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(NPR)   Insurance companies less enthusiastic about their business model after having to pay claims   (npr.org) divider line 80
    More: Obvious, Munich Re, State Farm  
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3374 clicks; posted to Business » on 05 Nov 2012 at 8:38 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-11-05 08:42:51 AM
Awwww, poor them.... actually having to live up to their end of the bargain.

/the heart bleeds.
 
2012-11-05 08:43:26 AM
This means the wind zones and windstorm deductibles will be expanded and increased... though the departments of insurance have said they are stating the storm wasn't a hurricane... which will cause the wording on the deductibles to be more broad.
 
2012-11-05 08:45:03 AM

Vertdang: Awwww, poor them.... actually having to live up to their end of the bargain.

/the heart bleeds.


Carriers paid out of $5B for Irene last year.
 
2012-11-05 08:50:16 AM
They should talk to my health insurance carrier. They're pretty good at not having to pay.
 
2012-11-05 08:53:21 AM
Their business model is to take premiums, invest them, and use the profits to pay lawyers who make it impossible for anyone to collect on a claim
 
2012-11-05 08:53:23 AM
You wanna know if human-induced global warming is real? Let's ask the people who are actually having to pay the costs of it right now and see what they think.

I have to wonder if all the bogus, industry-funded studies by oil companies and manufacturing and the like to try and minimize or deny the reality of climate change will eventually start to come under fire from insurance and real-estate who are actually having to bear the initial brunt of the costs associated with it.

It made some cynical sort of sense that the people causing the problem had a financial incentive to try and deny and bury that reality as long as possible, but now that there are actual costs associated with the problem they're causing, are we going to start seeing industries battling each other over this issue?
 
2012-11-05 09:07:03 AM
A contract is a contract corporate biatches.
 
2012-11-05 09:08:44 AM

HotIgneous Intruder: A contract is a contract corporate biatches.


Ya know the article is about insurance company models, as in how the determine rates and deductibles and coverage, not about paying claims for Sandy.
 
2012-11-05 09:15:38 AM

MugzyBrown: HotIgneous Intruder: A contract is a contract corporate biatches.

Ya know the article is about insurance company models, as in how the determine rates and deductibles and coverage, not about paying claims for Sandy.


Which has no relevance to anything going on in the real world right now, nor the wall-to-wall insurance advertisements playing right now. Gotcha, sparky.
 
2012-11-05 09:16:43 AM
You made a bet. You lost. Pay up, biotch.
 
2012-11-05 09:17:57 AM

HotIgneous Intruder: Which has no relevance to anything going on in the real world right now, nor the wall-to-wall insurance advertisements playing right now. Gotcha, sparky.


I don't even know what this means.

Obviously it has to do with claims they will be paying for Sandy, along with Irene, it's causing them to reevaluate which areas are considered risky for wind/storm damage.


Can't wait for the first articles complaining that companies aren't paying for flood damage
 
2012-11-05 09:28:11 AM

MugzyBrown:
Obviously it has to do with claims they will be paying for Sandy, along with Irene, it's causing them to reevaluate which areas are considered risky for wind/storm damage.


Can't wait for the first articles complaining that companies aren't paying for flood damage


When all is said and done, I'm guessing there aren't any major changes with respect to wind policies/coverages/deductibles. It doesn't look like the wind damage was particularly severe (except in terms of power loss).

But you're right, the flood damage is going to be the story once the claims start being discussed. Pretty much all the photos showing significant damage have been caused by flooding/storm surge. I hope people had the right coverage, particularly those on the barrier islands that got washed away.
 
2012-11-05 09:28:43 AM
Insurance companies balking over payouts? I'm shocked!

Nothing new... hurricane Isabelle ripped roof shingles and siding off of my parents' house and the claim-filing process was a pain in the ass.
 
2012-11-05 09:32:01 AM
"We're seeing more of everything, and what we're doing is trying to factor that in going forward as we work with others to have a better sense of what the future holds," says State Farm spokesman David Beigie.


translation: We're gonna triple your premiums.
 
2012-11-05 09:32:11 AM
Come talk to people here in Florida about insurance premiums following nasty hurricanes.

Welcome to the party. :D
 
2012-11-05 09:39:11 AM

MugzyBrown: HotIgneous Intruder: Which has no relevance to anything going on in the real world right now, nor the wall-to-wall insurance advertisements playing right now. Gotcha, sparky.

I don't even know what this means.

Obviously it has to do with claims they will be paying for Sandy, along with Irene, it's causing them to reevaluate which areas are considered risky for wind/storm damage.


Can't wait for the first articles complaining that companies aren't paying for flood damage


Did you have a stroke? Are you having a stroke now?
Are you trying to type the lyrics to, "Climb Every Mountain"?
Do the words on the screen make any sense to you?
I suspect not.
Perhaps it's best to just step away from the keyboard now.
 
2012-11-05 09:40:30 AM
If the wind rips off your roof and the rain, which is wet, floods your house, does regular insurance pay or do you need flood insurance, too?
 
2012-11-05 09:45:21 AM

HotIgneous Intruder: If the wind rips off your roof and the rain, which is wet, floods your house, does regular insurance pay or do you need flood insurance, too?


If rain damages your home through an opening created by a covered cause of loss, then it is covered.
 
2012-11-05 09:47:20 AM
HotIgneous Intruder: If the wind rips off your roof and the rain, which is wet, floods your house, does regular insurance pay or do you need flood insurance, too?

If rain damages your home through an opening created by a covered cause of loss, then it is covered.


This being said, you have to try to stop further damage where possible. If a tree puts a hole in your roof and 4 days later it rains and causes water damage, that may not be covered. You should have had a tarp put onto your roof.
 
2012-11-05 09:51:17 AM

eKonk: When all is said and done, I'm guessing there aren't any major changes with respect to wind policies/coverages/deductibles. It doesn't look like the wind damage was particularly severe (except in terms of power loss).


I don't work with personal lines, but suspect we'll see a widening of the windzones or application of more named storm deductibles in more regions.

A few years ago you didn't see these deductibles much in NJ, but they've already started to increase.. this won't help.
 
2012-11-05 09:51:17 AM

finnished: They should talk to my health insurance carrier. They're pretty good at not having to pay.


I just had a svt stroke on my birthday, and am already screwed because of the multitude of different ways my insurance has found to not pay for things. I have an hsa plan that was pretty much only supposed to be good if I had what they deem catastrophic health issues such as this, but nope, they've so far found a way out of pretty much everything. My neurologist apparently wasn't something I needed, nor the labs I needed, etc. Not being able to work and insurance screwed on top of almost dying on my birthday was pretty sweet. When I first got my insurance claims I was fairly certain they time it so you aren't in your right mind and intentionally add to your stress .

/sorry for the thread jack , been a rough few months
 
2012-11-05 09:51:41 AM

HotIgneous Intruder: If the wind rips off your roof and the rain, which is wet, floods your house, does regular insurance pay or do you need flood insurance, too?


A good way to tell the difference between wind-related water damage and flooding is whether the water has hit the ground prior to entering the building - hole in the roof? broken window? Rain came in? That's wind. River rose until it hit the building? Storm surge? Storm water running off the hill into the building? That's flood.
 
2012-11-05 10:12:56 AM
last years storm a tree from a nearby property smashed onto our land and impaled the roof, a ceiling, and out the front of the house. we've been paying premiums to that ins co for 16-17 years. it was like an act of god to get a little check from them to help out. and then they raised our rates through the farking roof.

this was the 3rd time our house was damaged by neighbors trees; the 1st time we put in a claim - ever.

yes, these are the NJ ins co.s that post huge farking profits year after year.
 
2012-11-05 10:16:10 AM

KrispyKritter: and then they raised our rates through the farking roof.

this was the 3rd time our house was damaged by neighbors trees


Would you want to insure a house that keeps getting hit by trees?
 
2012-11-05 10:32:23 AM
I wouldn't mind if premiums for houses on the beach went up ten-fold. It's not my fault you decided to build just a few feet above sea level/a few yards from the ocean.
 
2012-11-05 10:40:12 AM

mjohnson71: I wouldn't mind if premiums for houses on the beach went up ten-fold. It's not my fault you decided to build just a few feet above sea level/a few yards from the ocean.


Really, it should be the job of the zoning authorities to adjust the rules of where and how you can build, not the insurance companies.
 
2012-11-05 10:49:47 AM
Really, it should be the job of the zoning authorities to adjust the rules of where and how you can build, not the insurance companies.

It should be the job of the insurance companies to set the premiums..and they will where allowed by the states, who typically jump-in and screw it up for everybody.. see Florida.
 
2012-11-05 10:55:33 AM

Vegan Meat Popsicle: You wanna know if human-induced global warming is real? Let's ask the people who are actually having to pay the costs of it right now and see what they think.

I have to wonder if all the bogus, industry-funded studies by oil companies and manufacturing and the like to try and minimize or deny the reality of climate change will eventually start to come under fire from insurance and real-estate who are actually having to bear the initial brunt of the costs associated with it.

It made some cynical sort of sense that the people causing the problem had a financial incentive to try and deny and bury that reality as long as possible, but now that there are actual costs associated with the problem they're causing, are we going to start seeing industries battling each other over this issue?


Hurricanes existed long before humans did anything to increase the concentration of greenhouse gasses.
 
2012-11-05 11:06:13 AM

mjohnson71: I wouldn't mind if premiums for houses on the beach went up ten-fold. It's not my fault you decided to build just a few feet above sea level/a few yards from the ocean.


THIS. You decide to buy/build a house at a higher risk area than other places, you pay the extra premium.

MugzyBrown: Vertdang: Awwww, poor them.... actually having to live up to their end of the bargain.

/the heart bleeds.

Carriers paid out of $5B for Irene last year.


Well, that's what the premiums that their customers are paying each month is suppose to cover.
 
2012-11-05 11:28:14 AM

MugzyBrown: Vertdang: Awwww, poor them.... actually having to live up to their end of the bargain.

/the heart bleeds.

Carriers paid out of $5B for Irene last year.


And made over 3 times that in profit, minimum (I keep seeing a $13B profit figure for health insurance in 2011 alone, so total industry profits must have been at least that high or higher, Irene or no Irene).

I've always said that Insurance, as a business / service, is the only fundamentally flawed enterprise in modern capitalism. Its most basic and universal business model is in fundamental conflict with any value it could bring to its customers or the marketplace. Basically, Enlightened Self Interest should mean that the more Value you bring to the market (your customers), the more profit you will make, all other things being equal. Customers will seek out the best value and funnel their revenue to you, over time.

In Insurance, the less Value you bring to your customers (i.e., the larger the difference between your premiums and claim payments), the more profit you generate. You will always fundamentally be in conflict with the service you are supposed to be providing. I do not see any way to reconcile the two as a privately-held, for-profit enterprise. It MUST always screw people, as hard as it can possibly get away with, or go out of business (either through insolvency, or, more likely, being out-competed by other insurers screwing harder than they are).

With conventional goods & services, you can make the argument for short-term gains by screwing your clientele (lower quality = cheaper overhead, then raise prices to maximize profit), but you always open up the possibility (however remote due to regulation, prevailing economic conditions, barriers to entry, etc.) of someone coming along and doing the job better (if not necessarily cheaper) than you. With Insurance, this tactic of competition would be self-defeating (because "better" in the eyes of the customer is "actually paying claims instead of fraud and theft"), ensuring that only the worst insurers remain in the marketplace, paying the fewest claims as possible. No one has any incentive to undercut or undermine your fraud, since that same fraud is exactly what's healthiest for them. What's the point of an entire industry predicated on collecting revenue and then NOT providing a service?

I'm not normally in favor of nationalizing industry, but I've never been able to think of a way a private insurer could ever be both reliably profitable (as private investors invariably demand) and not defraud policyholders as a standard practice at the same time.
 
2012-11-05 11:37:12 AM

eKonk: MugzyBrown:
Obviously it has to do with claims they will be paying for Sandy, along with Irene, it's causing them to reevaluate which areas are considered risky for wind/storm damage.


Can't wait for the first articles complaining that companies aren't paying for flood damage

When all is said and done, I'm guessing there aren't any major changes with respect to wind policies/coverages/deductibles. It doesn't look like the wind damage was particularly severe (except in terms of power loss).

But you're right, the flood damage is going to be the story once the claims start being discussed. Pretty much all the photos showing significant damage have been caused by flooding/storm surge. I hope people had the right coverage, particularly those on the barrier islands that got washed away.


I don't even want to know what flood insurance on a barrier island in the North Atlantic would cost. I can't even imagine a company that would quote such a policy when you can only get flood insurance for a hilltop house 5 miles from the nearest koi pond and 7 from the nearest stream worthy of the name in my town from federal insurers... You probably couldn't insure a friggin' blimp hangared in the Sahara against flooding without mortgaging your DNA.
 
2012-11-05 11:40:44 AM
Always love insurance threads. All the outrage and butthurt oozing from people who pay for a certain coverage and then, when they do have a loss, they go look up what they bought and find the loss wasn't covered in the way they thought. Then, of course, they blame the insurer, their Agent, the 'small print', basically anything except themselves.

...but...but...but the insurance company is ripping me off! They're making Zillions! They take my money and refuse to pay! They're making me fill out a form that's complicated fercryingoutloud!

Amazing as it may seem, insurance companies aren't really allowed to take your money then not pay if what they insure suffers a legitimate, covered loss. If it's not a covered loss, they can - and will - tell you to go eff yourself.

/yes, I do work in the insurance industry.
 
2012-11-05 11:42:31 AM

TheOtherGuy: I don't even want to know what flood insurance on a barrier island in the North Atlantic would cost. I can't even imagine a company that would quote such a policy when you can only get flood insurance for a hilltop house 5 miles from the nearest koi pond and 7 from the nearest stream worthy of the name in my town from federal insurers...


The NFIP is very inexpensive.. and that's the problem.

A quote for a condo for $250k in coverage w/ a $25,000 deductible that sits on a pier over the ocean was $1,771 2 weeks ago.
 
2012-11-05 11:44:51 AM

TheOtherGuy: In Insurance, the less Value you bring to your customers (i.e., the larger the difference between your premiums and claim payments), the more profit you generate. You will always fundamentally be in conflict with the service you are supposed to be providing. I do not see any way to reconcile the two as a privately-held, for-profit enterprise. It MUST always screw people, as hard as it can possibly get away with, or go out of business (either through insolvency, or, more likely, being out-competed by other insurers screwing harder than they are).


The usual counterpoint here is that if an insurance company doesn't treat its customers well, they will lose business to competition. Competition solves everything! There are two huge problems with this derp. First, insurance premiums are an almost textbook definition of delayed gratification. You really don't know what you're getting into until it's too late, and research only goes so far. You could pay your premiums for twenty years only to find the company fights you in court over a small, legit claim. What's your recourse, write an angry post on Consumerist? They've already made their money many times over and good luck finding an insurance company that doesn't have its fair share of haters. Second, insurance by nature has high costs of entry and so dependent on name recognition that only wealthy investors have the resources to start an insurance company. . . but the wealthy aren't the ones with the incentive to rock the boat here.

I basically use insurance for approvals. I need insurance to get a mortgage, I need insurance to drive, etc. I'll do due diligence on claims but I don't ever expect them to honor their obligations.
 
2012-11-05 11:46:27 AM

stellarossa: Amazing as it may seem, insurance companies aren't really allowed to take your money then not pay if what they insure suffers a legitimate, covered loss.


Technically. I've seen them fight legit claims for five years in an effort to get the claimant (?) to give up. After all, the legal fees will always bankrupt the little guy first.
 
2012-11-05 11:46:58 AM

TheOtherGuy: I've always said that Insurance, as a business / service, is the only fundamentally flawed enterprise in modern capitalism. Its most basic and universal business model is in fundamental conflict with any value it could bring to its customers or the marketplace. Basically, Enlightened Self Interest should mean that the more Value you bring to the market (your customers), the more profit you will make, all other things being equal. Customers will seek out the best value and funnel their revenue to you, over time.


You've always thought like a fool then.

Do you know what insurance provides? Financial stability. Without an insurance company willing to back your $300,000 home in case of a fire, you never get your mortgage.

Without insurance companies a business never gets off the ground.

Who would ever invest $50m addition to build an apartment complex, only to have a welder let a spark go down the wall and burn the whole thing down? Real Claim

Where a worker could forget to tie off his ladder and fall 20 feet to the ground and bankrupt your business? Real claim

Where an old lady could trip on your curb and lose an eye on a piece of rebarb and bankrupt your business? Real claim
 
2012-11-05 11:47:07 AM

MugzyBrown: HotIgneous Intruder: A contract is a contract corporate biatches.

Ya know the article is about insurance company models, as in how the determine rates and deductibles and coverage, not about paying claims for Sandy.


Fails to mention that the insurance industry has an exception to the Shermen Anti-Trust Act and can work together to determine rates and deductibles.
 
2012-11-05 11:49:16 AM

eKonk: MugzyBrown:
Obviously it has to do with claims they will be paying for Sandy, along with Irene, it's causing them to reevaluate which areas are considered risky for wind/storm damage.


Can't wait for the first articles complaining that companies aren't paying for flood damage

When all is said and done, I'm guessing there aren't any major changes with respect to wind policies/coverages/deductibles. It doesn't look like the wind damage was particularly severe (except in terms of power loss).

But you're right, the flood damage is going to be the story once the claims start being discussed. Pretty much all the photos showing significant damage have been caused by flooding/storm surge. I hope people had the right coverage, particularly those on the barrier islands that got washed away.


Yeah, those houses that blew away were definitely not by wind.

Just like Katrina. No wind damage at all, only flood damage.

/they even screwed over Trent Lott when he was a Senator
 
2012-11-05 11:52:49 AM
Fails to mention that the insurance industry has an exception to the Shermen Anti-Trust Act and can work together to determine rates and deductibles.

It's a bad thing that when you're in a business that depends on a huge amount of statistics that companies would together to compile their statistics?

You fail to mention that most states handcuff the rate flexibility and coverages insurance companies use.
 
2012-11-05 11:54:51 AM

mcreadyblue: Yeah, those houses that blew away were definitely not by wind.

Just like Katrina. No wind damage at all, only flood damage.


Yeah and those $60 Billion of payments made by insurance companies was imaginary.
 
2012-11-05 12:03:13 PM

Bippal: finnished: They should talk to my health insurance carrier. They're pretty good at not having to pay.

I just had a svt stroke on my birthday, and am already screwed because of the multitude of different ways my insurance has found to not pay for things. I have an hsa plan that was pretty much only supposed to be good if I had what they deem catastrophic health issues such as this, but nope, they've so far found a way out of pretty much everything. My neurologist apparently wasn't something I needed, nor the labs I needed, etc. Not being able to work and insurance screwed on top of almost dying on my birthday was pretty sweet. When I first got my insurance claims I was fairly certain they time it so you aren't in your right mind and intentionally add to your stress .

/sorry for the thread jack , been a rough few months


Take your story to the news agencies. They will need something to fill the endless gap the election will cause after the fact, plus it will help put the screws to the insurance company to pay up. It makes it hard for them to sell new policies when visible issues are in the news.

Be more cutthroat than they are. Treat them like the scum they think you are. Do not let them get away with it. Then when its all said and done.. Sue them for additional stress related issues that stemmed from a situation that shouldn't have happened.

Once enough clients do this over time, they will stop their petty games of not paying for what they should pay for.
 
2012-11-05 12:29:15 PM

poisonedpawn78: Bippal: finnished: They should talk to my health insurance carrier. They're pretty good at not having to pay.

I just had a svt stroke on my birthday, and am already screwed because of the multitude of different ways my insurance has found to not pay for things. I have an hsa plan that was pretty much only supposed to be good if I had what they deem catastrophic health issues such as this, but nope, they've so far found a way out of pretty much everything. My neurologist apparently wasn't something I needed, nor the labs I needed, etc. Not being able to work and insurance screwed on top of almost dying on my birthday was pretty sweet. When I first got my insurance claims I was fairly certain they time it so you aren't in your right mind and intentionally add to your stress .

/sorry for the thread jack , been a rough few months

Take your story to the news agencies. They will need something to fill the endless gap the election will cause after the fact, plus it will help put the screws to the insurance company to pay up. It makes it hard for them to sell new policies when visible issues are in the news.

Be more cutthroat than they are. Treat them like the scum they think you are. Do not let them get away with it. Then when its all said and done.. Sue them for additional stress related issues that stemmed from a situation that shouldn't have happened.

Once enough clients do this over time, they will stop their petty games of not paying for what they should pay for.


CSB time

When I went in,they thought I had meningitis, or West nile, at first, that might have been better, because it would have been easier to take care of, but the batch of meds they would have used to take care of meningitis here in Indiana was highly likely to have been the tainted one that's killing people, so that would have been bad in hindsight. When i started getting my insurance statements, they didn't pay any of my labs while I was in the hospital. They said they weren't necessary for what I was in for. I was on heparin, for breaking up the clot in my brain. Three times a day, to make sure I was on JUST the right amount, too much and I hemorrhage and bleed out, not enough and i stroke out and die. So yea, not necessary at all. so 27 labs at like 50 bucks a piece. Neurologist, not needed in a stroke case. Good call company. my out of pocket maximum is stated at like 10k for my policy from anthem, but somehow my portions of the bills total almost 15k, and that doesnt make any sense to me, but they have yet to explain it in a satisfactory manor to me. When I got out and was sent home, I couldn't take any OTC meds for the headaches, only narcotic pain meds, which blew, but what could I do? They gave me prescriptions for Oxys and Hydros, went to get them filled, gave my pharmacy the scripts, and they quoted me around 580 dollars for the oxys. Called the insurance company and they said that since my deducible hadnt been met yet, i had to pay full price for the pain meds. My bill hadn't been processed yet, so of course my deducible hadn't been met yet. I have no idea how to handle the insurance company other than how Ive been calling and emailing them with their online system of fighting claims. I have another appointment with my neurologist and an MRI Wednesday to see if I need a shunt or if more heparin and coumadin therapy is needed. All I know is years of paying 60 some dollars a week in premiums and they sure as hell found a way to keep as much of my money as possible. God knows how much of my employers money they have on top of that.
 
2012-11-05 12:38:20 PM

mjohnson71: I wouldn't mind if premiums for houses on the beach went up ten-fold. It's not my fault you decided to build just a few feet above sea level/a few yards from the ocean.


But but but then prices will go up!!! We need the NFIP to make sure that rates for extremely risky property stay low, through taxpayer subsidization. People who build or buy property in risky areas should never have to pay for the true risk of their waterfront property. That just wouldn't be fair!!
 
2012-11-05 12:41:42 PM
I can only assume people defending insurance companies make their livelihood through insurance or possibly protection rackets.
 
2012-11-05 12:54:58 PM

TheOtherGuy:

I don't even want to know what flood insurance on a barrier island in the North Atlantic would cost. I can't even imagine a company that would quote such a policy when you can only get flood insurance for a hilltop house 5 miles from the nearest koi pond and 7 from the nearest stream worthy of the name in my town from federal insurers... You probably couldn't insure a friggin' blimp hangared in the Sahara against flooding without mortgaging your DNA.


I have no idea what the actual premiums are like, but if I was personally putting my money on the line, a house on a barrier island would have insanely high premiums (or deductibles) or ridiculously low policy limits. There really is no other way (unless you count government subsidies) to stay in business, as barrier islands are guaranteed to flood at some point, and the flooding is always severe due to the lack of high ground and solid bedrock.

Anyway, there is something of a solution to the apparent conflict of interest in insurance - at least in theory. Mutually held insurance is a great business model, as those who stand to profit from not paying claims are the same who benefit by the payment of those claims. Of course, the reality is that if you're a small fish in any pond, you're not going to have much influence, and it's hard to find a company that could provide coverage to only a small pool of small customers and still be counted on to remain solvent when losses start coming in.
 
2012-11-05 12:59:53 PM

swahnhennessy: I can only assume people defending insurance companies make their livelihood through insurance or possibly protection rackets.


I do work for a property insurance company, but I see no cause to defend anyone in this thread (at least in terms of property insurance - Bippal seems to have a good case against a health insurer). Are you going to bring up a specific case of an insurance company not paying a valid claim? Or do you just need a faceless corporation to hate?
 
2012-11-05 01:04:53 PM

Debeo Summa Credo: mjohnson71: I wouldn't mind if premiums for houses on the beach went up ten-fold. It's not my fault you decided to build just a few feet above sea level/a few yards from the ocean.

But but but then prices will go up!!! We need the NFIP to make sure that rates for extremely risky property stay low, through taxpayer subsidization. People who build or buy property in risky areas should never have to pay for the true risk of their waterfront property. That just wouldn't be fair!!


While beach houses and other high risk locations are most definitely an issue, the fact that house prices ran amuck for years everywhere is a big contributor as well. That 1 million dollar house that is now worth 250k still needs to be insured at a price that will repair/replace damage. Builders are still charging the same they did when the house was worth 1 mil.

All those buyers, realtors, builders and closing attorneys share the blame when it comes to high insurance costs.

I'm not sure where or why the American Dream now means you must buy a overpriced house to keep realtors and developers afloat or the economy will crash and we will all be doomed.
 
2012-11-05 01:07:29 PM

mcreadyblue: eKonk: MugzyBrown:
Obviously it has to do with claims they will be paying for Sandy, along with Irene, it's causing them to reevaluate which areas are considered risky for wind/storm damage.


Can't wait for the first articles complaining that companies aren't paying for flood damage

When all is said and done, I'm guessing there aren't any major changes with respect to wind policies/coverages/deductibles. It doesn't look like the wind damage was particularly severe (except in terms of power loss).

But you're right, the flood damage is going to be the story once the claims start being discussed. Pretty much all the photos showing significant damage have been caused by flooding/storm surge. I hope people had the right coverage, particularly those on the barrier islands that got washed away.

Yeah, those houses that blew away were definitely not by wind.

Just like Katrina. No wind damage at all, only flood damage.

/they even screwed over Trent Lott when he was a Senator


Which houses were blown away? I have seen a lot of photos of missing shingles and siding, broken windows, and trees on/in houses - all doubtlessly significant to the homeowners, but relatively minor in the grand scope. I have not seen the type of catastrophic wind damage that you normally see in major hurricanes (GIS for Hurrican Andrew for that). Most of the major damage I have seen from Sandy has been due to storm surge, but if you can point to cases of significant wind damage, I would like to see them before I recant my statement.
 
2012-11-05 01:08:12 PM
I work in the insurance industry as an agent. When it comes to your policies, don't just accept what the salesman/agent told you, actually read the policy, especially in part that said 'exclusions'. The policy is a contract that was accepted at will by the client, drawn up by the insurance agency. If you have a claim and the insurance company denies it and you take it to court, the judge is going to look at the contract/policy and rule based on that, nothing else. Case in point, I have a friend who's father was dying of cancer. He had a life insurance policy and a cancer rider attached to it. The agent told them not to worry, this was all they were going to need. Her father dies of cancer, they open up the policy and find that under 'exclusions', cancer was listed. So the life insurance policy wasn't going to pay, even though the agent said it would. Then they read the cancer rider, it also listed cancer under the exclusions. So they were paying money for a cancer rider that wouldn't pay out on a cancer death, even though the agent said it would. So the family got nothing and are suing that agent and that company. They also filed a complaint against the agent with his state to strip him of his license. I don't know if that's going to work or not.

Another thing, when it comes to insurance, you get what you pay for. Don't be surprised if that insurance company that you've never heard of with a C rating with the BBB never pays. New York Life may be more expensive, but they've got enough money that if they had to pay every claim tomorrow they'll still have over $18billion. Primerica is far from one of the best places to work, but their life insurance is one of the best. Both New York Life and Primerica paid death claims to the families of September 11th. Primerica really had no choice, their only exclusion is to not pay on a suicide on the first two years of a policy. New York Life has the common exclusion of not paying if death occurs in a war zone. So they didn't have to pay, but they did anyways because they decided that it was the right thing to do.

Coverage with AFLAC is needed. If your boss doesn't want to offer it, call an AFLAC office and ask for a direct sell. If you're hurt or injured and can not work, you're not bringing in any money or not equal to what you were making, but your bills are still there and still need to get paid. Major Medical is not going to help you make the rent or your car payment. I recommend AFLAC because they did supplemental insurance first and they pay most claims in under a week. I read a statistic last week that of the people who had to file bankruptcy due to expenses caused by medical issues, 75% had major medical insurance. The bankruptcies were due to the other bills like housing, car, student loans, credit cards, etc...

If you buy, for example, flood insurance and never read it, never take it out of the plastic bag it comes in, and read after you've been flooded out of your home, that flooding is never covered, I have no sympathy for you. Always read your policies and if it is a case where it's a flood policy and it says "doesn't pay in the event of a flood" or it's a life insurance policy that excludes just about any type of death, you need to find out instantly so you can either turn it down on the spot or drop it instantly and find a company that will actually protect you.
 
2012-11-05 01:09:27 PM

eKonk: TheOtherGuy:

I don't even want to know what flood insurance on a barrier island in the North Atlantic would cost. I can't even imagine a company that would quote such a policy when you can only get flood insurance for a hilltop house 5 miles from the nearest koi pond and 7 from the nearest stream worthy of the name in my town from federal insurers... You probably couldn't insure a friggin' blimp hangared in the Sahara against flooding without mortgaging your DNA.

I have no idea what the actual premiums are like, but if I was personally putting my money on the line, a house on a barrier island would have insanely high premiums (or deductibles) or ridiculously low policy limits. There really is no other way (unless you count government subsidies) to stay in business, as barrier islands are guaranteed to flood at some point, and the flooding is always severe due to the lack of high ground and solid bedrock.

Anyway, there is something of a solution to the apparent conflict of interest in insurance - at least in theory. Mutually held insurance is a great business model, as those who stand to profit from not paying claims are the same who benefit by the payment of those claims. Of course, the reality is that if you're a small fish in any pond, you're not going to have much influence, and it's hard to find a company that could provide coverage to only a small pool of small customers and still be counted on to remain solvent when losses start coming in.


Yeah, it's too bad there are no big mutual insurance companies. I've only been able to find little rinky dink mutuals like State Farm.

How are are they supposed to compete against the big mean stockholder owned insurers when they only write $50b in annual premium?
 
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