ORLANDO, Fla. – As Tropical Storm Idalia is expected to grow into a hurricane while heading towards Florida, homeowners who’ve experienced skyrocketing property insurance premiums or have been forced to change insurance carriers over the past year may be concerned about the storm’s impact.
“People have nothing to fear when it comes to their insurance being available to them,” said Jimmy Patronis, Florida’s Chief Financial Officer. “The State of Florida has multiple redundances and safety nets in order to help people out, plus right now it helps when we’re in the best fiscal health we’ve ever been in the state.”
Unlike last summer, when at least one Florida insurance carrier entered the peak of hurricane season without sufficient financial protections for its policyholders, the Insurance Information Institute said every insurer currently operating in the state has adequate levels of reinsurance.
“The Florida insurance market is well-capitalized for storms of the magnitude of Idalia,” said Insurance Information Institute spokesman Mark Friedlander. “The fact that Florida insurers have all had their financial ratings reaffirmed, and they’ve purchased adequate levels of reinsurance, they are in a position to pay your claims if you suffer a loss from Hurricane Idalia.
Homeowners hoping to make changes to their insurance policies are likely unable to do so now.
“Unfortunately, once the storm watches and warnings have been issued for Florida, all insurers put a moratorium on writing policies,” Friedlander said. “That means you can’t get new coverage and you can’t adjust existing coverage.”
The Insurance Information Institute has published a list of recommendations for Floridians in the storm’s path.
Patronis said some policyholders in the storm’s path could receive messages from their insurance carriers before Idalia arrives.
“Insurance companies are now starting to do pre-event claims. If you’re in the ‘cone of uncertainty,’ your insurance companies will start to reach out to you proactively,” Patronis said. “Essentially, they’ll get you in the queue and get you lined up because they know you’re probably in the affected area of impact.”
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