Insurance News

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May 25, 2011

Missouri Department of Insurance offers guidance for Joplin tornado victims

Tips for filing claims, avoiding home repair fraud

Jefferson City, Mo. - The Missouri Department of Insurance says a high volume of insurance claims has already been filed by Joplin residents, and guidance for consumers is posted on the department's website. The information includes:

The online information will be updated as more information becomes available from insurance companies. The companies listed make up 80 percent of the Joplin market for homeowners insurance and 75 percent for auto insurance.

Insurance Director John M. Huff and other department officials have been in contact with senior leadership from Missouri insurance companies since the storm struck.

"For consumers with property damage, the time to act is now," said Huff. "Consumers should move quickly to protect their property and file claims with their insurance companies."

Huff on Thursday will visit Joplin to tour the mobile claims centers set up by insurance companies throughout the city. Huff and other employees of the Department of Insurance will also attend the community response meeting Thursday afternoon in Joplin beginning at 4 p.m. at the Taylor Performing Arts Center on the campus of Missouri Southern State University.

Huff says many insurance companies will begin paying claims very soon to cover temporary living arrangements for consumers with homes left uninhabitable by the storm.

Huff's department says if you have storm damage, the key is to act quickly:

Consumers can file complaints immediately with the Department of Insurance at insurance.mo.gov, or by calling the Insurance Consumer Hotline at 800-726-7390.

About the Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions & Professional Registration

The Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions and Professional Registration (DIFP) is responsible for consumer protection through the regulation of financial industries and professionals. The department's seven divisions work to enforce state regulations both efficiently and effectively while encouraging a competitive environment for industries and professions to ensure consumers have access to quality products.

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