With hurricane season nearing fast, now is the time to check up on your insurance policy to determine whether you are covered on all fronts. Standard homeowners insurance policies do not cover damage from flooding, meaning policyholders are required to obtain supplemental flood insurance to protect their home against potential storm surges. While most policyholders obtain flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance Program, there are private insurer options available to those looking for another option.
Continue Reading Hurricane Season Is Near – Preparing For Flood Claims

The National Flood Insurance Program (“NFIP”) was implemented to assist victims of flood recover through the issuance of Standard Flood Insurance Policy (“SFIP”) under the National Flood Insurance Act (“NFIA”). The SFIPs are not grants, they require payment of insurance premiums in exchange for the coverages promised under these flood policies. Ideally, the premiums create of “pool” of money from which to draw to pay out claims. This “pool” often dries up and the federal government is called upon to fund the NFIP.
Continue Reading The Meandering of the Louisiana Great Flood of 2016: NFIP WYO Insurer’s Baseless Denials Rejected

The National Flood Insurance Program is a tough federal insurance program. There is a recent case which was thrown out of court because the policyholder tried to do it himself. [1] It is another example that when FEMA officials say the government Is there to help with your flood claim, you will find out differently very quickly if you disagree with them on anything.
Continue Reading Policyholders Should Immediately Get Professional Help if they Have Any Problems with their National Flood Insurance Claim

Hurricane and Tropical Storm Eta caused intense flooding with 13 inches of rainfall and storm surge along the Gulf Coast of Florida. Eta also prompted flash flooding, road closures, and water rescues as it moved across the state into the Carolinas. I know a few of the folks who experienced flooding in their homes on Davis Island, Florida, where I race sailboats in my spare time.
Continue Reading My Home Flooded During Tropical Storm Eta: What Do I Do?

Hurricane and Tropical Storm Eta has left a flood claims hangover from Florida throughout the Carolinas. Since the National Flood Insurance program administrators appear to be stingy and failing to watch out for their fellow Americans by not granting flood proof of loss extensions, policyholders need to get started properly filing their claims right away.
Continue Reading Storm Eta Leaves a Flood Claim Hangover and Do Not Forget Lake Charles — Tune In For Friday at 2 PM

The National Flood Insurance Program (“NFIP”) permits an insured to file a supplemental Proof of Loss that adds or changes an earlier submitted version. To be valid, the supplemental Proof of Loss must be filed within 60 days of the loss. No exception allows the insured to submit a supplemental Proof of Loss after the 60 days, even if the insured later determines that the flood damage it sustained exceeds the amount stated in the original Proof of Loss.
Continue Reading Can an Insured Submit a Supplemental Flood Proof of Loss If the Insurer Has Already Paid the Initial Proof of Loss?

The Tampa Bay Times ran an excellent story, Hurricane Michael Destroyed Their Homes Then The Insurance Heartache Began, which tells a sad but familiar theme about insurance company denials and delayed payments following hurricane losses. I was quoted in the piece:

Chip Merlin, a Tampa insurance lawyer, said the same conflict happened in the last 15 years after Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Ike. He said companies try to avoid making payment even when a slab is all that’s left of a property, as is the case in much of Mexico Beach.

‘Typically you have the strongest wind speeds come first, and then the storm surge follows it,’ Merlin said. Both cause damage. But residents and their attorneys, he said, may need to pay meteorologists and engineers to prove that flood and wind are to blame, and how much.
Continue Reading Wind Versus Water Causing Insurance Payment Delays? The Sad Song Remains The Same For Michael Victims as In Other Storms

If you’ve read my recap from Day 1 of the National Flood Conference, you’ll know that there was a lot to discuss from Day 1. Days 2 & 3 were a bit less eventful, and largely more geared towards flood insurance agents and lenders. As with Day 1, there were often several courses running concurrently, so the below is my recap of those that I attended.
Continue Reading National Flood Conference – An Insider’s Perspective, Days 2 & 3