December 28, 2015

Department of Insurance offers guidance to Missourians impacted by severe weather

Gov. Nixon declared state of emergency on Dec. 27 in response to widespread flooding

Jefferson City, Mo. - Following recent severe weather that impacted parts of the state with flooding, snow and sleet, the Missouri Department of Insurance is reminding Missourians if they have questions or concerns about their insurance coverage to contact the department's Insurance Consumer Hotline at 800-726-7390 or visit insurance.mo.gov.

"If you have questions regarding what your policy covers, we are here to assist," said John M. Huff, director of the department. "We have trained technical experts standing by who can help review policies and assist with claims if needed."

On Dec. 27, Gov. Jay Nixon declared a state of emergency in Missouri as heavy rain, flooding and flash flooding impacted much of the state. More heavy rain and additional flooding is expected through Monday (Dec. 28), and river levels are forecast to continue to rise over the next several days.

Generally, homeowners insurance does not offer protection against flood losses. Homeowners should check their policies for exclusions, such as 'water damage'.  

Flood insurance is available through the federal government's National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). It may be purchased through licensed property and casualty insurance agents or through many private insurance companies. Typically, there's a 30-day waiting period from date of purchase before a policy goes into effect. There are eligibility restrictions to qualify for National Flood Insurance. Consumers should contact the NFIP with eligibility questions at 800-427-4661 or visit the NFIP's website.

If homeowners have lost the contact information for your insurance companies, the department may be able to help locate it. Homeowners can contact the Missouri Department of Insurance at insurance.mo.gov or by calling 800-726-7390.

The department recently released a video podcast that discusses flooding and what a typical homeowner's insurance policy does not cover. The video is posted on the department's website.

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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