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  • Writer's pictureKyle Staggs

What is a Named Storm Deductible?


Hurricane named storm in Florida waves and palm trees

Named storm deductibles are particularly common in areas prone to severe weather events, like our home State of Florida.  


Legally, this type of deductible comes into play when a storm, such as a hurricane or tropical storm, has been officially designated with a name by the World Meteorological Organization or the U.S. National Weather Service. The purpose of this deductible is to limit the insurer's exposure to catastrophic losses from major natural disasters. They are designed to encourage property owners to take preventative measures to minimize potential storm damage, as they will be responsible for a larger portion of the repair costs. 


Named storm deductibles are a specific type of insurance deductible that applies when damage is caused by a storm that has been officially named by the National Weather Service. These deductibles are typically higher than standard ones and understanding them can be challenging for policyholders. Commonly, the named storm deductible is separate from other deductibles in your insurance policy. For example, a policy might have a separate deductible for other perils, such as fire or theft. Understanding the specifics of these deductibles is key to assessing the true cost of insurance coverage and the potential out-of-pocket expenses following a named storm.  


This is where our expertise at Florida Property Damage comes into play. We know Named storm deductibles significantly impact home and business owners in several ways. The most immediate impact is financial. Unlike standard insurance deductibles, which are typically a set dollar amount, named storm deductibles are usually a percentage of the insured value of the property. This means that the deductible could be significantly higher than a standard deductible, especially for high-value properties near our law firm in Tampa Bay.  



The Impact of Named Storm Deductibles on Home and Business Owners 


Named storm deductibles have significant implications for Florida residents due to the state's susceptibility to hurricanes and tropical storms.  


Following a bad storm or hurricane is a confusing and stressful time for many property owners. Many owners may not realize they have a named storm deductible until they file a claim after a storm. This can lead to unexpected out-of-pocket costs. Unlike traditional claim deductibles, which are a fixed dollar amount, named storm deductibles are typically a percentage of the insured property's value. Which is why it's crucial for property owners to thoroughly understand their unique insurance policies and to consult with knowledgeable professionals like Kyle Staggs, Esq. to ensure they are adequately covered. 


After a significant storm, many property owners may need to make repairs or even rebuild. If large numbers of people are facing high deductibles, this can lead to a surge in demand for local contractors and construction materials, which can drive up prices and lead to delays restoring your space to pre-loss condition. 


Knowing that a higher deductible may apply is meant to serve as motivation for property owners to invest in preventative measures to protect their property, such as installing hurricane shutters or reinforcing roofs. These measures can reduce the potential damage from a storm and thus the amount of an insurance claim. 


Remember: the trigger for a named storm deductible is the naming of the storm, not the declaration of a state of emergency or the categorization of the storm's severity. The deductible applies regardless of whether the damage is direct (caused by wind, rain, or debris from the storm) or indirect (such as loss of power leading to other damage). 


 

A ‘Named Storm’ deductible refers to a provision in an insurance policy that stipulates  a higher deductible for damages caused by a storm that has been officially named by the National Weather Service. This deductible is typically expressed as a percentage of the insured property's value, rather than a flat dollar amount. These deductibles are generally 2, 5, or 10 percent of the amount of insurance at the time of loss. 

 


Recent Named Storm Deductible Examples



Note: Every policy, like every storm, is different. Please contact us for specific advice that suits your unique property claim case. 

 

We all recall the news and weather reports for recent significant weather events: Hurricane Ian. Hurricane Idalia. Hurricane Esla. And the list goes on for local named storms.  


In practice, let's say a homeowner in Florida has a policy with a dwelling coverage limit of $250,000 and a named storm deductible of 5%. If a named storm like Hurricane Irma causes damage to their house, they would be responsible for $12,500 (5% of $250,000) of the repair costs before their insurance coverage kicks in


In some cases, the named storm deductible may apply to the dwelling coverage and to other coverages in the policy, such as personal property or loss of use coverage. For example, if a named storm causes damage to a homeowner's personal belongings or makes their home uninhabitable, the named storm deductible may apply to these losses as well. 


Another example could be a business owner in Florida who has a commercial property insurance policy with a named storm deductible. If a named storm like Tropical Storm Eta causes damage to their business property, the named storm deductible would apply. The amount of the deductible percentage due would depend on the specific terms of their policy. 


It's important to note that the named storm deductible only applies if the damage is caused by a named storm. For instance, if a home is damaged by a severe thunderstorm that was not given a name by the National Weather Service, the standard homeowners insurance deductible would apply, not the named storm deductible.  


Named Storm Damage Insurance Claim? Seek Legal Advice 


Overall, while named storm deductibles can help insurance companies manage risk, they also present significant financial and coverage challenges for Florida residents. It's crucial for homeowners and business owners to understand these implications and to carefully review their insurance policies before a named storm strikes.  


These deductibles can impact the affordability and availability of insurance in Florida. In areas with a high risk of named storms, some insurers may choose not to offer policies at all. (You may have already noticed insurance companies like Citizen's moving out of Florida.) Sadly, high deductibles may deter some homeowners from purchasing adequate coverage in the future. 

Florida Property Damage, led by Kyle Staggs, Esq., has spent many years advising home and business owners on insurance claims, policy interpretation, and dispute resolution. His expertise in named storm deductibles is rooted in a deep understanding of the complexities of insurance policies and the unique insurance landscape in Florida. 


Our property claims law firm has guided many clients through filing claims and negotiating settlements related to named storm deductibles. Clients choose us for our ability to clearly explain the intricacies of their specific deductibles and to advocate effectively for our client’s best interests. 


If your home or office has experienced damage from a recent named storm or you have questions about this type of insurance deductibles, contact Kyle Staggs, Esq. He is a seasoned Florida claims attorney with a specialized focus on named storm deductibles. We are here as a valuable resource for anyone seeking to understand this complex aspect of insurance law, with the overarching goal of making your property whole again. Contact our law firm, we're happy to discuss your case. 



 

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