Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that the Department of Financial Services would be releasing a series of new regulations to help expedite Sandy-related insurance claims, according to City and State.
“The problem is one of scale and quantity,” Cuomo said at a press briefing on Thursday, according to City and State. “You have about 360,000 people that have insurance claims right now, so you can imagine the overwhelming task of getting 360,000 claims adjudicated and administered in a relatively short period of time.”
With the new regulations, insurance companies will now be required to send an insurance adjuster to a home within six days – much quicker than the current requirement of arriving within 15 days. Cuomo also wants to allow for an increased number of public adjusters who will be available to advocate for the homeowner.
According to City and State, the Department of Financial Services will also post a public report card on its web site to hold insurance companies accountable for their performance.
One interesting new regulation is that homeowners will be allowed to do their own construction work without an adjuster’s approval if there is a health and safety issue that needs to be addressed. Homeowners who decide to take repairs into their own hands will still be required to keep records and receipts and take photographs of the damage to get insurance reimbursement.
The regulations would go into affect immediately, and Cuomo has said that if adjusters are still slow to address homeowners they will face a $1,000 penalty for each day that they are late, according to City and State.