Some people are claiming in news stories and social media posts that policyholders, like those affected by Hurricane Harvey, need to file their claims before Sept. 1 or they will lose some of their rights.
This is simply not true.
Here are the facts from the Texans for Lawsuit Reform:
- The normal claims process has not changed. A person making a claim with their insurance company after Sept. 1 will go through the same process as a person making a claim before Sept.1.
- Consumers continue to have a full range of remedies in the event an insurer acts fraudulently or in bad faith.
- HB 1774 applies to lawsuits filed after Sept. 1, 2017.
- The Texas Department of Insurance will, as always in catastrophic events, be monitoring the activities of insurance companies to make sure that claims are being paid properly and promptly.
- Consumer protections in Texas include the full recovery of amounts owed under an insurance policy, plus penalty, interest, court costs, and attorney fees.
The primary purpose of the new statute is to require written notice of a dispute before a lawsuit is filed.
REMEMBER: Once you are safe, contact your insurance company to notify them about your claim. However, you are under no obligation to do this by Sept. 1.
Our thoughts and prayers are with each of our policyholders and all Texans affected by Hurricane Harvey.