U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-Penn.) is asking flood insurance companies to quickly process remaining claims from Irene and Lee. He says some 25 percent of the claims in Pennsylvania are still not processed.
“Pennsylvanians have worked tirelessly to rebuild in the wake of the devastating floods, but too many families and businesses are still struggling to pay their bills and make ends meet because they’re waiting for their claims to be processed,” the senator said.
“I urge insurance companies to redouble their efforts to process claims quickly so that Pennsylvanians affected by flooding can return normalcy to their lives and remove one source of economic stress.”
Federal flood insurance is a federally funded program administered by Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and is sold and serviced by property insurance companies.
He sent an open letter to the Insurance Federation of Pennsylvania last week, seeking its help in speeding up the claims process. The Federation has 200 member companies. But some critics say the government red tape and the additional requirements that the government has implemented in handling these claims are to blame.
Below is the full text of the senator’s letter send to the group:
Mr. James J. Tanous
Insurance Federation of Pennsylvania, Inc.
Dear Mr. Tanous:
As you know, Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee caused devastating flooding across Pennsylvania earlier this year. Families and businesses have worked hard over the past several months to rebuild in the wake of the disaster, some using their own funds to undertake reconstruction projects while waiting for their insurance claims to be processed. Now more than three months later, many Pennsylvanians are still waiting.
The National Flood Insurance Program estimates that approximately 27 percent of claims from Tropical Storm Lee and 25 percent of claims from Hurricane Irene have yet to be processed by private insurance companies. Some families and businesses that have invested their own resources in repairs are struggling to make ends meet. Others have been unable to begin making repairs until they receive the anticipated assistance. With winter storms approaching, it is critical that these outstanding flood insurance claims be given the highest priority.
I appreciate insurance providers’ ongoing efforts to process claims and provide relief to victims of Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee. I urge the members of the Insurance Federation of Pennsylvania to redouble efforts to quickly process all remaining flood insurance claims so that the people of our Commonwealth have the resources they need to recover and rebuild in the wake of this disaster.
Robert P. Casey, Jr.
United States Senator
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