On March 28, 2017, the Assistant Administrator for Federal Insurance, Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration, issued a memorandum to Write Your Own (WYO) Company Principal Coordinators, NFIP Direct, and Independent Adjusters, titled “WYO Company Acceptance of Electronic Signatures” (W-17008).
It provides, in part:
To further improve the insured survivor experience and to reduce administrative burden, FEMA is approving and encouraging the use of electronic signatures on proofs of loss and other NFIP-related submissions. FEMA will not deny the legal effect, validity, or enforceability of a signature solely because it is in electronic form. (footnote omitted). WYO Companies should accept electronic signatures in accordance with their general business practices and applicable laws.
While FEMA is approving electronic signatures and not requiring “original” signatures on proofs of loss and other NFIP-related submissions, the bulletin is still unclear regarding whether the WYO Company will accept a proof of loss signed electronically (with all required supporting documentation) via email or whether a policyholder is still required to mail the proof of loss to the WYO Company for receipt by the proof of loss deadline.