False Information about New “Windstorm” Law
This is the information sent to us by Germania, and we have paraphrased it for you to be more relevant.
Many of Germania Insurance agents are getting calls or seeing social media posts by plaintiff’s attorneys and others claiming that insureds, like those affected by Hurricane Harvey, need to file their claims before Sept. 1 or they will lose some of their rights.
This is simply not true.
• The normal claims process has not changed. A person making a claim with their insurance company after Sept. 1 will go through the same process as a person making a claim before Sept.1.
• Consumers continue to have a full range of remedies in the event an insurer acts fraudulently or in bad faith.
•HB 1774 applies to lawsuits filed after Sept. 1, 2017.
•The Texas Department of Insurance will, as always in catastrophic events, be monitoring the activities of insurance companies to make sure that claims are being paid properly and promptly.
• Consumer protections in Texas include the full recovery of amounts owed under an insurance policy, plus penalty, interest, court costs, and attorney fees. Additionally, if the insurance company acts fraudulently or in bad faith, Texans may recover triple the amount of their actual damages, which is unchanged by the new statute.
The primary purpose of the new statute is to require written notice of a dispute before a lawsuit is filed.
The new law is designed to do two important things:
•Discourage the feeding frenzy by lawyers and contractors following natural events occurring in Texas over the past several years. These unscrupulous actors have taken advantage of thousands of hard-working Texans over the past several years.
•Encourage out-of-state insurance adjusters to come work in Texas following a massive disaster like Harvey. In the following days and weeks, it will be critically important for out-of-state adjusters to work in Texas to ensure that insurance claims are evaluated and paid in a timely manner.
We will alway help by:
•Providing clear instructions about how to file your claim. You can always file a claim via Germania’s direct line, 1-877-GERMANIA, or online at https://www.germaniainsurance.com.
•Warning you about individuals claiming to help them get more from their insurance company.
•Encouraging you to file your claim as quickly as possible, but please know you are under no obligation to file your claim before Sept. 1.
Please feel free to call us anytime and know that we are working for you.
“Cohn Insurance Agency – Where the Customer is the Boss.”
(L to R) Casey Cohn, Selena Cohn, Dixie Cohn, and Robert Cohn