The state says the fire risk map did not affect insurance [Baker City Herald, Ore.]

The state says the fire risk map did not affect insurance [Baker City Herald, Ore.]

Aug. 15—Oregon’s insurance companies have not used, and do not plan to use, a fire risk dispute resolution map when determining potential damages or costs, according to a study released by the state agency on Friday, Aug. 12.

The results of this study contradict one of the complaints it originated Oregon Department of Forestry remove the map that has been released to the public June 30.

Homeowners and state lawmakers cited cases in which people whose properties were deemed at high risk for fire on the map had problems with their insurance, including policies that were not extended.

But a Oregon Division of Financial Regulation On Friday he said in a press release that “insurance companies are Oregon they have not used, and currently have no plans to use, fire risk maps for decision making. “

The hazard map is part of Senate Bill 762, a 2021 bill passed by the Legislature. Oregon Gov. Kate Brown signed into law.

The law addresses a number of issues related to wildfires in the state, including wildfire prevention and protecting rural buildings from fires. The bill required the government to draw a map, by June 30, 2022to indicate the risk of wildfires to each of the Oregon to 1.8 million in taxes.

Oregon Department of Forestry and Oregon State University they agreed on the creation of a map, which, in addition to the level of danger, showed which elements are within what is known as the nature of wildness – WUI, areas in and near forests and areas where wildfires tend to occur.

Homeowners who are within the WUI and have been rated as high or dangerous may be required, under Senate Bill 762, to take measures, such as tree trimming, to protect their property. The residents may also have to comply with strict building codes.

But concerns about how the fire hazard map will affect residents’ insurance have sparked many complaints, including from City of Baker County two senators, Sen. Lynn FindleyR-Valeand Rep. Mark OwensR-Crane.

State Forester Cal is on fire he announced Aug. 3 that the map has been removed and replaced.

Mukumoto said the government did not hesitate to inform people about the map and ask people to comment on the map.

As for the controversy surrounding the map affecting the insurance industry, government officials say this is baseless.

According to Division of Financial Regulationbefore the government releases the map June 30The insurance company officials told the government, which the press release described as “unstructured negotiations,” that they do not want to use the upcoming map.

Get started Aug. 2after hearing concerns from residents that the risk map is affecting the provision of insurance, the government conducted a survey of insurance companies, which are required by state law to answer honestly, according to the newspaper.

The government surveyed about 150 insurance companies that provide coverage for homeowners Oregon to answer these questions:

-Does the company use state maps for testing or writing?

(The valuation determines the value of the asset, and the underwriting is a way of assessing the risk of issuing a policy.)

-Does the company use the state map for any other purpose?

-Does the company plan to use the state map for any purpose in the future?

According to the press release, both companies said they do not use maps for reading or writing, nor do they intend to use them.

The press release also stated that the state has not received requests for insurance changes that include a fire hazard map as a feature.

“This confirms what we knew: Insurance companies are not using fire risk maps,” Oregon Insurance Commissioner. Andrew Stolfi he said in a press release. “Insurance companies have been using their risk maps and other risk management tools to assess wildfire risk for many years in making reading and writing decisions. Their risk maps, as well as discussion of new wildfire risk maps. We encourage insurers and agents to be careful with how they report labeling decisions and ratings.”

Consumers with questions or complaints about insurance can contact Financial Regulation’s section call consumer advocacy at 888-877-4894 (toll free) or file a complaint online at dfr.oregon.gov.

Get started Thursday, Aug. 11and Division of Financial Regulation issued a statement, signed by Stolfi, to all insurance companies selling homeowner’s policies expressing concerns about companies using fire risk maps.

The article stated that although the companies refused to use the map, “it may be a violation of the Insurance Act to falsely claim that it will be added or decisions to prevent the publication of the fire risk map.”

“It is very important that consumers receive accurate information about the decisions they make in their decision-making process,” the bulletin says.

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