2 Years Later: Texas Residents Still Filing Claims

It’s now two years later and windstorm claims, resulting from Hurricane Ike, continue to be reported by Texas homeowners.

The Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA) continues to receive, on average, at least one new claim everyday from victims of the costliest storm to ever hit the Texas coastline. Other large insurance companies in the state are in agreement with the TWIA, reporting that they too are also seeing new Ike claims.

Homeowners are given two years, from the date of the storm, to file claims where they can be fully reimbursed. Any additional or new claims filed after that two year mark can only be considered at an actual cash value agreement as opposed to a full replacement or reimbursement. In some specific cases, residents can request an extension, buying them some additional time to file Texas homeowners insurance claims.

Hurricane Ike struck Galveston on Sept. 13, 2008, with 110 mile per hour wind gusts and a 16 foot storm surge. According to an article from Insurance Journal, “more than 2,000 homes and businesses on Bolivar Peninsula in Galveston County were completely washed away and 75% of the structures in the city of Galveston received flood damage”.

Hurricane Dolly also struck south Texas on July 23, 2008, causing an estimated $500 million in total insured losses. The Insurance Council of Texas reported that, “with the exception of 80 pending lawsuits, TWIA has paid all of Dolly’s claims”.

Texans whose homes suffered damages from the 2008 storms have until April 1 to make repairs to their homes or they will no longer be able to obtain a windstorm policy from TWIA. “Homeowners with questions about repairs or having the proper inspections required for TWIA coverage should contact their agent or TWIA,” said Mark Hanna, a spokesman for the Insurance Council of Texas.

TWIA, which only provides windstorm coverage in counties that lie along the Gulf of Mexico, faces losses that may reach $2.3 billion. The number of TWIA claims from Hurricane Ike has risen to 92,800 resulting in 4,800 lawsuits having been filed—more than 2,500 of the lawsuits have since been settled.

In Texas, the total number of insurance claims from Hurricane Ike exceeded a whopping 700,000.

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