Derecho-related insurance claims top more than $1.6 billion in Iowa
Derecho-related insurance claims for damaged homes, crops, vehicles and more have topped $1.6 billion in Iowa, the Iowa Insurance Division reported Monday.
As of Nov. 2, insurance companies had paid nearly 160,000 of the more than 200,000 claims reported in relation to the Aug. 10 derecho, which brought hurricane-force winds to a large portion of the state, toppling trees and power lines, devastating crops and damaging or destroying buildings.
The massive amount in claims may rise — a news release from the Iowa Insurance Division said insurers have reserved more than a billion dollars for the remaining claims.
“We encourage property owners to continue to work diligently with their insurance company and agent as they obtain the necessary repairs,” Iowa Insurance Commissioner Doug Ommen said in the news release. “Adjustments can take time, but we have seen other challenges, including early cold, snow and some shortages of materials and contractors.”
The largest category of insurance claims — with nearly 104,000 — is for homeowners insurance, while more than 40,000 claims are for farmowners insurance. Other major categories are: private passenger auto (18,902 claims), commercial (13,213) and auto physical damage (9,253).
Ommen said the Iowa Insurance Division had received more than 90 derecho-related complaints. He said the division will continue to review complaints from Iowans who believe their insurance companies aren’t providing what they promised in their contracts. Some of the complaints the office has received that were unique to the derecho were delays in inspections, getting repairs made or communication.
“This event is quite historic in scope, and it’s important to be as patient as possible given the other national weather events that also happened during our recovery, but I encourage both companies and consumers to continue to communicate in order to get the remaining claims resolved expeditiously,” Ommen said. “The Iowa Insurance Division is here for consumers if they need to file a complaint.”
Complaints can be filed on the Iowa Insurance Division’s website.