South Carolina Issues Emergency Order to Insurers, Updates Hurricane Florence Data Call

October 1, 2018

The South Carolina Department of Insurance has issued two Hurricane Florence-related notices to all property and casualty insurers doing business in the state.

SCDOI Director Ray Farmer issued an emergency regulation Sept. 14 designed to protect insurance consumers as they recover from Hurricane Florence, according to a statement from SCDOI.

The emergency regulation imposes a 60-day moratorium on cancellations for nonpayment of premiums and on nonrenewals for insureds directly impacted by Hurricane Florence. The 60-day moratorium began Sept. 14, 2018, and ends Nov. 13, 2018.

“This emergency regulation will help South Carolinians by giving them some extra time to focus on their family and immediate needs before worrying about insurance notices or paperwork,” said Farmer.

Farmer also issued Emergency Order 2018-EO-001, ordering persons licensed or authorized to transact the business of insurance in South Carolina to comply with the requirements of Emergency Regulation 69-79. The emergency regulation provides a number of other protections for consumers, including:

  • Requiring insurers to consider exceptions to proof of loss deadlines and contract or underwriting requirements for those insureds directly impacted by Hurricane Florence.
  • Prohibiting insurers from canceling or nonrenewing policies solely because of claims resulting from Hurricane Florence.
  • Suspending late payment, reinstatement, or insufficient funds fees along with any other fee, penalty, or interest charge resulting from an insured’s temporary inability to submit premium payments for those insureds directly impacted by Hurricane Florence.
  • Allowing insureds to request a duplicate copy of their policy at no additional cost.
  • Permitting claims payments to be made via prepaid debit card or electronic transfer provided certain conditions are met.

Farmer issued a data call of insurers on Sept. 13 requiring them to complete a claims reporting sheet weekly beginning Oct. 1, 2018, for claims relating to Hurricane Florence for South Carolina policies reported as of Sept. 26, 2018.

However, on Sept. 20 Farmer updated the reporting dates and reduced the number of required reporting cycles from 10 to four. The final report is due Jan. 7, 2019.