Please see the following press alert notice received. I will update the blog by late this evening with information located on current insurance company damage assessments by 10pm CST.
You are subscribed to Press Releases for the California Department of Insurance. You are receiving this email because new information has recently been released.
You can access the department’s Communications Office Web page by clicking here.
INSURANCE COMMISSIONER STEVE POIZNER ISSUES DECLARATION OF INSURANCE EMERGENCY FOR
SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA FIRE STORMS
Insurance Adjusters Expedited to So. California to Quicken Recovery by Local Residents and Businesses
SACRAMENTO – Today Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner, in anticipation of an onslaught of severe insurance claims, issued an emergency declaration to help accelerate claims from the aftermath of the Southern California fire storms.
“I am issuing a declaration which will expedite additional insurance adjusters to California to assist survivors of the fire storms with the prompt processing of insurance claims resulting from this catastrophic event,” said Commissioner Poizner. “During this state of emergency, I want to ensure Californians that I will do all that I can to help them through this crisis and rebuild as quickly as possible. For many, the first step on the road to recovery is to cut through the red tape, have their loss documented and processed for a claim. We want to remove any unnecessary delays to the system and make sure we have enough adjusters on the job.”
The California Department of Insurance (CDI) proclamation will allow CDI-licensed insurance adjusters and insurers to use the services of non-CDI licensed adjusters, such as those from out-of-state, to assist with the processing of the multitude of anticipated insurance claims arising from the fire storms. The work performed by the non-CDI licensed adjusters must be under the active direction, control, charge, or management of a CDI-licensed insurer or adjuster.
Commissioner Poizner issued the declaration in according with the requirements of Section 14022.5 of the California Insurance Code, which provides that such use is reasonably necessary in order to adequately respond to the emergency situation.
The last time Commissioner Poizner issued this type of declaration was January 22, 2007, in the face of the extreme, California crop freezes. Prior to that, however, the last insurance emergency declaration was issued in November 2003 in response to wildfires in Southern California.
Text of declaration can be found at www.insurance.ca.gov under LATEST NEWS.
Please visit the Department of Insurance Web site at www.insurance.ca.gov. Non media inquiries should be directed to the Consumer Hotline at 800.927.HELP. Callers from out of state, please dial 213.897.8921. Telecommunications Devices for the Deaf (TDD), please dial 800.482.4833.
This service is provided free of charge by: California Department of Insurance.
Special Thanks to Helen Palmer of the Cat-Women@yahoogroups.com for sharing the following two other press releases on this:
Associated Press Release:
Calif insurance commissioner declares insurance emergency
California Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner declared an “insurance emergency” on Wednesday because of the Southern California wildfires.
The declaration temporarily removes the ban on out-of-state claims adjusters lacking California licenses. Poizner said that lifting the ban will help insurance companies better deal with the expected crunch of fire claims. He estimated that more than $1 billion in property damage has already occurred.
Poizner last lifted the ban in January during a devastating crop freeze in the Central Valley.
During a press conference in San Francisco, Poizner also said that he is sending dozens of fraud investigators into the burned region to crack down on scam artists posing as claims adjusters and contractors. Poziner said he has already received reports of fraud, but no arrests have been made.
Poizner said fire victims can call 1-800-927-HELP or log onto http://www.insurance.ca.gov for Department of Insurance guidance.
Published: Wednesday, October 24, 2007 12:04 PDT
LA Times News Article:
State opens door to insurance adjusters
Declaration of ‘insurance emergency’ allows companies to bring in personnel from other parts of the country, even if they aren’t licensed in .
By Marc Lifsher, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
— Steve Poizner today declared an “insurance emergency,” clearing the way for a more speedy processing of damage claims from the Southern California wildfires.
Poizner invoked special powers to suspend a law that requires insurance adjusters — the people who inspect and calculate the value of property losses — to be licensed by the state.
The declaration of an emergency allows insurance companies to bring in large numbers of out-of-state adjusters to help process thousands of claims. The unlicensed adjusters must work under the supervision of California-licensed colleagues.
“I want to ensure Californians that I will do all that I can to help them through this crisis and rebuild as quickly as possible,” Poizner said at a news conference. “For many, the first step on the road to recovery is to cut through the red tape, have their loss documented and processed for a claim.”
Poizner’s action will help insurers dispatch professional personnel to charred areas of, said Joseph Annotti, a spokesman for the Property and Casualty Insurers of America, a Chicago-based trade group that includes ., California’s third-largest home insurer.
He estimated that the fires, which are far from contained, would result in companies paying claims in excess of $2 billion, surpassing the state’s most costly fire to date, the blaze in theand Oakland Hills in 1991.
“In the wake of [Hurricane] Katrina, we learned that even when insurers called out every adjuster they ever had on their payrolls, [and] people out of retirement, there still weren’t enough folks,” Annotti said. “If this helps get homes inspected more quickly and gets money to the people who need it more quickly, that’s a very positive thing.”