood insurance claim, contact the insurance professional who sold you the flood insurance policy to start the claims-filing process.
- Document your loss Take photographs of your damaged items and note the purchase date and approximate value—and collect receipts, if you have them. Many insurers ask policyholders to submit an inventory of storm-damaged items. An insurance adjuster will assess your property damage and then estimate how much it will cost to repair or rebuild your property and/or replace possessions.
- Check with your insurer before discarding damaged items and materials However, if you are required by your local municipality to discard property for safety reasons, remember to take photographs of these damaged items and materials to help with the claim-filing process.
- Do not sign any contracts Be sure to contact your insurer before retaining a contractor. Contractors who ask for large deposits up front may not be reputable.
- Know what emergency services are available In the event you need emergency services, such as removing water from your home, covering your roof, or boarding up windows or doors, many insurers will dispatch an approved emergency services company to protect your home from further damage. If your home has sustained severe damage, making it unlivable because of an insured event, your homeowners insurer will provide funds for additional living expenses (ALE). FEMA National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) policies do not offer ALE coverage.
- Keep a claims-filing diary Good recordkeeping is important when filing a claim. Make a list of everyone you speak to about your claim. Note their name, title and contact information. Also, keep track of the date, time and issues discussed. The better organized you are, the easier the claims process will be.
- Sign up for Short Message Service (SMS)/text alerts Many insurers use these alerts to notify you of your claim’s status. Under this system, you will receive text messages on your phone when you first report your claim, when your insurance adjuster’s estimate is available, and when an insurer’s payment has been sent to you.
To schedule an interview with one of I.I.I.’s subject matter experts, contact the I.I.I.’s Head of Media and Public Affairs, Michael Barry, at 917-923-8245 or email@example.com.
RELATED LINKS Hurricane Fact Files: South Carolina; North Carolina Articles: Understanding the Insurance Claims Payment Process; Recovering From a Flood Infographic: How to File a Flood Claim
The I.I.I. has a full library of educational videos on its YouTube Channel.
THE I.I.I. IS A NONPROFIT, COMMUNICATIONS ORGANIZATION SUPPORTED BY THE INSURANCE INDUSTRY.
Insurance Information Institute, 110 William Street, New York, NY 10038; (212) 346-5500; www.iii.org