Insurance may be the one thing that you can’t buy when you need it most. People don’t generally like to buy something they don’t need, and not many people enjoy reviewing an insurance policy. But when a hurricane or tropical storm is bearing down on your neighborhood, your insurance coverage may be all you can think about.
Many insurance carriers like Georgia Farm Bureau place moratoriums on new property and casualty policies, as well as on coverage changes, during natural disasters including hurricanes, tornados, flooding and wildfires. An insurance moratorium, also referred to as a binding restriction, places a temporary halt on writing new business or making changes to an existing policy for a certain timeframe.
“Implementing a moratorium on binding new coverage when a storm is nearby is something all insurance carriers do, and something to keep in mind if you need to buy insurance coverage on property that can be damaged by storms,” says Richard Hart, Director of Sales Training at Georgia Farm Bureau. “Carriers usually have reinsurance – that is insurance they buy for other companies to protect them in the event of large single-storm losses. These reinsurance contracts require carriers to cease binding coverage when storms approach.”
For example, during Hurricane Michael, Georgia Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company placed a moratorium on new coverage in the state of Georgia. Moratoriums are determined by weather predictions within a certain region. When a Hurricane or Tropical Storm enters the area, senior management declares a moratorium on binding all property coverage for the entire state until the storm either leaves the area or has dissipated.
If you have questions about a current or potential moratorium, please contact your Georgia Farm Bureau agent for assistance. There are exceptions to the rules and your agent can help you navigate the process.
It is important to note that while Georgia Farm Bureau may not bind coverage during a moratorium, you can still receive a quote from your agent about future coverage.
According to Richard Hart, the best way to protect yourself and your home is to review your coverage before disaster is on your doorstep.
“Don’t wait to get the coverage you need,” says Hart.
Contact an agent today to review your coverage.