How Is COVID-19 Affecting Claims Handling For Hurricane Damage?

 Tuesday, June 16, 2020

 World Economic Forum

As tropical storms become more likely, COVID-19 is changing the ways resulting insurance claims are handled. New tools and practices can help insurers work within physical distancing guidelines, for example.

A survey of claims-related organizations reveals how the sector plans to change its processes for this year’s hurricane season.

Over the past five years, hurricane activity has varied. In 2016, we saw the first hurricane to make landfall in Florida since 2005, and that followed an even quieter 2015. Then, in 2017 and 2018, five hurricanes affected some of the largest and most frequently hit coastal states, including Florida, Texas, and North Carolina.

Insured losses for the five storms are approaching $100 billion. Insured losses for the two that had the greatest impact on Florida — Hurricanes Irma and Michael — are still developing as a result of certain localized issues associated with claim handling.

Hurricane Irma’s overall insured loss estimate has been moving for nearly three years, longer than any other catastrophe tracked by PCS.