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Gallagher Assures Storm Victims That a Process to Apply for Deductible Relief Will Soon Be in Place

12/17/2004

CONTACT:  Tami Torres
(850) 413-2842 

 
TALLAHASSEE–Florida lawmakers yesterday approved a measure – House Bill 9A – that will provide $150 million in financial assistance for Floridians faced with multiple hurricane deductibles.  Those eligible will be reimbursed up to $30,000 to cover multiple deductibles applied to homeowners insurance policies.  Storm victims will be responsible for paying their first deductible plus $100 toward each subsequent deductible.
 
The new law requires the state Department of Financial Services to promulgate rules governing eligibility and the application process.   Pending the governor's approval of the new law, the department will be assessing available data on policyholders with multiple deductibles and working with insurance companies to ensure all eligible Floridians are identified.
 
 "Our goal is to get financial assistance to impacted Floridians as soon as possible," said Florida's Chief Financial Officer Tom Gallagher, who oversees the Department of Financial Services.  "Applications from insurance companies to eligible Floridians should be in the mail by early January."
 
The maximum reimbursement is limited to the amount of the policyholder's loss in excess of one full deductible, but not more than $10,000 per policy for damage caused by two hurricanes, not more than $20,000 per policy for damage caused by three hurricanes, and not more than $30,000 per policy for damage caused by four hurricanes.
 
As part of their application, storm victims will need to provide proof from their insurance companies that a second or third deductible was applied. 
 
Once applications are completed, Floridians will need to forward them to the Florida Department of Financial Services.  Submission instructions will be included in the application packet storm victims will receive. 
 
 The new law requires eligible Floridians to submit applications no later than March 1, 2005.  
 
 For more information, consumers can contact the department at 1-800-22-STORM or log on to www.fldfs.com.