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Hurricane Michael – A Lasting Impact

If you haven’t been to the panhandle the devastation is hard to understand.

Because hurricane Michael happened so quick and hit a rural area in the south. People from the area feel as though the rest of America is unaware of their struggle. Charitable donations have been modest – According to The American Red Cross: Florence hit just a month prior and the North Carolina area received $64 million. Irma a year earlier $97 million and Harvey $522 million.

The storm went from being named a tropical storm to a category 4 hurricane and crushing the panhandle in just 73 hours (3 days!). (Rapid Intensification Article FCHS)

Insurance is certainly extremely important for protecting your home/livelihood many consumer advocates are frustrated with it’s effectiveness. Chip Merlin does a good job of explaining how insurance is not always the answer.

“When people have purchased insurance and have suffered a loss, there is a certain peace of mind in knowing that insurance will soften the financial blow that would otherwise add further anxiety to a tragic situation. All of that is destroyed if the insurance policy has significant limitations, deductibles and exclusions of coverage which leave uninsured losses. Peace of mind can also be destroyed if insurance claims handlers are slow to pay or take aggressive non-claims paying positions during the adjustment. This is why departments of insurance need to regulate the conduct of insurance claims departments and be concerned about the trend of modern insurance companies to sell “cheap” insurance through policies that carry high deductibles, low sub-limits of recovery, and numerous exclusions of coverage. Such policies make the insurance contract almost illusory; the promised peace of mind for policyholders and entire communities is never delivered.”  (Merlin’s Law Group Article Reference)

As of April 2019 there are over 27,000 insurance claims still open. Those are just the claims that haven’t been paid yet. The damage is immense and many residents are living in damaged homes, trailers or even tents unfit for human habitation. While there is no perfect plan to protect your home/family from disaster. However do not rely on insurance alone. Having a plan to protect your home to the best of your ability could be all of the difference.