California Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner, local, state and federal oficials, as well as insurance industry representatives recently hosted a town hall-style Insurance Recovery Forum for Triangle Fire survivors in Yorba Linda, Calif. According to the Department of Insurance, 1,965 claims were filed as a result of that fire that burned in November 2008.
“Thousands of homeowners were hit hard by the November wildfires in Southern California, and my heart goes out to all fire survivors for everything they have had to endure,” Poizner said. “The Triangle Fire ripped through communities in Eastern Los Angeles, Riverside and San Bernardino counties, destroying 131 homes. But I want all fire victims to know that they are not alone on the road to recovery. My Department is here to help until every last insurance claim is paid.”
Since the wildfires broke out in Southern California in November, 5,151 residential and commercial property claims have been filed, and 718 of those claims are known to be total losses, with an estimated exposure for insurers of $637 million. More than $250 million has been paid out by insurers so far.
As a result of the Triangle Fire, 1,965 residential and commercial property claims have been filed, and 134 of those claims are known to be total losses, with an estimated exposure for insurers of $228 million. Nearly $78 million has been paid out by insurers to Triangle Fire survivors. Commissioner Poizner has ordered his Department to continually monitor these numbers to make certain that insurers are meeting their obligations to pay all valid claims presented to them.
The Department’s Consumer Services Division has received 60 consumer complaints from fire survivors. Nine of those complaints are from the Triangle Fire. One of the complaints from the Triangle Fire is related to underinsurance. The remaining complaints include claim denial, claim delay and low settlement offers.
Commissioner Poizner will continue to monitor the wildfire recovery efforts, assist consumers with complaints and make sure that insurance companies are fulfilling their legal obligations to customers. The Insurance Recovery Forum was the third in a series of forums hosted by the commissioner in the communities impacted by the recent wildfires. A forum for Tea Fire survivors was held on January 29, and for the Sayre Fire survivors on January 7.
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