Insurance Industry Responds to Dallas Tornado
Residents of Dallas are assessing the damage from last night’s tornado that caused damages across a 20 mile path. Fortunately, no one was injured but there are reports of widespread damage to vehicles, businesses, and homes. Initial reports say more than 100 homes were damaged as well as dozens of vehicles, and up to 100,000 Dallas residents were without power at the height of the storm.
Severe weather is a staple in our great state and last night’s event served as another reminder. Immediately after the storm, local residents and business began calling their insurers to report damages and ask for information on next steps for recovery.
“We’ve heard from hundreds of customers with damage already and anticipate more claims will be filed as it becomes safe for residents to inspect property and power and connectivity to be restored,” said Chris Pilcic a spokesman with State Farm. “Local agents and claims representatives are already talking to policyholders and deployed catastrophe teams are being dispatched to the area to assist in recovery.”
Representatives from the Insurance Council of Texas (ICT) will be in Dallas on Wednesday October 23rd, to be available to local media to answer questions about post-storm recovery, claims processes, and avoiding fraud. ICT recommends that Dallas residents affected by the storm assess their damage with photos and video and then report their claims as quickly as possible. Taking steps to reduce further damage is important, but policyholders should wait to make any permanent repairs until insurance adjusters arrive. Keep all receipts for repairs and take note of all calls with his insurance company representatives to repair damage.
ICT also recommends that homeowners take caution and refrain from signing with contractors immediately. Check references and don’t be pressured into signing contracts and giving deposits for work promised. Unfortunately, it’s situations like this that often brings out unscrupulous contractors who prey upon homeowners who are at their most vulnerable. Insureds’ should also be wary of any contractor offering to pay or have your deductible waived. Effective September 1, 2019, a new law took effect strengthening existing laws prohibiting contractors from waiving the insurance deductible. More information may be found by clicking here.
ICT offers resources including, “What to do after a loss” and other insurance related information at insurancecouncil.org.