RELEASE: Insurers Encouraged to Provide for Continued Coverage In Wake of Maui DisasterPosted on Aug 21, 2023 in INS, News Releases
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE AND CONSUMER AFFAIRS
KA ʻOIHANA PILI KĀLEPA
JOSH GREEN, M.D.
GOVERNOR | KE KIAʻĀINA
NADINE Y. ANDO
DIRECTOR | KA LUNA HOʻOKELE
GORDON I. ITO
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 21, 2023
Insurers Encouraged to Provide for Continued Coverage In Wake of Maui Disaster
Insurance Commissioner Memorandum Requests Insurers to Work With Insureds as Hawaiʻi Recovers
HONOLULU — Wildfire disasters in Hawaiʻi and Maui counties resulted in the loss of life and property. The wildfires also destroyed records and prevented access to the resources necessary for insureds to make premium payments or to submit claims. To provide the Maui community time to heal and to ease its burden, the State of Hawaiʻi Insurance Commissioner issued Commissioner’s Memo 2023-3A to encourage all admitted and non-admitted insurers in the state to work with their insureds to ensure continued insurance coverage as our islands work toward recovery.
“We are asking insurers to refrain from cancelling or non-renewing policies, to grant a grace period for premium payments, and to work with their insureds,” said Insurance Commissioner Gordon I. Ito. “Communication between insurers and insureds is key to the recovery process. Therefore, we are asking the insurance companies to work with their insureds to make sure their coverage continues during this difficult time for a period of 60 days or longer.”
Commissioner’s Memo 2023-3A also asks that the insurers extend the timeframe to complete property and automobile inspections or to undergo medical exams.
The Hawaiʻi Insurance Division issued a declaration authorizing the temporary assistance of nonresident independent adjusters to operate in the State of Hawaiʻi. The measure will help insurance companies and adjusting firms handle the volume of claims that is anticipated as a result of the wildfires that ravaged the islands of Maui and Hawaiʻi County.
If you have sustained a loss, contact your agent or insurance company as soon as possible. File a claim with your agent or directly with your insurance company by visiting its website or calling its local or toll-free number.
“One of the most pressing needs families will face is finding temporary housing. Homeowners and renters insurance policies may provide coverage for additional living expenses if a covered loss makes your home uninhabitable,” Ito said.
When contacting your agent or insurance company:
- Ask whether the policy provides for additional living expense that covers temporary shelter expenses. Keep all hotel and meal receipts.
- Ask if your policy covers the cost of housing as you rebuild.
- Go over the claims procedure.
- Review the forms you need to fill out.
- Find out how much time you have to file the claim.
- If you do not have a copy of your policy, ask if a copy can be emailed to you.
The state Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs’ Business Registration Division (BREG) today also announced the temporary waiver of fees for businesses affected by the wildfires to obtain Certificates of Good Standing and any copies of business registration documents filed with BREG. Fee waivers are in effect through December 31, 2023 and requests for Certificates of Good Standing, copies, or certified copies with the fee waiver must be made through one of the following methods:
- Email: [email protected]
- Phone: (808) 586-2727 (Select Option 1)
- Fax: (808) 586-2733
If you have questions or need assistance, the Hawaiʻi Insurance Division is available to provide in-person support on Maui at the FEMA Disaster Resource Center (DRC) located at UH Maui College. The public may also contact the Insurance Division by phone at 808-586-2790 or by email at [email protected].
For insurance resources and more information on navigating the insurance claims process when dealing with fire and disaster claims, visit https://cca.hawaii.gov/fireclaims.
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The Hawaiʻi Insurance Division regulates the Hawaiʻi insurance industry, issues licenses; examines the fiscal condition of Hawaiʻi-based companies; reviews rate and policy filings; and investigates insurance-related complaints.
Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs
Email: [email protected]
Phone: (808) 586-7582