State Insurance Commissioner signs ordinance to protect homeowners’ insurance policies
TWAIN HARTE, Calif. (KTXL) – In response to the wildfires that broke out this year in the state, California Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara signed an order protecting hundreds of thousands of California insurance policies.
While owners and local leaders are grateful to have this safety net, the moratorium only lasts for a year and many are worried about the future.
When the Washington Fire broke out in Sonora last summer, Betsy Hurst told FOX40 she was ready to evacuate if she got the call.
âI packed my suitcase. I packed some food. I packed our trailer and left them by the front door, âHurst recalls. âIt didn’t matter how far away you were. It looked like you could smell ashes falling on your property.
The threat of forest fires is a costly way of life for people living in rural counties, like Tuolumne.
âI’ve seen them between $ 1,800 for the year and over $ 3,500. I’ve heard people say they got quotes for $ 6,000, âsaid Hurst.
Home and fire insurance is chargeable, and homeowners are at the mercy of businesses that can cancel their policies or refuse to renew them.
âI actually received a non-renewal from a vacation cottage I own, and it’s been over a month and I haven’t received a quote yet. I tried two different companies, âsaid Hurst.
Tuolumne County Commissioner Anaiah Kirk said a recent moratorium signed by Lara protects homeowners’ policies, but it’s not a long-term solution.
âI know I need to have several different types of insurance. The fair shot is exactly like the base shot and then I have to get other outlines, âKirk explained. âWe need ideas, and we need proposals because, right now, just kicking the box is not going to solve the problem. “
The moratorium now includes homeowners’ insurance policies in 115 postcodes near disaster areas.
âSigh of relief, yeah, sigh of relief, and you know, my fingers crossed for everyone,â Hurst said.
Kirk said he recently sent a letter to the insurance commissioner offering alternative solutions.
âInstead of just funding the liability and growing it more and more, let’s put that money back on the ground in the community so that we can actually mitigate and stop these wildfires,â Kirk said.
With the moratorium, Hurst knows she’s covered for another year, giving her some peace of mind, but she said more needs to be done.
âI hope that other insurance companies, and of course Commissioner Lara, will continue to work on drawing up fairer plans. Even though we have the California FAIR Plan. We need something more fair for the owners, âsaid Hurst.
For those who want to know if their postal code is included in the moratorium, tap or click here.
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