When a hurricane hits Florida and causes damage to homes, a Florida Homeowner's Insurance Policy carries a higher deductible than other casualty losses if the damage is due to a Hurricane. This allows the Insurance Company to pay out less on a claim for a Hurricane, forcing the Homeowner to bear a larger portion of the burden for repairs and restoration of their home.
The good news for those hit by TROPICAL STORM ISAAC is that, because it was not upgraded to Hurricane status til Tuesday, Aug. 28, at 11:20 a.m, insurance companies were reminded by the commissioner of the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation not use the unique hurricane standards against any homeowner who puts in a claim for storm damages. This allows homeowners to pay lower deductibles and get much needed relief in their claim.
It is important for Florida Homeowners to be aware of their rights in filing a legitimate claim against their insurance policy, as stated in a previous blog post. After Isaac was upgraded to a HURRICANE, the law defines windstorm damage as “wind, wind gusts, hail, rain, tornadoes, or cyclones caused by or resulting from a hurricane which results in direct physical loss or damage to property.”
Most Florida Homeowners, with the exception of the Western Panhandle, were damaged by TROPICAL STORM ISAAC, before it became an official HURRICANE.
“For these property losses, all insurers must apply the deductible that is unrelated to hurricane, generally referred to as the ‘all other perils deductible’ or ‘other than hurricane deductible,”Kevin McCarty, the Commissioner of the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation, said in a memorandum, according to a News Release to Florida Realtors. “An insurer that fails to apply the appropriate deductible is subject to administrative action.”