Six months have passed since Hurricane Michael hit the Florida Panhandle, causing 49 deaths and more than $5.5 billion in damage. During that time, the roads have been cleared, the power has been restored, and FEMA has paid out $1.1 billion for response and recovery efforts. However, the environment, homes and people who live there are still far from back to normal.
A recent Washington Post article reports that the “lingering destruction” from Hurricane Michael has, in fact, made the people living in the affected Panhandle area feel forsaken. The government has not passed a major disaster-relief supplemental-funding bill for long-term recovery, and insurance companies have been very “stingy.” As a result, debris and destruction still alter the landscape, while lack of permanent housing and loss of economic security leave thousands of residents in continuing crisis.
According to the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation, of 144,667 Hurricane Michael-related claims filed, only 68% have been paid; 13% were not paid; and 19% are still open. Homeowners, mobile homeowners, and commercial property owners alike have been denied payment or are still waiting for payment from their insurance companies.
If your insurance claim has been denied, underpaid, or delayed, it’s time to call an experienced Florida hurricane damage attorney. At Malik Law, we’ve helped clients collect hundreds of thousands of dollars from insurance companies. We are available 24/7 to help you get paid what you deserve.
Whether you live in the Florida Panhandle or not, the long-lasting effects of Hurricane Michael should give you pause. None of us can ever be completely prepared for the devastation and aftermath of a hurricane. However, we can keep a few things in mind to help us deal with insurance companies.
Fortunately, scientists are predicting the upcoming hurricane season will be relatively quiet, or at least, less destructive than 2018. However, the devastation of Michael still lingers, and the threat of hurricane damage, even during a quiet season, is always present.
Florida Office of Insurance Regulation. (29 March 2019). Hurricane Michael claims data. https://www.floir.com
Sullivan, P. & Achenback, J. (2019, April 6). Survivors of Hurricane Michael in the Florida Panhandle fear they have been forgotten. The Washington Post. https://www.washingtonpost.com