An update from the Iowa Insurance Division puts the amount of claims paid out following the August 10th derecho is more than $1.6 billion.
Insurance Commissioner Doug Ommen says that’s the tally through November 2nd. He says the numbers are reflective of the significant damage that was done — but that are not final numbers. Property damage claims led the way with more than $877 million. There were some $71 million in claims for damage to people’s cars. “With limbs falling and blowing and objects as well causing damage on vehicles, “Ommen says. “Most of it was on homeowners and related buildings — but there was significant damages on autos as well.”
Commercial businesses has $335 million in claims. Ommen says a majority of the claims have been paid out — but there are many thousands still in the works. “We estimate it’s been about 200,000 claims — and out that 200,000 — 160,000 have been paid,” according to Ommen. “That means there’s still a substantial number — 40,000 that are out there in the process. And it can be issues related to adjustments, trying to come to some evaluation of what the actual covered claim ought to be.”
He says his office has had relatively few complaints thus far, considering the large number of claims. “Seventy-five or eighty now where people are dissatisfied with the way their claim is being handled. But I expect over time the insurance companies are going to make the effort in order to resolve claims,” Ommen says.
Ommen says you can get help from his office if you still have issues with your claim. “We of course encourage people to continue to pursue their claim through the insurance company — and then if they’re dissatisfied with that process or believe that their claim hasn’t been appropriately handled — they can file their claim with us. We can provide some assistance by conducting an investigation,” Ommen says. A majority of the damage from the derecho was covered by insurance claims.
But FEMA did report at the end of October that they had paid out more than 28 million dollars in assistance for items not covered by insurance.
You can contact the Iowa Insurance Division at: iid.iowa.gov/insurance-consumer-complaint.